The Mountain Press ■ Sevier County’s Daily Newspaper ■ Vol. 26, No. 10 ■ January 10, 2010 ■ www.themountainpress.com ■ $1.25
Tough decisions ahead
5A league of their own Family enjoys time participating in Pokémon league Mountain life, Page B1
5Manning makes history Peyton gets unprecedented 4th MVP award Sports, Page A8
Suicide attack investigated Video links Pakistan Taliban to deadly CIA bombing Page A5
Weather Today Partly Cloudy High: 29°
Tonight Partly Cloudy Low: 12° DETAILS, Page A6
Obituaries Hobert Kerr, 87 Elizabeth Kuncitis, 58 Jerry Rolen, 69 Delmar Ogle, 68 DETAILS, Page A4
Index Local & State . . . . . A1-6 Calendar . . . . . . . . . . A2 Nation . . . . . . . . . . . . A5 Opinion . . . . . . . . . . . . . A7 Sports . . . . . . . . . . . A8-10 Classifieds . . . . . . . . B4-5
Budget cuts top concern of legislators By DEREK HODGES Staff Writer NASHVILLE — When Tennessee’s lawmakers go into regular session in just a couple weeks, it seems the consensus is they’ll do so with shears in their hands. Among all three of Sevier County’s General Assembly representatives, the unanimous vote for the top issue of the coming legislative year is, obviously, the budget. And, with a $1 billion – that’s right, with a “B” – deficit projected, the trio is prepared to join with others in the Capitol in making some serious cuts. “The budget, without question, will be the biggest issue in the regular session,” State Rep. Joe McCord, R-Maryville, says. “It’s going to be an ugly year and there are going to be a lot of cuts made.” State Rep. Richard Montgomery, R-Sevierville agrees. “It’s going to be a year when we’ll have to tighten the belts and do some serious cutting,” Montgomery says. “It’s not going to be easy. There will probably be some painful cuts that have to be made. We’re going to have to go through every department line by line. We’re just going to have to be sure we do the cutting we need while preserving those critical services that the people of Tennessee rely on.” State leaders already made some serious cuts last year as they faced a smaller but still monumental budget shortfall. With spending down across the country, tax collections have faltered and that has meant less revenue coming into state coffers over the past couple years. Still, Montgomery points out the state isn’t as bad off as others. “Some of those other states would be ticked to death to have a $1 billion shortfall, as unbelievable as that sounds,” he says. “We could always be more conservative, but I think the state has done well and we’re in better shape than probably 75 percent of the states. We haven’t done as much borrowing and deficit spending.” McCord likewise praised the state’s relative fiscal responsibility, adding that he’s pleased lawmakers have already come to
AP Photo/Mark Humphrey
The Tennessee State Capitol in Nashville, celebrating its 150th birthday, will see legislators back in session this week. terms with needing to make cuts, rather than borrowing to meet the deficit. “One thing I’m proud of is we are accepting the facts as they are. I think there’s no choice but to admit there is a problem and live within our parameters, and I think our legislators have done that.” The two representatives and State Sen. Doug Overbey, R-Maryville, all agree the discussion about bridging the budget gap won’t include the specter of an income tax. Further, they believe the talks won’t get far into raising other taxes or fees. “The governor has promised we won’t have major tax increases this year and I agree with him on that. This isn’t the year to be raising taxes on folks,” Overbey says. “I think everyone expects government to live within its means, just like a family, and that means making ends meet and making do with the resources you have.” Though all three men agree the money will come from cuts, none of them yet has any information on specifically which departments will be losing money and, likely, employees. One area that certainly won’t be getting cuts is education, where state leaders appear poised to possibly invest more in the hopes those dollars will multiply. Special session In that interest, Gov. Phil Bredesen, D-Tenn., has called a special session of the Legislature set to start Tuesday, with See budget, Page A3
AP Photo/John Russell
State Sen. Doug Overbey, R-Maryville, shown at a legislative hearing, says he agrees with Gov. Phil Bredesen that no new taxes should be imposed on residents of the state.
Two local seats up for grabs in House; Montgomery plans to seek re-election By DEREK HODGES Staff Writer NASHVILLE — With an important statewide redistricting coming up next year and, along with it, the potential to shape the future of politics in Tennessee, Sevier County’s Nashville Republican representatives believe their party can hold onto or even expand its slim majority in the General Assembly. If that’s the case, it See seats, Page A3
AP Photo/Mark Humphrey
Rep. Joe McCord, R-Maryville, left, talks with Rep. Mike McDonald, D-Portland, during a session of the House of Representatives. McCord thinks the state budget will be the biggest issue facing lawmakers this year.
Locals venture out into the cold, test roadways
Corrections The Mountain Press is committed to accuracy. Please report factual errors by calling 428-0748 Ext. 214.
By Ellen Brown Staff Writer
Ellen Brown/The Mountain Press
Jim and Martha Norton braved the snow and ice to get groceries.
Although there was still snow and ice throughout Sevier County on Saturday, many people braved the roads to get to work or to do errands. Jeremy Hurst, 17, lives off of Sevierville Pike in Seymour, which he reported as “slick.” “I just drove slowly, like my mom told me to do,” he said of driving to Food City
for his job. warm,” Jim Grocery said with a shopping laugh. was the “We’re first time lucky,” out in sevsaid fellow eral days Seymour for Jim resident and Martha K e n n y Hurst Loveday Morton of Loveday. Seymour, “Our drivewho are retired. way is steep, but we live “We’ve been staying on Dupont Road, right busy inside, and we’ve down from the volunteer been rushing from room to room faster to keep See locals, Page A4
A2 â—† Local
The Mountain Press â—† Sunday, January 10, 2010
community calendar Editorâ€™s Note: The community calendar is printed as space permits. Only noncommercial, public events held in Sevier County will be considered. They are listed by date. To place an item phone 428-0748, ext. 214, or e-mail to email@example.com. Items may be faxed to 453-4913.
sunday, jan. 10 Boyds Creek Revival
Boyds Creek Church of God winter revival 11:30 a.m. Bishop G.R. Hill from Cleveland to speak.
Right to Life March
Sevier County Right to Life memorial march leaves Pigeon Forge Community Center at 1:45 p.m. for Country Tonite Theater. Sanctity of Life program begins 2:45 p.m. in theater.
monday, jan. 11 GateKeepers
GateKeepers menâ€™s community Bible study, 6:30 p.m., 2445 Scenic Mt. Drive, Sevierville. (865) 310-7831.
Womenâ€™s Bible Study
Garlands of Grace womenâ€™s Bible study: n 10 a.m. Seymour Heights Christian Church (enter last door on right), Chapman at Boyds Creek Highway. n 1 p.m., Gatlinburg Inn
Cancer Support Group
Smoky Mountain Cancer Support Group meets at Senior Center. Supper 6 p.m., program 6:45 by Barbara Edwards on stress. 428-5834 or 654-9280.
DAR Spencer Clack Chapter meets 7 p.m., Sevier County Library. Program on history of silver by Carrie Murphy.
Angel Food orders: n 2 to 5 p.m. Gum Stand Baptist Church, 3031 Veterans Blvd., Pigeon Forge. 429-2508. n 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4 to 7 p.m., First Smoky Mountain Church of the Nazarene, 2652 Upper Middle Creek Road. 9081245. n 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., River Of Life Outreach, 110 Simmons Road, Seymour. 679-6796.
a.m., Seymour Library. Guest readers for Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. 573-0728.
Preschool story time 10:30 a.m., Sevier County Main Library. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday guest readers. 453-3532.
