Even though the 2013 season is more than three months away, publications began to release their preseason all-conference teams.
On Tuesday, Phil Steele disclosed his 2013 Preseason All-Sun Belt Team. Texas State landed 13 players on the list, headlined by four first-team selections, three second-team honorees and six third-team members.
Like many others, Steele felt junior linebacker Mike Orakpo and senior defensive lineman D.J. Yendrey will make an impact in 2013 and awarded them first-team mention. Orakpo (Colorado State) and Yendrey (TCU) have yet to play a meaningful down for the Bobcats, as they each transferred to the program and had to sit out the 2012 season.
Also landing on the first team were junior punt returner Andy Erickson and sophomore kick returner Jafus Gaines. Erickson averaged 16.7 yards per return, while Gaines went 28.9 yards per return with a long of 65.
Second-team honors went to junior kicker Will Johnson, junior cornerback Craig Mager and senior punter Zach Robinson. Johnson converted 12 of his 17 attempts in 2012, Mager tied for the team lead with four interceptions and Robinson averaged 46.2 yards per punt.
Third-team honors went to senior wide receiver Isaiah Battle, junior transfer running back C.J. Best, senior cornerback Xavier Daniels, junior linebacker David Mayo, senior defensive lineman Blake McColloch and junior offensive lineman Charlie Will Tuttle. Of those names, Best is the most surprising since he was a member of the 2013 signing class.
Texas State opens the 2013 season Aug. 31 at Southern Mississippi.
“Together We Rise” is the new mantra for the Sun Belt Conference after its recent rebranding.
On Sunday, the Sun Belt unveiled its logo and mantra to the public. It worked with SME, Inc. throughout the process.
Take a look at the new logo.
Looks a little bit like Frost Bank’s logo, no?
Those blue rays of the sun stand for different traits the Sun Belt felt its conference is molded by: adventurous, ambitious, authentic and loyal.
In comparison, here is what the old logo looked like.
How did Texas State’s only season in the Western Athletic Conference turn out?
While the Bobcat baseball team still has the WAC Tournament this week, each program — including Ty Harrington’s bunch — wrapped up its regular season.
Here is a look at how Texas State did in its final season against a schedule full of Southland Conference opponents versus those in the WAC.
Get ready for Texas State to make a trip to Big-10 Country.
It was recently announced that the Bobcats, who went 4-8 last season, will play at Illinois in 2014. No return trip is set, so it looks to be a pay day for Texas State.
That gives the Bobcats two non-conference opponents for 2014. Navy is set for a trip to Bobcat Stadium that same year.
It will also be the first year in which the Sun Belt Conference, Texas State’s new home, will look completely different in 2014. Appalachian State and Georgia Southern will step up to the Football Bowl Subdivision, while Idaho and New Mexico State become football-only members.
Prior to last Saturday’s final day of the Western Athletic Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships, Texas State only had one team title in its new conference. Back in February, the women’s track and field team took first place at the conference meet.
Well, you might as well add two more to that tally after the women added an outdoor crown to their haul and the men followed suit.
“Once the women got a taste of it, I knew the men wanted it too,” Boone said. “It’s just that competitive nature that I love so much about this team.”
Texas State’s women held a comfortable lead from early on in the meet, while the men rallied on the last day.
“It was a total team effort from each team,” said Boone, a second-year head coach. “We couldn’t have been in that position if it weren’t for our throwers, our jumpers, our sprinters, our middle-distance runners or the long-distance guys.”
Once the Bobcats clinched both titles, all that was left to do was douse Boone in Gatorade. Boone never saw it coming.
“They really did get me on that one,” Boone said. “You see it on TV all the time and you think you’d need it coming, but I didn’t.”
USA Today put out a comprehensive list of how much revenue 228 athletic programs pulled in last year.
Are you curious about how Texas State did compared to others? Well, you’re in luck.
Texas State hauled in a revenue stream of $26.8 million in 2012, good enough for 84th in the nation. That number put the Bobcats second among teams in the Western Athletic Conference (New Mexico State fell in at 77th) and first in the Sun Belt Conference (their new league come July 1).
Nearly half of the Bobcats’ revenue came from student fees ($13 million).
Ticket sales amassed $682,454, compared to $509,629 from the previous calendar year. That amount was the largest since 2006, when the Bobcats sold $557,796 worth of game passes.
Be prepared to see Texas State head coach Dennis Franchione on the sideline for at least five more years.
On Thursday, Texas State President Denise M. Trauth announced in her newsletter “From The Hill” that the university signed Franchione to a new five-year contract. Franchione is now under contract until 2017, which is two years longer than his previous contract that he signed when he took over following former head coach Brad Wright’s dismissal. Terms of the new contract weren’t disclosed, but a raise is expected. Franchione had been earning $350,000 per year under his old contract.
Franchione is 10-14 in two seasons with the Bobcats.
Texas State opens the 2013 season Aug. 31 at Southern Mississippi.
Edit: Franchione’s new deal will pay him $50K more annually, beginning Feb. 2014.
Texas State released start times for its 2013 home schedule.
Rest assured, you’ll have plenty of time to tailgate before watching the Bobcats.
Sept. 7 — Prairie View A&M — 6 p.m.
Sept. 21 — Wyoming — 6 p.m.
Oct. 12 — Louisiana-Monroe — 6 p.m.
Oct. 19 — Georgia State — 6 p.m.
Oct. 26 — South Alabama — 6 p.m.
Nov. 23 — Western Kentucky — TBA
Note: Texas State has sold 3,646 season tickets thus far.
Despite several standout performances at Texas State’s Pro Day, no Bobcats heard their names called in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Texas State should have three players sign as free agents: former linebacker Joplo Bartu (1), former tight end Chase Harper and former defensive back Darryl Morris (2). Bartu led the Bobcats with 95 tackles in 2012, Harper caught 28 passes for 315 yards and three touchdowns, while Morris hauled in four interceptions.
Don’t be surprised if a few players from Texas State get drafted in 2015 and 2016. If sophomore offensive lineman Adrian Bellard, junior cornerback Craig Mager, junior linebacker Michael Orakpo and sophomore wide receiver Brandon Smith all put in the work, there’s a good chance NFL scouts would salivate over their potential.
Fans packed Bobcat Ballpark to watch Tuesday’s game between Texas State and Texas A&M (Photo by Tyler Mayforth).
When it was announced that Tuesday’s game between Texas State and Texas A&M was sold out, Ty Harrington’s team had to like its chances. Something about big crowds at home often pushes the Bobcats to victory.
“Our kids were really excited to come back (after batting practice) and see a nice crowd,” Harrington said after his team’s 4-1 win. “It probably added an extra step, some giddy-up and I was proud for them.”
With its win against the Aggies, Texas State improved to 4-1 in games played in front of the five best crowds in Bobcat Ballpark history.
Rank – Opponent – Attendance – Date – Result
1st – Texas A&M – 2,603 – March 30, 2010 – Won, 6-5
2nd – Texas – 2,593 – March 3, 2009 – Lost, 6-5
3rd – Texas A&M – 2,512 – April 23, 2013 – Won, 4-1
4th – Nebraska – 2,386 – Feb. 18, 2011 – Won, 7-2
5th – Notre Dame – 2,181 – March 3, 2012 – Won, 6-0
Texas State has nine of its 15 remaining games at home.