Showing posts with label Longhorns. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Longhorns. Show all posts

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Our Odd 20th Century/ 21st Century Football Evening

As I've complained about, Time-Warner failed to pick up the Longhorn Network, and seems like it will continue to not carry the Longhorn Network, which means that, like likely thousands of other people in my area, I got up this morning and looked to see if I could change cable carriers.

The only carrier in town with the Longhorn Network is Grande Communications, who are also much cheaper than my carrier, but, of course, they haven't made it yet to my neighborhood.  Whatever that means.

So, last night we had PaulT (aka: @PlacesLost) over at the house, ate some Tostitos, and listened to the game on the radio while watching the LSU/ Orgeon game on mute.  We tried to keep up with both games via iPhones and laptops.  It was kind of a goofy night.

And while Paul's company was great, Paul and I also like to talk as much as grannies at the Gossipin' Fence, so you tend to lose a lot of the nuance of the game unless you decide you're going to just sit there silently.  And, if you're a casual football fan like me, you have a lot of questions you don't often think about when you're able to watch the game.

"A reverse pass?  What the hell is a reverse pass?  What does that even mean?"  Paul was kind enough to mime it out for me.

So that was our weird night.

Also, I was a bit bummed that Oregon lost to LSU.  But quite chuffed that UT won their game 34-9.

Yes, yes.  I know its Rice and not OU, but we didn't just win a game, we won it by more than a touchdown, which means UT might not be the Keystone Cops this year, even if UT, reportedly, didn't play a perfect game.  

The next game to be carried exclusively on the Longhorn Network is the Kansas game, a game I will most definitely want to see.  Hopefully we'll either have the LHN by then, or we can think about all sitting quietly around the radio, I suppose.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Signal Watch Sports: College Football Ready to Go (and being a Longhorn fan at the moment)

Its almost Game Day! 

I imagine our friends Jake Shore and Fantomenos are quite excited about Oregon's prospects this year.  I know I am, and I'll be watching. 

I'll also be watching Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, and a lot of others as well. 

But, oh my, my Longhorns.  And the Big XII.  And the @#$%ing Longhorn Network.

No doubt many are currently thrilled to hear that Texas A&M has left the Big 12 Conference, delighted that somehow this diminishes UT.  To this, I say:  quit listening to sports radio.  Its making you crazy and ignores the bigger picture.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

My Chat Transcript with Pearl at Time Warner re: The Longhorn Network

Today I learned that Time Warner Cable has not yet reached a deal in which I will receive the Longhorn Network, ESPN's first regional-specific network dedicated to satisfying the sports needs of Longhorn fans.  I am not kidding.

Kickoff for the first game of the 2011 season for UT is the traditional UT/ Rice game is 6:00 PM on September 3rd. As of today, TWC, which has a stranglehold on cable subscribers in Austin, has not yet negotiated a contract with ESPN, the mother-ship network for the LN.  And, as you guess, only the Longhorn Network is carrying the game.  This, people, is utter bull-hockey.

Because the market solves all, I turned to my benefactors at Time Warner, knowing my pleas would not fall on deaf ears.

I suspect "Pearl" may not be the actual identity of my liaison.

Pearl Smith:    Thank you for contacting Time Warner Cable. At the end of our chat you will be given the option of taking a brief survey. My name is Pearl. Please give me a moment while I access your account.

Ryan_:    hello.
Pearl Smith:    I understand you need information on Longhorn Network, am I correct?
Ryan_:    yes!
Ryan_:    I am hoping that TW will find an agreement with the Longhorn Network prior to August 26th.

Pearl Smith:    Although we do not currently have an agreement to carry Longhorn Network, we do want to make the Longhorn Network available as soon as possible. Unfortunately, the Longhorn Network refused our offer to bring the Longhorn Network to TWC customers.
Ryan_:    why?
Pearl Smith:    There is some issue with the broadcasting rates.
Pearl Smith:    The deal does not get finalized.
Ryan_:    I am sure TWC cares more about me seeing UT football than something as silly as money.
Pearl Smith:    I apologize for any inconvenience this has caused you.

