League Wide: The Season Looms Near

Oct 15, 2016; Lubbock, TX, USA; Texas Tech Red Raiders head coach Kliff Kingsbury looks on before the game with the West Virginia Mountaineers at Jones AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
Written by Steven Mandeville

Let’s take a look at some news from around the league over the last week or two.

Catching Up

Texas Tech is digging into that ever blowing west Texas topsoil and doing some work on their facilities.

The $1.6 million project allowed Tech to upgrade its amenities with 120 steel lockers to go along with a new players’ lounge, state-of-the-art lighting system and 60-inch HD televisions scattered throughout the facility.

The project was funded through The Campaign for Fearless Champions. To date, Tech has secured funding for 22 of 25 facilities project, while doubling the department’s scholarship and program endowments. The list of facility projects includes the Sports Performance Center, which is slated to open prior to the 2017 season. [Lubbock Avalanche Journal]

On the heels of a new indoor practice facility — the last team in the Big 12 to add one — a good move for the Red Raiders.

For scale, here’s the Cowboys’ locker rooms.

Beer and Horns

While Coop obviously won the big fish (PFB, duh), Corona will settle for sponsoring the University of Texas as their official beer of choice.

Longhorns fans across the country can raise more than just their “Hook ’em Horns” this season, as Corona Extra and Texas Athletics today announced an agreement designating the nation’s #1 imported beer as an Official Sponsor of The Texas Longhorns.

As part of its relationship with the Longhorns, Corona’s “Horns up, Limes In!” marketing efforts and sponsorship assets include access to the university’s football, basketball and baseball programs, a responsible drinking campaign, hospitality, tickets, media exposure on the Longhorn Network, and access to the “Texas Exes” alumni community. Corona also has use of University trademarks for use in certain point-of-sale, social, digital and other advertising materials. [Constellation Brands]

Texas fans could have used a Corona or seven per game since Colt McCoy left.

But as Texas joins West Virginia and other schools in selling alcohol to the non-club/suite level sections, don’t be surprised to see schools take that beer money to offset losing folks who are simply watching the game at home.

The Stoops Effect

ESPN’s FPI quantified the value of Bob Stoops retiring concerning the Big 12 title race in 2017.

It’s no surprise that in the third iteration of ESPN’s college football 2017 Preseason FPI, released Wednesday, Oklahoma’s chances of winning the Big 12 take a slight hit due to the June retirement of head coach Bob Stoops, who had been at the helm of the program since 1999.

Though they remain the largest favorite to win a Power 5 conference, the Sooners’ chances of securing the Big 12 title dropped from 77.5 percent to 72.3 percent. [NewsOK]

A whopping 5.2 percent in 2017. On the progression of that difference — will Stoops’ loss be felt most in 2017 or three years from now?

By a Hair

The Sooners and Cowboys are close at the top of preseason polls.

Oklahoma, now coached by Lincoln Riley following Bob Stoops’ surprising retirement, garnered 19 of 32 first-place votes and 302 points overall, edging out in-state rival Oklahoma State. The Cowboys, picked to finish second, received 12 first-place votes and were just behind the Sooners with 294 points. [Yahoo Sports]

It’s unreal that a team making $50M less per year (see below) is a handful of votes away in the eyes of the media.

$ $ $ is Here

So the Big 12 revenue numbers came out:

So if you had to tier it out (roughly), it’d be Texas and OU, West Virginia, OSU and Kansas then Tech, Iowa State and Kansas State.

Quick Hitters