The Morning Stake

The Morning Stake | 2020.04.15

Your daily dose of all things Texas Tech athletics.

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Texas Monthly’s Michael Hall profiles the story of two West Texas brothers who helped launch soft rock as we know it.

By many measures, Seals and Crofts were a successful group. Though their first album hadn’t cracked the Billboard 100, Jim and his partner, Dash Crofts, were opening for acts like Chicago, the Guess Who, and Eric Clapton, getting their music heard by huge crowds in famed venues like the Fillmore East and the Boston Tea Party. But the pair wanted to do more than just play cool tunes. They wanted their placid words and lush harmonies to soothe a world reeling from the nonstop chaos of the Vietnam War, the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy, and the unending riots in the streets. They wanted to make a difference.

The melody that came to Jim that day was simple and sweet, and it nudged a series of images into his mind. Curtains hanging in a window, a newspaper on the sidewalk, music coming from a neighbor’s house, a man walking up the steps and through the front door, a smiling woman waiting for his arrival. Home.

The chorus came to him now, so effortlessly that it felt as if the song was writing itself:

Summer breeze, makes

me feel fine

Blowin’ through the

jasmine in my mind.

Waco Tribune-Herald’s Chad Conine with a defense, yes a defense, of a John Feinstein book that had called Texas Tech a nonbasketball school:

As he unpacks Smith’s final years at UNC, he dismissively wrote about the Tar Heels’ loss to Texas Tech in the 1996 NCAA Tournament (by the way, my favorite basketball game of all time).

“That set up a game against Texas Tech,” Feinstein wrote, “very much a nonbasketball school, but a team that was having a once-in-a-lifetime season under coach James Dickey.”

There are several parts of this brief, condescending description that bother me. The use of the phrase “once-in-a-lifetime” now seems particularly inaccurate. However, the one that obviously got my attention was “nonbasketball school.”

Like I said earlier in this column, I think Feinstein is a fantastic sportswriter. But even fantastic sportswriters are biased. He’s a New York native who went to Duke and covered hoops for the school paper. So that’s his background. No different than me writing “The Republic of Football” and extolling the virtues of high school football in our state.

I really enjoyed this today.

USA Today’s Steve Berkowitz reports that Power Five institutions would lose an average of $78 million per school if there is no football:

Within the college sports industry, the word for now about a 2020-21 football season is optimism amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Somehow, some way, at some point, games will be played.

Right beneath the surface, however, is the knowledge that it might not be normal. Or, that it might not be at all.

At stake is at least $4.1 billion in fiscal-year revenue for the athletics departments at just the 50-plus public schools in the Power Five conferences — an average of more than $78 million per school — a USA TODAY Sports analysis of schools’ financial reports to the NCAA shows.

That’s more than 60% of these schools’ combined total annual operating revenues, based on amounts reported for the 2019 fiscal year. These estimates do not take into account potential impacts on student fees or money from schools’ general funds, both of which likely would be reduced if students cannot return to campus as usual for the fall semester. Even within the Power Five, there are schools that receive significant amounts from those sources.

Yahoo Sports’ Pete Thamel reports that athletic departments are looking to ask the NCAA for temporary relief from some regulatory requirements of the NCAA:

The letter from the commissioners of the AAC, Mountain West, MAC, Sun Belt and Conference USA asked for alterations of NCAA bylaws in the wake of COVID-19 in order to save money. The letter asks for “temporary relief from several regulatory requirements for a period of up to four years” in order to provide “short-term relief.” The letter hopes that this relief will provide “opportunity for institutions to retrench and rebuild the financial structures of the institution.”

The requirements the conference commissioners asked for relief from hint at the fiscal peril of schools and leagues outside college athletics’ so-called Power Five. The most relevant among them is relief from the minimum number of “Sports Sponsorships,” as every FBS school is required to have a “minimum number of 16 varsity intercollegiate sports.”

That’s a fancy way to say that athletic directors may have to start cutting sports in order to simply have a budget and then you could no longer be in compliance with NCAA regulations. Without football and men’s basketball, there’s just no money to fund the other sports.

Episode 4 of Typical Tech with Los Angeles Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn, Rodney Allison, and spirit director Stephanie Rhode.

This is a significant loss. Lubbock native and sculptor Glenna Maxey Goodacre passed away yesterday at the age of 80. Goodacre had numerous pieces of art on campus, including the tribute piece to Preston Smith, “Tug O’ War”, “Crossing the Prairie”, “Irish Madonna”, and “CEO”, which was based off of her daughter, Jill Goodacre-Connick, who is married to Harry Connick, Jr. 8th Street was renamed for Goodacre as well. Rest in peace.

Here are some tweets.

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