Recent Blogs Posts

  1. Insurgents take cities in Iraq- what mission did we accomplish?

    Quote Originally Posted by Taxman View Post
    9/11 taught us the cost of doing too little. Iraq taught us the cost of overreacting. The decisions a President makes can leave a footprint for decades. It is easy to play Monday- morning quarterback, which we all do. But unless we are on his (one day her) shoes, I am not sure we can fully comprehend how difficult some of these issues can be.

    Both 9/11 and Iraq taught us grave lessons. The most important thing is to learn from our mistakes when making decisions in the future.
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  2. Interactive SMS Marketing Tactics

    Personalized mobile marketing is becoming more popular every day, especially with the advancement of mobile technology such as smartphones and tablets. Companies are coming up with new ways to market their products through these technologies in order to bring in more business by making it convenient for consumers to access their products from their phones or tablets. The more personalized and accessible the mobile advertisements are, the more successful they turn out to be. Companies can never go wrong by making their consumers feel individually appreciated rather than just another number. Mobile Marketer has stated that mobile text messaging is the most direct and personal way companies can reach consumers. Once consumers have gained enough trust in the company to opt-in to receive sms advertisements, there is not an easier way to reach out to those consumers and make them feel important to the business.

    Hidden Valley’s new mobile marketing campaign

    Hidden Valley has found a way to connect directly with families. According to a survey done by Mobile Marketer, the busiest time of day for families is between 5:00 and 7:00 in the evening just after the kids get out of school and it is time to prepare dinner. Often times extra curricular activities, homework, cleaning, and other events get in the way of parents being able to have enough time to prepare meals quickly for their children. Hidden Valley has caught on to this challenge, and has created a new mobile marketing SMS campaign to help these parents out. Once parents have opted-in to receive Hidden Valley’s SMS, they receive weekly SMS that include delicious and easy to put together recipes along with videos and images for extra help. In order to start receiving the SMS, all parents have to do is text RANCH to 40679 and if they ever want to stop receiving them, they just have to text STOP to the same number. This helps consumers feel like they are in control of how much mobile advertising they receive, ultimately building their trust in the company. Consumers are looking for the easiest ways to accomplish simple tasks like dinner, and SMS promotions like Hidden Valley’s have proven successful. Mobile Marketer states that this type of marketing is effective at inspiring consumers to become frequent users and the purchase rates greatly increase because of the convenience. Most of the time consumers are looking for such marketing technologies, so companies should take advantage of this new and easy way to market.


    Mobile Technology News brought to you by businesstexter.com

    Source: mobilemarketer.com/cms/news/messaging/17921.html
  3. ***Official Athens Softball Super Regional ~ Lady Bears vs Female Dogs Thread***

    Quote Originally Posted by setshot View Post
    I loved these two games....Baylor played a very fine offensive team and showed that they deserve to be considered a dark horse going into OKC. They defended, they hit, they ran the bases, and Canion was just terrific, particularly after such a strenuous weekend preceding this trip. Moore and his staff are very good at what they do to prepare these young ladies, and they compete! Their poise and their focus was very impressive. I look forward to the tournament at OKC.

    The sports program at Baylor is in excellent hands, from top to bottom. It is a good time to be a Baylor fan, and some of us have waited a long time for this prosperity.
    I always thought that it was possible, but for a time it seemed to lie outside our grasp, but no more, and thanks to the generosity of those who have contributed to make our facilities competitive is due...that has been a boon to this program.

    I was told several years ago by someone who was in the know in College Station that when A&M poured money into updating their baseball stadium, that they were determined that it "would be as nice as Baylor's." I think that Getterman stadium is about as nice as any, and the new football stadium will be, as well. Track and field will finally be housed in a location that is appropriate, and in due time will be a jewel. We know that our tennis facilities match the quality of our program, and that is a compliment to both. The Ferrell Center needs some upgrade, but it is, even now, a nice venue for the Bears, and the practice facilities in every sport leave little to be desired.

    The tardiness of the commitment by the administration and the Board of Regents to the athletic program as we entered the Big 12 has been remedied, and the results are there to be seen on the scoreboard. This is a highly competitive university sports program, and we are rightly proud to proclaim it so. Congratulations to everyone concerned.
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  4. Mobile marketing: advertising to young consumers

    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]Marketing has never been as competitive as it is now. Advertisers market across so many channels that people are constantly bombarded by advertisements. That makes it harder and harder for marketers to reach their target audience. The key is finding a way to communicate with consumers in a way that doesn’t seem pushy or unnatural. As a result, many businesses are turning to social media and texting to get their message across. It’s personal, efficient, and natural. These methods are especially effective at reaching younger consumers. Here are some tips for using them effectively.

