Hot on the heels of the Big XII's stern reminder to Baylor that they will no longer be allowed to drag the conference's name through the mud with impunity, the Bears officially announced that they will be releasing five members of their 2016 recruiting class from their National Letters of Intent. The players to be released haven't been publicly ID'd as yet, but the boys over at Inside Texas believe the names to be:
Patrick Hudson (5* OT/OG)
Kam Martin (4* RB)
Parrish Cobb (4* CB)
JP Urquidez (4* OT)
Donovan Duvernay (3* S/ATH)
The word on the street is that Cobb is likely OU bound. Texas looks to be the likely destination for Hudson and Duvernay, while Martin and Urquidez are possibilities depending on mutual interest and swiftly tightening scholly numbers.
Baylor head coach Jim Grobe had this to say regarding today's releases:
"I wanted the opportunity to talk with our signees and their families before providing any releases," said Baylor Acting Head Football Coach Jim Grobe. "This has never been about whether or not we would ultimately provide individuals with a release; we simply asked that we go through the process outlined by the NLI, take some time and have the chance to speak with the student-athletes and their parents. I’ve enjoyed those opportunities to meet with these families and wish each individual success in all that they do in life.
Whether you want to give Grobe the benefit of the doubt and take him at his word that he planned and hoped to conduct things honorably is up to you, but at least there's some doubt to be found. What's beyond doubt is Grobe is not, and has not been, calling the shots. Some external force has finally checked Baylor's football-uber-alles power players for the first time since Ken Starr outmaneuvered them by calling for the full release of the Pepper Hamilton report. The Big XII's own request for the release of the PH findings was measured in tone, but one suspects that behind the scenes the demand sounded a little more like the terms that William Wallace offered before the Battle of Stirling:
Cheltham got his head lopped off about 15 minutes after turning down that offer, and the Bears may finally be snapping to the notion that permanent banishment from power conference ball is absolutely on the table if they don't at least start to effectively feign contrition for the heinous acts that took place under Briles' watch. Considering the ridiculous spectacle that they've made of themselves at literally every step of the journey thusfar, their fate may already be ordained.
But at least five guys just got a reprieve from having to go down with them.