Temple football coach Matt Rhule is leaving the school to take the head coaching job at Baylor. From Philly dot com.
"I am truly honored and humbled to join the Baylor Family," Rhule said in a statement issued by Baylor. "Baylor is a tremendous institution with a history of football success and I know the passion that so many have for the Bears will help bring the community together to reach even greater heights. I am excited to get started."
Baylor athletic director Mack Rhoades IV said: "When we set out on our search for a new leader of our football program, we wanted a coach who shared our values, who had demonstrated success, who showed a true commitment to the overall student-athlete and who we believed could lead Baylor to a national championship. We found all of that and more in Matt, and I know that he will be a perfect fit with the Baylor Family.
A source said Rhule was planning to speak to his Temple players around midday Tuesday. The Owls' program planned an afternoon press conference.
As of noon, Temple had not publicly named an interim coach to lead the program against Wake Forest in the Military Bowl on Dec. 27 in Annapolis. The source said Temple officials were working Tuesday to choose the interim coach.
Lady Bears Basketball
After handing No. 22/25 Tennessee its worst defeat in Thompson-Boling Arena, the No. 3/4 Baylor Lady Bears return to the Ferrell Center for a match-up against Texas State tonight. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. (CT). Fans can watch tonight's game online on Fox Sports Plus with John Morris (play-by-play) and Jim Haller (analyst) calling the action. Live audio is also available on the Baylor Sports Network, IMG College and ESPN 1660 AM. Rick May (play-by-play) and Lori Fogelman (analyst) are on the call. From Baylor Bears dot com:
• The Lady Bears rolled the No. 22/25 Lady Vols in Sunday's SEC/Big 12 Challenge matchup, 88-66. It matched the largest margin of defeat in Tennessee women's basketball history at home and its worst defeat in Thompson-Boling Arena.
• Baylor, which led by as much as 35 points in the second half, never trailed in the contest to record its fourth win over a ranked opponent.
• Senior Alexis Jones recorded the third 30-point, 10-assist performance in program history, joining Sheila Lambert (37 points, 10 assists vs. Kansas on Jan. 6, 2001) and Odyssey Sims (39 points, 10 assists vs. West Virginia on March 2, 2014).
• Jones added nine rebounds, one shy of recording the first triple-double of her career. Had she accomplished the feat, she would be the only player in Baylor history to record a triple-double in points, rebounds and assists.
• Senior Nina Davis came on strong in her home state, recording her first 20-point game of the season and the 34th of her career. She pulled down nine rebounds, one shy of a double-double.
• Senior Khadijiah Cave netted double figures for the second consecutive game, tallying 10 points off the bench on a 5-for-5 performance from the floor in 15 minutes.
• Junior Kristy Wallace continued her solid play compiling nine points, seven rebounds and seven assists in the game. She also led the Lady Bears with a career-high three blocks.
SCOUTING THE BOBCATS
• Texas State was picked to finish sixth in the 2016-17 Sun Belt Conference Coaches' Preseason Poll.
• Two Bobcats, junior guard Kaitlin Walla and senior guard Erin Peoples, were named to the preseason all-conference third team.
• The Texas State roster, led by sixth-year head coach Zenarae Antoine, is comprised of one senior, seven juniors, four sophomores and two freshmen.
THE LADY BEARS
• The Lady Bears, who are fourth nationally in points per game (91.3), have had four or more players score in double figures in eight of 10 games this season. • Six netted double figures against Houston Baptist in the season opener, five reached double figures against Mississippi Valley State, No. 18/17 DePaul and No. 8/8 Ohio State, and four scored double figures against No. 9/9 UCLA, at No. 3/2 UConn, Southeastern Louisiana and Kent State. • Five Lady Bears average double figure scoring on the season, including senior Alexis Jones(16.6), sophomore Kalani Brown (13.0), senior Nina Davis (12.2), sophomore Beatrice Mompremier (10.0) and senior Alexis Prince (10.0). • Assists and offense go hand in hand and Baylor is the national leader in assists, dishing out 22.8 per contest. • Wallace and Jones lead the Lady Bears, averaging 5.3 distributions per game.
