Saturday, January 27, 2007

An Open Letter to Baylor Sports Fans

Dear Baylor Sports Fans:

As the first Baylor Sports Blog, BearMeat has found that we occupy a large void on the internet. This is due to the fact that Baylor's presence in the world of sports blogs is terribly lacking. The largest gathering of Baylor supporters on the net is Baylorfans.com, which is predominantly a discussion board where fans share their hopes and air their grievances. However, the discussion board is the first stage in a school's internet presence, the next stage must be the sports blog, which plays an amateur journalistic role, but one that is highly interactive with its readership and can establish a regional, or even national following. In terms of Baylor athletics there is a dearth of such sites.


The BearMeat Editorial Board Hard at Work

We have noticed that the Lariat's sports coverage has bemoaned the fact that Baylor fans are so quick to turn on the teams and coaches and exhibit little patience with tough losses. For this the Lariat is to be applauded. We think that the presence of serious, committed Baylor bloggers will help to revive the hopes of our fans, the pride in our programs, the confidence in our coaches, and the image of Baylor athletics. As students and alumni, it is our duty to support our school. For the tens of thousands of Baylor sports fans out there, one way to do that is to begin a blog dedicated to one or more sports. Judging by the discussion boards, we know that there are many intelligent, witty, and knowledgable Baylor fans out there who would enhance the conversation of BU Athletics. While BearMeat skews ironic and satirical, we want nothing more than to see an army of Baylor blogs defending our school from those who would malign our reputation.


The BearMeat Board of Trustees

We of the BearMeat Editorial Board write this letter as a call to Baylor sports fans to establish a much stronger presence on the internet. Most other Big12 Schools have serious sports blogs which attract national attention and do their schools a great service by promoting athletic programs. In this department Baylor is behind the curve.

So we offer this Call to Arms: Let's get to blogging!

Sic 'Em,

The BearMeat Editorial Board
www.bearmeat.blogspot.com

7 Comments:

  • My offer still stands, guys...

    Would be a good way for y'all to start making bigger waves.

    By Anonymous PB at BON, at 12:15 PM  

  • PB,

    Your offer caused much hand-wringing in the Editorial Offices; however, due to the board be spread across this great state, we still haven't had a face-to-face meeting regarding the proposal. A subcommittee was assigned to take up the matter, but they adjourned to the Hole in the Wall for $1 beer and haven't been heard from since. In all seriousness, thanks for the extension of the offer and we hope to come to a final decision within the next two weeks.

    Also, keep up the great work at the best blog in the nation. Seriously,

    Red & Co.

    By Blogger Red Andrews, at 12:35 PM  

  • P.S.

    Basically this "Open Letter" is an attempt to get an enterprising Baylor Bear to start a BON-esque blog. We at BearMeat are notoriously lazy and hope that someone more dedicated and serious would take up the mantle.

    By Blogger Red Andrews, at 12:36 PM  

  • I believe the tendencies to reign in the so-called negative writers about the state of Baylor's mens programs are one of the big reasons that Baylor degenerated into cellar-dwellers. Instead of intelligent people examining the bad coaches, they spent their times helping bad coaches dig Baylor deeper and deeper into a hole.

    For years and years, blow out after blowout, Kevin Steele was given support by fans AND the administration despite giving away sure-fire wins with last minute losses, or just laying down from the first possession on.

    Yet those Baylor fans loved Kevin Steele. They were saying, "Support him, give him four years, wait, give him time" while they were ALSO letting him dig Baylor Football deeper and deeper.

    There was a much better example of dumping a bad coach just a 100 miles south. John Mackovich wins the first Big 12 Conference Champ game, and the next year, he guides his Horns to a 66-3 blowout loss to a mediocre UCLA team.

    That was it. No more. He can win a championship one season, but at THAT school, being a terrible coach doesn't mean you're allowed to engineer blow out losses to weak teams.

    He was gone after that one season.

    He wasn't allowed to dig that program into a deeper pit.

    But a few years later, despite this good example, Baylor fans and administrators saw terrible coaching in Steele's first two games but they loved waiting to see how he crushed Baylor's football program deeper and deeper, making it a laughing stock among Texas high school coaches and prospective recruits.

    WHY WAIT FOR A BAD COACH TO MAKE YOUR PROGRAM WORSE?

    One of the answers was there seemed to be some "coaching fraternity mandate" that Baylor castrate itself because it was only giving the previous two coaches 2 years each.

    Frankly, Kevin Steele should have been fired after TWO GAMES.

    I mean - could No-Coach have produced any WORSE results? (Nine wins, including Ark State, Southern Illinois lower division schools, and he delivered more shutout losses and more blow-out (30+ points) losses than any 4 coaches in Baylor history.

    Yet Baylor Fans LOVED him and supported him. Even when Steele was letting his team give up First-Play-Of-Game TDs, and 2nd-Play-Of-Game TDs, and Fourth-Play-Of-Game TDs, his supporters kept whining, "Oh, it's the negative writers that's the problem!! Just give him more time!"

    The Longhorns only needed ONE season to get rid of him.

    IS THIS FOOTBALL COACH BAD?

    He makes promises to recruits to help them develop NFL-calibre skills. Did anyone see ANY of that from his 4-year offensive line, which HE coached? What about these season-ending collapses?

