I chat on Mondays and Fridays around lunch.
EDDIE REESE MAKING SURE NO 'BATTERED FAN SYNDROME' FOR TEXAS THIS WEEKEND!
I know I talk (tongue-in-cheek) a lot about the "battered fan syndrome" at Texas, because it seems the Longhorns are serving up more than their fair share of warmed over mediocre finishes in the big-three men's sports.
But this is a weekend Longhorns' fans can truly feel great about things - starting with Eddie Reese's men's swim team going for its second straight NCAA championship - and what would be Reese's 12th national title!!
Plain and simply, Reese's No. 1 Longhorns are toying with the field at the NCAA championships in Atlanta - playing splish-splash and making everyone else take a bath.
After winning the 800 freestyle relay on Wednesday, Texas opened the second day at the NCAAs with three straight wins - meaning the Longhorns won the first four events at an NCAA championship for the first time in school history.
UT kicked off Thursday night by winning its second consecutive NCAA title in the 200-yard freestyle relay and sixth overall NCAA title in the event. The quartet of sophomores Brett Ringgold and Joseph Schooling, junior Jack Conger and senior John Murray took the win in 1 minute, 14.88 seconds, good for school and Big 12 conference records.
SUPER SOPHOMORES ... AND A FRESHMAN!!
Did you catch that Ringgold, Schooling, Conger and Murray are all sophomores?!?!
You gettin' the picture that Reese has this thing in dynasty mode?!?!?
And then there's fantastic freshman Townley Haas, who won Texas' second straight NCAA title in the 500 freestyle and the first individual NCAA title of his career.
Haas beat the defending national champion in the event - his junior teammate Clark Smith, who won Texas' first-ever national title in the 500 free last year.
Adding to the hardware being piled up by Texas was old man - junior Will Licon - who won the 200 individual medley in a thrilling finish over Cal's Josh Prenot for Licon's third individual NCAA title and - at the time - his fourth overall national title of his career.
Texas capped the night by setting an NCAA record in the 400 medley relay for the second time in as many NCAA Championship meets.
Texas leads the championship through two of four days with 209 points. Florida sits in second with 163 points while California holds third place with 141 points. N.C. State is in fourth place at 137 while Michigan rounds out the top-five with 90 points.
TEXAS BASEBALL GETS POTENTIALLY MONUMENTAL WIN OVER TCU ... (GAME 2: Friday, 6 pm CT, Disch)
The Texas baseball team got a solid performance from new No. 1 starter Morgan Cooper, who opened the game with three scoreless innings in the Longhorns' potentially monumental 4-3 victory over the Big 12's highest-ranked team - No. 6 TCU - Thursday night.
In his first start as Texas' new No. 1 starter in the weekend rotation, Mo Coop gave up 3 earned runs on 4 hits with 3 strikeouts and 2 walks in 4.2 innings.
But Coop's continued return from last year's lost season due to Tommy John surgeAry wasn't even the biggest development of the victory.
That headline goes to the Longhorns' bullpen - Travis Duke, Blake Wellmann, Chase Shugart, Josh Sawyer and closer Connor Mayes - providing 4.1 innings of scoreless relief.
That was a huge development considering the late-game collapses by the bullpen recently in losses to Cal, UCLA and Texas A&M.
Obviously, Texas needs to start putting more games like that together now that the Longhorns are in Big 12 play - like tonight at 6 pm CT at the Disch when LHP Ty Culbreth (3-2, 2.62 ERA) faces TCU RHP Brian Howard (4-0, 2.37)
TEXAS WOMEN LOOKING TO TAKE BIG STEP (vs UCLA, Saturday, 1 pm CT, ESPN)
UT women's coach Karen Aston said the goal this season was to take the next step as a program.
Last year, the Longhorns had to travel to Berkeley, Calif., for the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament - defeated Western Kentucky and Cal - before losing to No. 1 UConn 105-54 in the Sweet 16 and finishing 24-11.
This year, the Longhorns, who are 30-4 and ranked No. 7, got to host first- and second-round NCAA tourney games in Austin.
"The goal is to always improve as a program," Aston said. "Last year, we had to go on the road for the first two games. This year, we got to sleep in our own beds. Hopefully, that will pay off as we head into the Sweet 16 (against UCLA). I think our players feel like they have a lot left to do in this tournament."
Added super sophomore Ariel Atkins, who had 22 points in UT's win Monday over Mizzou, "Yes, we want to do more.