    [/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR] [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3][B]Social media marketing tips[/B][/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]

    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]There are many different types of social media from Facebook and Twitter to Instagram and Pinterest. Because there are so many different platforms for social media marketing, the number of ways to advertise is virtually endless and each year businesses are coming up with new and creative ways to reach their target audience.[/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]

    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]The main idea behind social media marketing is that you want your most loyal customers to do a lot of your marketing work for you by sharing your posts, tweets, and pins with their circle of friends. Another great thing about social media marketing is that it fosters customer involvement. Customers are much more likely to engage in two-way communication with your business through social media. For instance, businesses are using social media to poll their customers and ask for feedback.[/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]

    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]While social media marketing is a great marketing channel, text messaging may be even more important for the mobile marketer.[/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]

    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3][B]Text message marketing tips[/B][/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]

    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]According to one poll, 75% of consumers would prefer a text conversation over a conversation carried out on social media. Younger users in particular prefer texting over other forms of conversation, even phone conversations.[/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]

    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]Currently, the average person exchanges 50 text messages a day (around 1,500 a month). If you look at the 18-24 age group however, that number is more than double (approximately 109 text messages per day).[/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]

    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]According to this research, the real key to reaching a younger audience is the humble text message. There are a number of ways to accomplish this. One of the most common is a text message loyalty program in which customers opt in to receive regularly texts about special deals and promotions.[/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]

    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]Marketers need not limit themselves to this one use of text messages however. Many businesses are realizing that texting is a great way to gather customer feedback. You can text your loyal customers a quick 1-2 question poll and they will feel that their opinions are important to you. Other uses for text message marketing include appointment reminders, shipping notifications, and e-receipts.[/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]
    [/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]Mobile Technology News brought to you by [/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR]businesstexter.com
    [COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3][B]Source:[/B][/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR][URL="http://castleford.com.au/blog/2014/how-texting-can-help-you-reach-young-consumers"][COLOR=#000000][FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]castleford.com.au/blog/2014/how-texting-can-help-you-reach-young-consumers[/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR][/URL]
    Tags: marketing
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  5. Football Overview - April 2014 - Submitted to saturdayedge.com

    Quote Originally Posted by ftblbob5 View Post
    We have a college football website called The Saturday Edge (www.saturdayedge.com)and I was hoping you could help us out with a Baylor Spring wrap up Q& A?



    Here are the questions:



    1.Coming out of spring practice, what are the team’s strengths and what question marks remain?

    Baylor’s strength over the last few years has been its offense. Based upon the returning players available and the performance of those players during most of the spring practices, you can probably look for the Bears to continue to be a real handful on the offensive side of the ball. The offense will still be led by Bryce Petty, who was phenomenal in his first year as the starting quarterback. Petty threw for 4200 yards and a 62% completion percentage, 32 touchdowns, while suffering only 3 interceptions on the 2013 season. It is little wonder that this young man is on the short list of 2014 Heisman favorites. If Petty can improve on his deep ball touch (arm strength is NO issue) and demonstrate a tad more poise under pressure, the Baylor passing game could set all kinds of records in 2014. Petty is blessed with a bevy of fast, talented receivers with more help on the way in persons of talented red—shirt and true freshmen. He is supported by two young, but relatively experienced backs with two up-and-coming backs (a red-shirt and a true freshman) available, if necessary.

    There are always questions about almost every aspect of a collegiate team coming out of spring practice. Even with veteran players, coaches can’t be totally sure that even their top players will remain at that level due to attrition and differences in motivation. On the other hand, Baylor University has seen its returning players be fairly consistent from year to year, with a steady improvement in most cases.

    One of the key offensive question marks is the whether or not the offensive line will be able to return to previous levels. The smart money says that not only will this group be able to return to previous levels, but it has an opportunity to be the best group the Bears have placed on the field in the Art Briles-era. The key to this coming to pass is the ability of the bookend tackles, Spencer Drango (58) and Troy Baker (75) to return to pre-injury levels of performance. Drango, a highly recruited junior, had off-season back surgery and Baker nursed a recovering knee throughout the 2013 campaign. If both of these guys can return to or exceed previous levels of performance, the Baylor offensive line should be very strong even though it has to replace Outland Trophy finalist and consensus All-American, Cyril Richardson, and center, Stefan Huber. Kyle Fuller is a more athletic replacement for the steady Huber and Richardson’s replacement will be the final victor in a position battle between two behemoths.

