|Clyde Hart Named World Coach of the Year
1:45 P.M. MONDAY, Nov. 23, 2009
Clyde Hart has so much hardware that he could open up his own store.
But Baylor's legendary track coach added another special recognition on Sunday, when he was named the World Coach of the Year by the International Amateur Athletic Federation at the World Athletics Gala in Monte Carlo.
Hart, who's been the program's Director of Track and Field since retiring as the head coach four years ago, trained world champion quarter-miler and World Athlete of the Year Sanya Richards. And he also resumed personal coaching duties of former Olympic champion quarter-miler Jeremy Wariner, who finished second to fellow American LaShawn Merritt at the World Championships.
Recognized as the premier 400-meter coach in the world, Hart trained athletes that won the 400 meters at three consecutive Olympics with Michael Johnson (1996 and 2000) and Wariner (2004). He was previously selected as USA Track and Field's Nike Coach of the Year in 2004 and '06, the NCAA national indoor coach of the year twice (1989 and '96) and five-time conference coach of the year.
Hart is also a member of the Baylor Wall of Honor and the Arkansas Sports, USA Track & Field Coaches Association, Texas Sports and Baylor Halls of Fame.
Not bad for an old boy from Little Rock, Arkansas.
Congratulations to Coach Hart and Waco-trained Sanya Richards!!!
Freshman QB Nick Florence is 'Kind of a Big Deal'
9:05 A.M. TUESDAY, Nov. 9, 2009
At least in jest, I've borrowed one of my favorite Ron Burgundy lines from "Anchorman" several times over the last few weeks: "I don't know how to say this, but I'm kind of a big deal."
In fact, I've said it so many times, Associate Athletic Director Paul Bradshaw just rolls his eyes now every time he sees me. He knows it's coming.
But I'll use it again in reference to true freshman quarterback Nick Florence.
This kid is "kind of a big deal."
After completing 32 of 43 passes for a school-record 427 yards and leading the Bears to a come-from-behind 40-32 win over Missouri, Florence was named on Monday as the Big 12 Conference Offensive Player of the Week.
And how rare is that?
Well, of Baylor's 16 previous players of the week in the 14-year history of the Big 12, only one other received offensive player of the week accolades following a conference game.
That was quarterback Shawn Bell, who threw for a then school-record 394 yards and five touchdowns in leading the Bears to a come-from-behind 36-35 win over Kansas on Oct. 21, 2006.
Baylor's only other Big 12 offensive player of the week performances came against Washington State last season (Robert Griffin), Texas State in 2007 (Blake Szymanski) and Samford in 2002 (Jonathan Golden).
So I'm thinking that makes Nick Florence "kind of a big deal."
"That's really a great honor, not only for him, but for our team first and foremost," head coach Art Briles said. "Because if you don't perform well, both sides of the ball and special teams, then that's really not happening. He had a lot of people step up and make some big plays for him on the offensive side of the ball. I'm happy for him. He's kind of been under the radar, so I guess that's over with now. But that's a good thing for him and a good thing for the program and a good thing for the team."
So in the immortal words of Ron Burgundy (portrayed eloquently by Will Ferrell): "Don't act like you're not impressed."