The Morning Stake

The Morning Stake: Vote for Beckie; Update on Kolin Hill

Lots of news this Saturday morning, including we need you to vote for Janine Beckie and checking in on Notre Dame transfer Kolin Hill.

Texas Tech to Open Vet School. Via the Texas Tribune, I think this is pretty big and great news, Texas Tech intends on opening up a veterinary medicine school, most likely in Amarillo (although no site has been determined). Texas Tech will have to have approval from the Texas Higher Education Coordinator Board and funding from the Legislature. The reason I’m pulling the Texas Tribune article is because of this:

The news will likely be greeted with glee by the hundreds, if not thousands, of Texas undergraduates seeking careers as veterinarians. Texas Tech said it alone has 150 students on a pre-veterinary medicine track. But spots in veterinary schools in Texas and across the national are limited, and competition is fierce.

A&M officials seemed less excited, and they hinted at another looming higher education turf battle in Texas. Their vet school has been around since 1916 and is considered one of the country’s best. It’s known both for producing most of the state’s veterinarians and for its research. The school claims to be responsible for the first-ever cloning of a calf, pig, goat and deer.

After Tech’s announcement, A&M System Chancellor John Sharp seemed to hint in a statement that A&M was considering expanding its school to other areas in the state.

“As a courtesy, last weekend I informed Chancellor Robert Duncan that the Texas A&M School of Veterinary Medicine would soon announce a presence in several Texas A&M System schools,” Sharp said. “In response, Mr. Duncan comes up with this long-rejected claim we should fund a vet school at Texas Tech. The Coordinating Board has specifically rejected the notion. The Legislature has rejected this for 40 years. We will proceed with our announcement as planned.”

Ah, yes, just one more thing that Texas A&M is trying to block, because, you know, competition is bad.

Nellis a Finalist for Wyoming President Position. Via the LAJ, Texas Tech president Duane Nellis is one of three candidates for the presidency at the University of Wyoming. Nellis is from that neck of the woods, but he’s only been the Texas Tech president since 2013, so you think he would have thought about that before taking the position just 2 years ago.

Vote for Beckie, Don’t Make Coach Kingsbury Angry. Let’s do this:

Smaller Lineup. LAJ’s Krista Pirtle writes about the smaller lineup that Texas Tech head coach Tubby Smith is having to employ due to the transfer of Isaiah Manderson, with Zach Smith considered to have been moved to small forward, but now, Smith is back playing the power forward spot and Justin Gray is playing power forward as well. Here’s Smith:

With five players around the same size on the floor, the Red Raider defense can switch screens without worrying about the opposition benefiting from an egregious mismatch.

Along with the ability to switch, the Red Raiders can move around quickly on the defensive end and slide over to help without being too late.

“Now when people take you off the dribble, you have an extra player that can really guard the dribble penetration, not so much on the ball but on help,” Smith said. “Then they can take the charge. Our guys are willing to give up their bodies.”

Also of note, is that Rokas Ulvydas is currently eligible, but as of right now he only has three years eligible and Texas Tech has filed a waiver to find out if he can have four years of eligibility and would prefer to redshirt him this year. And the staff won’t know about Matt Temple’s status until after finals, but this would seem to be just a situation where Temple has to pass his classes (which you presume, otherwise why would the staff spend so much time with this situation) and he’ll be eligible.

Hold Off on Replacing Turf. LAJ’s Don Williams writes that head coach Kliff Kingsbury wants to wait just one more year before replacing the turf, mainly because Texas Tech is able to play so fast on the turf and there’s no reason to upset that apple cart. Here’s AD Kirby Hocutt:

“Good condition,” Hocutt said. “He (Kingsbury) likes the speed of the surface. So, with that, we’ll work with our partners. It’s a FieldTurf surface, so we’ll bring FieldTurf (personnel) in to evaluate it and make sure it’s up to safety standards that are accepted. If it is, then I think we probably would look at delaying the field returfment project for one more year.”

Zoom. Zoom.

Checking in on Kolin Hill. LAJ’s Don Williams checks in on Notre Dame transfer Kolin Hill, who came to Texas at 6-2/235, but is now up to 255 according to recently let go defensive line coach Mike Smith:

“He was really raw when I got him,” Smith said recently. “He’s going to be a good player. Smart. With him, it’s just teaching him the fundamentals (of) pass rushing.

“When he was at Notre Dame, the only thing they taught him to do was bull (rush). I knew that when I was watching his film.”

I definitely envision Hill being part of the rotation in a big way next year.

Graduate Assistants to Help Fill Coaching Spots. LAJ’s Don Williams writes that Texas Tech will fill their assistant coaching spots with graduate assistants and quality control folks. Sam Fehoko is a graduate assistant, Matt Brock and Brett Dewhurst are quality control staffers and Emmett Jones, director of player personnel, are all being considered as options. Apparently, it is just a matter of obtaining a waiver for those guys to coach during the game, the waiver can be obtained, usually in a day.

“So we’ll have nine individuals on the field coaching for bowl preparations. Who those nine individuals will be in replacement of the three gentlemen that just left us will be coach’s (Kliff Kingsbury’s) decision.”

I’ve Been Everywhere. The coaches were in the Houston area last night seeing LB Brayden Stringer:

Ruffin McNeill Fired at East Carolina. In a move that reeks of everything that’s wrong with this thing, East Carolina fired Ruffin McNeill after going 5-7 this year after going 42-34 overall.


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