Seniors In Touch (S.I.T.) meets 6 to 7:30 p.m. at MountainBrook Village, 700 Markhill Drive, Sevierville. 428-2445.
thursday, jan. 14 Womenâ€™s Bible Study
Alzheimerâ€™s Support group at MountainBrook Village meets from 5-6 p.m. Program by Bobby Fields of Alzheimerâ€™s Association. 428-2445, ext. 107.
GateKeepers menâ€™s Bible study, 6:30 p.m. 1328 Old Newport Highway, Sevierville. 908-0591.
Martin Luther King Jr. Day Community Choir will practice 6-8 p.m. today and Friday in ConnerShort Building, Walters State Community College. Interested singers welcome.
Angel Food orders: n 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Gum Stand Baptist Church, 3031 Veterans Blvd., Pigeon Forge. 429-2508. n 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4 to 7 p.m., First Smoky Mountain Church of the Nazarene, 2652 Upper Middle Creek Road. 9081245. n 6 to 7:30 p.m. Basic Life Ministries, formerly The Fatherâ€™s House, 139 Bruce Street. 286-9784 or 230-1526.
Smoky Mountain Area Rescue Ministries provides hot meals 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church in Sevierville.
TOPS weight loss chapter meets at 6 p.m., Parkway Church of God in Sevierville. 755-9517 or 429-3150.
wednesday, jan. 13 Garden Club
Sevierville Garden Club will meet at noon at Sevier Senior Center. Lunch served. Tom Leonard, manager of Sevier Solid Waste Inc., to speak on recycling. Board meeting at 11.
Angel Food Orders n 5 to 6:30 p.m., River Of Life Outreach, 110 Simmons Road, Seymour. 679-6796.
Middle Creek UMC
Worship services at 6:30 p.m. at Middle Creek
Garlands of Grace womenâ€™s Bible study: n 9 a.m., Pigeon Forge UMC n 2 p.m., Blue Mountain Mist B&B, Pullen Road, Sevierville n 6:30 p.m., Sevierville UMC, Conference Room
Angel Food orders: n 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Gum Stand Baptist Church, 3031 Veterans Blvd., Pigeon Forge. 4292508. n 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4 to 7 p.m., First Smoky Mountain Church of the Nazarene, 2652 Upper Middle Creek Road. 9081245.
n 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sevierville Primary School, 1146 Blanton Drive n 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Seymour Middle School, 737 Boyds Creek Highway
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Local â—† A3
Sunday, January 10, 2010 â—† The Mountain Press
City to move ahead on marketing contracts By DEREK HODGES Staff Writer PIGEON FORGE â€” After a heated debate about the cityâ€™s contracts with its two tourism marketing firms in a workshop last week, officials are set to forge ahead on those deals when they meet at 5:30 p.m. Monday in City Hall despite concerns from one city leader. Commissioner Randal Robinson has objected to holding the vote on the contracts with BOHAN Advertising and USDM, an Internet marketing company, saying he believes the commission is â€œrushingâ€? into the move.
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effort had been made to address his concerns. Robinson was the only one of the five commissioners who objected to the boardâ€™s moving ahead with a vote on the contracts. â€œI canâ€™t honestly say Iâ€™m satisfied with any of this,â€? he said, though everyone else agreed they were ready to proceed. Department of Tourism Director Leon Downey assured Robinson he is willing to answer questions about the contracts at any time. He also promised he will seek qualifications and proposals from other marketing firms if the City Commission agrees they want him to do
cuit court. She was being held. u Fred Daniel Ledford, 30, of 984 Goose Gap Rd., Lot 2, Sevierville, was charged Jan. 8 by criminal summons for shoplifting less than $100, first offense. He was released. u Quinnten Kalab Lindley, 21, of 1401 Old Newport Highway was charged Jan. 8 by criminal summons for theft of property. He was released. u Monica D. McMahan,
24, of 1210 Pin Oak Dr. Apt. 30, Sevierville, was charged Jan. 8 with general theft. She was released. u Stanley Dewayne Myers, 44, of 1417 Little Cove Church Rd., Sevierville, was charged Jan. 8 with driving while revoked, traffic violations and financial responsibility law. He was released. u Ravon Jamal Silva, 22, of Morristown, was charged Jan. 8 with driving on suspended license.
that would be fair to him and I donâ€™t think it would be fair to the county.â€? While acknowledging the importance of his party keeping a majority in the General Assembly after the upcoming election, State Rep. Joe McCord, R-Maryville, says he hasnâ€™t yet made up his mind about running again. â€œRight now Iâ€™m focused on getting all the legislation introduced that I need to for the people of my district,â€? McCord says. â€œAfter March or April Iâ€™ll have some time to sit down and think about reelection.â€? State Sen. Doug Overbey, R-Maryville, doesnâ€™t have to run for reelection until 2012, having just won his four-year term in 2008. However, several of his Senate colleagues
will have to campaign this year. â€œI donâ€™t see the numbers changing in the Senate, where the Republicans have a 19 to 14 majority,â€? Overbey says. â€œThe House is really where the action is going to be in the 2010 elections. I think we could see some changes there.â€? Overbey suggests there might be Democrats holding seats in traditionally Republican districts or Republicans representing left-leaning areas who could be unseated. Beyond that, he believes the state may continue a move it made in 2008. â€œIn that election we saw the nation move to the left in the votes for the president and the Congress, but Tennessee bucked that trend and went
even more to the right,â€? Overbey explains. â€œI think Tennessee is a conservative state and we could see it moving further that way this year.â€? Overbey isnâ€™t the only local Republican optimistic about the coming vote. McCord believes his party will hold the majority and use that power to redraw the political map in such a way that it helps keep the state mostly red for years to come. Meanwhile, Montgomery has even bigger ideas. â€œI think we will at least hold the majority and we might even expand it,â€? he says. â€œI think there is the real possibility we could pick up as many as three additional seats.â€?
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could give the GOP its first chance at drawing up the stateâ€™s political map in more than a century and a half, with Democrats holding the majority for all that time previously. Though both parties take part in such redistrictings, the majority side obviously has more power in any issue that comes to a vote. Republicans are gunning to maintain or grow their presence in the Capitol, holding a narrow one-vote majority between the two houses of the General Assembly. Among the three who represent Sevier County â€” and all three of the local representatives are Republicans â€” two are currently filling seats that will be up for election at the end of this year. State Rep. Richard Montgomery, R-Sevierville, says heâ€™s already made up his mind to seek another term, giving the credit for that decision to the upcoming redistricting. â€œI am going to be running for re-election, but after that Iâ€™ll have to reevaluate if I want to run again at the end of that term,â€? Montgomery said. â€œI donâ€™t want to be sending a freshman representative down there to Nashville to do this redistricting. I donâ€™t think
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u Brannon James Hall, 36, of 3009 Amanda Dr., Kodak, was charged Jan. 9 with domestic violence assault. He was being held on $2,500 bond. u Tyler Higginbotham, 18, of 2559 Roberts Rd., Kodak, was charged Jan. 9 with underage consumption of alcohol. He was being held on $1,000 bond. u Kelly Ann Jones, 28, of 615 River Rd., Kodak, was charged Jan. 8 with violation of probation from cir-
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(low-density residential) to C-2 (tourist commercial) n An agreement with Vision Engineering for survey work at the new fire station site on Veterans Boulevard n A request to purchase items to upgrade the Jake Thomas Lift Station pump n Reappointing Police Chief Jack Baldwin to serve as a member of the E-911 Board of Directors n Appointment of Commissioner David Wear to the Sevier County Economic Development Council Board of Directors.
