Happy Friday, friends and fans!
If you haven’t heard, Bruce Feldman broke some big news today, reporting that Alex Grinch is set to be the DC for the Oklahoma Sooners. Before we get to that... VOTE FOR BAKER!
Baker Mayfield needs your help to win NFL Rookie of the Year. Click here or check out the tweet below to enter your vote for the finalist you feel deserves to be named the 2018 ROY.
Even if you’re biased, there are plenty of legitimate, justifiable and objective reasons why you should vote for Mayfield that aren’t based on his OUDNA. First of all, he was named Rookie of the Week seven times this season, while the other four finalists combined for just six of those honors. Next, Mayfield changed the culture in Cleveland, a franchise that has been thought of as one of if not the hardest place to win games at. Finally, he broke the all-time rookie passing touchdown record held by Peyton Manning and Russell Wilson, and he did all this while not even starting until Week 4.
Voting ends on January 21st at 2 pm CT. It’ll probably come down to Saquon Barkley and Baker Mayfield. The No. 2 overall pick has been named to the NFL Pro Bowl for his outstanding season with the New York Giants, but I would still give the slight nod to the Browns’ QB for all the aforementioned reasons.
Now onto this week’s Friday edition of Hot Links! Theo Wease Jr. balled out, Buddy Hield continues to wow, West Virginia has found their next head coach and more!
- Alex Grinch, co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach at Ohio State in 2018 and DC at Washington State from ‘15-’17, is reportedly being named Oklahoma’s next defensive coordinator. The young coach’s track record is very promising, as he was named a semifinalist for the nation’s top assistant in 2017. This was first reported by The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman.
BREAKING: #OhioState’s Alex Grinch is expected to become the next defensive coordinator at #OU, per source. He was a semifinalist for the 2017 Broyles Award. Grinch worked wonders at WAZZU turning a defense ranked outside the top 100 into one ranked No. 34 by the time he left WSU— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) January 4, 2019
- Speaking of Grinch in 2017, his defense took on the moniker of “Speed D”, coming from the style of aggressive play he instilled in his group. Against fast-paced offenses, it only makes sense that the defense needs to run just as fast, if not faster, at every level. Under his instruction, WSU’s defense rose towards the top of the Pac-12 that season, and they did so with less than talent than much of their competition.
- Looking at Grinch’s defense at Wazzu in 2017 and Oklahoma’s in 2018 side by side, there really is no comparison. The Cougars did far more with far less than the Sooners. I’m loving this hire more and more with results like these.
Quick look at Alex Grinch's 2017 Washington State defense compared to Oklahoma's 2018 defense between Mike Stoops and Ruffin McNeil: pic.twitter.com/osN66KVkvb— Kegan Reneau (@KeganReneau) January 4, 2019
- Here’s a video of Grinch following his introduction to the Ohio State coaching staff in early 2018.
- Three Big 12 teams made it onto Athlon’s way-too-early top 25 college football rankings for 2019, and Oklahoma leads the way at No. 4.
- Five-star wide receiver signee Theo Wease Jr. showed out in the Under Armour All-American Game on Thursday night. Check out this sick catch he nabbed in the end zone for six, followed by a little treat for Longhorns everywhere. Boomer!
- Wease was robbed of one touchdown after he went up for the ball and came down with a toe in bounds. There is no review in these high school All-American games, so the call on the field stood, but the talent of Wease is still undeniable.
- Four-star cornerback signee Jaden Davis also played in the UA All-American Game, and not only did he go head-to-head against the star-studded Wease, he won at least one of those battles. Check it out.
- On Saturday, the All-American Bowl kicks off in San Antonio. Check out the Sooner talent that will be on display. From left to right, you see OL EJ Ndoma-Ogar, QB Spencer Rattler, OL Stacey Wilkins, TE Austin Stogner and WR Trejan Bridges.
whole lotta BOOMER out here! pic.twitter.com/FpvIjO0AcM— Spencer Rattler (@SpencerRattler) January 3, 2019
- Seriously, this offensive group that’s being put together in the class of 2019 looks incredibly special. If everything goes as planned, this could be a great photo and caption to revisit down the road.
Me & Spence laughing at how we are going to run through the Big 12 next year pic.twitter.com/BxUBMmui3y— tb (@TrejanBridges) January 3, 2019
- The Oklahoma men’s basketball team is gearing up for Bedlam this Saturday at 1 pm CT. The Oklahoma State Cowboys have struggled this season with a lack of depth and experience, but when these two programs collide, none of that other stuff matters.
A game so big it only needs one word: Bedlam.— Oklahoma Basketball (@OU_MBBall) January 3, 2019
1 pm CT
Fox Sports Southwest
Fox Sports OK+ (Spanish)
Limited GA seats remain
➡️ https://t.co/loVMRmjFGU pic.twitter.com/7BblVIqnCn
- The Norman Transcript’s John McKelvey noted that according to Lon Kruger, starting big man Jamuni McNeace could return to the court soon, but it’s up to him as far as how much pain he can tolerate.
- Speaking of Sooner hoops, I feel like I remember Buddy Hield doing something like this in the Lloyd Noble Center at some point over the course of his four year career in Norman. Awesome stuff.
Buddy does it himself pic.twitter.com/OmQPRtVTeu— Sacramento Kings (@SacramentoKings) January 4, 2019
Around the Sports World
- Well that didn’t take long. West Virginia has hired Troy’s Neal Brown to be its new head coach. Brown led the Trojans to three consecutive double-digit win seasons, and over that time recorded victories over Power Five programs LSU and Nebraska.
- James Harden took down the Golden State Warriors on the road in overtime with this circus shot of a three pointer. My goodness gracious.
- From earlier in the Rockets-Warriors game, the refs missed a blatant out of bounds Kevin Durant as he attempted to save the ball from bouncing out. Really though, how do they miss this? Fortunately the egregious error didn’t result in Golden State winning the game.
ICYMI: The refs missed Kevin Durant stepping out of bounds, which helped give the Warriors a lead with 30 seconds left in OT last night pic.twitter.com/7Kpu8AjHmV— ESPN (@espn) January 4, 2019
- Kawhi Leonard, former Spur turned Raptor, was warmly welcomed by the San Antonio faithful with ‘Traitor’ chants throughout the night. Yeah, it be like that sometimes.
- The Baylor women’s basketball team defeated No. 1 UCONN on Thursday night, snapping the Huskies’ 126 regular season game winning streak.
- A high school basketball team in Missouri is under investigation after it was revealed that the coaches may have swapped free throw shooters during the game because three of the team’s starters are identical triplets. Yup.
Stick to Sports!
- How about a feel good story to take into the weekend? Marci the Labrador was strolling along and just being a dog, only to find herself in the middle of a frozen lake in Hungary. Fortunately, somebody spotted her and called a rescue team to save the pup from potentially drowning or freezing. A nifty inflatable rescue pad was brought out to Marci, and she made it back to land safely and in good spirits.
DOG RESCUE: Firefighters rescued a Labrador from the middle of a frozen lake, using an inflatable rescue pad to slide across Lake Csunya and bring the dog to shore. The dog, named Marci, was in good health and spirits after the incident. https://t.co/Fwf7JQctO1 pic.twitter.com/CxiQSgc7hM— ABC News (@ABC) January 4, 2019
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