Frogs O’ War: To Be Lucky, Is To Be Good

Sports, especially baseball, is a lovely paradox. Baseball is so statistically driven that you can pretty much argue yourself out of any gut-feeling you could ever have if it could be even mildly disproven with numbers. But yesterday when Cody Jones threw that rope from centerfield- combined with Skoug’s brilliant block- prevented LSU from getting the first run of the game, you had to like TCU’s chances for the day.

Frogs O’ War: Frogs Open the CWS With 10-3 Win Over LSU

TCU’s 10-3 victory puts them in the winner’s bracket for Tuesday, where they will face the winner of Vanderbilt and Cal State Fullerton at 7pm. LSU will play the loser of that game at 2pm on the same day. The Frogs will likely look to Alex Young or Tyler Alexander to start game two, as they hope to take a short route to the championship series. One step closer to the destination! Go Frogs!

Frogs O’ War: College World Series Infographic Preview

This year’s College World Series field is loaded. Four national seeds are joined by four programs with rich baseball histories to create what will no doubt be a very competitive two weeks in Omaha. The eight teams in this year’s field account for 15 of the last 36 National Championships as well as 85 total appearances in the College World Series.

Before first pitch, here’s everything you need to know about this year’s field!

Join the DSR Tournament Challenge!

The tournament is just a day away and even though SMU couldn’t sneak in, there should still be plenty of activity around the area as DFW gets ready to host the Final Four at Jerry World in a few weeks.

Come join the DSR Bracket Challenge group in ESPN Tournament Challenge and compete to see if your bracket beats the rest of the DSR readers!

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The Bracket

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The Final Four

The Final Four is in “North Texas” at ATT Stadium in Arlington this year so Im looking forward to all the events that should be happening around the Metroplex over the next few weeks to get ready for the big show in Jerry World.

Frogs O War

You can join the Frogs O War as well.

Vote for us in the Tailgate Harder Competition

Crowd Tilt is sponsoring a Tailgate Harder (#TailgateHarder) competition for tailgate groups that pooled money using Crowd Tilt for the 2013 season.

Vote for our group and we could win $500 to use towards a tailgate at a Frogs game this year. You can vote one an hour so make sure you keep voting!

Vote for our Tailgate!

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Zone Read Podcast: College Players of the Week

(Photo Credit: USATSI)

College Football got underway with a bang in Week 1, and now it’s time for the first Zone Read Podcast Player of the Week Awards.

Offensive Player of the Week: Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State

Winston, a redshirt freshman, helped Florida State annihilate Pitt on Monday night, completing 25 of 27 passes for 353 yards and four touchdowns. Yes, he only threw two imcomplete passes all night.

Winston also ran for 42 yards and a touchdown.

Here are some highlights from his game against Pitt.

Defensive Player of the Week: Collin Ellis, LB, Northwestern

Ellis had not one, but two interceptions on Saturday against Cal, and he returned not one, but two for touchdowns. He also recorded four tackles, including one for a loss.

Here’s video of both his pick 6’s.

Special Teams Player of the Week: B.J. Catalon, RB, TCU

TCU lost to LSU to start the season, but it wasn’t for lack of effort on the part of B.J. Catalon. Catalon totaled 159 yards on four returns, including this one for 100 and a touchdown (he also rushed for 52 yards and TD in the game).

Mean Green Football Reaction After Big UNT Win

The University of North Texas Mean Green have flipped the script of previous seasons. Heading in to its matchup against the University of Ohio, UNT is coming off one of the biggest victories margins since head coach Dan McCarney took over two years ago.

McCarney has taken on big events and celebrations since joining the Mean Green including the opening of Apogee Stadium, entrance into Conference USA and the 100-year celebration of the UNT football program all in his short stay with the team.

A 40-6 victory over the University of Idaho Vandals this past Saturday is an indication that the team is moving in the right direction, but hopefully the confidence isn’t over flowing because when teams get cocky mistakes are made.

The last couple of years UNT has had a problem with playing down to its opponent. With the Vandals taking refuge at the bottom of the Division I cellar this year, is nice to see a team like the Mean Green defeat a team that is supposed to be easily defeated.

Before the game, I figured that McCarney made a mistake starting quarterback Derek Thompson over the freshman sensation Dajon Williams.

Around the UNT fan base, Thompson is not their favorite quarterback to wear the Mean Green colors. Too many bonehead plays and failed comebacks over the last couple of years didn’t get him in the good graces of the student body and loyal fans.

To be fair, he has had to play second fiddle on the offense to now current Dallas Cowboy Lance Dunbar and the shifty senior receiver Brelan Chancellor since he first win the starting job in 2011.

To my surprise, Thompson shined bright in the victory over Idaho. Chancellor over shined him in this game as well but in all fairness when the ball is in his hands he’s a top tier play maker. You can’t argue with a six catches for 135 yards, a 85 yard touchdown reception and 111 yards on three punt returns. Giving Thompson the credit he deserves, he had one of the better week one performances for a quarterback in the nation.

Thompson ended the game 23 for 27 with 349 yards and two touchdowns. Keep in mind, after the final score of the game with 11:17 left the game in the fourth quarter Thompson came out of the game so Williams could get his first look at college football. The true freshman performed well himself connecting on five passes on six attempts for 55 yards.