Editorâ€™s Note: The following information was taken from the intake reports at the Sevier County Jail. All people listed within this report are presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law. u Kathy Michelle Bunch, 36, of 3180 Hickory Dr. #310, Pigeon Forge, was charged Jan. 9 with domestic violence assault. She was being held on $2,500 bond.
that. On the agenda for the Monday session is consideration of a general services agreement and scope of work for USDMâ€™s Internet efforts for the city. Additionally, a new letter of agreement, scope of work and media plan for BOHAN will be voted on. Also on the agenda for the meeting is: n Proclaiming March 15 Arbor Day in the city n Review and consideration of an option agreement with Cindy Owens as trustee for Ogle Credit Shelter Trust regarding the purchase of right of way and the rezoning of property from R-1
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the regular session opening a week after that. The focus of that meeting will be implementing new testing standards for students across the state that might qualify the state for a new federal program called â€œRace to the Top.â€? That effort, implemented by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, offers money to states that, among other things, hold students to higher standards for expected educational progress. â€œThe governor is putting education front and center by calling us into a special session next week to discuss this Race to the Top program,â€? Overbey says. â€œWeâ€™re going to be looking at possibly changing test standards to bring a different level of accountability for students and teacher across the state. We might possibly also make some changes to higher education funding that could help us out with that.â€? Itâ€™s not clear yet what changes might need to be made, with legislators set to hold a number of committee meetings throughout the week to figure out exactly what needs to be done. Montgomery is optimistic there wonâ€™t be too many changes that need to be made. â€œWe in Tennessee have done a good job of investing in education and building a good framework for education, so I think weâ€™re probably in a better place to qualify for these dollars than a lot of other states,â€? he says. â€œThere will only be a limited amount of money and a few states that get it, as I understand it, so weâ€™re really going to be pushing for that.â€? Beyond that, Overbey says Bredesen announced during a recent Blount County Chamber of Commerce meeting that he wants to see a new school of energy and engineering opened somewhere in East Tennessee as part of a partnership between the University of Tennessee and the U.S. Department of Energy facilities in Oak Ridge. â€œI think that will be something to build on the universityâ€™s reputation as a top-tier research school,â€? Overbey says. Local issues So far there havenâ€™t been too many Sevier County folks
contacting their lawmakers about changes theyâ€™d like to see, apparently. Overbey says he hasnâ€™t received any calls seeking local bills, while McCord and Montgomery seem to have both gotten only one call about the same issue. â€œKenny Maples called me to let me know he and some of the other hotel owners up there in Sevier County are concerned about a move that would put a tax on the continental breakfasts they serve at their places,â€? Montgomery says. â€œThey donâ€™t think thatâ€™s fair because that would be like taxing that breakfast twice, so theyâ€™re asking that we fight that.â€? Other issues All three men also mentioned some changes they hope to make to a piece of workers compensation legislation passed during their 2009 session. Apparently, with some force behind the proposed amendments to the laws governing that insurance program, the bill was pushed through before many in the General Assembly truly understood its possible implications. Since then, it has apparently come to light that the move would require small business owners to carry workers compensation coverage on themselves, even if they donâ€™t actually work on-site. â€œThatâ€™s something that we didnâ€™t realize was in there and certainly we think thatâ€™s an unnecessary hardship to put on our small business owners,â€? McCord says. â€œWeâ€™re going to be looking at changing that law to fix that.â€? Montgomery also hopes the legislators will get into at least some discussion of criminal penalties, perhaps substituting community service for jail time for lesser crimes while strengthening the punishments for DUI offenders and some others. Additionally, he says he expects to see some issues related to healthcare arise if the Democrats are able to pass their national reform bill.
Robinson has made objecting to the cityâ€™s tourism marketing contracts the cornerstone of his young tenure on the board, questioning them at every turn. His concerns in part prompted the marathon three-and-a-half hour workshop session. During that meeting, Robinson continued to hammer at the cityâ€™s agreements with the two firms, questioning everything from how detailed their invoices should be to whether the contract with BOHAN was still legally binding. At the end, city leaders said they had done everything they could to reassure Robinson the deals were in the cityâ€™s best interests, while Robinson maintained no
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A4 â—† Local
The Mountain Press â—† Sunday, January 10, 2010
obituaries In Memoriam
Hobert Kenneth â€œJohnâ€? Kerr
Hobert Kenneth â€œJohnâ€? Kerr, age 87 of Sevierville, went to be with the Lord on Friday, January 8, 2010. John was a very loving brother, uncle, and friend. John had lots of friends and he loved all of them. He was preceded in death by his parents, Mack and Nora Kerr, sisters, Anah Lewelling and husband Kenneth and Lois Campbell, brothers, Conley, McKinley, and W.C. Kerr and wife Velma, sister-inlaw, Deloris Kerr, brothers-in-law, Ralph Flynn and Kenneth Loveday. Survivors: sisters, Helen Flynn, Francis Loveday; srothers, Mayford and wife Helen, Ernest and wife Ruby, and Raymond Kerr; brother-in-law, Brownie Campbell and wife Christine; several nieces, nephews, great nieces, and great nephews; special friends, Claude England and Gene Abbott. Special thanks to all the staff at Sevier County Healthcare Center and the staff of Caris Hospice. The family would also like to thank all of Johnâ€™s friends for their many prayers and visits. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to Millican Grove Baptist Church Building Fund, 1559 Allensville Rd., Sevierville, TN 37876 Funeral service 5 p.m. Sunday in the East Chapel of Atchley Funeral Home with Rev. David Wilson officiating. Interment 11 a.m. Monday in Millican Grove Cemetery. Nephews and great nephews will serve as pallbearers. The family will receive friends 3-5 p.m. Sunday at Atchley Funeral Home, Sevierville. n www.atchleyfuneralhome.com
Jerry Lee Rolen
Jerry Lee Rolen, Sr. age 69, of Knoxville, passed away Friday, January 8, 2010 at St. Maryâ€™s North Hospital. He was preceded in death by his wife, Linda Rolen and parents, Roy and Ruby Rolen Survivors: wife, Katie Rolen; children, Malisa Gail Kontour, Sandra M. Rolen Mackey and husband Tracy, and Jerry L. Rolen, Jr. and wife Rita; 11 grandchildren; brothers and sister-in-law, Mike and Faye Rolen and Paul Rolen; sisters and brother-inlaw, Betty Oâ€™Neal, Geneva and Murrell Parton, and Mary Kate Webb. Funeral service 1 p.m. Monday in the East Chapel of Atchley Funeral Home with Brother John Daniels officiating. Interment will follow in Mt. Zion Cemetery. The family will receive friends 3-5 p.m. Sunday at Atchley Funeral Home, Sevierville. n www.atchleyfuneralhome.com
Delmar Arthur Ogle Delmar Arthur Ogle, 68, of Sevierville, died Thursday, Jan. 7, 2010. He was a member of Calvary Baptist Church and a veteran of the U.S. Army. He was preceded in death by his parents, Lester and Naomi Ogle; and brothers, Bob and Don Ray Ogle. Survivors: children Scott Ogle, Rick Ogle, Mike Ogle, Jessica Ogle; grandchildren Alex, Bryce, Anna, Trent, Paige, Ashley; sisters and brothers-in-law Shirley and Bill Huskey, Linda Carol and Scotty Chaney; brothers
and sisters-in-law Roy and Pam Ogle, Roger and Cathy Ogle; sisters-in-law Brenda Ogle, Donna Ogle; several nieces and nephews; special friends Vea Ogle, Mattie. Funeral service 3 p.m. Sunday in the West Chapel of Atchley Funeral Home with Revs. Ronnie Reagan, David Huskey and David Ayers officiating. Family and friends will meet 11 a.m. Monday in Smoky Mountain Memory Gardens for graveside service and interment. The family will receive friends 1-3 p.m. Sunday at Atchley Funeral Home, Sevierville.
