A Blog devoted to all things SWC, the greatest college athletic conference. Updated weekly with the SWC Game of the Week during football season. Other relevant SWC News will appear from time to time as well.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Aggies Make Mistake

Texas A&M fired Mark Johnson this week. He won more games at the baseball coach at A&M than any other man. He averaged 41 wins over 21 years, before he was coach they won 40 games in a season twice. I think you can judge a coach by what his former players and peers say about him, and in Mark Johnson's case, it is only good. From the Bryan College Station Eagle:

“ That’s my only explanation as to why this happened to Mark,” Garrido said. “It isn’t about coaching ability. It isn’t about him being a good teacher or his ethics. It isn’t about his baseball knowledge. My guess is that it’s about the evolution of the game and the expecations for coaches. You’ve got to win, and you’ve got to win every year.”

“ He’s an important figure in my life,” Rupe said. “I feel sorry for him, and I also feel sorry for the other coaches. It’s a sad day for A&M baseball. It really is. As much as everyone is going to look to the future, for his past players, it’s a very sad day.”

A&M has made a claim with this move, win our your out. Of course as Larry Dierker said in the Houston Chronicle about the Astros,

There are two types of fans: baseball fans and fans of winning.

It seems to me that A&M's new administration is a fan of winning.

Listen to My Wife...

This is interesting in our house, as we think about starting a family in a two career household. Granted, we are both civil engineers so our hours are not quite lawyer or investment banker hours, but it is still something we think about. Read the whole article here.

Maybe you know a woman (or a few million) like her. It's hardly news that the issue vexing talented people is the struggle to balance their professional lives with time for fulfilling lives outside of work. The shock is that after decades of wrestling with these tradeoffs, the obvious answer is the one everyone has been too skeptical or afraid to explore: changing the way top jobs are structured.

In a world where most people are struggling, the search for "balance" in high-powered jobs has to be counted a luxury. Still, there is something telling (if not downright dysfunctional) when a society's most talented people feel they have to sacrifice the meaningful relationships every human craves as the price of exercising their talent.

Of course my opinion is the situation is driven by greed, corporate greed and individual greed. If no one would work the hours or put up with the bs, then corporate America would be forced to change. As far as women, business is going to have to change the way they handle mom's or they are going to lose some of their best employees.

Why can't we be sucessful and have a life? I like my job, I think I'm pretty good at it - I don't want to brag, and I work with a top firm in my field. But my job is a job, and I want to have my weekends to spend some of the money I'm making, and I like to go home and have dinner with my wife. So far I've been lucky, but as I see where my career might go it is not pretty.

Friday, May 20, 2005

More on Muslim Views in the Middle East

From today's Wall Street Journal. Read it here. (Register to read, easy, painless, worth it.)

As a Muslim, I am able to purchase copies of the Quran in any bookstore in any American city, and study its contents in countless American universities. American museums spend millions to exhibit and celebrate Muslim arts and heritage. On the other hand, my Christian and other non-Muslim brothers and sisters in Saudi Arabia--where I come from--are not even allowed to own a copy of their holy books. Indeed, the Saudi government desecrates and burns Bibles that its security forces confiscate at immigration points into the kingdom or during raids on Christian expatriates worshiping privately.

The Saudi Embassy and other Saudi organizations in Washington have distributed hundreds of thousands of Qurans and many more Muslim books, some that have libeled Christians, Jews and others as pigs and monkeys. In Saudi school curricula, Jews and Christians are considered deviants and eternal enemies. By contrast, Muslim communities in the West are the first to admit that Western countries--especially the U.S.--provide Muslims the strongest freedoms and protections that allow Islam to thrive in the West. Meanwhile Christianity and Judaism, both indigenous to the Middle East, are maligned through systematic hostility by Middle Eastern governments and their religious apparatuses.

The lesson here is simple: If Muslims wish other religions to respect their beliefs and their Holy book, they should lead by example.

Too bad they have all that oil. It seems to me that what we are dealing with in the Middle East are facist and Islam is the medium to convert the masses. I always wondered how the Nazi's could get everyone to buy into their terror, but now I'm witnessing it first hand. Of course liberal America will not face up to this fact and want to make us out to be ugly Americans intruding where we don't belong. Of course our relations with places like Saudi Arabia are ridiculous because they have all that oil.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Middle East Hypocrisy

Great atricle in today's New York Times, imagine that. Thomas Friedman writes:

It is hard not to notice two contrasting stories that have run side by side during the past week. One is the story about the violent protests in the Muslim world triggered by a report in Newsweek (which the magazine has now retracted) that U.S. interrogators at Guantánamo Bay desecrated a Koran by throwing it into a toilet. In Afghanistan alone, at least 16 people were killed and more than 100 wounded in anti-American rioting that has been linked to that report. I certainly hope that Newsweek story is incorrect, because it would be outrageous if U.S. interrogators behaved that way.

That said, though, in the same newspapers one can read the latest reports from Iraq, where Baathist and jihadist suicide bombers have killed 400 Iraqi Muslims in the past month - most of them Shiite and Kurdish civilians shopping in markets, walking in funerals, going to mosques or volunteering to join the police.

Yet these mass murders - this desecration and dismemberment of real Muslims by other Muslims - have not prompted a single protest march anywhere in the Muslim world. And I have not read of a single fatwa issued by any Muslim cleric outside Iraq condemning these indiscriminate mass murders of Iraqi Shiites and Kurds by these jihadist suicide bombers, many of whom, according to a Washington Post report, are coming from Saudi Arabia.

The Muslim world's silence about the real desecration of Iraqis, coupled with its outrage over the alleged desecration of a Koran, highlights what we are up against in trying to stabilize Iraq - as well as the only workable strategy going forward.

Read it for yourself.

I would add that Americans attitude about this story is outrage, as it should be if it had in fact been true, too bad for liberal America it isn't, but what if someone had flushed a Bible down the toilet and Christians had rioted? I imagine the Christians would be called hypocrits. What if someone had written a novel about a Islam where they made something up about the prophet Muhammed that went against Isalm teachings?

Thursday, May 12, 2005


Letter to the editor in the NY Times.

To the Editor:
The Texas House of Representatives has it all wrong when it comes to elite cheerleading and sex ("Texas Legislation Adds a Bah! to Sis and Boom," news article, May 5).

The squads that engage in the "provocative" routines they seek to ban are elite squads - focused on competition, athletic skills and leadership.

These young women are athletes. Studies show that young women involved in sports - and make no mistake about it, in the South cheerleading is a sport - are less likely to engage in sex than their nonathletic counterparts.

As a former elite cheerleader, I saw more than one girl "kept out of trouble" by her participation on an elite squad.

These squads build leaders with self-confidence, lead to college scholarships and give young women the chance to value their bodies for their athletic abilities instead of their sexual appeal.

The routines may look sexy, but that does not mean the girls are having sex. Instead of banning routines and becoming the "dance police," the Texas Legislature should see the value in these squads for young women's futures and say, "Bring it on!"

Mary Alice CarrNew York, May 5,

First of all, when did cheerleading become a sport? Second, call it sport, call it dance, whatever, but when will people face up to the fact that the reason there are girls in tight clothes rolling around on the ground at basketball games is so the men in attendance can see them as sex objects. Who wants this for their daughter?