Considering the following, there’s a good reason for the Mean Green to have confidence heading into this Saturdays game against the Ohio.

Being around the UNT fan base for a little over three years now, the reactions to hype around its teams is a tad on the pessimistic side. Who would blame them, it seems that last couple of years the football and basketball programs has been sponsored by Murphy’s Law (anything that can go wrong, will go wrong).

Idaho was beaten badly because it’s a bad team. It was as much as a tune up game that you can get for the Mean Green. They paid the Vandals 410,000 dollars to come visit Denton to lose in week one and a well spent 410,000 dollars it was indeed.

UNT’s schedule still has four teams coming off bowl victories last year, two of them in the next three games.

Because the Mean Green are not going to break into the top 50 anytime soon, the Conference USA games are much more valued than the non-conference match ups. With six bowl game opportunities in C-USA, it is not tough to see the heightened emphasis put on games when Oct. 5 comes around. With that being said they still need six wins to have a chance at a bowl game this year.

Enjoy the feeling right now UNT fans because September is going to be a lonely month for the win column.

It’s not because the Mean Green are going to be a bad team this year because it’s quite the opposite. This is the best team assembled by the Mean Green in since former head coach Todd Dodge allowed the team to implode. The loss column this year is going to be reflective of the level of talent UNT will have to face, not because of the team’s abilities.

The schedule will lighten up my mid-Octctober and wins would likely start piling up, but as for now prepare for a quick slap back to reality.

To end on a good note, the Mean Green has adopted some form of home field advantage. Apogee Stadium and McCarney became a part of UNT history at the same time. Since then the Mean Green are 8-4 at home and there are five more home games left on the schedule.

Game Day

It’s finally here. College game day.

Geux Frogs.

Also: Check out the Zone Read Podcast Monday at 7 PM for an update on Chris and Jamie’s fantasy draft Friday night and stories from the TCU LSU game at Cowboy’s stadium Saturday.

Tony Mitchell punches his ticket to Motor City

In last week’s NBA draft, a player by the name of Tony Mitchell went off the board at pick 37 to the Detroit Pistons. Almost 25 picks later than where he was predicted to go if he decided to forgo his sophomore season at UNT and enter the 2012 NBA draft.

Within one year, Mitchell went from being a lottery pick talent with elite athleticism to a second round, multiyear project on a team with recent losing tradition.

At least a losing situation is something he got used to with his final year at the University of North Texas.

Because Mitchell is considered a prospect, Detroit could have been the worst team he could have landed.

While the Pistons have talented young players like Brandon Knight, Andre Drummond and Greg Monroe, they were each first round picks and considered as NBA ready players. Mitchell needs maturing and lots of coaching from both players and the Detroit staff.

In his eight years of coaching, Maurice Cheeks has run three playoff teams but in the regular season is 284-286. A percentage of .498 is the ultimate definition of an average record of accomplishment.

Cheeks is not the coach to mold a young player who is I need of a proven coach that can bring a long a player and implement him into a system that will best fit him.

Mitchell may not be the prize of the draft for the Piston’s organization so it wouldn’t surprise me that he doesn’t get too much playing time or attention which is really a shame. Mitchell has a limitless ceiling, but he just needs some scaffolding to reach the top. He can’t do it on his own. Mitchell already proved that with his final season at UNT.

Before the draft, ESPN had Mitchell going 42nd to the San Antonio Spurs. The perfect team and situation for both Mitchell and SA because they have the best coach in the league and one of the greatest big men of all time to help Mitchell’s process of becoming the NBA player that he has the ability to be.

Instead, he’s on a team with striking similarities to the 2012-2013 Mean Green. A team led by one and two year players and in the middle of a coaching change. It ended as a disappointing campaign for Mitchell when he was a star and now, as a NBA prospect, he may never get his professional career moving in the right direction.

Two of the top players on the Detroit roster take the roles of the big men. The Pistons offense revolves around the play of their guards Knight and Rodney Stuckey. With the talent in front of him in the rotation and a system that revolves around the perimeter players, playing time at first will be a valuable commodity for the athletic big man.

I get the feeling Mitchell’s above the rim style will win him some playing time with the coaches and brownie points with fans. He brings a certain type of energy to the Palace that hasn’t been there for years. Even if it is eight minutes per game, he can add a spark by getting the bench and fans out of their seats with his version of a two pointer.

The best bet for Mitchell would be to find himself in a trade to a playoff caliber team within his first couple of seasons. I do not feel he will find what he is looking for in the Motor City.

Then throw in reports that the Pistons are meeting with Atlanta forward Josh Smith it wouldn’t surprise me to see Mitchell in the D-League to start the season if Smith were to join Detroit.

After all of this I can confidently say the Detroit will improve on its 29-53 regardless of landing Smith but not because of Mitchell’s presence. Detroit will be better because its core will be stronger by adding another offseason together with each other.

I’ve met Tony Mitchell, I’ve talked to him and covered a vast majority of his collegiate career and wish him the best of luck when October 29 comes around. I plan to follow this young man’s career to the end but there’s just the sneaking suspicion that it may just not be long enough to have a follow up to this article.