Elizabeth Kuncitis, age 53, of Sevierville, passed away on Friday, January 8, 2010 at St. Maryâ€™s Hospital in Knoxville, TN. She will be remembered for her caring and vibrant personality. She was preceded in death by her maternal grandparents, Frank and Apolonia Hermann and Edward and Lydia Kuncitis, and uncle Zigfred Simonsons. Survivors include her parents, Edgars and Anna Kuncitis of Sevierville; a brother, Edgar Kuncitis of Sevierville; uncles, Lorenz Hermann of Knoxville and Stephan and wife Margret Hermann; aunt Zigrida Simonsons; cousins, Michelle and husband Doug Kurry and their children, Kaitlyn and Jaclyn; Dogmar and Stanley Salkewiezc; and the Steins family. A private committal service will be conducted in the Hamblen Memory Gardens. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Relay For Life. Arrangements are by Stubblefield Funeral Home.
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fire department (if we need them).â€? People even traveled into Sevierville from other areas in the Southeast for a PokĂŠmon card tournament, held at First United Methodist Church on Cedar Street. â€œWe have 29 people here today, which is half of what we had last year,â€? said tournament organizer Keith Haas. The snow is expected to slow down a great deal, according to the National Weather Service in Morristown. In Sevier Countyâ€™s higher elevations, only â€œa few flurriesâ€? were expected for Saturday night. Meteorologist Mary Black said a wind chill advisory was in effect through 10 a.m. today. The rest of the day is expected to be partly sunny with temperatures at 15-20 degrees. Tonightâ€™s forecast is partly cloudy with temperatures at 5-15 degrees. For the lower elevations, today is expected to be partly sunny with temperatures in the upper 20s and dry. Tonight can expect partly cloudiness with light winds and temperatures of 10-15 degrees. Predictions for Monday are mostly sunny in the mid-30s in the lower elevations, and mostly sunny with highs in the upper-20s to mid-30s for the higher elevations. n firstname.lastname@example.org
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NASHVILLE (AP) â€” A GOP contender for Tennessee governor will face no penalty for violating a state law during a recent duck hunting trip to western Tennessee. Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam ran afoul of the state law by failing to buy the right license for a Dec. 28 trip with his son and friends in Dyer County. â€œI just messed up,â€? said Haslam, an infrequent hunter.
The Knoxville News-Sentinel reported that Haslam went to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agencyâ€™s Web site to purchase the basic Tennessee hunting and fishing license that costs $27. Instead, Haslam bought other permits he did not need, according to Haslamâ€™s account and TWRA records reviewed by the agencyâ€™s assistant commissioner, Nat Johnson.
UT considered a good value From Submitted Reports KNOXVILLE â€” The University of Tennessee provides students one of the best values in public education, according to the latest rankings from Kiplingerâ€™s Personal Finance magazine. The magazineâ€™s annual â€œ100 Best Values in Public Collegesâ€? ranks American colleges based on academic quality and affordability. The Best Values program this year evaluated 120 public colleges and universities. UT was the only Tennessee public university to make the top 100, placing 58th overall, up six spots from
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last year. Kiplingerâ€™s considers characteristics including entrance exam scores, admissions and retention rates, graduation rates, student-faculty ratios, total cost for in-state students and average debt of students upon graduation. Academic quality measurements make up two-thirds of the total score, while costs and financial aid factors count for one-third of the scoring. â€œWe strive to make the University of Tennessee an affordable and accessible
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institution and are proud to be nationally recognized for our efforts,â€? said UT KnoxvilleChancellorJimmy Cheek. â€œWe have continued to increase access by creating need-based scholarship programs so that we can offer the best education possible for the best and brightest students.â€? The HOPE Scholarship is available to Tennessee high school graduates who earn at least a 21 on their ACT and have an overall weighted grade-point average of 3.0 or better. About 95 percent of UT Knoxvilleâ€™s
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NASHVILLE (AP) â€” A Tennessee lawmaker is considering pushing a partial amnesty for drivers with unpaid traffic violations and setting up a program to allow people to work off the debt. State Rep. Brenda Gilmore told The Tennessean that some people donâ€™t have the funds to pay all they owe. Gilmore, D-Nashville, is working on a bill for legislative consideration that would help establish a statewide amnesty program. The Tennessean reports that some drivers have amassed significant debts to Davidson County from traffic violations. A group of 10 drivers owes the county $118,638 for a total of 247 unpaid violations.
GOP candidate to face no penalty over hunting foul
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Tenn. weighing amnesty for unpaid tickets
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Video links Pakistan Taliban to deadly CIA bombing
AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File
Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-Calif., second from left,and others, listen to House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer of Md., center right, speak during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington on July 31, 2009 . From left, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Calif., Becerra, D-Calif., Hoyer, and House Majority Whip James Clyburn of S.C.
Govt. health insurance option appears doomed By DAVID ESPO AP Special Correspondent WASHINGTON (AP) â€” Senior House Democrats have largely abandoned hopes of including a government-run insurance option in the final compromise health care bill taking shape, according to several officials, and are pushing for other measures to rein in private insurers. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other senior Democrats told President Barack Obama in recent meetings they want the legislation to strip the insurance industry of a long-standing exemption from federal antitrust laws, officials said. That provision is in the House-passed measure, but was omitted from the bill that the Senate passed on Christmas Eve. They also want the final measure to include a House-passed proposal for a nationwide insurance exchange, to be regulated by the federal government, where consumers could shop for private coverage. The Senate bill calls for a statebased system of exchanges. Additionally, House Democrats want to require insurers to spend a minimum amount of premium income on benefits, thereby limiting what is available for salaries, bonuses, advertising and other items. The House bill sets the floor at 85 percent; the Senate-passed measure lowers it to 80 percent for policies sold to
small groups and individuals. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the negotiations are private. The maneuvering comes as the White House and majority Democrats intensify efforts to agree on a final measure, possibly before Obama delivers his State of the Union address late this month or early in February. Government intervention into the insurance market is one of the most contentious issues to be settled. Others include the fate of a Senate-passed tax on high-cost insurance plans, bitterly opposed by some labor unions; the extent to which abortions could be covered by insurance to be sold in the new exchanges; and the amount of money available to help lower-income families purchase coverage. Liberals long have pressed to include a government-run insurance option in the legislation, arguing it would create competition for private companies and place a brake on costs. House Democrats included it in their legislation. In the Senate, it drew opposition from Democratic moderates whose votes are essential to the billâ€™s fate. Even attempts to include an expansion of Medicare for uninsured individuals as young as age 55 â€” widely viewed as a face-saving proposal for liberals â€” had to be jettisoned.
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AP Photo/Taliban video via APTN
In this image taken from undated video made available from Taliban sources on Saturday, purportedly showing Humam Khalil Abu Mulal al-Balawi, right, reading a statement to camera vowing revenge for the death of Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud, while sitting next to the new leader of the Pakistani Taliban, Hakimullah Mehsud. Jordanian doctor Humam Khalil Abu Mulal al-Balawi, is identified by news organizations to be the man who killed seven CIA employees in a suicide attack in Afghanistan on Dec. 30. The authenticity of this video is unconfirmed. simple, and no one ignored the hazards,â€? Panetta wrote in a Washington Post op-ed piece posted online Saturday. â€œThe individual was about to be searched by our security officers â€” a distance away from other intelligence personnel â€” when he set off his explosives.â€? Al-Balawi turned out to be a double-agent â€” perhaps even a triple-agent. In his 1 1/2 minute video, the bomber said he attacked the CIA to avenge the death of Baitullah Mehsud, the longtime leader of the
Pakistani Taliban who was killed in August in a CIA missile strike. â€œThis jihadi attack will be the first revenge operation against the Americans and their drone teams outside the Pakistan border,â€? the bomber said on the video broadcast Saturday. Al-Balawi â€” wearing an Afghan hat and camouflaged jacket â€” said the Pakistani Taliban, now under the leadership of its new chief Hakimullah Mehsud, would fight until they achieve victory.