    What about SEASON OPENING COLLAPSES OF PLAYERS?!! Talk about Out Of Condition!

    Yet, he has those fabulous "Texas ties" but doesn't know about conditioning in Texas weather? TCU players didn't have any cramps during their game with Baylor's 4th Year Coach and his "conditioned team".

    Is Coach Morriss the wrong man for the job?

    If he doesn't know what he's doing, if his players at the end of Year 4 are no better than Year 1, it's hard to look at THOSE FACTS and make any excuses for him.

    However, even the pollyanas with green glasses are ONLY giving him a year. Or maybe two.

    NO ONE is saying, "Shut up and learn to love him - he's here forever."

    Even his so-called supporters have him on short-leash.

    Gee - with friends like that, who needs the negative writers?

    -Ben

    By Blogger Ben, at 2:51 PM  

  • Ben,

    Wow! Great arguments. I guess I would respond to your UT analogy by saying that we cannot hope to have the resources, name ID, and recruiting potential that they enjoy. I too felt Steele should have been sacked much earlier, but GuyMo can at least win conference games at home and away, which seems like a big step forward for us. Also, what coach in America could have done better than Drew after what many sportswriters consider the greatest tragedy in collegiate athletics?

    The expectations of our program are modest and these coaches more or less fall within those expectations. If we were living in a SWC world and our winning pct was the same, I would wholeheartedly agree with you, but we happen to occupy the toughest football division and one of the toughest basketball divisions in the country, with the next smallest school at least twice our size.

    We do need a winning attitude - but to group GuyMo and Drew in there with the Steele-era may be a bit of an overstatement.

    Thanks so much for your comments by the way. You should start a blog and our blogs could debate each other on such issues.

    Peace,

    Red

    By Blogger Red Andrews, at 3:59 PM  

  • I do not like the "Modest expectations" excuse because it means settling for less and less. Look what "settling" has gotten Baylor - Kevin Steele. Dave Bliss.

    Can you give me any reason to support your Modest Expectation excuse after it results in those two choices?

    Dave Bliss was a has-been retread from the outset, but he was an easy choice for lazy thinkers among Baylor admins and supporters. "He has Texas ties!" was the battle cry. (Golly-gee, where have I heard that recently?!!)

    Yet the simplest review of his past two years in Albequerque showed Gun Incidents among his players (he was quoted as saying, "If more of my players had guns, I'd have fewer players" in the AlbQQ paper.) And there were rumblings of NCAA violations.

    He was famous for filling up his roster with last-available players (often called "bottom of the barrel"). He did that in Year 1 at Baylor ("We got started late in recruiting" was his first year's excuse).

    Then in Year 2, same thing. Year 3, same thing. The trend was obvious - he was lazy in recruiting because his bosses were lazy in their choice of him - he correctly calculated he could be as lazy as they were. After all - what's teh worst that could happen? Making easy, lazy choices weren't going to result in putting together homicidal personalities, was it?

    I believe that's what your "Let's support modest expectations" covenant begets.

    I totally disagree with "We can't compete with UT".

    Uh.

    We ARE competing with UT and other Big 12 schools.

    Haven't you noticed that? How many more years do you need before you understand - we ARE competing with them.

    NEWS FLASH: Baylor's been competing with UT and other regional Big-Time Schools for, oh, a few years before these recent couple, too.

    Why doesn't Baylor (and its fans) get that FACT? WE ARE COMPETING AGAINST THEM. Stop with the "we can't" crap. WE ARE.

    I understand that excuses are easy for lazy people to dredge up. But the women's basketball team didn't let blowing opening home-court NIT losses from competing for NCAA championships in their seasons. (Of course, the WBB's coaching staff had the integrity to turn in Bliss' staff for taping and using closed opponent practices, too.)

    The Tennis team managed to compete successfully as well.

    The Track program has been successful.

    If you argue "The Baylor Name" can't compete, then what excuses do you use for those FACTS of other Baylor Programs setting high goals AND succeeding?

    I wish every time I heard "Baylor's in a deep hole", I'd see the author confess "I supported the coaches who dug that hole and therefore I enjoy the hole." Because invariably, I know that author did support Steele and Bliss.

    I didn't. On 9/11/1999, I stopped that support for Steele and was active against him. Then came Doak's change, too.

    I still think firing Steele on 9/12 (A SUNDAY?!! OK - 9/13/1999) would have been such a wild incredible statement of goal-setting that Baylor would have attracted far more positive attention than negative.

    Remember the October 1999 TANK McNAMARA week-long cartoon series that lampooned Baylor and Steele? The negative attention Steele and His Supporters heaped on Baylor were central issues for those 6 cartoon strips.

    Yet, Steele's supporters kept digging that hole for Baylor football. And they're now the ones crying loudest about "that hole that we're in".

    "The hole THEY put Baylor in" should be the phrase they use.

    By Blogger Ben, at 2:09 PM  

  • Ben,

    Do you work for BU Athletics? If so, could you arrange for BearMeat to get press passes? If not, that's fine.

    Your argument is strong and we find little to say in return. You have made your point rather well and would love to see your perspective on BU Sports voiced through a blog. That way, we could carry such a conversation beyond the limited scope of a comments page or a discussion board, so as to bring it out into the public.

    Sincerely,

    Red

    By Blogger Red Andrews, at 7:54 AM  

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