Ryan_:    Pearl, nobody is blaming you.
Pearl Smith:    Time Warner Cable regularly examines its programming line up with an eye towards providing the highest quality and widest choices available at reasonable and competitive prices. Although we do not currently provide the programming that you requested, we do keep track of the number of requests received and utilize this information to influence programming changes. Time Warner Cable is always concerned with the programming interests of our subscribers. This programming request will be shared with our Programming Department. It is this type of feedback that is vital as we strive to deliver the best variety of programming available to our customers.
Ryan_:    But this is a nuisance.  Please tell Mr. Warner and Mr. Time that I will take a network showing Longhorn football over 1000 channels showing me shows about baking cakes and/ or cupcakes.
Ryan_:    I expect for the outrageous sums outlayed to the Time Warner Corporation, they can scrape together a few shekels and see to it that I get my football programming.

Ryan_:    Even if it does mean that's one less private island for the super fortress they're obviously building for their secret private army.
Pearl Smith:    I can transfer you to our sales team for more information on this.
Pearl Smith:    They would be able to inform you the time of its launch.
Ryan_:    That won't be necessary.  I appreciate your patience and I look forward to having the Longhorn Network on my cable dial by August 25th.
Pearl Smith:    Thank you.

Pearl Smith:    Is there anything else I can assist you with today?
Ryan_:    You can explain to me what vertical integration means.
Pearl Smith:    I am sorry, I am unaware of this word.
Ryan_:    that's okay, Pearl.  I appreciate your time.  Have a great night!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

O Tannenbaum

So this afternoon I had a small realization. Last year I can't say I was ever really in what I think of as "The Christmas Spirit". I enjoyed the holiday. It came, it went, turkey was had and presents exchanged. But something was missing, and I couldn't figure it out.

As much as anything else, Christmas is about ritual. Its why when we start dating someone new, everything about their family's Christmas sounds completely crazy (Jamie's family has a quiet family event. When I was growing up, you could expect up to 12 people sleeping in the house on Christmas Eve. I didn't sleep in my own bed on Christmas until the end of college.).

The ritual we decided to forego in 2009 was a tree. I think Jamie and I have had a tree in every apartment and house we've shared. As a kid, everything about the tree was part of the holiday ritual. We did not go as a family to the lot and pick out a tree. We pulled the branches out of the boxes, laid them out according to size (marked by a dab of color at the aluminum stem of the branch) and then began putting the thing together. It took forever just to get the branches on, let alone getting lights strung (we had no fancy pre-lit trees in those days) and ornaments hung.

And then, we all had to stand back, look at the tree, and notice that, yeah, that thing really listed, and we'd maybe get a new fake tree next year. Which we finally did when I was a Junior or Senior in high school.

But, man, you should have been there for the great "The Clapper" experiment of 1996. Let's just say that having a device that uses sound to turn the power on and off in the same room where you're watching football and basketball for two weeks straight makes for a magical Christmas tree. (That said, my Grandma loved standing up at night and "clapping" the Christmas tree off.)

Anyhow, last year after we got Scout, who is a very sweet but very nervous dog, we decided not to put up our fairly sizable fake tree. She might eat branches or ornaments. She might knock the tree over. We didn't know. Also, we were kind of glad not to lose the square footage in the middle of the house.

This year we actually decorated the front and inside of the house Thanksgiving weekend (another ritual), but... its just been off again. Our stockings are up, the nutcrackers are in place, the garland is out... but once again, I just didn't really feel like it was Christmas time. Even after going shopping for a good chunk of the day.

And I realized: maybe I need to decorate a tree. Maybe that's just part of the deal. If I don't assemble a fake tree and place ornaments upon it, maybe my Christmas engines simply won't fire.

Anyhoo... this evening we went out and got a small tree that we can place on a side table. It had sort of plastic legs you slide into place, and it doesn't exactly require assembling, but something like it. We put on some carols and put some ornaments on (its much smaller than our usual tree). Jamie sang a song or three.

The tree is now decorated, complete with Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman and GL. Its got a star and a menagerie of animals and these nice glass orbs Jamie bought a while back. And I'm already feeling much, much better about Christmas.

