Good morning. Breakfast — or is it more like brunch today? — is served.
It’s August 11th — 224 down, 142 to go.
And 21 till the college football season kicks off.
YESTERDAY: In Rio, the vaunted U.S. men’s hoops team had a pool-play scare, if you can call a 10-point Olympic victory a scare.Texas Rangers slugger Prince Fielder formally retired. The Rangers (Rockies, 1, FSSW) and Astros (at the Twins, noon, Root Sports) both play early games. Former Texas A&M coach Tom Wilson — the guy who replaced Emory Bellard in the middle of the 1978 season — died in Corsicana. ESPN’s John Saunders died as well.
TODAY: Are you ready for some football? The Patriots and Saints kick off the NFL preseason (6:30, NFL Network). And the Olympics continue in Rio.
TOMORROW: More Rio. There are two NFL preseason games to catch on TV (Broncos at Steelers, 6, NFL Network; Raiders at Cardinals, 9, NFL Network). And the Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez plays his final game.
Aug. 11 has a sports history. On this date, Jason Dufner (2013), Mark Brooks (1996) and John Daly (1991) all won PGA Championships; Roger Clemens recorded his 2,000th career strikeout against the Yankees’ Danny Tartabul (1993); the Cincinnati Reds retired Johnny Bench’s No. 5 uniform (1984); Carl Lewis won his fourth track and field gold of the LA Olympics, duplicating Jesse Owens’ four from 1936 (1984); Reggie Jackson hit his 400th career homer (1980); the Dodgers’ Don Drysdale retired (1969); Babe Ruth hit his 500th home run, the first professional player to do so (1929); and the Green Bay Packers were founded (1919).
Last year on Aug. 11, Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee, after sitting out 15 months with a knee injury, was cleared for full contact. He ended up playing 14 games last season. And, for the first time in MLB history, all 15 home teams won their game. The previous record was 12.
Today’s sports birthdays: Patty Mills (28), Craig Ehlo (55) and Terry Bollea — though you know him better as Hulk Hogan (63). Other notables: Chris Hemsworth (33), Steve Wozniak (66).
Wednesday trivia: Let’s celebrate birthday boy Hulk Hogan with a daily double — and then some — with this two-parter. (a) In which Rocky movie did Hogan appear, and (b) what was his character’s name? (Answer, as well as some more HH factoids, is at the end of Breakfast.)
Top of the menu: The Rio Olympics.
A day after UT’s swimmers took center stage on the medal stand, Texas exes scored wins in men’s basketball and women’s volleyball. But the basketball win (98-88) wasn’t the breeze that many expected it to be, and the volleyball team battled back from a 1-1 deadlock after the first two sets. Still, it’s on to the next opponent for both Kevin Durant and Rachael Adams.
After back-to-back 50-point blowout wins, Team USA was tested Wednesday by Australia. Durant scored 14 points and added five rebounds, two blocks and an assist in 34 minutes. He was 2 of 4 from 3-point range.
Team USA (3-0) plays Serbia on Friday, then wraps up pool play on Sunday against France.
Adams, who starred at Texas from 2008-11, posted 13 kills, four aces and a block in Team USA’s 3-1 win over Serbia, 25-17, 21-25, 25-18, 25-19. She led the team in kills.
The win, which secured a quarterfinal berth, improved the U.S. to 3-0 and the Americans now sit atop the Pool B standings. The knockout quarterfinal round begins next Tuesday. The U.S. next faces Italy on Friday (1 p.m., NBC).
Through three matches, Adams has 25 kills, four assists and five blocks.
Today in Rio:
Women’s swimming: Joanna Evans, competing for The Bahamas, goes in the 800 free prelims (11 a.m.-2 p.m.).
Men’s swimming: Joseph Schooling, swimming for Singapore, competes in the 100 fly prelims (11 a.m.-2 p.m.). The semifinals would be from 8-10. He made it to the semifinals of the 100-meter freestyle on Tuesday.
Men’s golf: Two Horns are competing as individuals — Brandon Stone (South Africa) and Jhonattan Vegas (Venezuela). This is Round 1. The Golf Channel will be covering it.
So far, there have been four Longhorn medalists, and they’re all swimmers — Jimmy Feigan (400 free relay), Townley Haas (800 free relay), Jack Conger (800 free relay) and Clark Smith (800 free relay).
Track and field starts on Friday. Lots of Texas athletes in there.
What’s being written out there about the Longhorns?
Brian Davis took a look at Texas’ offensive line, and how this wave of talented newcomers are giving the defensive front a real shot in the arm. And Ryan Autullo took a look at the 2015 signing class’ impact on this year’s two-deep. There’s as many as 11 guys from that signing class that are slated to start. The Horns had a media availability with us last night; we had items on Jerrod Heard‘s work this week at wide receiver and the chances of Texas producing a 1,000-yard receiver in Sterlin Gilbert‘s offense.