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KABUL (AP) â€” In a video broadcast after his death, the Jordanian suicide bomber who killed seven CIA employees sits cross-legged on the floor next to the new chief of the Pakistani Taliban, confirming the group was behind the brazen attack in eastern Afghanistan. Yet multiple insurgent groups have claimed responsibility for the bombing, and a senior Pakistani militant told The Associated Press that al-Qaida and Afghan Taliban fighters also were involved in one of the worst attacks in the U.S. intelligence agencyâ€™s history. The suicide attack inside the CIA base could prompt the U.S. to further pressure the government of Pakistan to crack down on militants who operate on both sides of the AfghanPakistan border. U.S. missile strikes against targets on the Pakistan side already are on the rise. Seven CIA employees and a Jordanian intelligence officer were killed Dec. 30 when the suicide bomber detonated his cache of explosives at Camp Chapman, a tightly secured CIA base in Khost province, a dangerous region southeast of the Afghan capital Kabul. The CIA had cultivated the bomber â€” a Jordanian doctor identified as Humam Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi â€” in hopes of obtaining information about al-Qaidaâ€™s second in command, Ayman al-Zawahri. Defending his agents, CIA Director Leon Panetta said the bomber was about to be searched before the blast occurred. â€œThis was not a question of trusting a potential intelligence asset, even one who had provided information that we could verify independently. It is never that
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The Mountain Press ◆ Sunday, January 10, 2010
sunrise in the smokies
TODAY’S Briefing Local n
County boards meet Jan. 20
Three Sevier County boards will meet on Jan. 20 at the courthouse. The Sevier Water Board meets at 10 a.m.; the Transportation Board will meet at approximately 11 a.m.; and the Solid Waste Board will meet at 1:30 p.m., all in the Sevier County mayor’s office. n
Right to Life march is today
Sevier County Right to Life will hold its annual memorial march today to remember the estimated 60 million unborn babies who have been aborted. The march will begin at the Pigeon Forge Community Center at 1:45 p.m. Participants will walk to Country Tonite Theater for a program in celebration of the sanctity of life. The program will begin at 2:45 and end at approximately 4:15. Persons may attend the event at the theater without having to participate in the march. For more details, call Terry Aparicio (654-7685) and Louis Kahl (3845441). n
Greenways Trail topic of workshop
Citizen and business community participation and input are encouraged when the city hosts a second public workshop to discuss the next steps in the development of the Greenways Trail System master plan, including preliminary cost estimates and phasing recommendations. Gatlinburg staff and representatives of Barge, Wagonner, Sumner and Cannon Inc. will conduct the informational workshop at 5 p.m. Jan. 26 at City Hall. For more information, contact Marty Nicely at 436-4990. n
Hospice in need of new volunteers UT Hospice is looking for mature volunteers to serve patients in the Sevier County and surrounding areas. The only requirement is a willingness to serve others. No medical experience is necessary. Training is provided. For more information, call Brenda Fletcher at 544-6277. n
$244M Tenn. revenue call made behind closed doors By ERIK SCHELZIG Associated Press Writer
NASHVILLE — It was potentially a quarterbillion dollar decision on state spending. And the public has no clue how it was reached. When the State Funding Board set conservative annual revenue estimates last month, its four members would
only say the decision was a “consensus.” The estimate was set without debate at a public meeting, and board members wouldn’t divulge how that agreement was reached. The projections are used by the governor and lawmakers to craft the state’s annual spending plan at a time when they are consid-
The Sevier County Public Library System, which includes the Main Library and History Center at 321 Court Ave. in Sevierville, the Seymour Library and the Kodak Library, will be closed on Jan. 18 for Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. All locations will be open for regular hours on Jan. 19. For more information, call 774-6033. SEVIERVILLE
Road closed temporarily
The city of Sevierville Department of Public Works is installing drainage tiles on Reed Schoolhouse Road. Weather and other conditions permitting, the estimated project completion date is Friday. The work requires the closure of the road to through traffic between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays. Motorists can expect delays while work is ongoing.
ering deep cuts that could include reducing TennCare coverage to thousands of enrollees and laying off state employees. The funding board’s low-end projection for the general fund of $8.275 billion is $244 million less than the most optimistic prediction among a panel of five econo-
mists consulted by the panel. The difference could pay for more than the entire budget of the Department of Children’s Services or the salary and benefits of about 6,000 state employees. The panel’s estimate is $22 million higher than the bottom projection offered by the economists.
Saturday, Jan. 9, 2010 Midday: 7-1-6
Saturday, Jan. 9, 2010 Midday: 6-1-0-0
Friday, Jan. 8, 2010 03-12-17-23-27
LOCAL: Partly Cloudy
Friday, Jan. 8, 2010 12-21-25-28-29-40 x4
This day in history
High: 29° Low: 12°
Today is Sunday, Jan. 10, the 10th day of 2010. There are 355 days left in the year.
Chance of rain
■ Monday Partly Cloudy
High: 37° Low: 23° ■ Tuesday Partly Cloudy
High: 35° Low: 18°
■ Lake Stages: ■ Air Quality Forecast: Base: 45-60 inches Primary base: Machine groomed Secondary base: Hard packed Trails open: All slopes open
National quote roundup “Not in the name of Islam.” — Sign among demonstrators outside federal court in Detroit where Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was arraigned on charges he tried to blow up a U.S. airliner.
“It wasn’t some prank that didn’t do any harm.” — New Jersey Sen. Frank Lautenberg, on the arrest of a man believed to have breached security to bid his girlfriend goodbye, triggering the shutdown of a busy Newark Airport terminal that led to snarled flights worldwide.
“Talk about waving a red cape in front of a bull.” — Criminal law professor Stan Goldman on balloon boy father Richard Heene. Heene now says there was no balloon hoax, even though he pleaded guilty and agreed to be sentenced to 90 days in jail, angering prosecutors and law enforcement officials.
The Mountain Press Publisher: Jana Thomasson Editor: Stan Voit Production Director: Tom McCarter Advertising Director: Joi Whaley Business Manager: Mary Owenby Circulation Distribution Manager: Will Sing (ISSN 0894-2218) Copyright 2008 The Mountain Press. All Rights Reserved. All property belongs to The Mountain Press and no part may be reproduced without prior written consent. Published daily by The Mountain Press. P.O. Box 4810, Sevierville, TN, 37864, 119 River Bend Dr., Sevierville, TN 37876. Periodical Postage paid at Sevierville, TN.
On Jan. 10, 1860, the Pemberton Mill in Lawrence, Mass., collapsed, trapping hundreds in the rubble; during rescue efforts, a fire broke out — up to 145 people, mostly female workers from Scotland and Ireland, perished.
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Mountain Hope Good Shepherd Clinic, which will celebrate its 10th anniversary next month, is preparing to offer new services for 2009, including a Vision Care Program that will start this winter and three dental operatories where dentures and partials can be done at an affordable cost. The clinic was founded to provide primary health care to the medically uninsured in Sevier County.
Libraries to close for King holiday
top state news
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America Online announced it was buying Time Warner for $162 billion (the resulting disastrous merger ended in December 2009). Peace talks between Israel and Syria recessed in West Virginia without agreement on new borders or any other major elements of a land-for-peace treaty. n Thought
“History must speak for itself. A historian is content if he has been able to shed more light.” — William L. Shirer, American author and journalist (19041993).
