August 12th 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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Training Camp Videos

Training Camp 2011: Check In Day    

Training Camp 2011: Day 1 - True freshman Patrick Coyne getting some pointers from Zach

Meet the Freshmen - Chris Moore & Nick Temple - Love these guys' attitude

Meet The Freshmen Bearcats - Akise Teague & Silverberry Mouhon

Training Camp 2011: Split Practice - A look at the split practices. It's like having a farm system at UC. Plus it's nice to see Shaq Washington's foot looks okay.

Bearcat News

Walter Stewart ready to shine at DE - Big East Blog - ESPN
Couldn't agree more with this piece. Moving Walter Stewart back to defensive end improves the defense in two ways. First of all, he's a natural fit at DE as he had been playing that since high school and, as we saw in Bearcat Bowl V, he has enough of a motor to get by offensive tackles but not the bulk to go through them. At roughly 250 lbs, he's definitely getting up there and can make up for a slight lack of size by that speed. The defensive is also improved by NOT having Walter as a linebacker. Let me explain. At DE, all he has to do is rush the passer or stop the running back. Pretty simple. At linebacker, he was asked to drop into coverage and protect the pass against tight ends and some running backs. This was his major area of weakness and having him in on passing downs really weakened the offense. By removing him from that situation and adding a more natural linebacker there, the defense as a whole improves.

Camp: Butch Jones Q&A Day 4
Butch Jones seemed like he was happier about UC's progress today in practice but, like most coaches, wasn't anywhere near satisfied. Again he's emphasizing the little things in practice- running a crisp route, maintaining the right technique, etc. Luckily this year the Bearcats seem to be ONLY working on details as the starters now have had a year to master the playbook. This is a good thing. Butch also weighed in on the MIke Thomas situation. You've probably heard just about every side of the story by now but it's nice to hear it from the coach. Oh, and if you think he's following Mike Thomas to Illinois, you'd be dreaming.

Recruiting

The preseason Top 247 for the class of 2012
Cincinnati commit Dennis Norfleet has been working the combines and camps hard since the end of football last year and has created a ton of buzz around himself. Well it's paid off as 247 sports bumped him up from a 92 to a 94 on their site. He's still a four-star prospect but this is so far UC's highest rated prospect ever, at least according to 247. As I've mentioned he's the softest of verbals right now but UC would be way better off if he stuck around.

Around the BEast

Coaches going into Year 2 - Big East Blog - ESPN
Looking at the list of 2nd-year coaches in the Big East, Andrea Adelson takes a look at each coach's year one and a preview of year two. By and large I think her list of USF followed by Cincinnati followed by Louisville is reflective of the order they will finish in the Big East (not 1-2-3 but more like 2-4-6). Skip Holtz's message at USF seems to be sinking in and they could definitely compete for a Big East title this fall. At Cincinnati, we all know Butch Jones's upside and I think they finish 8 - 4 this fall, finished 4th. Louisville will take a step back and while generally year 2 coaches have an improved record the Cardinals are replacing 25 seniors. The talent is there but young and I see them finishing 6 - 6 or 5 - 7, placing 6th in the Big East.

Around the Nation

Mass expansion at Big 12’s expense looms with A&M looking SEC’s way - NCAA Football - Sporting News
It looks like rumors of Texas A&M to the SEC actually has some legs. According to this Tex-AM's president has been in close contact with the SEC commissioner Mike Slive for some time now as they attempt to break away from the Big XII. This is purely speculation right now and any real talks with the SEC would be kept pretty much under wraps if any decision is at all made. But news like this combined with the apparant tear between Texas and the rest of the conference because of the details of the Longhorn Network couldn't have come at a better time.

NCAA sends second letter; still investigating Ohio State - ESPN
Ohio State thought they were off the hook a few weeks ago when the NCAA decided not to charge the university with a failure to monitor. That's good news for them as that would have meant there was improper compliance throughout the school and there would have been institution-wide punishments. But they aren't out of the woods yet as they are meeting with the NCAA today and according to this are still going to see punishment handed down. 

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