I also have two UT sports ornaments. And as I was hanging them, I made a little promise to myself that these were for better luck next year for our mighty Longhorns. I confess, I even rubbed them for good luck.

That's what this time of year is about. Saying good bye not just to this year, but looking back at all the years, all the memories you unpack, with hope for better next year.

A Christmas album was playing, the dogs were settled and snoring on sofas, my lovely wife was under a blanket and reading, and I sat back in the glow of the lights, quite content.

And then I read this bull@#$%.

%$#@!!! %$#@ity @#$% %$#@!!!!!!!

UT's defensive coordinator, Will Muschamp, is leaving to become head coach at the University of Florida. In my book, this is a total disaster. He was supposed to be staying at UT and make millions of dollars and then take over when Mack Brown retired. But, ohhhhh no. UT had to have a 5-7 season, and Mack Brown isn't leaving on that note, so you bet Muschamp started looking around.

The guy is a great coach, he may well poach some of UT's better coaching staff that remains in the wake of the coaching resignations and firings the past week or so following the Longhorn's 5-7 season. Muschamp won't be here to recruit for 2011, and our defense was barely holding on, as it was.

My magical UT ornaments did NOTHING.

Stupid 2010. Stupid 2011.

Monday, December 6, 2010

I am pretty sure you won't finish reading this meandering blog post

It would be bad form to not have a post ready for a Monday, but I'm kind of running dry at the moment.  Bear with me.

The weekend 

The holidays are here, and that meant Saturday we were able to attend a lovely get together at Matt and Nicole's place.  Sweaters were worn, cocktails embibed, and a cold front hit just before the party, so it didn't feel odd or unseasonal. 

I learned a lesson in trying to be a safe driver:  if you're planning to cab it around town - do not decide its time to call a cab at 2:00 AM on Saturday night/ Sunday morning during the middle of holiday revelry.  They will never, ever show up.  And you will spend an ugly hour regretting that last cocktail with SyFy Channel on mute showing some horrendous movie with Alan Cumming painted blue, and Jamie just staring at the window and repeating "where are they?", only to give up and force a sober Nicole to drive you all the way back to your house at 3:10 AM.

Today was fairly lazy.  Played with the dogs.  Read.  Cleaned up a bit.  Walked the dogs.  Fixed the fence.  Slept for a while in the afternoon, facedown on the sofa.  Denied the fact that I need to go to Lowe's and do a few last bits of Christmas shopping (I am way, way out ahead on Christmas shopping).  Met up with Matt and Nicole at a sort of Italian bistro near Nau's, ran into Keora and Laura (wife of SimonUK). 

And now I'm sitting in front of the fake fire with sleepy dogs. 

Big 12 and Longhorn Football

OU won the Big 12 Championship, which is secretly good news to me (as OU is my second favorite college team, but we do not say such things in Austin). 

And it looks like UT's long-bemoaned Offensive Coordinator, Greg Davis, will be leaving UT's coaching staff by hook or by crook early this week. 

I don't know much about Davis.  He doesn't get in front of the mics or cameras very often, but I know that in a city that screeches to a halt on game days, I have never heard one person who didn't second-guess or immediately leap to chip in to question Davis's coaching and play calling.  That's not an exaggeration for dramatic effect, that's a fact.  And it seems that UT's great recruiting of the past 10 years finally wasn't able to overcome the deficit in offensive coordination.  At some point, you can't have 100K people in the stadium all slapping their foreheads, and everybody but the Offensive Coordinator knowing that the play called was not going to work.

That's not to say people aren't warily eyeing Will Muschamp (UT's Defensive Coordinator), his millions per year and the fact that UT oddly already anointed him Mack Brown's successor despite the fact that Brown isn't scheduled to retire or leave Texas.  I don't think Muschamp is on the chopping block quite yet, but if UT is giving up as many touchdowns next year as they did this season?  That sweetheart deal is going to dry up pretty fast.

Anyway, strange days for Texas football.

On the positive side:  Looks like Oregon will challenge Auburn for the National title spot!  Very happy for our man in Oregon, Fantomenos.  The Ducks have been building to this point for a while, and I'm personally planning to dress in green and watch that one.

