It’s time for another News ’n Notes column, so here goes...
• Isn’t it amazing how many basketball games are now being
played while football season is still going on. Those roundball games really
get overshadowed. Some coaches would like to see hoops season start around
• Texas Christian is a small school. Enrollment at the Fort
Worth institution is just slightly over 8,000. The Horned Frogs are building
a new 4.5 million dollar basketball practice facility. It will include two
courts and will house both men’s and women’s programs. That’s exactly what
• Speaking of basketball facilities, Middle Tennessee has
its own Murphy Center. The Pirates played there Friday night. The locals
refer to it as the “glass house.” It looks like a giant green house with
11,000 seats inside.
• The Pirate Sports Television Network and WITN Channel 7
will air the Old Dominion game on December 7th from Norfolk and the
Charlotte game on January 11th from the Queen City. Both are Saturday night
games. We’ll also air a home game to be announced. The women’s game with
Cincinnati on Sunday, February 9th will also be televised.
• Pat Sullivan, the 1971 Heisman Trophy winner at Auburn,
and now UAB offensive coordinator, deserves another shot at being a head
coach. He was at TCU before Dennis Franchione. The Horned Frogs were
rebuilding under Sullivan and now at age 53, he has a wealth of experience
and still has the fire to lead his own program.
• Cincinnati went to Hawaii this weekend to battle the
Rainbows. Can you imagine if they go to the Conagra Foods Hawaii Bowl on
December 25th. It could happen. Two trips within a month to paradise.
• Speaking of Cincinnati, did you see the University’s plans
for facility enhancement? Varsity Village will come with a price tag of 80
million dollars. You can log on to the Cincinnati Enquirer to see UC’s
elaborate plans for athletics in the future.
• This is the time of year for football changes. One would
think in the next two weeks there will be some movement. It’s a tough
business especially for guys with families. I’ve often thought some of the
real saints in this world are coaches' wives.
• This has nothing to do with ECU or college sports but I
want to send kudos to a broadcasting legend. Bob Chase is in his 50th year
as the “Voice” of the Fort Wayne Komets in the United Hockey League. I grew
up listening to Bob on WOWO 1190 AM in Fort Wayne. You can hear the
76-year-old’s broadcasts most nights in our neck of the woods.
• My broadcast partner, Carlester Crumpler, has been burning
up the highway following our games on Saturday. You’ll find Crump on Sunday
in Atlanta watching son Alge play for the Falcons. The big tight end is
having a good year.
• Most broadcasters will tell you that they get closer to
the basketball team than the football team. It’s because of sheer numbers
and the amount of time you spend together on the road. Former UAB Director
of Athletics Gene Bartow was amazed at the size of football traveling
parties after being a basketball coach all those many years. Gene is now
with the Memphis Grizzlies, working with Hubie Brown.
• Legion Field is legendary in Birmingham, but it needs some
work. Now in it’s 75th year, “The Gray Old Lady” could stand a little
• Pirate kicker Kevin Miller is very high on freshman kicker
Ryan Dougherty. Kevin says Dougherty has a stronger leg than he has. Cameron
Broadwell from East Wake also figures into the kicking equation for next
• It’s tough to handicap Conference USA football games this
year. The parity in this league is amazing. TCU is the best team but after
that it’s anybody’s ballgame on a given Saturday.
• Congratulations to former ECU offensive coordinator Todd
Berry for his Army win over Tulane. The Black Knights were the last team in
Division IA to post a win this year. Navy is on the clock.
• Speaking about clocks, when you’re in the Central Time
Zone this time of year, it’s dark by 4:30 p.m. The lights came on in
Birmingham in mid-afternoon a couple weeks ago during the game.
• Did you notice the new lights in Williams Arena Sunday for
the Ole Miss game? They make a big difference. ESPN is getting real picky
about lighting at college stadiums and arenas. You'd better have good lights
if you want the exposure.
• Another great fundraising job has been turned in by the
Pirate Club. Six Million dollars has been raised for the new baseball
facility. Congratulations to all who made it happen. It’s going to be a show
place scheduled for a 2005 opening.
• After the hectic pace last weekend, with three
play-by-play broadcasts in forty hours plus three radio talk shows and a
television show, we are back to normal this week. Thanks as always for being