a handful of topics, while the "Countdown to Football Season" clock
ticks ever-so-slowly in my head. The good news? We are 24 hours closer to the
start of football season now than we were at this exact moment yesterday. By
the time you finish this column - provided, of course, that your finish this
column - we'll be even closer. And this is a good thing.
disclosure, though I'm excited about the upcoming football season, I hadn't
really thought about it too intensely until the dude from Uruguay bit an
opponent on the "pitch" the other day in the World Cup. I watch a
little bit of a USA game the other day, but just couldn't maintain my interest.
Wake me when the World Cup ends. There are too many things about
"futbol" that keep me from jumping in with the millions of others on
our planet who appear to be all worked up about this World Cup deal. Primarily,
I don't get the clock thing. The clock counts upward, and the ref evidently has
the ability to add time to the game. How much time is left in the match? Nobody
knows; I think the ref just sort of hollers out "game over!" whenever
everything is finished. It's also a sport which evidently allows a serial biter
to continue to participate, and the biter and the coach of the biter both sort of
chastised the press for even bringing it up after the match the other day. In
fact, the perpetrator said his opponent bumped his shoulder into his chest.
Dude, is your chest located in your mouth? Geez, just stop biting people.
Patterson's methods continue to be a topic of conversation on our message
boards here. Here's my take: 1. Patterson says, in all the arguments about a
possible student-athlete "stipend", that the worth of the scholarship
seems to be underappreciated, and I agree with him. It took me more than 20
years to pay off my student debt, and I went to school when getting your degree
was much less expensive. A scholarship is extremely valuable - tangibly and
intangibly - and that should be better articulated. 2. Patterson says the high
salaries for football coaches is a reflection of the market, and I also agree
with him on this subject. Football helps fund sports that aren't producing
revenue (and there are a lot of those), thus the football coach gets paid
depending on his success, which is how it should be. A high-paid and successful
coach is good for all of the program's sports, and should be compensated
accordingly. 3. Though much of what Patterson has recently said makes sense, I
do wish administrators would spend as much time vocalizing about and doing
something about cheating in college athletics. Mention "stipend" to a
lot of these guys, and they cringe as if they stepped into a patch of poison ivy.
Is it too much to ask that they also address cheating, which most people admit
exists but few people seem willing to address? I don't think so.
* A recent
Inside Texas reader mentioned that Charlie Strong's rule that players must live
in dorms might have a detrimental effect on recruiting. I agree with this, though
I'm not sure to what degree; I vote that Patterson and Strong make sure we have
fancy dorm rooms for the players, who are generally bigger than
"normal" students and need more space. Maybe the burnt orange can
spend some of the "stipend" money they aren't spending - for now - on
Speculation about Augie Garrido's future has been fairly rampant lately after
the Texas baseball team was eliminated from the College World Series. I
understand the speculating about his future because of his age, but I have
trouble accepting the notion that Patterson should somehow figure out a way for
Garrido to leave. If Augie wants to retire, fine, he deserves that option and
has nothing left to prove. But run someone off who just coached a team that
finished third in the College World Series? No.