Jackie Chiles returns

Back in the 1990's Seinfeld was (and still remains) one of my favorite shows.  Many will remember the OJ-case inspired character, Jackie Chiles, loosely based on now-deceased showboating attorney Johnny Cochrane.

A colleague of The Signal Watch is a contributor to award-winning legal blog Abnormal Use, which recently swung an interview with the actor who portrayed Jackie Chiles, Phil Morris.  We encourage you to read the interview

I confess that, yes, I do still watch Smallville on the CW (I'm quite a fan of Ms. Durance who plays Lois.  Rowr.).  For the past few years, Morris has guest-spotted on the program as J'onn J'onzz/ John Jones (aka:  The Martian Manhunter), and he's been a real highlight in a show that I usually enjoy semi-ironically (because, man, Smallville...).  I figured it was too much to ask that they spin the character off into his own, better show, so I take what I can get.

You can also see Morris in new clips as Jackie Chiles on Funny or Die!

Congrats to Abnormal Use for a great 2010!

Spider-Man play suffers another injury

An actress playing a major role as a villain suffered a concussion when a rope smacked her in the head.  This same actress has to sit in her harness 6 hours per day. 

I really do think people will turn up to watch the show, but its for the same reason you go to NASCAR races: horrendous accidents.

Never Assume

You people can enjoy the malarkey that is The League in small, bite sized chunks and opt in or out of dealing with me as you please.  Even Jamie has the option to tell me to shut it, and/ or leave the room.  But there is a person who does not have any options.  8 hours per day, 5 days per week, my officemate (who also reports to me in the org chart) has to sit and listen to whatever I say.  And I kind of just talk.  And talk.  And talk and talk and talk and talk and talk all day every day.

And its kind of unfair.  Literally nobody else on the planet has to put up with my monologuing or fear for their livelihood.  And so it came to pass that I was completely under the impression that my officemate and I were on the same page that KANYE WEST IS THE GREATEST THING THAT EVER HAPPENED, EVER.

Apparently, not so.  So, if anyone else has some ideas for what to get an officemate for Christmas that isn't the new Kanye West album, please let me know.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving Week!

In 1940, you could look hungover and still be Super
JimD sent me this picture from The Retroist.  Absolutely great picture of the first Superman float, debuting just a year and a half after Superman's first appearance in comics.  I absolutely love this picture, partially because I'd never seen this balloon before, and partially because, well...  20th Century America.  She had her moments.

I am unsure of the frequency of posting as we move into the US's Thanksgiving Week.  I hope that you find a table with friends and family.  Give thanks for what you've got.  Eat some appropriate meal (I am getting hungry just thinking about turkey and cranberries), and try not to get into a full-blown political debate with the in-laws.

For more on the TRUTH behind Thanksgiving, you can read Sunday's column.

And, of course, on Thanksgiving night I'll be watching the mighty UT Longhorns battle the lowly Aggies of Texas A&M on television while they duke it out a few miles up the road from us at League HQ at UT Austin's Memorial Stadium.

Who knows, we could win a game...

Because elsewhere in 1940:

Behind this lovely/aggressive co-ed, you can see my family's coat of arms.
As per the traditional Thanksgiving match-up in 1940 the UT Longhorns went up against the Texas A&M Aggies, the reigning National Champions.  Knowing the task before his team, the legendary Coach Bible distributed the following poem to his team:

"It Couldn't Be Done" by Edgar Guest

There are thousands to tell you it cannot be done,
There are thousands to prophesy failure;
There are thousands to point out to you, one by one
The dangers that wait to assail you.
But just buckle in with a bit of a grin,
Just take off your coat and go to it;
Just start to sing as you tackle the thing
That 'cannot be done,' and you'll do it.

And thus:
Noble Doss and the Impossible Catch
Thanks to a nigh-magical pass and catch, UT beat Texas A&M 7-0, upsetting their feared rivals.