Celebrities in the news n
LOS ANGELES (AP) — If “Tonight Show” host Conan O’Brien decides to leave NBC over its proposed late-night lineup revamp, he might find a w a r m welcome waiting for him at Fox. F o x respects O’Brien O’Brien’s talent and sees him as a good fit, a person at the network said Friday. The person, who lacked authority to comment publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity, said Fox was watching to see how the situation played out but that O’Brien remained under contract with NBC.
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peacably to assemble and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” —United States Constitution, Amendment One
■ The Mountain Press ■ Page A7 ■ Sunday, January 10, 2010
A fish tale that you can truly believe It’s about time Ryan DeSear had some good news. On Thursday, as he unveiled plans for the penguin exhibit at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, you could tell life was pretty good for him these days. DeSear is general manager of the Ripley’s attractions in Sevier County, including Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, Moving Theater, Haunted Adventures, Mirror Maze, Davy Crockett Mini Golf, Believe It or Not, Old MacDonald’s Farm Mini-Golf in Sevierville and Guinness World Records Museum. He got that job last year after working his way up through the system for years. He also seems to have his house flooding problems behind him. For years his house in Pigeon Forge has been plagued by flooding from what he insisted was a clogged, broken city drainage ditch. After repeatedly denying the city was at fault, officials finally went in and — can you believe it? — found the drain was clogged. The DeSear house has survived recent rains with no flooding. Last week he was all smiles, dressed — like his key staff people — in black and white clothes to resemble a penguin. He teased the audience by proclaiming the announcement was for a manatee tank, but everyone there knew this was the worstkept secret around. DeSear, who’s in his late 30s, is loving his new role, but also thankful for the guidance he got along the way from people such as Steve File, former Ripley’s GM who’s now overseeing the company’s various construction projects as a regional supervisor. DeSear loves the marketing side of the business, meeting and hiring people, thinking of ways to make a Ripley’s attraction a mustsee destination. The decision by corporate officials to close the Veranda Restaurant was a good one. While at one time the high-end eatery was a good idea to go along with the aquarium, in fact most people who visit the aquarium are satisfied with sandwiches and fast food from the snack bar inside. Gatlinburg has some terrific upper-end restaurants already, and the Veranda was probably a financial drain on the aquarium. Besides, there wasn’t a lot of room left for expansion. Closing the restaurant and using that space for a new exhibit made lots of sense. So did the decision to add penguins. The African blackfooted variety will fit nicely into the aquarium’s mix. Bringing in coldwater penguins from Antarctica would have been difficult, and maintaining their habitat would have been costly. Besides, the warm-water penguins allow the aquarium to build the exhibit so people can interact with them easier. But don’t expect to be able to touch them or swim with them. Not that you’d want to. Penguins have a nasty odor, and humans wouldn’t want to be in contact with them for very long. It’s one big reason they are glassed off from people when you see them at zoos and aquariums. DeSear thinks the animals will draw at least another 250,000 people to the aquarium. He may be right. But he also probably sees the addition as a boost to business at a time when there are more and more options right here in Sevier County for the tourist dollar. The folks at Dollywood understand the need to give people something different every year. Whether it’s a show or a ride, Dollywood has something new each year to offer potential guests. So has the aquarium, but not like what they’re doing now. This is a $5 million project. Joseph Construction of Knoxville is doing the work. The company has a branch in Sevierville, and its local representative, Jim Arwood, was at the announcement. Safe to say this is the company’s first penguin exhibit. The Ripley’s investment in the aquarium is significant. It shows confidence in the future of tourism here and in the continued recovery of the economy. And for Ryan DeSear, it is an indication of what his bosses think of his leadership. It’s well placed trust. This GatlinburgPittman graduate — and Merit Scholar, I might add — shows what hard work, loyalty and patience can mean. This is a fish tale to be believed. — Stan Voit is editor of The Mountain Press. His column appears each Sunday. He can be reached at 428-0748, ext. 217, or e-mail to email@example.com.
It’s SEC again Bama didn’t beat McCoy-led Texas, but a title is a title When a boxer’s punch cuts his opponent, he goes after that spot, hoping to open up the cut more and maybe stop the fight. That’s the way one-on-one sports are. You find your opponent’s weaknesses and vulnerabilities and attack them. The same goes for team sports, although one person’s absence or weakness usually doesn’t mean disaster for the whole team. Yet you can’t help but wonder — as will everyone who saw the Texas-Alabama game — what would that game have been like with a healthy Colt McCoy quarterbacking the Longhorns. To have Texas’s best against Alabama’s best would have been a more compelling game and storyline. It wasn’t to be. No team makes it to 14-0 without some close calls and lucky breaks. It’s difficult to go through an entire football season at any level without losing at least once. You really can’t afford to lose a game these days if you want the title. Parity hasn’t yet come to college football. The best teams are those with the best
head coaches, the best recruiters, the best facilities and the best organization. And even then you’re only as good as your last recruiting class or close game. The big-time coaches make big bucks, but at what price? Tennessee fans take some comfort in knowing they came within a low field goal try of beating Alabama and putting somebody else in that title game. That game, plus Bama’s narrow win over Auburn, were the close calls, the lucky breaks, that the Tide received. Texas had its troubles with Oklahoma and, of course, that classic against Nebraska for the Big 12 championship. Close calls. Lucky breaks. The Rose Bowl stadium was full of 92,000 fans Thursday night, with precious few no-shows. This was not an easy or inexpensive trip to make just to watch a football game. Television is great for sporting events, but you do miss something not being at the stadium watching in person. It’s the difference between seeing “Jaws” or “Titantic” on
a giant screen with an audience, and watching it alone at home. If TV can ever replicate the in-person experience, watch for attendance to drop. Fans of Southeastern Conference sports should be happy that an SEC team won the title for the fourth straight year. The respect in which this conference is held cannot be measured and is invaluable for those who recruit high school players. Three different SEC universities have won in those four years, so there is enough glory to go around. And always, always, there is next year. Few teams can repeat as champs in the modern era, whether at the college or pro level. That should give hope to the fans of Tennessee, LSU, Ole Miss, Arkansas and Georgia who are close but not there yet. For now, though, let’s congratulate the Tide. Whether they beat the best Texas team that could have been fielded is beside the point. The title goes to the team that wins the game.
Public forum Sevierville officials doing poor job getting priorities straight
façade of a picturesque mountain and build the much talked about “Ultra Flow” traffic system, through the middle of town that is now popularly called the “Ultra Cram” sysEditor: tem. Previously, both TDOT and Sevierville When our children were young, my wife totally ignored the suggestion that a bypass and I would take them to Myrtle Beach in starting at the French Broad River would the summer. Once, we sat in traffic about 10 miles from our destination for nearly two work more efficiently. The Pigeon Forge parking lot now sits hours. We haven’t been back to Myrtle Beach empty, the poorly designed TDOT traffic flow since. It has long been acknowledged that history system failed and now BOMA is considering spending millions of dollars of borrowed is a good predictor of the future, because money to build a road to a shopping center it often repeats itself. Unfortunately, the that has a history of stopping construction. Sevierville Board of Mayor and Aldermen It is barely in the city limits. Moreover, this has paid very little attention to history. shopping center has only attracted another A couple of years ago, Pigeon Forge was convinced to spend over $25 million to build Walmart as a major tenant. In the meantime Sevierville officials are a parking lot for the now defunct Belle Island ignoring the fact that as the Events Center project. gains popularity, visitors are finding it much Several years earlier, Sevierville excitedly cooperated with the Tennessee Department more convenient to bypass SR 66 and take Old Knoxville Highway to do their tourist of Transportation (TDOT) to destroy the
things, thus backing up traffic for as much as one mile. Fortunately, those of us familiar with the area know the backroads, but the residents of Mountain View Drive and Jersey Drive are getting tired of all the new traffic in their residential neighborhoods. In the interim, the city has spent most of the money it borrowed for the purpose of widening Old Knoxville Highway on buying and destroying buildings downtown, and still plans on only widening Old Knoxville Highway to a dangerous maximum of three lanes. The Events Center and Wilderness Resort are realities, producing revenue, affecting traffic flow and frustrating both locals and visitors. The Walmart shopping center is still a couple of years off. Isn’t it time that Sevierville officials started putting first things first? Neil Cubberley Sevierville
Letters to the editor policy and how to contact us: ◆ We encourage our readers to send letters to the editor. Letters must contain no more than 500 words. No more than one letter per person will be published in a 30-day period. Letters must be neatly printed or typed and contain no libel, plagiarism or personal attacks. All letters are subject to editing for style, length and content. Statements of fact must be attributed to a source for verification. All letters must be signed and contain a phone number and address for verification purposes. No anonymous or unverified letters will be printed. No letters endorsing candidates will be considered. The Mountain Press reserves the right to refuse publication of any letter. E-MAIL LETTERS TO: firstname.lastname@example.org or MAIL LETTERS TO: Editor, The Mountain Press, P.O. Box 4810, Sevierville, TN 37864. For questions, call (865) 428-0748, ext. 214. The Mountain Press and its publishers do not necessarily agree with the opinions expressed in letters and columns on this page.