A 1,000-yard rusher? That’s another story.
AROUND THE BIG 12: On the expansion front, an oddsmaker out there is giving BYU 5-3 odds of getting into the Big 12, followed by Houston (5-2), Cincinnati (5-2) and UCF (3-1), wrote the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. … So Art Briles says he wants to coach again? The Dallas Morning News’ Tim Cowlishaw makes the case that it’s too soon to give the former Baylor boss a second chance. Remember James McFarland, who led TCU in sacks two years ago? He’s finally back from a broken toe injury, writes the Star-Telegram. And speaking of TCU, Kirk Bohls wrote about Gary Patterson‘s future at the school, which appears to be locked up. How seriously is Texas Tech taking special teams? Serious enough to make ST coach Joe Robinson the Red Raiders’ highest paid position coach, according to the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. Up in Norman, we all know Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon‘s checkered history, but the Oklahoman’s Berry Tramel wrote about Mixon’s attempted path back to respectability. The paper also had a Q&A with Sooners receiver Dede Westbrook. The Oklahoman also wrote about Oklahoma State’s Keenen Brown, a Texan who’s transitioning from wide receiver to “Cowboy back,” or OSU’s version of a hybrid fullback/tight end.
AROUND THE FORTY ACRES:
Football: Junior WR Lorenzo Joe strained a hamstring on Monday. He’ll miss extended time during fall camp, according to UT. … Vegas released updated odds at making the CFP field. Texas, which started out with 75/1 odds in mid-January, dropped to 100/1 in mid-February and now is 66/1, lumped together with the same 66/1 odds as Texas A&M, Oklahoma State, Iowa, Houston and Louisville. No Longhorns made Vegas’ updated Heisman list, but Texas will face five of them this season that are generating odds — Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield (14/1), Oklahoma RB Samaje Perine (25/1), Notre Dame QBs DeShone Kizer (28/1) and Malik Zaire (28/1) and Texas Tech QB Patrick Mahomes (33/1). … Ricky Williams was part of last night’s “Any Given Wednesday with Bill Simmons” panel discussion. He was seated right next to Seth Rogen (insert joke here). If you didn’t catch it, you can still find it on HBO.
Volleyball: Texas is ranked No. 2 in the AVCA preseason poll released Wednesday. The Horns received three first-place votes behind No. 1 Nebraska, which garnered 60. Three of the top five teams are on Texas’ schedule, and five teams on the Top 25 — Nebraska (Aug. 27), No. 4 Wisconsin (Sept. 18), No. 5 Kansas (Sept. 24 and Oct. 29), No. 16 Texas A&M (Sept. 14) and No. 25 Colorado State (Sept. 9). … Rachael Kidder, the MVP of UCLA’s 2011 national championship team, has been hired as a volunteer assistant at Texas. She’s been playing professionally in Puerto Rico for the past three years.
Baseball: Former Horn Drew Stubbs was reinstated from the Rangers’ 60-day disabled list on Wednesday. He’s coming back from a sprained toe.
Women’s tennis: Texas signed twin sisters from Italy on Wednesday — Anna and Bianca Turati. They’ll join the team this month and will be eligible for the 2016-17 season.
Women’s soccer: Texas was picked sixth in the Big 12 preseason coaches poll. The Longhorns went 8-6-4 last year. This season kicks off Friday with an exhibition match against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (7, Myers Stadium).
On Aug. 11, 2014: We lost Robin Williams.
On Aug. 11, 1972: The last U.S. combat unit left South Vietnam.
On Aug. 11, 1965: The Watts race riots broke out in Los Angeles.
Trivia answer: Hulk Hogan portrayed pro wrestler Thunderlips in “Rocky III.” Some more did-you-knows, courtesy of IMDB:
- Remember the Rocky-Thunderlips exhibition bout, when Rocky body-slams Thunderlips out of the ring? Sylvester Stallone later admitted that he couldn’t dead-lift the Hulkster, so he had Hogan jump into his arms.
- Thunderlips is billed as being 7 feet tall, but Hogan is only 6-8. Why? Because in the first two Rocky movies, Rocky was billed as 6-1 even though Stallone is only 5-10. So to make it believable that Rocky was taller than 6 feet, the 6-8 Hogan had to grow, too.
- Hogan initially got the offer to be in the movie after a Shea Stadium wrestling match with Andre the Giant, but Hogan thought it was just a prank. Later, after he got back from a tour of Japan, he received a telegram that again offered him the role. Hogan accepted immediately.
- The Rocky-Thunderlips fight took 10 days to film.
OK, Breakfast is over. Thanks for stopping by.
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