    The biggest question marks remain on defense where the Bears have to replace 2 out of the 3 linebackers and 3 out of the 4 defensive back positions. At linebacker, the only returning starter is two-time 2nd team All-Big XII middle linebacker, Bryce Hager, who has to overcome off-season surgery to take care of a severe tear in his groin. Gone are the steady playmaking abilities of Eddie Lackey and Sam Holl. These will be big shoes to fill. Currently, no one has truly made the weakside linebacker or the nickel linebacker position his. These two positions remain in question going into fall camp.

    In the secondary, All-Big XII safety Ahmad Dixon, potential NFL-draftee Demetri Goodson, and steady KJ Morton and Joe Williams will be missed. It is up to a group of players that were well-thought of coming out of high school to be able take these experienced players places. While this group will be able to probably be able to rely on a better pass rush, these guys still have big shoes to fill in a very short time. Experts believe that this group will probably be more athletic than the previous group, but it remains to be seen if they can make up for the wealth of experience this graduating group possessed.


    2.Can you name a few breakout players to keep an eye on in 2014?

    The number one potential breakout player has to be Shawn Oakman, the 6’9”, 280, Junior transfer from Penn State. Oakman is truly explosive – he led the Bears in tackles behind the line of scrimmage despite the fact that he was not a starter and only played about 40% of the defensive snaps in 2013. Workouts in the spring indicated that Oakman has continued to improve at a rapid rate and was largely unblockable for most of the spring.

    Look for Shock Linwood to become the bell-cow running back for the Bears in 2013. Linwood got plenty of work in 2014 (running behind Seastrunk and Martin), but will see much more attention in 2014. While this young man has only had to shoulder the load in a couple of games (who can forget his performance against OU?), he has demonstrated a slashing running style that is reminiscent of Baylor standout Jay Finley. Look for Shock to be able to meet the challenge of the starting position and be able to equal or surpass the previous top running backs.

    Finally, one young man that deserves a mention is KD Cannon. The highly-touted Mount Pleasant product will be given an opportunity to become a regular in the rotation at the inside receiver position behind Levi Norwood. If his high school performance can translate into comparable performance at the collegiate level, KD could be very, very special. A lot of work remains for this to become possible, but this true freshman deserves a mention in this context.


    3.Position grades (and of time permits -- a quick breakdown of each group:QB, RB, Receivers, OL, DL, LB, Secondary & ST’s)

    Coming out of the spring, you would have to give the following grades to each of these positions:

    QB: A+
    Petty is the best returning (and therefore probably the best overall) quarterback in the Big XII in 2014. He is rated a coveted NFL prospect with a rifle arm, big body (6’3”, 230), good speed, and a competent ability to read defenses. He can improve on his pocket awareness and his ability to make quicker reads, but this is nit-picking. He’s way ahead of any of his completion in these categories already. He has shown a willingness to do what it takes to improve in the way he works in practice and his willingness to work with highly respected quarterback coaches when he is away from school. This young man is dedicated to his craft. Petty is backed up by Seth Russell, who is highly athletic and explosive. Russell needs to improve on his ball security, but he is a highlight reel waiting to happen. This young man can go the distance carrying the football and has shown a very accurate deep arm. Russell needs to improve on his decision-making but he has real potential. Chris Johnson is a red-shirt freshman that could really push Russell for the number two spot, but at this point has not been able to make this contest as competitive as he would have wished.

    RB: B+
    With Shock Linwood and Devin Chafin returning, the Bears cupboard will be anything but bare despite losing Lache Seastrunk and Glasco Martin. In a backup role in 2014, Linwood accounted for 804 yards on 128 carries and a 6.9 yards per carry average, scoring 8 touchdowns and Chafin tacked on 304 yards on 51 carries for a 5.8 yards per carry average, scoring 4 touchdowns. This fall, these two young men will be expected to shoulder the first carries of the game. They won’t be getting carries after the contest is out of reach for the opponent. This task is much different than coming in during “mop up time.” From his performance in the critical OU game last fall, it appears that Linwood has the ability to take on this responsibility. But Shock must demonstrate that he can stand up to the punishment throughout the course of the 2014 season. It was noticeable that his production dropped off as his carries in the heat of battle increased.