From the Statesman:
Less than one minute into the game, Texas halfback Noble Doss made an over-the-shoulder, eyes-shut grab that put the ball on the Aggies 1-yard-line, setting up Pete Layden's touchdown plunge. Texas then grimly held on for a 7-0 win.
That's roughly 59 minutes of a defense deciding that they were going to hold the line.  And that is awesome.  And something, surely, UT's 2010 squad could learn from.

But, you know, no matter how tough it looks, I have to have faith that by miracle, mistake, hook or by crook, the Longhorns could take the day.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

We're going to call this a rebuilding year

Wow.  So, I admit that as a University of Texas fan and alum, its been a while since I've seen my team play like a bunch of mediocre chowderheads.  But today, play like a bunch of mediocre chowderheads they did. 

I had guessed UT would win by 14 points, even though the line was 20, last I checked.  We were at home, we'd just beat Nebraska and we were playing an unranked Iowa State, a team we have ALWAYS been able to beat. 

But from the start of Iowa State's second possession, we looked like a team that was just not ready to play football.  I don't know if the morning's iffy weather had confused our players, if they had practiced against a local middle-school all week, or what...  I suspect that the team had the same lazy attitude that they had approaching UCLA. 

I confess I almost found myself dropping the "we" from my discussion about UT, distancing myself from the team in a way that I don't do when UT is winning.  But, you know, I'm a Texas fan.  I'm going to do my best to continue saying "we".  Good times and bad and all that stuff.

Anyhow, I was actually at the game in the rain today, so my patience with this whole debacle was not terrific.  I did get a little more perspective seeing how plays seemed to unfold and how the team looked in general in a way that TV sometimes can't show as they cut to commercials, replays, etc...  and they just looked oddly...  slow.  Like they just didn't have their act together.

As a fan, I want to see us use the talent and skill we've got that seems to be squandered.  I will disagree from some of the TV commentators after what I saw today: I am beginning to wonder about Gilbert.  Seeing him live, he just didn't seem to know where to throw the ball far too often if the play didn't fall out exactly as he expected, and when he did release, it was kind of near the receivers, but not quite to the receivers. 

Am I one of those guys who blames Greg Davis, our offensive coordinator? Oh, absolutely.

I have no idea what to expect out of the Longhorns anymore this season, but by gum I am not giving up. There's too much well recruited talent, and I think we can make adjustments. But this team is going to have to do better, and the coaches are flat out going to have to quit going to back to the same playbook everyone has already seen for the last 10 years at UT.

Here's a quick report on the game.

Friday, October 22, 2010

UT plays Iowa State Tomorrow: And I will be there!

On Saturday the mighty Longhorns of the University of Texas will take on the Cyclones of Iowa State. 

The game is at 11:00 Central, so its the morning game here in Texas (I assume Fantomenos will be asleep at kick-off).  I'm slated to attend with The Admiral, Matt and Nicole. 

I like UT's chances.  At home.  Coming off a win and returning to a ranked status.  Playing Iowa State.

And tomorrow is supposed to be a high of something like 83F. 

Hopefully he same defense that played last week against Nebraska will show up, and the same Garrett Gilbert that added some wheels and tried this innovation called "The Forward Pass" will make an appearance.

Go Horns!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Rounding Up: Longhorns, Interactivity, Son of Frankenstein

1) Longhorns at Nebraska

I am not at all confident about Longhorns and Football going into today's game vs. Nebraska. Apparently the Huskers are still a bit peeved about UT's last-second win against them a while back and have done nothing but train for a year to figure out how to beat UT. And the UT team they planned to beat has graduated, leaving the "gosh, gee-willikers, it's a buildin' year!" Longhorns we're now watching. So... that's gonna be interesting. Right now our greatest hopes for success require a complete psychological breakdown for Nebraska, the 'Horns accidentally being bathed in Gamma Radiation*, and/or the spread of a nasty stomach virus this morning amongst UT's foes.

"I'm totally going to throw this ball 10 yards behind the line of scrimmage.  Because that is what I am awesome at."
Heap upon this the fact that Colt "Oh, My Arm Seems to Have Stopped Functioning" McCoy is starting for the Browns against the punishing Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday?

Ah, well.