Lecomte’s award follows Johnathan Motley’s recognition last week and extends Baylor’s streak to six consecutive seasons with multiple Big 12 Player of the Week honors. The Bears have had 18 different players honored 31 total times, and 16 of those 31 awards have come in the last six seasons.
Lecomte was previously recognized as Big 12 Newcomer of the Week on Nov. 14. He is the fourth player in program history to earn both Big 12 Newcomer and Player of the Week honors in the same season, joining Terry Black (2000), Ekpe Udoh (2010) and Kenny Chery (2014).
A Brussels, Belgium, native, Lecomte averaged 16.5 points, 3.5 assists and 1.5 steals in 28.0 minutes per game while leading Baylor to wins over No. 7 Xavier and Sam Houston State. Those victories brought Baylor’s season record to 8-0 for the sixth time in program history.
Lecomte scored a career-high 24 points on 8-of-14 shooting, including 6-of-9 from 3-point range, in Saturday’s win over No. 7 Xavier. His six 3-pointers made were the most by any Big 12 player this season, and he added five assists and two steals to lead Baylor to its third win over a top-10 opponent this season. His 24 points topped his previous career best of 23 scored in a win at Duke while playing for Miami in 2014-15.
BU trailed Xavier by three points at the half, but Lecomte scored 15 points and added four assists after the break to help the Bears out-score the Musketeers 45-27 over the final 20 minutes. It was the fourth time this season the Bears have overcome a halftime deficit, including three times in win over ranked teams.
In Wednesday’s win over Sam Houston State, Lecomte had nine points, two assists, one block and one steal in 25 minutes. For the week, Lecomte shot .556 from the field (10-of-18) and .615 from 3-point range (8-of-13).
Lecomte shared the Big 12 Player of the Week honor with Oklahoma State’s Jawun Evans. Texas Tech’s Anthony Livingston was named Big 12 Newcomer of the Week.
Lecomte currently ranks third in the Big 12 with 5.3 assists per game, fourth in free throw percentage at .800, sixth with 2.1 3-pointers made per game, eighth in assist-to-turnover ratio at 2.5, 10th in 3-point percentage at .395 and 11th in scoring with 13.9 points per game. He also ranks second in the league with a 33.2 assist rate, according to KenPom.com.
Also on Monday, Baylor climbed from No. 9 to No. 4 in the AP Top 25, earning the second-highest ranking in program history behind the No. 3 ranking on Jan. 16, 2012. The Bears picked up a school-record six first-place votes.
Baylor has a 10-day break for final exams before returning to action with four non-conference games in an eight-day stretch before opening Big 12 play on Dec. 30 at Oklahoma. The Bears host Southern on Dec. 14, travel to Fort Hood to face Jackson State on Dec. 17, and then host John Brown on Dec. 18 and Texas Southern on Dec. 21.
Tickets for all remaining home games are available at www.BaylorBears.com/tickets or by calling the Baylor Athletic Ticket Office at 254-710-1000. Follow @BaylorMBB on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat for updates throughout the season.
Scandal Ain’t Going Away
“Let’s see what the true facts are and let the chips fall where they may,” said Houston attorney John Eddie Williams, who has donated millions to the school. “We hope the board will join us in supporting an independent investigation so that we can let all the facts be known, hear from all parties involved and then let the healing process begin. We emphasize to the regents that this issue is not going away. The distrust that many of the alumni have of the board is not going away.” From The Austin American-Statesman.
A group of powerful Baylor alums demanded Monday that the school’s board of regents hire a new firm to open an independent investigation of what happened when sexual assault charges were made against football players and other students.
The group also wants the investigation to focus on the conduct of the regents and the school administrators as well as speak to athletes who weren’t interviewed when another firm studied the issue for nine months. After the Philadelphia law firm Pepper Hamilton issued recommendations from its report this May, the regents fired school president Ken Starr, football coach Art Briles and reprimanded athletics director Ian McCaw, who eventually resigned.
