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Rivals.com – Texas/OU could set off realignment dominoes as early as next week

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Orangebloods publisher Geoff Ketchum and I have checked in with multiple sources on Wednesday and asked about Texas’ desire to leave the Big 12 and join the SEC.

Texas and Oklahoma are ready to make that move.

A high-level university official informed Orangebloods the expectation is that Texas and Oklahoma would inform the Big 12 as early as next week that both schools intend to decline on extending the existing set of media rights. The contract expires in 2025.

“That should start the dominos,” the source told Orangebloods.

That major piece of news Orangebloods learned coincides with an earlier report on Wednesday.

Houston Chronicle’s Brent Zwerneman was the first to report Texas and Oklahoma reached out to the SEC about joining that conference. Zwerneman also said, “An announcement could come within a couple of weeks concerning the potential addition of UT and OU to the league, the person said, which would give the SEC 16 schools and make it the first national super-conference.”

In addition, Orangebloods was told a move to the SEC would signal the end of the LHN and that the school has come to terms with this. Another source told me he would not be surprised if LHN simply folded into the SEC Network (both are owned by ESPN).

The most interesting Texas-OU development centers around what has not occurred on Wednesday.

Texas officials routinely dismiss stories they believe are inaccurate. Not one media outlet in Austin cited an anonymous Texas source that disputed the reported league change.

In fact, our sources did not want to directly address the rumor.

I previously reported a high-level Texas official’s response to me was “nothing to say” when I inquired about departing the SEC. A few hours later, the same source told me “When I can talk, you know I will.”

Of course, Texas officials believe Texas A&M leaked the story to make it harder for the Longhorns to switch conferences. Texas officials believe the leak creates friction for Texas and Oklahoma in the Big 12 and SEC.

Austin American-Statesman columnist Kirk Bohls reported Texas A&M and Missouri would vote against adding Texas and Oklahoma. Bohls said only two more votes against the Longhorns and Sooners would be necessary to prevent those teams from switching conferences.

However, a source told Orangebloods, “This will take some time but the interest by both sides is there.”

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India can pick two more teams and still win any competition in the world, states Hardik Pandya

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Hardik Pandya has spoken highly of India’s remarkable bench strength across formats and believes that the team can end up winning any competition in the world even if they pick ‘C’ or ‘D’ string sides. India, on Tuesday, sealed a series win over Sri Lanka despite fielding a second-string team.

Building a world talent pool has been integral to team India’s sustained success over the past decade, and nothing served as a testament to the same more than the tour of Australia last winter. Without their skipper Virat Kohli, and without a handful of senior players, the Indian side ended up winning 2-1 Down Under, in the process breaching Gabba for the first time this century.

But while the side that triumphed in Australia had a fair mix of first-teamers and newcomers, the contingent currently in Sri Lanka is dominated by debutants and newcomers, with only a handful of seniors present in the entire squad. And the inexperienced squad, on Tuesday, sealed a 2-0 series win to project the scary strength in depth the country possesses.

Hardik Pandya is one of the few seniors in the white-ball tour of Sri Lanka, but the all-rounder believes the team could do without him and other seniors. Speaking ahead of the third ODI, Pandya insisted that India ‘can pick two more teams and still win any competition in the world’, singing praises about the country’s talent pool.

“Our roles are very clear, even in the main team. The kind of talent which the Indian team posses right now, I think we can pick two more teams and win any competition in the world,” Pandya told the host broadcaster, reported Cricbuzz.

On a personal note, however, 2021 has been a tough year for Pandya, who has struggled to build on the promise he showed in the tour of Australia last year. So far this year, across formats, Pandya has struck a solitary fifty in Indian colours, averaging 25.62, while he also had a rough IPL, averaging 8.66 from 7 outings. Now a more mature cricketer, Pandya, however, insisted that failures a part of a cricketer’s journey, and revealed that he has learned to celebrate bad days.

“I understand that in life you have to keep growing. As a cricketer and a person you need to keep growing. My process is just growing as a human being. You tend to make mistakes, you fail, but I like to celebrate my failures. I like to celebrate my bad days, it is a part of the sport and it teaches you a lot of things. I like to remember it.”

