John McClain talks Texans; Jeremy Branham talks University of Houston Football & Basketball

Welcome to Episode 69! This week, Chron’s John McClain and Sports Radio 610’s Jeremy Branham join us to talk Houston sports on The Weekly Brew, the Voice of Houston.

John McClain is no stranger to The Weekly Brew, having joined us on no fewer than four other occasions. He calls in to talk a little Texans, a little Baylor, this and that. Listen, the guy is one of the most veteran, locked-in voices in Houston sports, and he can talk whatever he wants, even if he does throw cold water on the Chad Morris-to-Baylor storyline.

Jeremy Branham is also an old friend of the show. He is a sideline reporter for UH Football, and he shares some insights from the huge upset victory over Louisville Thursday, and delves into Tom Herman’s future with the team and the impact of yet another UH victory over a top-5 squad. Branham is also now the play-by-play voice of UH Cougar Basketball, and will be hosting coach’s shows with Kelvin Sampson every week, and he talks a little bit about what to expect from the team this season (hint: NCAA Tournament berth) and the long-term trajectory of the program under Coach Sampson (hint: future is bright).

As usual, terrific guests with terrific takes get into anything and everything Houston sports. That’s, after all, why we’re the Voice of Houston (according to us, and we would know: we are the Voice of Houston), and to the listeners, we say both thank you and you’re welcome.

But hark – there is one thing you can do for us, and in fact, should. In these uncertain times, people look to symbols of certainty and stability, and for a podcast, that equates to iTunes reviews. We need them. Go to iTunes and click Ratings and Reviews and leave a 5-star review with a little blurb (if you’re on a mobile device, use the magnifying glass in the podcast app to search for The Weekly Brew, and you can do it from there), and we will actually read it aloud to our thousands of listeners. And you’ll be our favorite listener of the week, like, UHCoog2010 is this week.

And remember guys, no matter who you are, where you go or what you do, always, ALWAYS brew responsibly.

Netw3rk (Jason Concepcion) talks Grantland and The Ringer; University of Houston Men’s Basketball head coach Kelvin Sampson on Cougar hoops and NBA Playoffs

Welcome into the 44th episode of The Weekly Brew podcast – and it is a doozy. Jeremy Paxton and Dolores Lozano have the week off, so Austin and Kevin get into some current events, including the Preakness and Tilman Fertitta’s shot across the bow at Texas and the Big 12, before welcoming in University of Houston Men’s Basketball head coach Kelvin Sampson and The Ringer’s Jason Concepcion.

Sampson breaks down the Cougars’ recent signees, delving into how Valentine Sangoyomi, Devin Davis, Morris Dunnigan and Armoni Brooks will help the program, alongside returning Coogs like Rob Gray Jr., Damyean Dotson and especially Kyle Meyer and Danrad “Chicken” Knowles, whom Sampson says have been constant fixtures at the new $25 million Guy V. Lewis Development Facility in the spring offseason. Sampson shares some tidbits about the upcoming 2016-17 schedule, including playing Rhode Island and Harvard at home, traveling to LSU and negotiations he hopes will lead to a home-and-home with Arkansas.

Sampson also breaks down the NBA Playoffs, getting into what he loves about the Oklahoma City Thunder and the “calming influence” new head coach Billy Donovan has exerted on Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, whom Sampson says is “a monster,” and “playing the best basketball of his career.” Sampson speculates on what any potential incoming Houston Rockets head coach needs to do first in order to have success with the team.

Next, Jason Concepcion – otherwise known as @netw3rk on Twitter – calls in to talk NBA. He explains the Knicks’ mystifying hire of Jeff Hornacek as head coach and how he fits in with Phil Jackson’s obsession with Tex Winter’s Triangle offense. Concepcion also takes a look at the Western Conference Finals, with the Golden State Warriors stumbling in game one against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Concepcion also analyzes the Houston Rockets head coaching frontrunner, Mike D’Antoni, and how he would fit in at the helm of the dysfunctional Rockets team.

Concepcion is also a noted Game of Thrones expert, and he shares his perspective on why the show is such a massive success and a cultural touchstone, describing how its depiction of politics as a “zero-sum game” is so relatable and relevant to the political landscape in this country. Concepcion also speaks to the process of getting discovered, becoming a staff writer at Bill Simmons’ Grantland and what’s coming up with Simmons’ new venture The Ringer, where Concepcion will be covering the NBA and Game of Thrones.

Finally, Austin swears to Kevin that before Episode 100, he will secure Bill Simmons as a guest on the podcast. Strong words from Austin, and Kevin fully intends to hold him to that. Somehow. Kevin also ventures very close to threatening listeners who have not yet left iTunes reviews before serenading Austin with a couple of bars from Bill Withers’ “Just the Two of Us,” so… it gets a little weird in the close. Enjoy that. And also, remember: no matter who you are, where you go or what you do this week, always, ALWAYS brew responsibly.

Baylor, U of H, Texas A&M basketball postseason preview; Oui Desserts’ Penny visits

On this 33rd episode of The Weekly Brew podcast, we exhaustively cover the Texas college basketball scene with the help of three big guests from around the state.

First, though, Penny, one of the proprietors of Weekly Brew’s sponsor, Oui Desserts, stops by the aptly named Oui Desserts Studios to say hi, chat about macarons and beignets and invite the listeners to be a part of the Oui/Weekly Brew family. Mention you listen to the podcast when you drop by Oui at 3411 Kirby and you’ll get 10 percent off of your order.

Next, voice of Baylor basketball, John Morris, joins us to talk Big 12 basketball. Baylor and Texas are both having strong seasons and split the season series with one another. Now they’ll face off in round one of the Big 12 tournament. Morris breaks down the great job being done by Shaka Smart and Scott Drew, and gets into the landscape of Big 12 basketball headed into the tournament.

Matt Thomas, of SportsTalk 790 and the University of Houston Men’s Basketball play-by-play broadcaster, calls in to give some love to his Cougars (Thomas is a UH alum), praise the dramatic turnaround head coach Kelvin Sampson has engineered and preview the American Athletic Conference tournament in Orlando later this week. Do the Cougars have an outside chance to make the Big Dance? What does the future hold for Sampson and the Coogs?

Finally, Brent Zwerneman, the Texas A&M beat writer for the Houston Chronicle and San Antonio Express-News, joins us to talk about the stellar season the SEC Champion Aggies are having. He says A&M is, at minimum, a Sweet Sixteen team, but theorizes that they may very well be one of the four teams coming to Houston to cap off the madness this March.

And kudos to last week’s guest Dolores Lozano, of ESPN Deportes, who left us an absolutely terrific iTunes review this week. Those really help us grow, because iTunes places a lot of weight on to the reviews when determining popularity, search rankings and lots of other important stuff like that. If you want to help us grow, please visit us on iTunes and click Subscribe there, and then click Ratings and Reviews to leave us a nice, little 5-star review with a blurb. Tell us what you enjoy or what you’d like to hear, and we’ll be sure to read your review and give you a shoutout to our listenership. Also, visit our Facebook and Like us there or follow us on Twitter to keep up to date with what we’re doing.

Thanks for listening, and remember: always brew responsibly.