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■ The Mountain Press ■ A8 ■ Sunday, January 10, 2010
NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE
Peyton’s place in the record books Manning gets unprecedented 4th Most Valuable Player award By BARRY WILNER AP Football Writer
In this Nov. 15, 2009 file photo, Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning reacts after he threw a touchdown pass to Reggie Wayne during the fourth quarter of an NFL football game against the New England Patriots in Indianapolis. Manning has been selected as The Associated Press NFL Most Valuable Player of the Year.
NEW YORK — Maybe the award should be renamed Most Valuable Peyton. Peyton Manning became the first player to win The Associated Press NFL Most Valuable Player honors four times. The Indianapolis Colts’ sensational quarterback romped to the award Saturday in balloting by 50 sports writers and broadcasters who cover the league. He got 39 1/2 votes to 7 1/2 for Drew Brees as only quarterbacks received any backing. Manning adds the 2009 honors to the awards he won in 2003, 2004 and 2008, breaking a tie with Brett Favre at three MVPs. “It’s been a different season,” said Manning, who guided the Colts to a 14-0 record before they rested starters in the second half of two games and finished 14-2. “Like I’ve said all along, it’s been a challenge, it’s been a grind at times, but guys have stepped up and played well.” No one more so than Manning, who threw for 4,500 and 33 touchdowns and, perhaps most impressively, led the Colts to a record seven fourth-quarter comeback wins. The 33-year-old Manning also has started every game in his career, 192 in the regular season and 15 in the playoffs. He is
National Football League MVPs 2009 — Peyton Manning, Indianapolis, QB 2008 — Peyton Manning, Indianapolis, QB 2007 — Tom Brady, New England, QB 2006 — LaDainian Tomlinson, San Diego, RB 2005 — Shaun Alexander, Seattle, RB 2004 — Peyton Manning, Indianapolis, QB 2003 — Peyton Manning, Ind, and Steve McNair, Tenn, QBs 2002 — Rich Gannon, Oakland, QB 2001 — Kurt Warner, St. Louis, QB 2000 — Marshall Faulk, St. Louis, RB 1999 — Kurt Warner, St. Louis, QB 1998 — Terrell Davis, Denver, RB 1997 — Brett Favre, GB, QB, and Barry Sanders, Det, RB 1996 — Brett Favre, Green Bay, QB 1995 — Brett Favre, Green Bay, QB 1994 — Steve Young, San Francisco, QB 1993 — Emmitt Smith, Dallas, RB 1992 — Steve Young, San Francisco, QB 1991 — Thurman Thomas, Buffalo, RB 1990 — Joe Montana, San Francisco, QB 1989 — Joe Montana, San Francisco, QB 1988 — Boomer Esiason, Cincinnati, QB 1987 — John Elway, Denver, QB 1986 — Lawrence Taylor, New York Giants, LB 1985 — Marcus Allen, Los Angeles Raiders, RB 1984 — Dan Marino, Miami, QB 1983 — Joe Theismann, Washington, QB 1982 — Mark Moseley, Washington, PK 1981 — Ken Anderson, Cincinnati, QB 1980 — Brian Sipe, Cleveland, QB 1979 — Earl Campbell, Houston, RB 1978 — Terry Bradshaw, Pittsburgh, QB 1977 — Walter Payton, Chicago, RB 1976 — Bert Jones, Baltimore, QB 1975 — Fran Tarkenton, Minnesota, QB 1974 — Ken Stabler, Oakland, QB 1973 — O.J. Simpson, Buffalo, RB 1972 — Larry Brown, Washington, RB 1971 — Alan Page, Minnesota, DT 1970 — John Brodie, San Francisco, QB 1969 — Roman Gabriel, Los Angeles Rams, QB 1968 — Earl Morrall, Baltimore, QB 1967 — John Unitas, Baltimore, QB 1966 — Bart Starr, Green Bay, QB 1965 — Jim Brown, Cleveland, RB 1964 — John Unitas, Baltimore, QB 1963 — Y.A. Tittle, New York Giants, QB 1962 — Jim Taylor, Green Bay, RB 1961 — Paul Hornung, Green Bay, RB
durable, dynamic, dependable and decisive. In other words, most valuable. “He’s been such a highly accomplished performer year in and year out. Just when you think you’ve seen his best, he improves upon it,” said Jim Caldwell, who replaced Tony Dungy as coach and benefited from the same kind of performances Manning gave
Dungy. “This year is one of those in terms of when you look at his numbers and how he’s been able to play consistently well over a long period of time. It’s been remarkable. “I think a lot of it has to do with his drive. He just has an innate sort of will to excel. He never gets bored with it. That, I think, is See PEYTON, Page A9
COMMENTARY AND PREDICTIONS
Pats, Cards should win today With the NFL playoff getting started yesterday, here are my picks for Sunday’s NFL Wildcard games.
Mark J. Terrill/AP
USC head coach Pete Carroll celebrates after they intercepted the ball during the Trojans’ game against UCLA last season in Los Angeles.
Green Bay also has a top-five defense this season, although they did lay some eggs in a few games, including a recent Week 16 matchup against the Steelers. • Baltimore Ravens at New The Cardinals also have an England Patriots, 1 p.m. explosive offense, from QB Kurt Sunday on CBS Warner to a solid stable of wide The Patriots have been an Running back Ray Rice is a beast. receivers. Arizona has some enigma all season, and we still The New England defense has talent at running back also, really don’t know how good they been virtually refabricated, and although both Beannie Wells and are. For one thing, they play in a they have been vulnerable against Tim Hightower have a chronic weak division with the Jets and the run and pass this season. problem called fumblitus. Dolphins as their main competiFlacco doesn’t have what it By the way, the Arizona tion. For another, we don’t know takes to win a game on his own. defense is pretty tough too, espehow well Tom Brady is actually He needs a great defense and a cially against the run. playing this season. running game. He has a great I guess I’ll go with experience Brady has had some great running game, but I don’t believe in this one. games this year, but he’s not been that will be enough. Warner is no stranger to playhis typical self by any measure. Pick: Patriots 27, Baltimore off runs and Super Bowl games. Randy Moss has been hearing 16 If his O-line gives him three secsome complaints that he’s slackonds, he’ll make big plays down ing this season and not giving a • Green Bay Packers at the field. great effort for the team. Arizona Cardinals, 4:30 p.m. Green Bay has choked in a It goes without saying that Sunday on FOX few too many big games this how well Moss and Brady play This should be a great matchup season to pick the Packers for a in this game will be a huge factor against two teams that have been road playoff win, and QB Aaron in the outcome, especially since playing well recently for the most Rodgers is a talent, yet very Wes Welker went down last week part. unproven, especially in the postwith a nasty knee injury against The Packers have some exploseason. Houston. sive offensive playmakers in their Pick: Cardinals 38, Green The Ravens no longer have a lineup, from their quarterback to Bay 27 great defense. QB Joe Flacco has receivers to a tight end that is a regressed from his promising mismatch for any linebacker and firstname.lastname@example.org rookie campaign a season ago. most safeties to cover.
