Morning Playbook – Texas A&M, Missouri formally introduced to SEC culture

CBR Morning Playbook

Kevin Sumlin
Kevin Sumlin was cool under the pressure of his first SEC media day event.

“It’s a pretty damn hard league.”

That was Texas A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin’s response when asked about the difficulty of the SEC schedule, which will pit the Aggies against the past six BCS champions. It was one of the first tests Sumlin passed with praise as a new member of the SEC.

The SEC opened their three-day media day festivities Tuesday, and naturally received an astounding amount of media coverage for it. With Texas A&M and Missouri joining the conference and being the stars of day one’s schedule we finally got a chance to see how they would handle the SEC scene. After one day, things mostly went smoothly for the Aggies and Tigers. Andy Staples of Sports Illustrated takes things a little deeper in writing the left tackles are preparing to take on SEC defensive lines.

As you might expect, the team has some of the best SEC coverage from day one. Bruce Feldman says that Kevin Sumlin seems to have the swagger to handle the SEC media frenzy. Similarly, Brett McMurphy writes Missouri is ready to earn respect in the SEC. Tony Barnhart took time to reflect on commissioner Mike Slive’s approach to the moral integrity of the SEC. Of course, Steve Spurrier is always worth discussing. Dennis Dodd writes the Ol’ Ball Coach is still winning in the SEC.

While the SEC media days are now in full swing in Alabama, we here at Crystal Ball Run continue to take a look at the Big 12 in our latest preview week. We took a look at America’s proudest coach, Iowa State’s Paul Rhodes, and we took a look around the Big 12 for the next Justin Blackmon.

More links after the jump…

The recent news out of Penn State even managed to be referenced at SEC media days. Slive referenced the Penn State mess in his opening statements, and Missouri head coach Gary Pinkel made some controversial remarks in support of Joe Paterno. It may have been nothing but a head coach coming to the defense of a senior member of the coaching fraternity, but you have to think somebody said something to Pinkel afterward, right? After all, there are only 1,100+ media members covering this event.

One of the other not-so-secret topics of discussion at SEC media days is the development of the SEC Network, which has gone from being dubbed Project X to Project SEC.

You know you envisioned Oregon head coach Chip Kelly soaking in a tub while reviewing game film after reading this story, right? It turns out that may not actually happen as reported.

North Carolina’s new athletic director, Bubba Cunningham, is looking to clean up a program stuck in academic scandal, writes Pat Forde of Yahoo! Sports.

The 2012 Biletnikoff Award watch list has been released. No Sammy Watkins, the 2011 Biletnikoff Award winner? No Marqise Lee? Michael Felder thinks that is ridiculous (he is right).

The Big Ten is revisiting the idea of a nine-game conference schedule after the deal with the Pac 12 was put in the recycle bin.

Some audio interviews for you, via SiriusXM Sports. First up is Slive from SEC Media Day, followed by BCS Executive Director Bill Hancock talks about the playoff system.

Tweet of the Day

There is little doubt who stole the shoe on day one of SEC media days. Missouri wide receiver T.J. Moe, who provided some great answers to the media during his press conference segment, received a standing ovation after being genuinely honest, funny and charming in his SEC debut.

Travis Haney, who previously has covered South Carolina and Oklahoma football and has now moved on to, updated his day one stats as well…

Video of the Day

As already mentioned, the Penn State situation was fresh on the mind at SEC media day. In this video we see what Steve Spurrier said of Joe Paterno, via

About Kevin McGuire

Contributor to's College Football Talk, Athlon Sports and The Comeback. Host of the No 2-Minute Warning Podcast on iTunes, Stitcher Radio and iHeart Radio. FWAA member and Philadelphia-area resident.