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Odds and Ends

I really wanted to call this "Scattershooting", but that just wouldn't be right.

First item...Aggie Journalist John Lopez is working without an editor now, and it shows.

LOPEZ: Inside the Fourth Estate -- UT Media Bias

He blows the lid on the BOMC. He gives four examples of the bias in action...

A writer at a major newspaper in Texas was asked if he wanted to cover a big Texas Tech game last season. He refused. When asked by an editor why, he responded: "Because it's Lubbock. And Tech.

Really, John? Bias? Or logic?

While talking with an investigative reporter about a piece aimed at exposing irregularities at a major state program, I asked the reporter why he never seemed so eager to investigate UT. He responded with a chuckle, raised a Hook 'em 'Horns sign and said, "You know."

I'll give you that one. Or maybe he just wanted to move you along.

An editor coordinating NCAA Tournament coverage at a Texas newspaper was asked in a staff meeting why the Longhorns basketball team consistently was played on the front page, while the Aggies ? ranked higher ? consistently were inside. He responded curtly, "I make those decisions, not you."

If you're like me, you're thinking, "In Lopez's 25 years of covering sports, when the hell was TAMU ranked consistently higher than Texas in basketball?" As near as I can figure, this must have been the 2006 - 2007 season (Lopez left the Chronicle in the summer of '07). Final rankings (pre-NCAA tournament)- TAMU at #9, and Texas at #11. TAMU had Acie Law, and Texas had the consensus player of the year, Kevin Durant.

The Ags did have the front page all to themselves for the five days that their greatest team ever was still in the tournament after Texas was eliminated.

An executive sports editor in Texas was approached with sourced information that indicated Vince Young's Wonderlic test score was well below par prior to the 2006 NFL draft. The editor quashed the story, which ultimately was reported elsewhere.

Imagine that! And in Houston, too! I have a good feeling about Vince in 2009. Good things happen when the Ags feel safe calling him an idiot. Stay on the case, Lopez!

Second item...This is the 20th anniversary of Switzer getting canned from OU, and the Tulsa paper has a series remembering those dark days. Their consensus- Switzer really didn't do anything that bad, he's a prince of a guy, and dumping him doesn't make sense to anybody now. I'll help them out.

You guys flushed Switzer for the same reason the Ags dumped Sherrill- because the NCAA grew some balls in the '80s and gave SMU the Death Penalty. 20 years later, this current version of the NCAA would never do that, but in 1989 the threat of losing your program was very, very real.

'The King': Turmoil led to the end of a grand era, but Switzer remains

"First of all, I want to set the record straight. I was never fired," Switzer said. "David Swank (OU's interim president in 1989) never fired me and never asked me for my resignation. We never had any conversation in regard to that. All he ever presented to me were accusations and fabrications that were false."

So, how exactly did it go down, if he wasn't fired, and he didn't quit?

Switzer Says Taking Over Dallas Cowboys Was a Tough Job.

It was a lot tougher on the fans.

He took black players from poor backgrounds and gave them an opportunity for a better life, while many of his peers refused to recruit them.

I'm all for giving the devil his due. Switzer never worried about quotas in recruiting, or reserving certain positions for whites, and he deserves credit for that. Let's not get carried away, though. I'm pretty sure that the African American athletes he offered could have played anywhere in the country. He wasn't exactly offering guys that didn't have opportunities everywhere else. Joe Washington, the Selmons, Daryl Hunt?

Also, Switzer was a college assistant from 1960 on. There is no record of him agitating Broyles to accelerate the integration. My point is- let's not get carried away.

After leaving OU and before accepting the Dallas Cowboy job in 1994, Switzer says he was offered two college head-coaching jobs.

"I won't mention (the schools). I don't want to embarrass them because I turned them down," Switzer said. "The success I enjoyed at Oklahoma — I wasn't going anywhere that didn't (provide) the same opportunity to win and be successful. There are very few of those jobs around.

I'll bet dollars to doughnuts that one of them was Mississippi State- after all, Bobby Collins was a finalist when they selected Jackie Sherill.

Which leads to the next item...

MSU Football - 2009 Coaching Staff

The 2009 Bulldogs coaching staff with three ex-TAMU coaches...Les Koenning (OC, just like at TAMU under Fran), Carl Torbush (DC, ditto), and Melvin Smith. Well, at least they don't have to throw away the maroon gear. It will be interesting to see how this team (4 - 8 in 2008) compares to our local maroon squad.

And the final item...I know we're all tired of Justin Chaisson, but here is a little bit more info that may shed light on why OU is so willing to give him a second chance. There are two current Sooners from his High School, Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas- DeMarco Murray and Ryan Reynolds. Evidently, it's a little bit of a feeder school for the Sooners. Also, their former High School coach, David White, has been a graduate assistant at OU for the last couple of years-

Legal path cleared for top OU recruit Chaisson

White is 35 years old, a little old to be going to grad school, but this kind of arrangement isn't Memphis Tigers basketball. Was he the guy in charge of special teams last year?