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July 19th Jump Off

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Bearcat news

Phase 2 Construction Underway At Sheakley Athletics Center - University of Cincinnati Official Athletics Site
Message boards have been buzzing the past couple of weeks about phase 2 of the Sheakley Athletics Center, more in the area of 'why the hell haven't they even started it yet?'. Well, this will put all of those questions to rest as construction will continue soon and is expected to be completed by March 1st of next year. I hope this doesn't interfere with the practice and games on the field this fall but when all is said and done, the addition should look great! Check out the renderings here.

Who's NEXT in the Big East? - Big East Blog - ESPN
It looks like Andrea has jumped on the Akise Teague bandwagon as she has tabbed him as the next big thing for the Bearcats. I couldn't agree more! Akise will step onto the field as the primary return man. If he doesn't I will likely break something valuable to Coach Jones. Is that a threat? No. It's a promise. Anyways, it's encouraging to hear how advanced Teague is as a true freshman as he is quickly picking up the playbook. I expected him to split reps with Jameel Poteat behind Pead but it looks like he's stepping out in front in the #2 role. That's extremely encouraging as he's a threat to score everytime he gets his hands on the ball.

Q&A: Cincinnati QB Zach Collaros - Big East Blog - ESPN
More from the Big East blog as Andrea released her interview with Zach Collaros. I've thought of Zach as a non-vocal leader who leads by example instead of with words. He's also incredibly humble and is the first to spread accolades around to his teammates. Most importantly, he's very competitive and a hard worker. He would be the first one to tell you that he didn't come close to his expectations last season both from a stats standpoint and a wins standpoint. Remember, until Fresno St. last year, Zach had won every single game he started since high school. I think Zach, as well as UC, has a bounce-back year next season. The entire offense is just too talented not to allow that.

Isaiah Pead Named To Doak Walker Award Watch List - University of Cincinnati Official Athletics Site
Out of any of the Bearcats to win a postseason award next season, Isaiah Pead probably has the best shot at it. You all know about him so there's really not much to analyze here except to emphasize his need to stay consistent throughout the season. Games like Louisville where he had almost 150 yards are great but then in the next 3 games he was almost nonexistent. Some of that can be attributed to the offensive line and the fact that UC had to play from behind. Still, Isaiah is one of the most explosive players UC has ever had and the Bearcats are lucky to have him. Regardless of some of his faults, I'm expecting a huge year out of him.


Lakota East pitcher Michael Conrad commits to UC | High School Sports Blog
Some baseball recruiting for you as another Lakota East player has cast his lot with the Bearcats. If you remember, Evan Hillis, the Thunderbirds' Ace-a will pitch for Coach Cleary at Cincinnati. Well, think of Michael Conrad as Ace-b for Lakota East. He's only a junior so this is a verbal commitment but it's nice to see the stockpile of solid pitching the Bearcats baseball team is compiling. The southpaw was very solid last season putting together a 5-1 record with a 1.11 ERA. Look for him to hone his game in his senior season as he prepares for college baseball.

Around the BEast

BYU never approached by Big East -
There have been nearly a dozen schools thrown out as potential Big East expansion candidates to be named that infamous 10th football school. Among them, BYU was being brought up as a potential football-only candidate. Apparently, the Big East never even sent feelers out to Provo to see if they were interested. Honestly, the idea of a football-only school in the Big East to make the conference as a whole even more confusing just isn't appealing to me. But, BYU does bring a great football tradition, national fanbase, and a new market for the Big East. I kind of figured those rumors about a BYU invite didn't hold much water considering the school is diving headfirst into Independence but this article just confirms it.

Around the Nation

USC Trojans suspend Marc Tyler for inappropriate comments - ESPN Los Angeles
I actually remember watching TMZ last week when this segment was aired and was thinking, "Wow, what a complete idiot. He's kicked out of school." Well, it didn't go down quite like I predicted be he did get a 1 game suspension. I guess Lane Kiffin didn't want to axe the kid and then have him spill the beans about all of the illegal payments going on at USC. Anyways, everyone claims he was 'joking' but, come on, some of the most honest things someone can say comes when they are drinking and this guy was wasted out of his mind! Not a smart move from a probably not very smart kid.