2) Where are the entries for our Halloween Interactivity?

You've got several days, but we've only received ONE entry for the 2010 Halloween Monster Interactivity! People, this is going to be super-lame if we don't get more submissions, and I know you want your voice heard.

And don't forget: A submission means you receive an awesome Signal Corps Fun Pack!

3) Son of Frankenstein

Just look at these handsome devils.  That's Lugosi and Karloff, btw.
So last night I watched Son of Frankenstein, the third in the series of the Universal Studios-produced Frankenstein movies.  It's a bit embarrassing to admit that I had never made it past Bride of Frankenstein when I'm such a fan of the first two films, but in all fairness, there's no Elsa Lanchester after Bride of Frankenstein, so why go on? 

Son of Frankenstein stars Basil "Sherlock Holmes" Rathbone as Wolf Von Frankenstein, son of Heinrich Von Frankenstein, the creator of the monster in the movies.**  Bela "Dracula" Lugosi plays Ygor, Heinrich's old lab assistant, now a mad man living in the ruins of the laboratory, and Karloff returns as The Monster.

The story isn't as large in scope, nor as nail-bitingly over the top as the two James Whale directed Frankenstein films, and Whale's touch is sorely missed.  The fever-pitch madness of Bride is almost completely absent until about the third reel, when Rathbone's Wolf Von Frankenstein realizes he made have made a mistake that' causing a whole lot of problems.

You would not believe the paperwork you have to do for the FDA before experimenting with the reanimation of monsters
It does establish some of what's actually going on with the monster, and basically sets up The Monster as the original Jason Voorhees.  Basically, you find out that whatever Henry Frankenstein did to re-animate the Monster meant that the Monster no longer has the ability to die, in addition to being super-human.

The set design on the movie is pretty wild, and I have to give the film's creators credit where credit is due.  Where Whale's forest and castles were gothic and detailed, the castle and sets of this film seemed to go back to German Expressionism, with vast spaces punctuated with odd angles, and twisted pathways.  Which, of course, our Frankenstein just adores when he walks into the castle (because he's got the Frankenstein madness, see).

This is how the Frankensteins eat dinner.  No, seriously.
If you've never seen Young Frankenstein, I pity you.  Its one of my favorite comedies and has been since I saw the movie at the Dobie my freshmen year at UT.  One of the best comedic casts I can think of***.  Despite the fact I've seen Young Frankenstein a half-dozen times, Somehow it never occurred to me that the movie was actually referencing characters from movies beyond the first two Frankenstein movies, but Son of Frankenstein is somewhat the template for the movie, right down to the one-armed Burgomeister (who totally uses his wooden arm to hold his darts).

If you've seen the first two Frankenstein movies from Universal, its worth checking out this third in the series, but its sort of suffering from some of the sequel-of-a-sequel-without-the-original-director malaise that you'll see in movies like Jurassic Park III.  I'll let you know how the 4th movie in the series is:  Ghost of Frankenstein - the first film without Karloff as the Monster.

the terrifying "birthday cake" scene

*That's a Hulk reference, kids
** For reasons I can't fathom, Universal changed the name of the monster's creator in the movies to Henry Frankenstein from Victor, as it appears in the 1818 book.  
*** Mel brooks directed, starring: Gene Wilder, Terri Garr, Madeline Kahn, Marty Feldman, Peter Boyle and with Gene Hackman in a brief cameo role.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Oh, also in September - UT FOOTBALL

We now interrupt the ceaseless line of pop-culture and comics non-sense to divert to one of my favorite topics: College Football is coming!

While I am not disappointed that the Big 12 did not get cracked up and bought and sold (and it seems that, really, the Big 12 Illuminati pulled everyone's strings to get what they wanted all along), we don't know what's going to happen with the Big 12 over the next couple of years.

It's a new year for UT football. The team of Shipley and McCoy has graduated, and we lost some great defensive talent. On local TV here in Austin, I think coach Mack Brown looks a little stressed. He seems to be trying to remind the press that he doesn't have a magical winning machine, and that the players are not the same crew we had and they're going to grow, just like McCoy's squad did over their tenure.

