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  1. Nebraska just lost at home to Northern Illinois. 21-17 Duke is beating Baylor 31-20. The biggest upset of the day is Aggy leading Louisiana in the 4th, 45-21. They were down by a TD at the half. Never saw this one coming, will surely hurt Louisiana's bowl chances. Memphis is hanging with Aggy slayer UCLA, 45-41 in the 4th. Gulp, . . Ohio beat Kansas 42-30. Oklahoma State looks unbeatable right now.
  2. Photo courtesy TexasSports.com With the 2015 Big XII Conference schedule starting up this weekend, I'd like to give my predictions on how I see us matching up with our conference foes. A few disclaimers and thoughts before I begin. I am a Texas alum, first and foremost. I am a fan. I won't hide this. That said, I really do try to remain somewhat realistic throughout the season. I don't want to get caught up in the "fire the coach," "small ball sucks," and/or "so-and-so can't play X position on this team/at this level." Leave that for other sites. I am neither a professional journalist nor former professional athlete/coach. I just try to "call 'em like I see 'em." Much to my displeasure, I am not able to attend a lot of UT baseball games in person. I do try to get down to one series in Austin, and one West Coast series if time allows. Otherwise, I am a follower like many of you, via LHN and radio broadcasts. My style, (if you will,) of calling a game is pretty straight forward. I do Play by Play, sometimes with a bit of color injected for good measure. I will recap an entire inning from start to finish, so I may not be following as closely to "Live" as you'd like. If an inning runs long, there's a good chance I'll post what I have and continue in the next post. I do this because I enjoy it. Bottom line. I would like to think of myself as a "Teddy" starter kit. Teddy is the announcer from Bull Durham. Although that is probably far too much self praise. Ha! If there is something you'd like for me to do differently, look into, answer, please feel free to ask. I'll try to get it done/answered for you. Sit back and enjoy 2015, as we're about to get rolling. Big XII Conference preview Schedule: Fri. 3/13 West Virginia 6 PM LHN Sat. 3/14 West Virginia 5 PM LHN Sun. 3/15 West Virginia 12:30 PM FOX Sports 1 Fri. 3/20 Kansas St. 6 PM LHN Sat. 3/21 Kansas St. 2 PM LHN Sun. 3/22 Kansas St. 1 PM LHN Fri. 4/3 @ Oklahoma St. 7 PM Sat. 4/4 @ Oklahoma St. 6:30 PM ESPNU Sun. 4/5 @ Oklahoma St. 1 PM ESPNU Fri. 4/10 Oklahoma 7 PM LHN Sat. 4/11 Oklahoma 3:30 PM LHN Sun. 4/12 Oklahoma 2:30 PM LHN Fri. 4/17 @ Kansas 6 PM ESPN3 Sat. 4/18 @ Kansas 2 PM ESPN3 Sun. 4/19 @Kansas 1 PM ESPN3 Fri. 4/24 @ TCU 6:30 PM Sat. 4/25 @ TCU 4 PM Sun. 4/26 @ TCU 1 PM Fri. 5/1 Texas Tech 6 PM LHN Sat. 5/2 Texas Tech 2 PM LHN Sun. 5/3 Texas Tech 1 PM LHN Sat. 5/16 @ Baylor 3 PM Sun. 5/17 @ Baylor (DH) 1 PM & 3 PM We've already seen the Horns play 17 games, posting an 11-6 record. While this is not a stellar record, it's just about where I thought we'd be thus far. If you will recall, in my Non-Conference Preview, I had Texas finishing non-conference at 23-5, but I'd be happy with 20-8. Looks like the Nebraska series will be the determining series for my predictions, although we'll have one less game due the cold-out, (I have a hard time typing that,) cancellation against USD. A few other notes about the Horns right now. Texas currently has played the #5 toughest schedule in the country. For comparison, UT opponents USD #1, Rice #10, Stanford #3. Texas' RPI sits at #18. For comparison, UT opponents USD is #5, Rice #15 and Stanford #17. Big 12 opponents RPI as of now: TCU #60, Baylor #37, Tech #183, Oklahoma #113, Oklahoma St. #43, Kansas #131, Kansas St. #61 and West Virginia #20. Say what you will about Augie, but he darn sure doesn't shy away from playing solid teams early in the season. This will pay huge dividends in not only conference play, but also in the post season. Let's look at the matchups: West Virginia: UT wins 3 of 3 WVU comes in with a 7-6 record. While their record doesn't really look that good, they did open the season taking 2/3 at Clemson, before dropping 5 of their next 7. They got back on track last weekend with a sweep of E. Tennesee St. WVU's pitching staff is led by RHP Donato, (2-2, 1.44 ERA,) and LHP Vance, (1-2, 2.16 ERA.) Both are solid, racking up a combined 43 Ks in