Mack Brown

Texas trying to lock down Thanksgiving Day home game?


Since Texas A&M’s departure for the SEC, Texas has decided that it will play a different opponent every year on Thanksgiving Day rather than stick with a series with the Aggies as a nonconference game.

This year’s game will be against TCU on Thursday and it appears the Longhorns are interested in having a rotation of Big 12 opponents come to Austin every year going forward on the holiday weekend. According to the Dallas Morning NewsTexas Tech will come to Austin on Thanksgiving to play in 2013. Next year’s Big 12 schedule is expect to be released later this week — perhaps tomorrow — so confirmation of that report should be coming in short order.

Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby told DMN reporter Chuck Carlton this weekend that the league is looking into the long-term feasibility of the idea, but that it had been worked out for the next few years.

“It creates a dynamic in the schedule that’s a challenge,” Bowlsby said. “It’s easy to make it so they play every Thanksgiving. It’s not easy to make it so they play every Thanksgiving at home, which is what they want. So that requires other accommodations.

“But at least in the near term we think we have it done.”

Bowlsby said earlier this year upon taking the job as Big 12 commissioner that he would not serve as a puppet for the likes of Texas and Oklahoma, yet Texas is getting approval on a request. Bowlsby said that most schools prefer not to play on Thanksgiving Day.

Special treatment for the Longhorns? Perhaps, but the decision’s reportedly been made — at least for the next few years.

Butch Jones labels rumor of ‘physical altercation’ with Vols player ‘absolutely ridiculous’

ATHENS, GA - SEPTEMBER 27:  Head coach Butch Jones of the Tennessee Volunteers yells at Marquez North #8 during the game against the Georgia Bulldogs at Sanford Stadium on September 27, 2014 in Athens, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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Already in the crosshairs for his 2-3 team’s late-game failures, Butch Jones now finds himself under increasing scrutiny for something that allegedly happened a couple of months ago.

The website, which features such respected journalists Tony Barnhart and Mike Huguenin among others, reported earlier today that the Tennessee head coach was involved in what was described as a “physical altercation” with senior offensive lineman Mack Crowder during summer camp this past August.  The source close to the program added that practice film that day captured the alleged incident, although it’s unclear if that tapes still exists.

From the site’s report:

The incident occurred during fall camp, about the time that news started to come out about a few offensive linemen who were considering stepping away from the program. Crowder walked off the practice field one day and missed a day or two of practice, and Brett Kendrick and Dylan Wiesman were said to be contemplating their futures. Sources say the players’ actions stemmed from an incident between Jones and Crowder.

The website also made a Freedom of Information request seeking any correspondence between the university and the Crowder family be turned over, but writes that UT “administrators said any sort of letter or correspondence that may or may not have happened was covered under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.”

Monday, Jones labeled what began as message-board speculation that he had struck one of his Vols players as “absolutely ridiculous.” The Knoxville News Sentinel contacted Crowder’s father, with the paper writing that “he had no comment and did not want to give validation to message boards.”

At least publicly, the university has yet to address the allegations.  Jones will get yet another chance to address the speculation with the media in the very near future.

Tulsa loses second-leading receiver to season-ending injury

NORMAN, OK - SEPTEMBER 14:   Wide receiver Keevan Lucas #2 of the Tulsa Golden Hurricane just misses a pass against the Oklahoma Sooners September 14, 2013 at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Oklahoma. The Sooners defeated the Golden Hurricane 51-20.  (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images)
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One of the most productive pass-catching duos in the country has been cut in half.

Tulsa head coach Philip Montgomery confirmed Tuesday that Keevan Lucas sustained a torn patellar tendon  in the third quarter of Saturday’s loss to Houston.  As a result, the wide receiver will miss the remainder of the 2015 season.

“He’s such an emotional leader for us and such a great kid,” the first-year coach said. “We’ll have to make a few adjustments offensively and move some people around and try to make sure we’ve got guys in the right spot but also guys who will step up and be ready to play.”

Lucas is currently second on the team with 26 receptions and 409 receiving yards, behind Keyarris Garrett‘s 33 and 539. His five receiving touchdowns, though, are tops on the team.

Montgomery expects Lucas to be healthy enough to participate in spring practice next year.