Good morning. Breakfast is served.
It’s April 5th — 95 down, 270 to go.
And 189 till the Red River Shoo—umm, the Red River Riv— umm, the Red River Showdown?
YESTERDAY: Colt McCoy threw to Jordan Shipley one more time — at Dell Diamond. Texas baseball beat Baylor in dramatic walk-off fashion. Kevin Durant tied Michael Jordan with his 40th straight game of 25 or more points, but his Thunder fell to the Rockets, who clinched a playoff berth. The Titans said goodbye to Chris Johnson and the Saints said hello to Champ Bailey. And Longhorns running backs coach Tommie Robinson celebrated his 51st birthday.
TODAY: The Final Four — Florida-UConn (5:09 p.m., CBS), followed by Wisconsin-Kentucky (7:49 p.m., CBS). Baylor and TCU hold their spring games. The Aggies close out their spring as well, but won’t play a spring game. Texas baseball hosts Baylor (7 p.m., Disch-Falk, Longhorn Network), preceded by Texas-Texas Tech softball (4, McCombs Field, LHN).
TOMORROW: NASCAR’s Duck Commander 500 is raced, at the Texas Motor Speedway. Texas and Baylor close out their baseball series (2:30 p.m., Disch-Falk, LHN), as does Texas-Texas Tech softball (noon, LHN). The women’s Final Four semifinals are played (Notre Dame-Maryland, 5:30 p.m., ESPN; UConn-Stanford, 7:30 p.m., ESPN).
April 5 has a sports history. On this date, Darryl Stingley died (2007); North Carolina beat Michigan in the NCAA championship game — Chris Webber’s infamous no-timeout timeout game (1993); Kareem Abdul-Jabbar broke Wilt Chamberlain’s career scoring record of 31,419 points (1984); the National Basketball Rules Committee OK’d the dunk shot for college and high school games, nine years after banning it (1976). Think about that while watching today’s Final Four; and the first Olympic Games of the modern era were opened, in Athens, with 311 athletes from 14 nations. There were no gold medals. Winners got a silver medal and a crown of olive branches.
Last year on April 5, Angels slugger Josh Hamilton was booed by Rangers fans every time he stepped up to the plate in Texas’ 3-2 home-opening win. Hamilton, the former Ranger, went 0 for 4 with two strikeouts.
Today’s sports birthdays: Matt Bonner (34). Other notables: Pearl Jam guitarist Mike McCready (48) and Colin Powell (77).
TODAY’S TRIVIA: When he left Texas, Colt McCoy was the all-time leader in victories for a college starting quarterback. Who are the top four now? (Answer’s at the end of Breakfast.)
TODAY’S LEAD: TEXAS VS. OU. Texas won the final Red River Rivalry Game — 36-20, last October. Just like Oklahoma won the final Red River Shootout, 12-0 back in 2004.
Texas vs. Oklahoma, one of college football’s great remaining rivalries, got a facelift again on Friday when it was officially changed from the “Red River Rivalry” to the “AT&T Red River Showdown.”
Note: We did not say it was a needed facelift.
Why the change? Wasn’t needed. Doubt it was wanted. Everyone on this side of the Red River calls it “Texas-OU” anyway. Here’s hoping it just wasn’t a move to sell more T-shirts or, as one tweet suggested, was merely one step closer to becoming the “Red River Sellout.”
Officials explained it as a “brand refresh” for the series, which now comes with a new logo as well.
What the suits are saying:
Texas AD Steve Patterson: “As a University of Texas alumnus, I have long enjoyed the Texas-Oklahoma series and the great tradition it represents for Texas and Oklahoma fans. We look forward to working with AT&T representatives and the University of Oklahoma to generate excitement for the new name and brand, and continuing our relationships with the State Fair of Texas.”
Oklahoma AD Joe Castiglione: “The Oklahoma-Texas game played annually at the Cotton Bowl is one of the grandest traditions in all of college football. We will continue striving to make this contest a truly memorable experience for the student-athletes and fans of both the University of Oklahoma and The University of Texas amidst the unique and colorful atmosphere of the State Fair of Texas.”
Suit takeaways: Patterson went to Texas, we don’t know if Castiglione went to OU, the Longhorns call it the “Texas-Oklahoma game” and the Sooners dub it the “Oklahoma-Texas game.” No great reasons for the name change. But there’ll still be plenty of excitement, uniqueness and colorful atmosphere come Oct. 12.
The Texas-OU series began in 1900, has been played in Dallas since 1912 and has been played at the Cotton Bowl since 1929. It’s the 19th most-played rivalry series in college history. The Longhorns lead it, 60-43-5.