their combined 8 starts. They can be hit, giving up 45 hits in those same 8 starts. At the plate, OF Kyle Davis is their leading hitter, (.365/.431/.558) with 8 RBIs and 8 XBH. Senior SS Tyler Munden from Lewisville, TX is not far behind, (.356/.394/.695) with 11 RBIs and 10 XBH including 5 HRs. While their HRs are impressive with 17, they have not exactly faced stellar opposing pitching. WVU will try to manufacture runs, which is evident by their 22 SAC Bunt attempts in 13 games, (compared to UT's 15 in 17 games.) Although WVU has some talent on their roster, they don't match up well with Texas. If the Horns come to play, this series should be a sweep. Kansas State: UT wins 3 of 3 Kansas State will come to Austin with a rough non-conference performance. Their current record is 8-8, while their only win over a team with a current record over .500 came against Washington State in the Big 12/Pac 12 Challenge. K St. will throw Griep (2-1, 2.60 ERA) and Fischer (1-1, 3.66 ERA) They have struck out 43, walked 19 and given up 35 hits in a combined 8 starts. Their bullpen is a by-committee setup, with 7 of their 11 pitchers of record logging a minimum of 5 appearances. At the plate, Kraus (.353/.411/.412) and Dalrymple (.341/.453/.386) are their leaders. K St. is not a power hitting team, with only 2 HRs and 33 XBH in 16 games. Like WVU, K St. will play some small ball. They've had 30 SAC Bunt attempts in 16 games. Texas should sweep the Wildcats in Austin. @ Oklahoma State: UT wins 1 of 3 Oklahoma St. currently has an RPI of 37, and sports a 9-6 record. Picked by many to be one of the top 3 in the Big 12, they have not had the start that Manager Josh Holliday probably was looking for. Losses (2/3) to Arizona St. and Illinois (2/3) sandwiched a solid performance in the Big 12/Pac 12 Challenge where they went 3/4, with their only loss coming at the hands of Oregon St. This team is still a work in progress. OSU pitching is led by Perrin (2-2, 3.66) and Freeman (2-0, 2.38) Both have solid command of several pitches. They like you to put the ball in play. Combining for 35 Ks vs 10 walks with 31 hits in 8 combined starts backs this up. Their closer is Cobb, and he has 16Ks in 13 IP. CF Green (.373/.500/.559) and 2B Arakawa (.350/.417/.500) are their hitting leaders. While they're not a true power-hitting team, they will push runs across however necessary. They've racked up 115 runs in 15 games. 33 SAC Bunt attempts in 15 games show that Holliday is not afraid of small ball. Going to Stillwater is never an easy task, and I think this may be the series that creeps up on us. I could see us taking 2/3, but my gut tells me we may drop this one and Augie & Co use it as a teaching moment. Oklahoma: UT wins 2 of 3 OU is playing some good ball right now. They are currently 12-7 with solid wins over Washington, Oregon St. and Utah in the Big 12/Pac 12 Challenge, 3/4 from BYU and 2/3 from Purdue. They dropped 2/3 to Notre Dame and lost games to Washington State and Arizona State early. On the hill, the leaders are Hansen (2-1, 3.68) and Elliott (2-1, 3.28) Hansen is a hard thrower, (mid to upper 90s,) and Elliott has a low 90s fastball with a good slider. 59 Ks, 18 BBs in 8 combined starts, but when they're hit, they're hit hard-giving up 40 hits in that same time frame. There are some very serviceable arms in their bullpen, and I'd imagine we'll see a good dose of them throughout the weekend in Austin. Oklahoma has some solid bats, led by CF Aiken, (.377/.423/.506) with 14 RBIs, and Soph SS Neuse, (.343/.400/.614) with 5 HRs and 22 RBIs. OU loves to swing the bat. They have 21 HRs on the season so far, and 102 Ks. They'll play a bit of small ball, (33 SAC bunt attempts,) but their bread and butter is swinging away, (61 XBH.) OU always plays us tough. I see taking 2/3 in this series, and I'll be very happy with that. @ Kansas: UT wins 3 of 3 I'm not real sure what's going on in Lawrence, but it isn't pretty. Kansas currently sits with a record of 6-11, and they've played the #131st toughest schedule in the country with an RPI of 185. That is ugly. They have struggled thus far and have yet to win a series. They did go 2/2 in AZ at the Big 12/Pac 12 Challenge, but that may be the lone bright spot for the Jayhawks. On the hill, Kansas has four tabbed starters, none with an ERA lower than 5.21. Edwards, Morovick and Krauth have given up 69 hits in 60.3 innings. At the plate, 2B Wright (.375/.507/.464) is one of th bright spots for Kansas. 