    Chafin will be expected to be the back in the short yardage situations, replacing the reliable Glasco Martin. It remains to be seen whether Chafin can measure up to this critical responsibility. Devin is a dynamic ball carrier with excellent speed, but he has to become more consistent on the critical downs.

    Should either or both of these young men fail to be able to produce during the 2014 season, the responsibility will fall to two young and highly-recruited RBs, red-shirt freshman Johnny Jefferson and true freshman Terence Williams. These two young men are very dynamic ball carriers, but just don’t have the experience of the first two RBs. Jefferson was very impressive in spring workouts, but it remains to be seen if he can measure up to Big XII competition in the fall.

    Receivers: A
    The Bears lost Tevin Reese, the quick-silver receiver from Temple to injury last fall and graduation this spring. When Reese went out, the vertical nature of Baylor’s offense suffered a hit. It remains to be seen whether or not the Bears can recover that quality with the returning group.

    One thing that is obvious is that Coach Art Briles always finds a way to utilize the strengths of this receiving personnel in the most advantageous manner. Briles will find a way to use the talents of returning players like All-Big XII receiver Antwan Goodly, steady Levi Norwood, and speedy Clay Fuller. In addition, Corey Coleman demonstrated all spring that he will be a major threat in the inside receiving position. Jay Lee had an outstanding performance in the Fiesta Bowl and is looking to use that as a springboard to bigger and better things in 2014.

    Two squad players that appear ready to make a significant contribution in 2014 are Robbie Rhodes (a highly-recruited outside receiver that was injured for much of 2013) and Quan Jones (the 6’5”, 210, red-shirt freshman). These two young men could go a long way toward making the outside receiver position a feared portion of the Baylor attack.

    Two true freshmen that must be mentioned with this group are Davion Hall (6’2”, 200) and KD Cannon. Hall went through spring drills with the Bears (though he suffered a shoulder injury which kept him out of most the contact). Both of these young men will be given an opportunity to win a spot in the receiving rotation.

    This group is probably the deepest receiving group in the 2014 Big XII Conference.

    OL: Difficult to predict, but if the tackles are completely healed (which is expected) then give this group an A-.
    This spring, Coach Randy Clements almost ran out of bodies to man the offensive line. While most of these problems have been probably resolved, this issue does point to a possible problem for the 2014 season. Fans expect these positions to be at least two deep by August, but the problems of the spring still raise concerns.

    The biggest hurdle for this group is replacing Cyril Richardson, the Outland Trophy finalist. The Bears have two really large and potentially talented players slated to complete tooth-and-toenail during fall camp to win this job. These two young men are LaQuan McGowan (6’7”, 385+, Jr) and Blake Muir (6’6”, 300, Jr, who started one-year at the University of Hawaii). Neither of these two players will probably be quite as good as Richardson, but they both could be very good. All the other positions should be improved over what was seen in 2013. This group has the potential to be the best offensive line group Coach Clements (offensive line coach) has produced in the Briles-era.

    DL: A-
    There is little doubt that this group will be the best defensive line that Coach Bennett (defensive coordinator) has been able to field at Baylor. Oakman is a potential beast and his running mate at defensive end, Jamal Palmer, is almost as explosive and probably a little faster. These two talented young men are replacing starters that held that position for 3 years, but expect the 2014 players to be able to eclipse previous performance. These guys will be backed up by Freshman All-American (at Boise State) Sam Ukwuachu and highly-touted recruit KJ Smith. These are four very talented pass rushers and run stoppers.

    The defensive tackle position is even deeper. There are two young men returning that had multiple starts in 2014 (Andrew Billings and Beau Blackshear) and the defensive player of the US Army All-Star game in 2011 – Javonte Magee. These three young men are very powerful. Billings almost single-handedly stuffed the University of Texas’ running game in the second half of a game that ultimately determined who would win the Big XII Conference Championship in 2013. Blackshear has been very steady for the last two seasons. Magee has a huge upside as he attempts to return to play after sitting out last fall for personal reasons. These guys are backed up by Byron Bonds (a true sophomore that started multiple games last fall) and Suleiman Masumbuko.

    If this group can generate significant pressure on the Big XII quarterbacks, it could go a long way toward making the Baylor defense much better.