Last year we saw QB Garrett Gilbert as a freshman have to fill in for McCoy in the Championship, and he actually performed pretty darn well. If he plays like that (and continues to improve), and he has some receivers who won't drop the ball...

Honestly, I've no predictions, but maybe you do? SHARE.

I realized that as I was re-reading my note about Intergalactic Nemesis , September 4th sounded like a familiar date. Well, UT kicks off at 2:30pm against the Mighty Rice Owls on September 4th. If you're a fan of football, you're more than welcome to come on over, help me cook up a hot dog and we can drink a cocktail or three.

That may mean I don't make the show, by the way.

Anyhow, Longhorns... Get your horns up!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Big 12 Shake-Up/ Shake-Down

I knew eventually I would need to start talking about Longhorn football, but I am a bit amazed/ down that my first post on football will discuss the much discussed (in Texas, anyway) goings on with the Big 12 conference. Honestly, I planned on my first post on sports to be about World Cup soccer (or as our friends from across the sea call it "football", but they are wrong).

Sports talk radio, non-stop-ESPN, etc... aren't so much my thing, so if the rumblings of the fall of the Big 12 were building, I had no idea. I'd been checking college baseball scores to see how Big 12 teams were doing, but otherwise tuning out.

For those of you catching up, my alma mater is home to The University of Texas Longhorns, who were the #2 football team and volleyball team in 2009, and won some unbelievable number of baseball games this year (I'm hoping they place first in the College World Series). Both our men's and women's basketball team made it to the tournament, etc...

The Longhorns belong to the Big 12, which is a fairly respectable and competitive conference. While I enjoy the rivalries, I actually wind up watching a lot of Big 12 football, from all the schools.

The Big 12 had a not-great contract with media outlets, but the schools had large and loyal fanbases, and college sports, particularly football, are big money. So, conferences The Big 10 and the Pac-10 have been trying to meet with Big 12 schools to try to move them over with their superior contracts.

Read more about this thing here.

Anyway, I'm a little bummed that (a) the Big 12 may be no more by the end of next week, and (b) the extra revenue could disrupt traditional and regional play.

I understand the schools supposedly make money from shaking things up and say, a few schools joining the PAC 10, but... this is the Pac 10 we're talking about. I'm a romantic and an optimist in some ways, and so I like to think that regional relations make a difference in these cases. Joining the Pac 10 just seems so... calculated. It's like the rich, dopey kids asking if you want to hang out because they know you've got a new Sega Dreamcast, not because you've been hanging out for the past 100 years (sorry, Oregon and Oregon State. You guys are cool. Why do you hang out with those jerks, anyway? You're better than that.). So what happens when the DreamCast gets outed by the XBox?

Sure, there are some logistical issues and budgetary issues for sports that draw in smaller audiences, but I tend to think that the Texas/ Oklahoma powerhouse is big enough to work with the region and get a better contract.

Further, the biggest d-bag of them all, USC, just pulled an SMU and is totally dealing with his comeuppance. Dad just took away the entitled little twerp's Porsche keys. But, hey, if we notice that we had friends in our own backyard all along....

For the Texas and Oklahoma schools, its not such a big deal that Colorado has split off, and Nebraska seems ready to go, too (whatsamatta, Nebraska? Texas and Oklahoma too much for you?). But its hard to imagine football in the fall without the UT, Texas A&M, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and other rivalries playing out as part of conference play. The thing is, by coming into other conferences, any of those schools could be peeled off. Already, Baylor is basically being told not to count on being a part of whatever happens. And that's a little sad.

So, if the Big 12 is croaking, here's my proposal for the Nu Southwest Conference (going classic, baby):

01. University of Texas
02. Texas A&M
03. Texas Tech
04. Oklahoma
05. Oklahoma State
06. Baylor (yes. Baylor. On principle.)
07. Texas Christian University (because those guys got good)
08. Kansas
09. Kansas State
10. Nebraska (fungible with any other corn-fed bunch of punching bags)
11. Missouri
12. University of Houston

That's right. U of H. Woot!

What do you guys think, because I think I just came up with a scheme that would make us all rich.