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MLB First-Year Player Draft Could Be Make Or Break For West Virginia Baseball

The MLB First-Year Player Draft begins on Thursday, and three key Mountaineer baseball players are eligible to be selected. What kind of impact will the draft have on the West Virginia baseball program?

Welcome, By-Godders, to the Shotgun/Throwdown: WVU's best place for sports links, information, sophomoric humor and daily distractions.

News Of Note

Basketball:

The West Virginia men's basketball team travelled to Wharton, WV in Boone County to help give out food and supplies to a community wracked with misfortune.

Baseball:

Three key West Virginia baseball juniors are eligible for the MLB draft, which begins on Thursday - first baseman Jackson Cramer, catcher Ray Guerrini and top pitcher Chad Donato - and Mountaineer manager knows what the anxieties, the stress and the trip into the unknown that the trio face. He also knows how the draft can be make or break for the Mountaineer baseball team.

West Virginia Athletics:

There was a rifle competition over the weekend, and naturally West Virginia University was there. This is the sort of thing the four-time defending national champion does in the offseason, particularly in an Olympic year. But while the Mountaineers were represented on the podium, they were not, for a change, the winners.

West Virginia University rising senior Alan Cooke wasn't the only player at the 97th West Virginia Amateur to tame the swirling winds at the Old White TPC on Tuesday. Still, after back-to-back performances that started on the Greenbrier course on Monday and continued with a 2-under 68 in the second round, Cooke took a one-shot lead on cut-down day at the 72-hole championship.

Around The League

Around The Big XII:

Talk of conference expansion just won't go away. Get ready for the summer of expansion. If it did anything, last week's Big 12 meetings only further defined what it would take for the Big 12 presidents to authorize expansion, and the criteria seems to paint a path for a few schools. One school sent their pitch to the Big 12 offices, and took aim at UConn and Cincinnati and claimed video game supremacy.

Texas Tech wide receiver Devin Lauderdale has been reinstated to the Red Raiders' program. Lauderdale was suspended before Texas Tech's 56-27 loss to LSU in the AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl in December. Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury called the suspension "indefinite" in a release, saying Lauderdale​ was suspended due to his failure "to uphold Texas Tech Athletic Department Student-Athlete Expectations."

Baylor offensive lineman B.J. Autry and defensive lineman Jeremy Faulk have been dismissed from the football team. This news becomes official after earlier reports indicating the pair of JUCO linemen had been suspended.

Speaking of Baylor, Joe Schad of ESPN reported some disturbing new allegations about former running back Devin Chafin and Baylor passing game coordinator/RB coach Jeff Lebby. There is always more, and it's always worse.

Around The NCAA:

Turns out that not only are the rich getting richer in college athletics, but the poor are getting poorer, too. In fact, Conference USA's revenue from TV contracts has eroded even more than earlier reports indicated. The ugly numbers: C-USA will receive about $2.8 million in TV revenue in 2016-17 from four broadcast networks, or about $200,000 per school.

The Sun Belt will add a conference championship game in 2018. Every FBS conference now has a conference title game or has planned to hold one in the future.

The Syracuse Orange have the returning production and the new offense to scare a lot of good teams this year. The problem: they play a lot of good teams this year.

Let's pretend you are a freshman in high school with aspirations of becoming a collegiate athlete. Being recruited to play football in college involves a difficult and complex decision-making process that will make an impact on you for the rest of your life. No pressure though.

Video Of Interest

Video Of (Dis)Interest

Miss Throwdown

Today's Miss Throwdown is a car enthusiast and racing driver from San Diego State University who also happens to be a knockout. CLICK HERE for Lindsay Brewer's Instagram.