Reports: Pete Carroll leaving USC for Seattle Vols changing as Kansas comes to town TENNESSEE VOLUNTEERS BASKETBALL
By GREGG BELL AP Sports Writer SEATTLE — Pete Carroll reportedly agreed to leave Southern California after nine years to return to the NFL and coach the Seattle Seahawks. ESPN cited multiple league sources Saturday, saying Carroll reached an agreement with a
team that went 5-11 and fired coach Jim Mora on Friday after one season. The Los Angeles Times reported Carroll also will be team president. The Seahawks also are speaking with Minnesota defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier. Teams must interview minority See CARROLL, Page A9
KNOXVILLE — The University of Tennessee is headed into a matchup with the top ranked team in the nation and they’re not at full strength. With the dismissal of senior team captain Tyler Smith and suspension of three others, Volunteers coach Bruce Pearl faces an unenviable task of try-
ing to avenge last year’s loss to the Jayhawks without the biggest tools in his toolbox when the teams tip off on Sunday. Smith, an All-SEC forward for No. 16 Tennessee (11-2), and three teammates were arrested during a traffic stop on New Year’s Day on misdemeanor drug and weapons charges.
Pearl dismissed Smith from the team and suspended post player Brian Williams, wing Cameron Tatum and point guard Melvin Goins. “Tyler was accountable to me, he was very remorseful, and he has accepted the responsibiliSee VOLS, Page A10
Sports â—† A9
Sunday, January 10, 2010 â—† The Mountain Press LOCAL FOOTBALL
Brewer: Coaching clinic a success By JASON DAVIS Sports Editor GATLINBURG â€” Over 200 coaches from Tennessee and the bordering states gathered at the Park Vista Hotel in Gatlinburg this weekend for the annual Big East Coaching Clinic. The clinic, which is named for the now-defunct Big East football conference, is organized by Sevier County High School coach Steve Brewer and Dobyns-Bennett head coach Graham Clark. â€œWe thought it went really well,â€? Brewer said Saturday afternoon. â€œWe had 220 register and for the snowy conditions that we had, we thought it was great.â€? Though Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson had to cancel his appearance due to problems at the Atlanta airport, the clinic still featured several influential coaches. North Carolina coach Butch Davis, Tennessee assistants Jim Chaney and James Cregg, Kentucky offensive coordinator Randy Sanders and former Tennessee head coach Johnny Majors were among the eventâ€™s
Peyton Manning in his Tennessee days, preparing to loft a pass in the Volsâ€™ 20-14 Citrus Bowl win over Ohio State Monday, Jan. 1, 1996, in Orlando.
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highly unusual.â€? So unique that Manning has joined the truly elite of team sports: Wayne Gretzky (9), Barry Bonds (7) and Kareem AbdulJabbar (6), the leaders for most valuable player awards in each of their sports. Not surprisingly, Manning, the 2007 Super Bowl MVP when he won his only league championship, briefly reflects before looking ahead. â€œTo win 14 games this year, if you had told me we were going to 14 games at the beginning of the season, I might not have believed you,â€? he said. â€œSo, it has been rewarding from a team standpoint because of what we have done. Hopefully, we can keep it going.â€? The Colts play in the divisional round next week and have home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs. The Super Bowl is Feb. 7 in Miami, the same place they won it three years ago. Manning lost his longtime favorite receiver, Marvin Harrison, this season. Harrisonâ€™s replacement, Anthony Gonzalez,
went down with a right knee injury in the opener. Manning simply turned to his latest fave, Reggie Wayne, who had 100 catches for 1,264 yards and 10 touchdowns. And to Dallas Clark, who joined Tony Gonzalez as the only tight ends with 100 receptions in a season when he grabbed exactly that many for 1,106 yards and 10 scores. Plus, Austin Collie tied for the rookie lead in receptions with 60 and scored seven times. Pierre Garcon, nurtured in dozens of passing sessions with Manning, developed into a prime deep threat and averaged 16.3 yards on 47 catches, with four TDs. â€œWhat heâ€™s been able to do this year with Pierre (Garcon) and Austin (Collie),â€? linebacker and defensive captain Gary Brackett said, â€œand obviously Dallas had a year that will go down in the record books, and I think it really says something when you can work young guys like that.â€? The other votes went to San Diegoâ€™s Philip Rivers with two, and Minnesotaâ€™s Brett Favre with one.
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candidates for head coaching jobs. Carrollâ€™s agent, Gary Uberstine, did not return calls and e-mails from The Associated Press. The Seahawks are not commenting and chief executive Tod Leiweke did not return repeated messages Saturday. Carroll was 6-10 in 1994 with the New York Jets and then 27-21 while twice reaching the playoffs from 1997-99 with the New England Patriots. He restored a dynasty at USC beginning in 2001. A month before firing Mora, the Seahawks forced general manager and president Tim Ruskell to resign. That left them without a coach, general manager or president less than four years after they reached the Super Bowl. Until now. The Los Angeles Times reported that Leiweke flew to California before firing Mora to interview Carroll. The newspaper said that Seattle â€” owned by Microsoft Corp. tycoon Paul Allen â€” is believed
Jason Davis/The Mountain Press
Coach Johnny Majors, a speaker at the clinic, poses for a photo after his session with first-year Bledsoe County head coach Jason Reel. featured speakers. In those sessions, the coaches share emerging ideas and strategies in the world of football. â€œIn our profession thereâ€™s not a lot of originality. You take what you hear and try to adapt it to what you can do and what
to be offering Carroll a five-year contract worth $7 million a season to be president and coach. That would be a raise of more than $2 million annually on what Carroll is thought to be earning at USC. The opportunity is unique for Carroll. The Seahawks still do not have a GM, so he conceivably will have authority over football matters as he does at USC, and far more than he would have had filling any of the NFL coaching openings to which heâ€™s been connected in recent winters. And this was perhaps
your personnel can do,â€? Brewer said. â€œWeâ€™re always looking for ideas, weâ€™re always looking for drills, and weâ€™re looking for things we can implement.â€? Hoping to strike gold, Brewer said Smoky Bearsâ€™ staff heard some things
they liked at the clinic. â€œWe got several ideas from the clinic, to the point that several of the coaches are going to go visit with one of the speakers that we heard,â€? Brewer said.
the best time to leave the Trojans since he arrived. USCâ€™s string of seven consecutive Pac-10 titles ended with four losses this season. The school has been under several years of NCAA scrutiny for alleged improprieties in both Carrollâ€™s team and athletic director Mike Garrettâ€™s beleaguered department. When receiver Damian Williams announced he would enter the NFL, the news release of his departure Friday night didnâ€™t include a comment from Carroll, who often lavishes praise on his early
entry candidates. If Carroll is indeed leaving college, USCâ€™s recruits must now decide whether to honor their commitments to the Trojans or re-enter the recruiting derby late in process. University of Washington coach Steve Sarkisian left his friend Carroll and the Trojans 12 months ago for his first head coaching job. He was asked if heâ€™d like to be a head man in the same city as his mentor. â€œThat would be kind of fun,â€? Sarkisian said. â€œHeâ€™s a great coach.â€?
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