Reaction, predictably, leaned toward the sarcastic side. There were plenty of Twitter alternatives offered up over “Red River Showdown” to the suits who decide such things:
From the Daily Oklahoman’s Jenni Carlson: Red River Shindig, Red River Fete, Red River Klatch, Red River Soiree.
From the AP’s Jim Vertuno: Red River Flap, Red River Battle Royal, Red River Rumpus, Red River Donnybrook, Red River Riot, Red River Rhubarb, Red River Mixer, Red River Smooch, Red River Snuggle, Red River Hoedown.
From our own Michael Adams: Red River Do-Si-Do.
Other tweeted gems — Red River Hootenanny, Red River Sharknado, State Fair Street Fight, Red River Google+ Hangout, Red River Schism, Red River Exchange of Views and Red River Rabblerousing.
The I-35 is Under Construction and a Parking Lot in Both Directions Memorial Shindig, courtesy of the Dallas Morning News’ Corbett Smith.
That’s nearly 25 suggestions for the next Texas-OU reboot. Which, for all we know, could come as soon as 2015.
One final rethinking-the-name thought, from the San Antonio Express-News’ Mike Finger: UT-A&M is now the “Motorola Beeper Hey Remember That Rivalry.”
So, what else is being written about the Longhorns?
Texas 5, Baylor 4. What a game last night at Disch-Falk. The Longhorns, trailing 4-2 and down to their final strike in the bottom of the ninth, got a three-run double from (who else?) Mark Payton. Texas has been living on the edge, if you remember Sunday’s 12-inning win in Lubbock. Here’s our Texas-Baylor ($) game story. The Waco Tribune-Herald’s game account focused not so much on Bears closer Josh Michalec, who loaded the bases in the ninth, but instead on starter Brad Kuntz, who was solid and all but handed Michalec the save.
Last night’s Big 12 scores: Texas 5, Baylor 4. Oklahoma State 3, Texas Tech 1. TCU 4, West Virginia 3. Kansas State 10, Kansas 0. And, in non-conference, it was Oklahoma 4, Cal State-Bakersfield 2.
Texas, at 4-3, is tied for third place in the Big 12 with Okie State. OU leads the conference at 4-2, with West Virginia in second at 2-1.
AROUND THE BIG 12: The conference is beginning to wind down its spring football season, and Baylor and TCU play their spring games today. Our own Suzanne Halliburton took a sweep of the conference, looking at ($) teams’ spring storylines heading into the spring games. Over at Baylor, the Bears are trying to replace star safety Ahmad Dixon, and Orion Stewart looks like he’ll be the guy, according to the Waco Tribune-Herald. The Trib also looked at the next wave of Bears receivers, all of whom hope to follow in the footsteps of Waco-to-pro successes Josh Gordon, Terrance Williams and Kendall Wright. Up in Fort Worth, the quarterback battle comes down to Trevone Boykin and Tyler Matthews. Will either separate today? Quarterback depth-challenged Texas Tech held an open night scrimmage last night, and Jordan Webb threw five touchdowns. Here’s the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal story. The Daily Oklahoman’s Berry Tramel wrote about Eddie Sutton‘s 2003 Oklahoma State men’s team that made a run at the Final Four. It’s been around for a couple of days, but it’s an awfully good read. The Tulsa World was writing about Sooners running backs, not quarterbacks. Looks like Keith Ford will be OU’s tailback this fall. And speaking of OU quarterbacks, former Sooners quarterback Blake Bell, who has been moved to tight end, reportedly suffered a sprained knee and will miss the rest of spring, according to the World.
AROUND THE FORTY ACRES: A quick sweep of UT teams …
Football: The Orange-White Game is April 19 (1 p.m., LHN), or the day before Easter. … On the injury front, offensive tackle Kent Perkins underwent knee surgery and will miss the rest of spring practice. He’s expected back for the fall. … On the recruiting front, the Longhorns have offered Baltimore, Md. QB Kai Locksley and Converse Judson DB Keivon Ramsey this week. … On the Texas Exes front, Colt McCoy signed with the Redskins on Thursday. He’s currently their No. 3, behind Robert Griffin III and Kirk Cousins. … Want to be in a movie? Today’s the day for open auditions for a movie being made about former UT player Freddie Steinmark. Registration for auditions is at 9 a.m. at the Kelly Reeves Athletic Complex (10211 W. Parmer Lane). Up to 200 “football players” are needed.