    LB: C-
    As of yet, the young men tasked with replacing graduating players at the WLB and NLB positions haven’t been able to demonstrate that they have what it takes to be a dynamic play-maker. While Bryce Hager appears ready to have a great season at middle linebacker, the Bears are still trying to find an inside linebacker that has what it takes to replace Eddie Lackey. Aivion Edwards (6’1”, 225, So) started one game last fall and had a decent spring at middle linebacker, stepping in for Bryce Hager (who was recovering from groin surgery) still has to prove he can man the WLB position play-in and play-out, game-in and game-out. He will be challenged by Taylor Young (a smallish player that had a very strong spring) and Raaquan Davis, both red-shirt freshmen.

    The Nickel Linebacker that came out of the spring on top of the depth chart was walk-on, Colin Brence (6’, 210, Sr). He was a real surprise. Brence has been a quality special teams player for several years, but his emergence at the top of the depth chart caught many Baylor fans by surprise. Brence was an All-State player in high school and is the son of one of the most well-respected high school coaches in the state. He will be challenged by Pat Levels (5’11”, 195, So). Most observers thought the position would go to Kiante Griffin (6’, 215, So, from Hebron High School in Carrollton. At the end of the spring, Griffin was not listed on the two-deep.

    Secondary: C
    The secondary lost one of the best secondary players the Bears have seen in several years in the person of Ahmad Dixon. In addition, they lost the top 3 corners (Goodson, Williams, and Morton). The only returning starter, Terrell Burt (5’10”, 185, Jr) had off-season surgery and sat out the entire spring.

    The loss of 4 seniors out of the top 5 players in the secondary will be difficult to replace. On the positive side, these new starters will be bigger players that will possibly be better at matching up with some of the large, physical receivers that gave the smaller Baylor secondary so much trouble over the last few years.

    Projected starters Terrence Singleton (5’11”, 195, SO) at field corner, Orion Stewart (6’2”, 200, So, who started when Dixon was suspended last fall) at down safety, and the combination of Xavien Howard (6’2”, 200, So) and Chris Sanders (6’1”, 185, Jr College transfer) have the potential to be very good. But these guys will have a difficult task in replacing all of the knowledge and understanding possessed by the graduating senior group.

    Special Teams: A-
    While the Baylor coverage units still have the occasional breakdown in execution, overall the Baylor special teams will probably be very special in 2014. Spencer Roth is one of the best punters in the nation. Even though he isn’t utilized often, Roth is a very talented punter. On 52 punts, Roth averaged 45.8 yards. But his talent doesn’t stop at distance. Roth is an excellent directional punter than can kick away from dangerous return men and pin almost any returner on a sideline, making coverage much easier. He is excellent at adapting to punting into strong winds, a talent very useful in the fall in Texas.

    Replacing a 3-year starter at place kicker is Chris Callahan. Based upon the early returns, Callahan should be at least as consistent as his predecessor and possibly a big-time improvement at a position that was already fairly solid. Callahan gets great height on his kickoffs, which is a real benefit to the coverage team. Overall, the talent on the punt and kickoff coverage teams has improved while the improved recruiting of the last few years is allowed to emerge.

    The returners are dynamic. Levi Norwood is a fearless ball-catcher and is surprisingly elusive in the open field. Kickoff returns could be very interesting with guys like Corey Coleman, Johnny Jefferson, and others returning kicks.


    4.What can we expect in 2014 (Improvement, worse off or about the same?Predicted W/L record?).

    The Big XII will probably be improved in 2014. Oklahoma served notice to everyone when it defeated highly-regarded Alabama in the Sugar Bowl last January. Most of the programs in the conference anticipate improved performance at the quarterback position in 2014 (and the Big XII has always been a league that is dominated by top QBs). The Big XII (always a deep league) will probably be deeper in 2014 than it was in 2013. That means that any team in the league can deal a possible upset to teams to the top of the projected standings.

    In addition, the Bears have a more difficult schedule in 2014. The Bears open the conference season by traveling to Ames, Iowa to play Iowa State. Baylor’s last trip to Ames was very difficult. The Bears have to go to Morgantown, a place that dealt OSU plenty of misery in 2013. Also, they make trips to Norman to play OU and Austin to play Texas. Those venues are difficult for any team.

    As a result, you have to think that the lack of experience in the second and third level of the defense will have to test the Bears heavily. While there is no game on the schedule that you would think the Bears couldn’t win, there are ample opportunities for a loss or two. Expect the Bears to have a very strong team and be able to win most of their games. The record could be anything between 12-0 to 7-5.

    Prediction: 10-2. That’s what I picked for the Bears last fall, too.
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