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Posts Tagged ‘Mike Price’

The 2012 Locksley: Week 4

Important Locksley news: John L. Smith is not – I repeat, not – eligible for the 2012 award. Why? Let’s consider the first reason: Smith is an interim head coach. I can’t blame you for not being fully aware with the Locksley’s laws and bylaws, seeing that said laws and bylaws have never been put into print. But one crucial factor is that a candidate must be a real, bona fide head coach – not an interim head coach, as is Smith. A second reason is that Smith would be such a lock for the Locksley that taking him out of the running evens the playing field among a slew of other highly qualified candidates. Now, is there a chance that Smith could one day be recognized for his wonderfully inept work with the Razorbacks in 2012? I can see it now: The John L. Locksley. That’s an option. But there will be no trophy on Smith’s mantle once his tenure in Fayetteville runs its course. As recompense, Smith gets the quote of the week:

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    The 2012 Locksley: Week 3

    Blind squirrels are known to stumble upon a nut every now and again, especially if that nut is, say, Maine’s football team. Or if the blind squirrel is Middle Tennessee State and the nut is Florida Atlantic, which houses the only Sun Belt team more impotent than Rick Stockstill’s Blue Raiders. So what to make of these wins? At face value, dates with Maine and the Owls pushed Boston College and Middle Tennessee State into the win column – that’s the biggest takeaway for both the Eagles and Blue Raiders. But beyond that point, what did these wins prove? That B.C. is not good enough to run with Miami (Fla.) but good enough to beat an F.C.S. opponent? That Stockstill’s gang can beat F.A.U. but not McNeese State? The wins prove nothing, in short, because for teams of this quality – or lack thereof – true colors won’t shine until the calendar turns to conference play, and for both B.C. and M.T.S.U., the season looks bleak indeed despite a bump up to .500. The coaching quote of the week come from U.N.L.V.’s Bobby Hauck:

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      No. 108: UTEP

      You’ve woken up, but 30 minutes before your alarm was set to go off. Awake, but not awake. You’re in a weird spot. Going back to sleep is an option, and an appealing one at that: another 30 minutes in the dark couldn’t hurt. So is waking up fully: the day has to begin at some point, so why not now, since your eyes are already open? One option that’s not on the table is standing somewhere in the middle, rolling around half-asleep, half-awake, while the minutes slowly tick down until the buzzer sounds. Either wake up entirely or go back to sleep, but you need to make a choice.

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        The 2012 Locksley: Winter Watch List

        They’re the survivors. Purdue’s Danny Hope barely nudged into bowl play, removing himself from the hot seat in the process — and landing a contract extension, in fact. George O’Leary’s common flirtations with mediocrity has led him to alter the makeup of his coaching staff, though he remains entrenched at U.C.F. as the program begins its move to the Big East. Another Conference USA head coache, Rice’s David Bailiff, putters along the road to mediocrity yet seems to experience minimal challenges to his job security. Middle Tennessee State’s Rick Stockstill is made of Teflon, if not some similarly strong fluorocarbon solid, as is UTEP’s Mike Price.

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          Mike Leach Helps Keep Pullman Weird

          Pullman’s not Los Angeles. But you knew that. Pullman isn’t Seattle, which you also knew. Pullman is different: it’s more accepting of, let’s say, quirky personalities. Not crazy, mind you; when it comes to crazy, Pullman is as unforgiving as any place in America. But Pullman is a place where a coach can let his hair down, such as Mike Price did for a generation. It’s quirk-friendly, in short. When coaching the Cougars, you can be yourself. You can be wacky. You can call out your players’ girlfriends, co-host the evening news, make jokes and crack wise — it’s cool. It’s Pullman. Also: you can win.

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            No. 104: UTEP

            In this new era of feel-good, everybody-gets-a-trophy bowl eligibility, it’s due to become more and more commonplace that a team like last season’s UTEP Miners squeeze into late December play. We don’t have to like it, but don’t blame UTEP: the Miners simply did what they had to do, win six games, namely, and thereby had the pleasure of a New Mexico Bowl date with B.Y.U. that ended in 52-24 infomercial for Jake Heaps and the fast-rising Cougars. So the six wins were terrible: New Mexico State, Memphis, New Mexico and Rice combined for eight wins and Arkansas-Pine Bluff went 5-6 in the SWAC, though that win over S.M.U. was good enough to write home about. Hey, all the bowl guidelines say is that a team must win at least six games, at least five of which come against the F.B.S. — the Miners got there, and there are 35 bowl games to fill. It’s not UTEP’s fault that the TicketCity Bowl wanted a seat at the table, you know.

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              No. 93: UTEP

              These miners are going to work. Mike Price's Miners have work to do, and plenty of it.

              Regardless of last season’s four-win finish, Mike Price’s 34 victories over his six-year tenure marks the most successful stretch of play in nearly 40 years of UTEP football. Not to say there aren’t concerns about whether Price can return the Miners to the upper echelon of Conference USA, where they stood for his first two seasons. The Miners have had four consecutive losing seasons since, largely because of the poor play of its defense: from 2004-5, UTEP gave up less than 26 points per game; over the last four, that number has risen to 31.2 in 2006, 37 in 2007-8 and 33.5 last fall.

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                The Countdown

                A bottom-to-top assessment of the F.B.S. landscape heading into the 2012 season.