Men’s basketball: Rick Barnes was named the District 8 coach of the year by the National Association of Basketball Coaches. He’s also one of 15 national finalists for the Jim Phelan Award, given to the country’s top coach.
Women’s basketball: Something to look forward to. Two UT signees — Duncanville’s Ariel Atkins and League City’s Brooke McCarty — had good showings Wednesday night in the McDonald’s All-American Game in Chicago. Atkins led the winning West team in scoring, with 12 points. And McCarty had two steals and an assist in 12 minutes. They’re the first future Longhorns to play in the McDonald’s game since 2012 (Imani McGee-Stafford), and only the 11th and 12th Texas recruits to play in the game since it began in 2002.
Volleyball: Yeah, yeah, volleyball’s a fall sport. But the Longhorns do play in the offseason too, and get their spring action in gear this weekend in the 15-team F.A.S.T. Complex Collegiate Invitational at Houston’s Reliant Stadium. It starts today, with four matches — Texas vs. UTSA (10 a.m.), Oklahoma (11), Texas A&M (1 p.m.) and Rice (2). If you get the wild hair and go, tickets are $10 cash at the door.
Baseball: No. 8 Texas beat Baylor on Friday, 5-4. Game 2 of the Texas-Baylor series is tonight (7, LHN) and Game 3 is at 2:30 p.m. Sunday (LHN). Tonight’s pitching matchup is Texas’ Dillon Peters (3-2, 2.68) vs. Baylor’s Austin Stone (3-2, 1.69). Nathan Thornhill (4-0, 0.88) draws Dillon Newman (3-1, 2.88) on Sunday. … On the recruiting front, Dripping Springs pitcher Chance Callihan, last year’s All-Centex utility player, has committed to Texas.
Softball: Texas (22-15, 2-0) beat Texas Tech (27-13, 0-4) at McCombs Field last night, 5-1. Game 2 of the three-game series is at 4 p.m. today (Longhorn Network) and Game 3 is noon Sunday (also LHN). Taylor Thom homered for the third time in the past two games, and freshman Tiarra Davis pitched a complete game.
Men’s golf: No. 18 Texas plays in the Augusta Invitational today and tomorrow, right before the PGAers invade the area for next week’s Masters. It’ll be played at Forest Hills Golf Club, not Augusta National. The Longhorns have won the event the past two years. No. 7 Illinois, No. 8 Houston and No. 29 Baylor are in the field.
Women’s golf: Natalie Karcher’s 1-under 71 paced Texas to ninth place after the opening round Friday of the PING/ASU Invitational in Tempe, Ariz. Karcher is in 12th place individually. The Longhorns (6-over 294) are eight shots off first-place Washington (284, -4).
Men’s tennis: No. 6 Texas hosts TCU today (11:30 a.m., Longhorn Network) for the final regular-season dual match that’ll ever be played at Penick-Allison, which is being displaced by UT in favor of a new outdoor tennis center. It’s also Senior Day for David Holiner and Sudanwa Sitaram. Texas is 10-0 at home this season. Soren Hess-Olesen was named Big 12 men’s player of the week.
Women’s tennis: No. 25 Texas (8-9 overall, 3-1 in the Big 12) plays at Kansas State (8-8, 2-2) today, then at Kansas (11-6, 2-2) on Sunday. It’s the Longhorns’ final road trip of the regular season.
Rowing: Texas competes in the San Diego Crew Classic today and tomorrow in California.
ON APRIL 5 …
2010: Twenty-nine coal miners were killed in a mine explosion in West Virginia.
1994: Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain committed suicide.
1983: Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean” was the No. 1 song in the country. Other No. 1s on past April 5s? Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face” (2009), 50 Cent’s “Candy Shop” (2005) and “In Da Club” (2003), Falco’s “Rock Me Amadeus” (1986), ABBA’s “Dancing Queen” (1977) and The Beatles’ “Let It Be” (1970) and “Can’t Buy Me Love” (1964).
TRIVIA ANSWER: The top four winningest starting quarterbacks in college football history are Boise State’s Kellen Moore (49-3), Texas’ Colt McCoy (45-8), Georgia’s David Greene (42-10) and Tennessee’s Peyton Manning (39-6).
TODAY’S LITTLE NUMBER: 1-0. All-time record for the Round Rock Express in games where McCoy and Jordan Shipley throw out the first pitch.
TODAY’S BIGGER NUMBER: 17-0. Texas softball’s record this season when holding opponents to two or fewer runs.
TODAY’S BIG NUMBER: 70. Consecutive games that Mark Payton has reached base, the best active streak in the country.
OK, Breakfast is over. Thanks for stopping by.
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