1B Blair (.304/.391/.643) has also been hitting the ball well with 5 HRs and 12 RBIs. Kansas is not a small-ball team, although they may try to manufacture some runs if the chips are down. I see Texas taking the brooms out in Lawrence. @ TCU: UT wins 2 of 3 The ONLY team in the Big 12 with a higher ranking (2) and higher RPI (4) than Texas is TCU. This should be a great weekend of baseball in Ft. Worth. TCU is currently 11-2, with their only losses coming against Arizona St and USC. On the bump, TCU probably has one of the best staffs in the country. Preston (3-0, 0.75,) Traver (2-0, 0.83) and Young, (3-0, 1.29) are as solid as they come. In the pen they have Teakell and Ferrell with ERAs under 1.32. Texas will have its work cut out for them with this staff. Patience will pay huge dividends, working deep counts and not hacking away at pitches will be key. At the plate, TCU is not a power hitting team. They are winning games mostly with pitching. They have only 4 HRs on the season. Steinhagen (.333/.349/.381) and Brown (.318/.375/.386) are their leaders. 32 SAC Bunt attempts in 13 games-small ball will come into play. TCU is strutting a bit right now, and I think that Texas can go in there late in the season and take 2/3 from them, provided we have a solid effort from our pitchers, defense and our hitters are patient. 2/3. Texas Tech: UT wins 3 of 3 Tim Tadlock's bunch has been playing good ball, albeit against some pretty weak competition. They're sitting at 11-4, but have fallen from their pre-season rank of #16 down to #24. Their losses were to Nevada and 3/3 to Cal St. Fullerton. Tech was picked to finish around 3 or 4 in the Big 12, depending upon the ranking service you looked at. They're projected to be playing in the post season, but it remains to be seen what they can do against good competition. On the mound, Dusek (2-1, 2.20 ERA) and Damron (2-0, 2.66 ERA) are leading the charge. Traylor, Moreno, Brown, Mushinski and Patterson all have had solid games out of the bullpen thus far. At the plate, Tech is not a power hitting team, but they will hit the ball. They have 55 XBH with 11 HRs. With only 19 SAC Bunts, small ball isn't something that Tadlock is doing a lot of. They hit a lot of singles. Tech has a bit of a swagger going on, but they're coming to the Disch. I think they go back to Lubbock with 3 more losses on their record. The Texas baseball machine should be primed and ready by the first weekend in May. @ Baylor: UT wins 3 of 3 After an opening weekend sweep of Cal Poly, Baylor had dropped 9/12. Sitting at 6-9, you may want to go back and read the Kansas preview. Baylor is struggling. They're currently on a 7-game losing streak. "Rose goes in the front big guy." On the hill, starters Tolson (0-2, 4.63,) Castano (0-2, 2.65,) and Kay (2-1, 4.02) are not lighting the world on fire. 71 hits, 32 Ks, 16 BBs in a combined 10 starts. At the plate, the Bears appear to be shuffling the lineup quite a bit to find out what might work for them. Baylor isn't a power hitting team, with only 3 HRs. Brown (.327/.444/.423) seems to be the only constant. With 35 SAC Bunts, they're clearly pulling out all the stops to get something going. Texas should finish out the regular season with a sweep in Waco. I realize this sounds pretty optimistic, but I like where this team is headed from what I've seen so far. Quick Joeywa Recap I see Texas' Big 12 conference record at 20-4. I'll be happy with 17-7. Thoughts?
  3. Our buds over at EERinsider.com gave their EARLY projections on how the post-season would shake up in the Big XII. Check the article out here - Way Too Early Big 12 Bowl Projections | April. They have Texas finishing 4th in the conference with OU, West Virginia and Okie State taking the top 3 spots. Damn they have some confidence in their team! Coacky bastages! LOL.
  4. Runnin' Horns vs. Fightin' Irish on the hardwood? At the sand volleyball court? Might happen! I wouldn't mind.
  5. The stat we all know - Mack Brown is "Cash Money" after an OU loss. Meaning, he ALWAYS beats the team he plays the week after. Is this streak in jeopardy? I THINK NOT. Stay on the wideouts and put pressure on Weeden. Time to right the ship which is tilting just a wee wee bit.

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