Happy Friday, friends and fans!
While the Big Ten and Pac-12 are officially moving forward with the conference games-only model for 2020, the Big 12 remains one of the final Power Five leagues that has yet to make an official decision. In the case of the Oklahoma Sooners, all 12 of its originally scheduled contests are currently still on the table, but that could change drastically in the next two weeks. Brian Davis of the Austin American-Statesman has more details.
Big 12 presidents could wait two more weeks, maybe longer, before making fall sports decisions. Tech president: “We still have time.”https://t.co/pV6LV75GGT— Brian Davis (@BDavisAAS) July 23, 2020
Texas Tech President Lawrence Schovanec says ‘We still have time’, but if or when the league needs to make a formal decision on going forward with the schedules as they are or switching to conference games only, the Big 12 ‘will be prepared to act very quickly and pivot on a dime.’
For OU, it’s honestly quite amazing that the chance to play 12 regular season games still exists, but for another Big 12 team like TCU, the non-conference schedule has already turned sideways as programs from other leagues and sub-divisions have either postponed the start of the 2020 season or canceled it altogether.
Either by the end of this month or sometime during the first week of August, the Big 12 should have an answer on what the 2020 college football season will look like ‘round these parts.
Now onto this week’s Friday edition of Hot Links! Oklahoma is well-represented in the MLB on Opening Day, Cedarian Lamb inks a deal with the ‘Boys, a high school recruit makes his commitment in the most 2020 way possible and more!
- On Thursday, OU released another round of COVID-19 test results. Out of 96 football players tested, none came back positive for coronavirus. Further, the team has maintained an active case count of zero among student-athletes and staff members.
- Redshirt senior LB Caleb Kelly was named to the 2020 Danny Wuerffel Trophy watch list — an honor reserved for a player who best combines community service with academic and athletic achievement. In the past, Oklahoma’s Gabe Ikard (‘13), Ty Darlington (‘15) have earned the award. Also, former Sooner Trevor Knight (‘16) was named its recipient during his lone season at Texas A&M.
- Senior cornerback and kickoff return specialist Tre Brown has been named to the 2020 Paul Hornung Award watch list. This honor is for the top player in the nation whose role as an impact player comes at multiple positions. In his career, Brown has amassed 1,121 kick return yards (21.2 yards per attempt), and on defense he has recorded 110 total tackles and an interception.
- A total of eight former Sooner baseball players are on MLB Opening Day rosters, five of which are currently players while the other three are with their clubs as coaches.
- Rookie WR CeeDee Lamb has agreed to terms with the Dallas Cowboys and has signed a four-year contract for nearly $14 million. Boomer!
Around the Sports World
- A proposal being presented to the ACC Board of Directors could allow the Notre Dame Fighting Irish to qualify for the ACC Conference Championship in football this fall. Currently, ND has a built-in partnership with the ACC that mandates the Irish play a pre-determined number of teams from the conference every season.
- Houston Rockets guard Austin Rivers has left the Orlando bubble to tend to a reportedly urgent family matter. He is expected to return eventually, but of course, he will have to self-quarantine for a required four to 10 days before fully re-joining the team.
- Tiger Woods has decided to skip the 2020 WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational that starts July 30 to gear up for the PGA Championship Major on Aug. 6-9.
- A group of Kentucky Wildcats faculty members are pushing a motion to change the name of historic Rupp Arena for its ties to former UK coach Adolph Rupp and his ties to racial exclusion during the Civil Rights Era.
- Class of 2021 forward R.J. Keene out of Tomball, Texas has likely made recruiting history by becoming the first high school prospect to announce his verbal commitment (Boise State men’s basketball) via mask choice. If there’s a greater sign of the times out there, I haven’t seen it. In any case, congratulations to the young man.
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