"I think we are right where we need to be," Atkins added. "We have things that we need to work on. We are not where we need to be but I think we are confident in who we are right now."
Texas will be playing a No. 3-seeded UCLA team that it knows already.
The Longhorns won at UCLA 75-65 last season in a game in which nearly all the same players are back again this season for both teams.
The Bruins, who are ranked No. 10 in the AP poll, play excellent team defense and are led by sophomore G Jordin Canada, who needed to hit clutch free throws in the final 25 seconds to help UCLA hold off South Florida.
UCLA, which has won 10 of its last 12 games (both losses were to Oregon State), is in the Sweet 16 for the first time since 1999 (when the Bruins' lost 88-62 to Louisiana Tech).
JORDAN SPIETH LOOKS TO WIN WGC DELL MATCH PLAY AT AUSTIN COUNTRY CLUB
Spieth, the world's No. 1 golfer and, of course, member of the Texas Longhorns' 2012 national championship team, destroyed 53rd-ranked Jamie Donaldson 3 & 2 Wednesday and crafty French shot-maker Victor Dubuisson (ranked No. 41) 5 & 4 on Thursday to go to 2-0 in Group 1 heading into Friday's final round of group play vs Justin Thomas.
Spieth tees off at 3 pm CT against Thomas (ranked No. 33), who generously introduced Spieth to his Spieth's now caddie - Michael Greller - in 2011, probably not realizing that Spieth would blow up the way he did - and take Greller with him!
When Spieth needed a caddie for the U.S. Junior Amateur championship at Chamber's Bay (near Seattle), Thomas recommended Greller, a math teacher and volunteer caddie who had been on Thomas' bag for a local event in 2010.
Spieth won the U.S. Junior Amateur in 2011 and then wanted Greller on his bag at the 2012 U.S. Open, when Spieth became the top-ranked amateur in the world, decided to turn pro and hire Greller full-time.
A FEW OTHER THOUGHTS
* How can a movie pitting Superman against Batman be taken seriously when ...
... Superman, an alien whose ET powers include being able to cook you with his eyes (laser vision), vs Batman, a super rich guy with what appear to be some gadgets attached to a belt that he borrowed from 007, is considered a fair fight?!?!?
* OU finally got the supporting cast performance it needed so that Buddy Hield didn't have to do everything in a romp over A&M ...
... including freshman Christian James hitting 4-of-6 from 3-point range.
James came into the A&M game averaging less than 10 minutes per game.
And when OU is hitting 3s like Jordan Woodard (5-of-6 3PT) and James (4-of-6 3PT) were last night - 11 of 25 3PT, 44 percent as a team - the Sooners are going to be hard to beat.
* RGIII to Cleveland a perfect marriage
No one expects RGIII to make it as an NFL QB again - after being benched as the inactive No. 3 QB of the Redskins last season behind Kirk Cousins and Colt McCoy - to make it again as a starter.
And no one expects the Browns to ever be anything.
So maybe this is the perfect marriage under Browns' new head coach Hue Jackson, who makes decisions without fear.
But let's keep it real: Does anyone think RGIII, who won rookie of the year just four seasons ago after leading Washington to the playoffs (with a clinching victory over the Cowboys), is serious when he says he'd be willing to take a QB drafted by the Browns in the first round "under his wing"?
Considering RGIII helped get Mike Shanahan fired as coach of the Redskins, allegedly threatened teammates in Washington to turn owner Daniel Snyder against them and then got benched for all of 2015 so that he wouldn't suffer a potential season-ending injury that would have forced Washington to have to pay RGIII $16.155 million for the 2016 season?
Come on now ...
* Tonight, the KISS OF DEATH would love to see ...
... Iowa State beat UVA ... Wisky beat ND ... Gonzaga d Syracuse ... and ... IU beat UNC
And I'd sort of love to see Gonzaga go to the FF out of the bracket-busted Midwest Region
* You didn't think I'd sign off without a Texas spring football nugget did ya?
Tope Imade will challenge Brandon Hodges for the starting left guard position if Hodges can't become more consistent.
I have high hopes for Hodges, who is a much better athlete at left guard than Sed Flowers, who started last season.
But Hodges needs to become much more consistent and keep from having his technique break down or Imade will come in and make Hodges the backup.
I'm actually out at Austin Country Club, watching the WGC Dell Match Play right now!
But I'm in the mood to chat, so let's do it!
What's on your mind?!?!?