Tag:Texas A&M
Posted on: September 13, 2011 5:55 am
Edited on: September 13, 2011 6:00 am

Believe statements from the SEC at your own risk

By Gary Parrish

Mike Slive said on Monday that the SEC has "no immediate plans for a 14th member."

And that might be true.

But before we start preparing to watch a 13-school SEC -- i.e., the current members plus Texas A&M -- in 2012-13, I feel compelled to point out what Florida president Bernie Machen said less than a month ago after a meeting with fellow league presidents and chancellors.

"[We] met today and reaffirmed our satisfaction with the present 12 institutional alignment."

Again, Machen said that on Aug. 14.

The SEC voted to add Texas A&M just 23 days later.

The lesson?

We should all be careful about what we believe as this conference realignment story continues to change by the day. Don't forget that there's a reason most have long assumed the SEC would jump from 12 members to 14 members whenever it decided to jump, and a smooth-talking commissioner who specializes in semantics publicly suggesting otherwise isn't really a good reason to believe that still won't be the case.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: September 7, 2011 9:46 am

Baylor is desperate and right at the same time

By Gary Parrish

Texas A&M's move from the Big 12 to the SEC is on hold until the SEC gets assurances that no Big 12 school will sue because, suddenly, at least one Big 12 school -- specifically Baylor -- is threatening to do exactly that. My question: Why would Baylor give such an assurance?

Baylor seems, at this moment, to have one foot in Conference USA and the other on something slippery as the college landscape shifts, and if that's the case isn't it only responsible for Baylor to try to scare the Big 12 into staying together by any means necessary? I have no idea if Baylor could win such a lawsuit against the SEC, commissioner Mike Slive and/or Texas A&M because I'm not a lawyer. But what I do know is that, in this country, you can threaten to sue pretty much anybody for pretty much anything, and if the SEC and A&M want that possibility off the table before moving forward then Baylor ought to make the SEC and A&M give something in return.

What something?

Could be anything, including straight-cash homey.

But it would be foolish to take the threat of a lawsuit off the table just because the SEC asks.

So good for Baylor for standing up.

Ultimately, the school's actions will probably only stall the inevitable.

But desperate shots are worth taking when you find yourself in desperate times.
Posted on: September 6, 2011 10:09 am

Multiple suitors in need of (Wannah) Bail

By Jeff Borzello

Wannah Bail certainly has the name of a basketball player. Extremely long and athletic, Bail also has the build and body of a highly-touted prospect.

This summer, however, Bail felt he didn’t get a chance to show his full host of talents due to a toe injury.

“Not my best, especially coming off injury,” he said. “I had always felt as if I could have done something better, even after giving it my all.”

When healthy, Bail has the physical tools to be a dominant performer. Ranked No. 68 in the CBSSports.com Top 100, the 6-foot-7 power forward runs the floor extremely well and uses his strength to make plays at both ends of the court. He can get solid position for offensive post-ups, and he is a very good shot-blocker and rebounder. If he refines his offensive game, Bail could be a stud.

Bail, a native of the Bahamas, is now enrolled at Lamar Consolidated (Texas) after bouncing around a few high schools in the Lonestar State last year. His recruitment will also begin to sort itself out with coaches finally able to track him during the school season.

“It’s going good,” Bail said of his recruitment. “I’m really enjoying it.”

For now, Bail is hearing from Auburn, St. John’s, Houston, Texas Tech, Florida State, Maryland, Kansas, South Florida, Indiana, Texas A&M, Baylor, Washington State and others. All besides Kansas have offered.

Bail plans to take his recruitment slowly, but did take a visit to Houston on Saturday, when the Cougars beat UCLA in the football season opener. Michael Carey and Chicken Knowles also joined him on campus.

Don’t look for a decision soon.

“I have no favorites,” he said.

Photo: Adidas Nations

Posted on: August 31, 2011 11:23 am
Edited on: August 31, 2011 11:24 am

Texas A&M submits application to leave Big 12

By Jeff Goodman

Texas A&M is leaving the Big 12.

After some uncertainty a month or so ago regarding the future home, the school made an official announcement today that it has notified the Big 12 it will submit an application to join another league.

That league is expected to be the SEC.

If all goes smoothly – which in the world of conference re-alignment rarely happens – the Aggies will be a part of the SEC in the 2012-13 campaign.

"After much thought and consideration, and pursuant to the action of the (Texas A&M University System) Board of Regents authorizing me to take action related to Texas A&M University's athletic conference alignment, I have determined it is in the best interest of Texas A&M to make application to join another athletic conference," President R. Bowen Loftin wrote to Big 12 Commissioner Dan Beebe in the letter dated August 31, 2011.

Certainly, this move gives the Aggies a jolt on the football side of things, joining what seems to be considered the elite football league in the country.

However, I’m not sure it makes all that much difference on the basketball side.

New coach Billy Kennedy will now have to compete against the likes of Kentucky and Florida instead of Kansas and Texas.

The bottom line is that if Kennedy is a big-time coach who can recruit at a high level (which he’s already shown in his brief tenure), he’ll be able to keep the Aggies towards the top of the league.

Whether it’s the Big 12 or the SEC.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: August 20, 2011 10:49 am

Trippin': The hoops angle of Texas A&M

By Jeff Goodman

Billy Kennedy was looking forward to this trip since he took over for Mark Turgeon in May.

It would give him a first-hand look at his new team, a Texas A&M group that many college basketball prognosticators will place somewhere in their Preseason Top 25.

Instead, it was about more than just that.

