The Morning Stake

The Morning Stake | 2020.06.09

Your daily dose of all things Texas Tech athletics.

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Texas Tech basketball announced that some of the men’s basketball program tested positive for COVID-19. I know that this is probably some sort of news, but I would think the more news-making item would be that no students tested positive. I tend to think that positive results will be part of the norm and the hope is that of the positive results, that they experience no symptoms. I was mentioning to the group that COVID-19 can have such a wide range of symptoms, from just being tired to destroying lungs and even death. The flu, almost assuredly each time you get it will sit you on your rear for a week, so the low-end with the flu appears to be higher than the low-end for COVID-19.

Oklahoma State men’s basketball was given punishment by the NCAA for their role in the federal basketball scandal where an associate head coach, Lamont Evans, pleaded guilty to bribery for trying to sway players to either South Carolina and Oklahoma State. OSU cooperated with the NCAA and despite that cooperation, was given a post-season ban for this coming up year as well as some recruiting and scholarship reductions. The thought is that Oklahoma State was severely punished. Yahoo Sports’ Pete Thamel writes about how the NCAA actually feels like Oklahoma State got off lightly:

Since August of 2013, Figure 19-1 has been in the NCAA rule book. This year it starts on Page 366 and requires this reporter to flip his laptop on the side to read. It’s a penalty matrix that squeezes the emotion out of cases, and it’s what experts have pinpointed for the delivered stiff penalties we’ve seen the past few years.

In the Oklahoma State case, Parkinson pointed out that they actually gave Oklahoma State the “lower end” of the available punishment for a Level I standard violation, which the chart in 19-1 says is a one- or two-year postseason ban. They chose one year.

You can forgive the Oklahoma State PR staff for incorrectly terming the ruling “arbitrary.” After all, they’ve been busy putting out fires the past few weeks.

But for the experts who follow these cases and have no emotion tied to the presence of Rivals.com No. 1 recruit Cade Cunningham coming to campus, this case was simply business as usual.

“The pendulum has swung to where all the punishments are severe,” said Stu Brown, a veteran of NCAA cases who has no ties to the Oklahoma State case. “There may be more consistency in the rulings, and the consistency tends to be very severe.”

I wonder if we’ll see this more this fall? Schutt has developed a splash guard for the entire helmet, an attempt to maybe minimize any spit and/or salvia from transmitting COVID-19.

Via FiveThirtyEight’s Josh Planos, he writes about how at Nebraska their athletic department team will help all student-athletes develop their own personal brand. The article mentions “Opendorse” and I’m almost all but positive that Texas Tech also utilizes this program, which is a program that allows the athletic department help create content for the student-athlete. So if you see an athlete tweet out what appears to be a university sponsored video, Opendorse helps organize and load that content for the student-athlete.

In mid-March, the University of Nebraska and athlete marketing program Opendorse announced the launch of the Ready Now Program, a first-of-its kind partnership that will assist college athletes with individual branding to market themselves as social media influencers.

“We wanted to find a way that benefits all student-athletes,” said Garrett Klassy, the Nebraska senior deputy athletic director who was instrumental in facilitating the arrangement. “This is something that will benefit the young men and women in our programs for the rest of their lives.”

Every student-athlete will be provided a valuation of their brand as well as insights into how to boost engagement and augment their social media following. Content calendars, performance benchmarks and various strategies will be provided to every athlete representing the scarlet and cream.

I will not be surprised if Texas Tech is at the forefront of this as well.

Here are some tweets.

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