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Byron Buxton trade: Ideal fits for Buxton before 2021 MLB Trade Deadline

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Byron Buxton would be a man in demand if the Twins make him available. Photo from Puckett’s Pond.

Just when he was starting to become one of the best outfielders in 2021, it looks like the Minnesota Twins might be trading Byron Buxton. While he’s spent a lot of time on the IL during his breakout season, a Byron Buxton trade could be in the works if he’s unwilling to sign an extension with the Twins. At least those are what the latest Buxton trade rumors would indicate.

The Twins, after all, are in a rather precarious position. They began the season expecting to compete but fell flat on their face. It’s possible that Minnesota could hit the reset button in 2022 and try again. But as a small-market team, they could trade away some of their best chips and enter a rebuilding phase. The latter possibility has brought about the Buxton trade rumors.

Buxton trade rumors

The 27-year-old Buxton could be an interesting addition to the trade market this summer. A fractured hand sent him to the IL in June, but it won’t keep him sidelined for the rest of the season. In just 27 games this season, he’s batting .369 with an OPS of 1.176, performing like one of the best outfielders in 2021. If Buxton comes anywhere close to producing those numbers when he returns, he’ll be an impact player.

But if the Twins decide to trade him, where will he go?

Yankees

The Yankees are the obvious fit for Buxton. They need at least one outfielder, although trading for two before the deadline isn’t a bad idea either.

More than anything, they need a bonafide center fielder, which is what they’ll get in Buxton. The likes of Brett Gardner, Clint Frazier, and other fill-ins aren’t getting the job done and a Byron Buxton trade would be a huge upgrade for the Bronx Bombers.

Astros

Houston isn’t in dire need of a center fielder given the rest of the team’s lineup. But Buxton would represent an immediate upgrade over youngster Myles Straw.

It would be the type of move that would prove that the Astros are serious about contending for another World Series.

Braves

Even though Atlanta just traded for Joc Pederson, the Braves could still make a play for Buxton. Keep in mind they’ve lost both Marcell Ozuna and Ronald Acuna, this year, so Pederson alone isn’t going to fill those holes.

Even with Pederson on board, the likes of Guillermo Heredia and Abraham Almonte are playing regularly in the Atlanta outfield. Trading for Buxton would solve some of their problems, giving them a viable bat and an elite defender in the same package.

Phillies

Much like the Braves, the Phillies have to think the Mets are vulnerable in the NL East, so a big trade for a player like Buxton could make a big difference. Outside of Bryce Harper, there’s not much to like about the Philadelphia outfield.

Andrew McCutchen is showing his age and who knows how long Travis Jankowski can keep being a viable place-holder in center field. That makes Philadelphia the ideal landing spot for Buxton.

Brewers

The Brew Crew is looking better and better but they still need a little more offensively. Jackie Bradley Jr. and Lorenzo Cain aren’t getting the job done in center field. Buxton would be the perfect solution for Milwaukee, especially since Bradley and Cain are there to provide depth if Buxton gets hurt again.

While the Brewers look good to win the NL Central, they’ll need to make a meaningful improvement at the deadline if they want to make noise in October, which is why Buxton should be on their radar.

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Podcast: Enter York Hall – Boxing News

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In this audio documentary relive York Hall’s great nights, fights and events that are the pillars of British boxing history

YORK HALL – the spiritual home of british boxing. Join us on an atmospheric deep-dive into the magic of the old venue that’s provided fight fans of all ages with so many special memories. From its 1929 opening as public baths in which Londoners would wash, right through to the present day – via visits from the likes of Tapia and Lomachenko – this audio documentary relives the great nights, fights and events that are pillars of British boxing history.

Boxers, promoters, referees, trainers, commentators and journalists relive their own personal highs and lows as the past, present and future of York Hall are explored in detail.

Written and produced by Darren Rees. Engineered at: Untapped talent recording studios (Southampton).

Please get in contact with your York Hall memories via Twitter: @ReesBoxing89 or [email protected]

Listen below:

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