With the onset of football preseason, time for a new batch of “David Citations,” for the interesting, weird and just plain zany in sports:
Biggest loss: Those who visit Hendrix practices will notice a slimmed-down coach Buck Buchanan. “Lost three games (last season) and 60 pounds,” he said. “ I quit eating like an offensive lineman.”
Symmetry in position coaching: Buchanan, the Hendrix head coach, also coaches the defensive line. Steve Campbell, the UCA Bears’ head coach, also coaches his team’s offensive line.
ABC’s of college initials: Oklahoma State University and Ohio State University are on a legal dispute about who can use the initials, OSU.
Best take on pressure: From Northwestern State coach Jay Thomas, whose team did not win a conference game last season, “Pressure is no stranger to me. Pressure is what you allow it to be.”
Location, location: Sam Houston State coach KC Keeler loves his school’s location in Huntsville just north of Houston and in fertile recruiting areas in east Texas and Louisiana. He’s been successful in getting topflight players to come: “More of these kids in Texas and surrounding areas want their families to be able to watch them play,” he said.
At Arkansas Sportscasters and Sportswriters Hall of Fame banquet, Charles Ripley, former Little Rock Parkview basketball coach and current athletic director at Arkansas Baptist College who was presented a Lifetime Achievement Award, said he had wanted to coach since he was age 10. “They once gave me one of those tests that supposed to tell you what career to best go into,” he said. “Didn’t really indicate anything for me. I told them that’s because they didn’t have any coaching questions on the test.”
Best tribute to a career: Jim Schneider, a co-worker and friend, has this to say about the late Joe B. McGee, the sportswriter honoree and longtime editor and reporter for the Log Cabin, “Joe came to work every day fully charged and fully focused.”
High percentage of excellence: Of the 11 sportswriters who have been inducted into the ASCSW Hall, five of them have worked for the Log Cabin at some point in their careers — Clay Henry, Donna Lampkin Stephens, Joe Mosby, Joe McGee and myself.
Weird mix: Just minutes after the Arkansas Activities Association’s Governing Body handed out its annual sportsmanship awards, members discussed and approved an revised process for ejections.
Weird stat: ESPN’s telecast of cornhole tossing, the popular picnic and tailgate game, drew bigger ratings that day than Major League Baseball on Fox and TBS, the WNBA All-Star game and the Tour de France finale.
Hottest tribute: A Starkville, Miss., strip club owner is planning a “Hugh Freeze Tribute Night,” in a slap at the fired Ole Miss coach.