Michigan State Spartans vs. Texas Tech Red Raiders
January 2, 2010, 8pm Central
San Antonio, Texas
Network: ESPN/ESPN Radio
Fourteen Michigan State players suspended. One Texas Tech head coach fired. Two programs in turmoil. The winner will be the one that can pull things together to field a cohesive team.
The challenge to Michigan State is straight forward, but significant. On the other hand, they've had a month to prepare replacements for those lost.
For Texas Tech, however, this is brand new, and there are lots of unknowns. Some players have indicated that things will be better without Mike Leach, and there were certainly signs earlier this season that he had lost the team. They very well could be better without the pirate on the sidelines.
Prior to this morning's hearing to address the injunction Mike Leach filed yesterday, Leach's attorney Ted Liggett received a letter from Texas Tech president Guy Bailey terminating Leach's employment for cause, effective immediately. As a result, the court hearing never occurred (I assume because Leach no longer had standing for the injunction).
Ted Liggett stated that a lawsuit against Texas Tech would be coming soon.
The Austin American Statesman's Cedric Golden and Suzanne Halliburton are reporting on Twitter that Mike Leach, the head coach of the Texas Tech Red Raiders, has been suspended indefinitely. Apparently, this has something to do with an injured player and a complaint by a player (or his parents).
Ruffin McNeill will coach the team at the Alamo Bowl on January 2nd.
Many Texas Longhorn fans still see the play in their nightmares. Texas Tech quarterback Graham Harrell throws the ball to Michael Crabtree, who tosses off a tackle from Earl Thomas and outruns Curtis Brown to the endzone to put the Red Raiders ahead with only a second remaining in the game.
It doesn't help that one can't watch anything involving college football without seeing the play every two or three minutes.
Tonight, after ten long months of waiting, Texas and Texas Tech finally meet again on the football field. Only this time, it's Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, in front of a record Texas crown that should approach 102,000.