August 10th Jump Off

The final five have been revealed in the Down the Drive Ring of Honor voting. You have until the season opener against Austin Peay to vote.

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Bearcat News

Camp: Butch Jones Q&A Day 1
You'll see a lot of these as Todd Cunningham has been working the midnight oil with his behind the scenes write ups about fall practice. I'll hone in on one quote in particular:

Q. Is Dominique Battle going to 100% by game 1?

A. We expect Dominique to be a 100%

This is phenomenal news especially considering news broke yesterday that Dom was getting a fifth year next year. Getting 100% healthy will only further his recovery back adjusting to game speed and it seems like most indications from practice is that he's back to his ball hawking self. If he can stay healthy he will lead the Bearcats' secondary in 2012 as a senior and possibly one of the best cornerbacks in the conference.

BearcatReport.com - Quarterback battles
Here's Andrew Force's look at the battle for the #2 quarterback spot next season. Everybody and their mothers know that Zach will be the starter. He looked crisp during the first practice and was 11-14 with 5 touchdowns during drills. This is a positive sign as we heard during the spring how players were so well familar with Butch Jones's system that they were now only working out the details. They are far ahead of where they were last fall. As far as the backups, it seems like Munchie as we expected is getting most of the reps at QB-2 with Luallen and Kay right behind him.

Camp: Butch Jones Q&A Day 2
Here's Jeremy Rosenberg's turn at interview Coach Jones, this time after yesterday's practice. It's nice to see him praising the leadership mentality of his seniors as this was one area of concern after ending last season. Guys like J.K. Schaffer have appeared to really stepped up and become vocal leaders. More to the practice itself, remember Coach Jones is implemented a two-practices-a-day schedule, starting yesterday, where he will split the team in half. Each squad will practice for 1.5 to 2 hours sometimes overlapping with each other. This is especially tough on the coaches so they deserve a lot of credit as they are at the practice for about 4 hours a day. I'm totally in favor of this strategy (assuming it follows NCAA rules) as it allows for a lot of the younger guys to get a lot of reps. This is especially helpful to the Bearcats who, while improved from last year, still have a lot of depth concerns.

Volleyball Reports for Fall Camp - University of Cincinnati Official Athletics Site
The Bearcats football team wasn't the only sport to report for fall camp on Monday as Reed Sunahara led his team to their first practice of the year. Stephanie Niemer has moved on but thankfully Sunahara is back as he leads his girls in defense of their Big East championship. He likely picked up some pointers from spending time in China this summer so could add a new wrinkle to the Bearcats' squad.

It Takes a Pack to Raise a Wolfe
So true. If you don't know much about Derek Wolfe other than the fact that he's one of the top defensive tackles in college sports, this might help you become an even bigger fan of his. Did you know he turned down Ohio State to come to Cincinnati? Yep, if that doesn't sell you Tim Adams' piece about Wolfe will. Check it out for yourself!

Recruiting

Jones' family atmosphere works with recruits
Paul Dehner gives an in depth analysis of Coach Jones's recruiting techniques and how they are received by the recruits he pitches to. We all know that he runs a family-oriented football program but his message really seems to hit home especially with the parents of those prospects. They are generally the most influential people in the recruits' lives so it's important to make a good impression on them. At least from a rankings standpoint whatever he's saying seems to be working as players are turning down offers from SEC and Big 10 schools to come play for the Bearcats.

Around the BEast

Twitter / @McMurphyCBS: Also confirmed media right ...
Huge news out of Brett McMurphy at CBS sports that when the Big East turned down the offer from ESPN, it was valued at 9-years $1.4 billion. This is surprising to me as I had always figured the network severely lowballed the conference. With those numbers, and the supposedly 65%-75% allocation to football schools, that would equate to roughly $15 million per football school per year. Not a bad offer if I do say so myself. When you couple that with John Marinatto's claim that he thinks the conference can get upwards of $20 million per football school you've just set your upper and lower limits of negotiations. So, look for the Big East to take sign a deal worth between $15 million and $20 million next fall.

Around the Nation 

Joe Paterno released from hospital, will return to Penn State practice Wednesday - ESPN
Yea I love Joe Paterno and have the utmost respect for him but at this point in his life coaching should be the last thing on his mind. The guy is 8-freakin'-4 years old! He's had injuries to parts of his body that probably won't heal the same because of his age. While this was an accident (a wide receiver ran into him) but when you're as old as he is getting up after that hit isn't as easy. I think this should be Joe-Pa's last season as a head coach from purely a health standpoint. His legacy has secured him a spot among the coaching elite.

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