Saturday Hodge Podge

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Some links for you to peruse as you try to conjure up interest in the World Cup:

* R.I.P. Larry Jackson. Jackson, an All-Southwest Conference linebacker for the Hogs in 1977 and 1978, died Wednesday after being struck by lightning on a beach in Nassau.

"He was just tough as a boot, the ultimate throwback guy," Mike Scott, a former Arkansas quarterback, told the Democrat-Gazette's Tom Murphy. "He’s the only guy I ever saw knock Earl Campbell on his back. He did it in Fayetteville in that 13-9 game [in 1977]." (note: a subscription is required to access the Democrat-Gazette article.)

* Mitch of the Midwest? David Ubben of ESPN.com's Big 12 blog (how much longer will that blog have that name?), says that schools in the conference with quarterbacking issues should be placing a call to Mitch Mustain, the former Hog and current USC quarterback. Because of the NCAA placing USC on probation, Mustain, along with other Trojan juniors- and seniors-to-be, can transfer to another school without having to sit out a year.

Says Ubben: "He'll be a senior with big-game experience who spent three years at USC improving his game. Before that, he spent his high school career and first year of college under the tutelage of Gus Malzahn -- now a hot-commodity offensive coordinator at Auburn on the fast track to a head coaching gig. He's 6-foot-3, 205 pounds. He's extremely accurate, has a strong arm, is deceptively fast and his deep ball is one of the prettiest you'll see in college football."

* Our Heads Are Spinning. Speaking of the Big 12, If you're having trouble keeping up on your scorecard, Dr. Saturday has an as-tidy-as-you-can-be-with-this-story summary of the dissolving conference's situation. Texas A&M in the SEC and Texas in the Pac-10? That would be pretty crazy.

* Speaking of the Longhorns and Aggies ... Peter Bean, the founding editor of Burnt Orange Nation, SB Nation's Longhorns blog, says both SEC fans and Texas fans should hope that the Aggies join the SEC without Texas.

* And in Closing. You should check out our friend and Auburn blogger Jerry Hinnen's excellent reflections on the money-crazed, realignment madness. Sample quote:

"Conference realignment will affect all teams, all conferences, from this point to all points forward. To watch it happen now, right before us, with its breathtaking Oklahoma land grab speed, is to inevitably have our college football fans’ pulses pounding. Our collective heart can’t help but race.

But I wouldn’t say I’m excited. I am the opposite of excited, in fact. I am sad. More than that: I am mournful.

Because this is college football. I can’t imagine a sport where tradition is–or maybe "has been"–more important, where it carries ("carried"?) more weight."

Great stuff. Definitely check it out.

Enjoy your Saturday. And go Hogs! Beat Arizona State! 

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