The reform group also wants answers as to how much the school already has paid in settlements to victims. Williams said the group wants additional information on why others were fired and then given settlements, especially if they were terminated for cause. Briles agreed to a settlement worth millions.
The group says it will continue to make a public push. Otherwise, some may withhold money from the school. The football field is named for McLane. And the field is named for Williams.
“I’m in a very difficult situation,” Williams said. “I’ve made commitments to Baylor for the field at the football stadium, and it’s something I’m wrestling with at the moment. I hope the board will go forward with transparency and we’ll put all that behind us.”
After an almost 21/2-hour meeting between three Baylor regents and four members of Bears for Leadership Reform — a group of donors that has publicly criticized the board for its handling of the scandal — the benefactors hosted a press conference. From Waco Tribune-Herald.
Houston lawyer John Eddie Williams, a prominent member of the reform group, said he expects Baylor to pay for this independent investigation, and said he would also contribute to what he thinks would be a more than $1 million, third-party probe. He hopes investigators could be hired within the month.
Temple billionaire Drayton McLane, former Texas Gov. Mark White and former Regent Randy Ferguson also represented the reform group. Board Vice Chairman Joel Allison and regents Cary Gray and Jerry Clements represented the board.
After the meeting, Clements said the board will respond to the group’s suggestion of an investigation, which Williams said would include findings of why Title IX was not fully implemented, if there were real or perceived conflicts of interest regarding regents and if the board acted appropriately. Williams said he hopes that response will come within a week.
Williams said he was “stonewalled” after asking how much money the scandal has cost Baylor, including how much Baylor has paid Pepper Hamilton. He also said regents urged his group not to speak to the press.
“It is my impression that (regents) are somewhat inside of a bubble and don’t know the depth of the skepticism of the board,” he said. “We emphasized it very strongly today. This is not going away. This will not heal itself. This will not be solved with you making a few changes in governance. We were very emphatic about that. I did not get a sense from what they told us that they appreciate or understand the depth of the issue.”
On Monday, Bears for Leadership Reform asked three regents from Baylor University to consider an independent investigation into the institution's response to the sexual assault scandal and the Board of Regents actions. From KXXV News Channel 25.
During a press conference in Dallas, former Texas Gov. Mark White, Houston Attorney John Eddie Williams and former Baylor University Regent Randy Ferguson, who are part of the Bears for Leadership Board of Directors, spoke publicly about their discussion with regents James Gray, Joel Allison and Jerry K. Clements. The meeting initiated by the regents lasted two hours and 20 minutes.
"We left on good spirits on both sides. There was no acrimony in the sense of bitterness and meanness. I think everybody was there with a view of resolving the issues,” said Former Texas Governor and Board of Directors Member Mark White.
The group, which described the meeting as spirited, expects the BOR to give them a response on whether they would support an independent investigation.
“I think it's positive, they did hear our questions. They will take those back to the board and they agreed to get back to us, hopefully, fairly quickly,” said former BU regent and board of directors member Randy Ferguson. “At least having a communication channel open is positive. We will look at that as a positive thing and hope to get positive results.”
Attorney John Eddie Williams said the investigation would look at why the full implementation of Title IX was delayed. In addition, the group would like to learn the facts the BOR received that led to actions, such as the dismissal of head football coach Art Briles.
“If they have nothing to hide, then they should embrace an investigation, which will then document they have done the right thing,” Williams said.
According to Baylor Regent Jerry K. Clements, the proposal suggested at the meeting will be presented to the board for consideration.
"I think we need to think about that really carefully. I want to do what's in the best interest of Baylor and if we look at this and consider their suggestion and hear from others about their suggestions then we're going to do what's in the best interest for Baylor going forward,” Clements said.
Williams said the group recommended the independent investigation as a way for the BOR to regain the trust of the Baylor family.
“I hope they understand the problems here at Baylor with the alumni, students and faculty having distrust. Only full transparency will heal that,” Williams said.