Kennedy (left), shortly after arriving on his trip, was dealing with the drama back home in which the Aggies appeared to be a lock to go to the SEC.

"We just look at it as we have to win wherever we are," Kennedy said. ``It doesn't matter to us. We've got a great school no matter what league we're in."

As for his thoughts on whether his future league will be the Big 12 or SEC, his response was simple:

"I don't have a clue."

What Kennedy learned: "We have good character and quality depth. These guys have been coached. You hear it, but it's different when you actually see it."

What or who impressed him: Kennedy mentioned three guys - freshman Jordan Green, Washington transfer Elston Turner and sophomore forward Kourtney Roberson. Kennedy spoke about Greens toughness and understanding of the game, Turner's IQ and ability to make shots - and Roberson's ability to score on the block.

What concerned him: "Getting easy baskets. We're going to need to find a way to do that on the defensive end."

- Kennedy said that the focus on the court was to play faster - on both ends of the court - than this group had last season under Turgeon.

- Kennedy said that he did play senior point guard Dash Harris and freshman Jamal Branch together at times. "Dash had a really good trip," Kennedy said. "He shot the ball well and we played fast - and that helped him."

- Zach Kinsley, who transferred in from New Orleans after leading the Privateers in scoring last season, was unable to go on the trip. Kennedy spent two years at LSU and one at New Orleans. He's a one-year transfer who can score the ball and will likely be in the rotation.

- Kennedy on senior big man David Loubeau: "He was really good. He a great motor and I was pleased with his effort on both ends of the floor."

- Kennedy said he can envision playing nine - and maybe even 10 guys.

- The leaders of the team was apparent early in the trip: Harris and Loubeau, a pair of seniors. "Dash was great with the young guys," Kennedy said.

Photo: AP

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: August 11, 2011 8:56 am
Edited on: August 11, 2011 11:31 am

Texas A&M to the SEC?

By Jeff Goodman

Just when we thought all this league shuffling speculation was over.

Now it appears as though Texas A&M, which is disgruntled by Texas’ Longhorn Network, could be headed to the SEC in time.

Governor Rick Perry told the Dallas Morning News that talks are ongoing with the league.

"As far as I know, conversations are being had,” he told the newspaper. ``That's frankly all I know. I just refer you to the university and the decision-makers over there."

Then came the statement from school president R. Bowen Loftin:

"President Loftin is committed to doing what is best for Texas A&M not only now, but also into the future. We continue to have wide-ranging conversations regarding all aspects of the university, including both academics and athletics."

Not exactly a denial.

Remember, Texas A&M was one of the schools that was believed to be headed to the Pac-10 (now the Pac-12) last summer.

Here are my colleague, Dennis Dodd's, thoughts from the football perspective. 

Now the Aggies could be using this potential move as leverage against rival Texas and this new network.

But is this truly a good move for Texas A&M?

Not really.

But it would be a nice addition for the SEC.

Texas A&M basketball wouldn't benefit - as football would - from going to the SEC. The Southeastern Conference is regarded as a football league while it takes a back seat to the Big East and ACC - and maybe even the Big Ten and Big 12 - when it comes to hoops. 

Right now the Big 12 is loaded in hoops. The league just lost Colorado and Nebraska, which made it stronger on the hardwood. 

New Texas A&M coach Billy Kennedy has inherited a strong roster, one that could contend for the league title this year. He's already proven he can land quality in-state talent - with the aid of assistants Glynn Cyprien and Kyle Keller. 

Heading to the SEC, from a basketball standpoint, makes little sense. 

Category: NCAAB
Tags: Big 12, SEC, Texas A&M
Posted on: August 5, 2011 5:02 pm

J-Mychal Reese pops for Texas A&M

By Jeff Borzello

The stories surrounding J-Mychal Reese have certainly not been limited. There were rumors that he and his father were a package deal, while others focused on his affection for Kansas.

On Thursday, Reese decided to stay at home and go to Texas A&M. The news was first reported by Scout.com and confirmed to CBSSports.com by two sources.

More on Recruiting

Reese, a 6-foot-2 guard from Bryan (Texas), lives a short distance from the College Station campus and has a brother who is a manager for the Aggies. Moreover, John Reese, J-Mychal’s father, could still have an assistant coach job offer on the table from new coach Billy Kennedy.

While not a pure point guard, Reese is one of the best shooters in the country. The lefty has a deadly pull-up jumper and is most effective when attacking after a jab step or ball fake. He can handle the ball and initiate offense, but is more productive when playing off the ball. Reese ranks No. 44 in CBSSports.com's Top 100.

Photo: Kelly Kline

Posted on: June 10, 2011 4:07 pm

Pepperdine's Leading Scorer Tripping to Missouri

By Jeff Goodman

Keion Bell wants to play at a higher level.

The 6-foot-3 Pepperdine guard, who has just one year left of eligiblity, has decided to transfer from the Waves after a difficult season marred by injuries and a suspension.

Bell is explosive and can score the ball. He averaged 18.9 points in 20 games last season and has scored 1,365 points in his three-year career.

Bell told CBSSports.com he will visit Missouri Sunday and he is hoping to take a trip to Texas A&M later this month. Oregon is also involved.

``It’s not that the WCC is a bad conference,” Bell said. ``But it doesn’t compare to the Big 12.”

Bell, who is rehabbing from wrist surgery, said all the coaches are recruiting him as a combo guard who will have to sit out this season and have one year remaining.

``I want to definitely take visits to Missouri and Texas A&M before I make a decision,” Bell said. `` 

Category: NCAAB
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com