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May 2010 • Volume 1 • No. 1

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

1


Apr10:Layout 2

THE

HOTTEST PRODUCTS

THE

4/21/10

10:08 AM

Page 1

SUMMER SPORTS CAMPS

LATEST TECHNOLOGY

LIPSCOMB UN IVERSIT U NIVER SIT Y Excellent Instruction in a Character-Building Environment BASEBALL

NAME BRANDS YOU KNOW & TRUST AT LOW PRICES Brentwood 1701 Mallory Lane (Next to Barnes & Noble) ........................ 370-8650 Nolensville Road 5300 Nolensville Road ............................................ 445-4565 West End Avenue 2714 West End Avenue .......................................... 329-1700 Cool Springs Market 2000 Mallory Lane (Kroger Center) ................. 771-7423 Hermitage 5108 Old Hickory Blvd. (Next to Home Depot)........................ 846-1208 Hickory Hollow Mall Antioch (Between Dillard’s & Hecht’s) .............. 731-6513

BASKETBALL

SOCCER

SPEED & STRENGTH

SONY • SHARP • PANASONIC •TOSHIBA • HITACHI • LG • JVC • PIONEER • SAMSUNG

100 Oaks Mall Nashville (Lower Level Next to Pet Mart) ....................... 297-1000 Post Sq. Shopping Center 21 White Bridge Road .......................... 352-4510 Rivergate Marketplace 2101 North Gallatin Road........................... 851-0346 Murfreesboro 2047 Old Fort Pkwy. (Next to Toys ‘R Us) ........................ 217-7444 Gallatin 825 Nashville Pike (Next to Kroger) ............................................. 206-9102 Clarksville Wilma Rudolph Blvd. ...................................................931 648-3029

www.electronicexpress.com

Columbia S. James Campbell Blvd. ...............................................931 381-7811 Cookeville 596 S. Jefferson St. .....................................................931 372-2332 Tullahoma N. Jackson St. (Next to Wal-Mart).................................931 461-7000 Spring Hill 1041 Crossing Blvd. (Next to Target) ............................931 489-9090

A TENNESSEE COMPANY FAMILY OWNED & OPERATED SINCE 1983

DAY CAMPS • BOARDING CAMPS • CAMPUS SETTING • EXCELLENT FACILITIES • EXPERIENCED STAFF

(615) 966-5899

LIPSCOMB UNIVERSITY • ONE UNIVERSITY PARK DRIVE • NASHVILLE • www.lipscombsports.com

 

   

  I I 

I 2

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

3


Apr10:Layout 2

THE

HOTTEST PRODUCTS

THE

4/21/10

10:08 AM

Page 1

SUMMER SPORTS CAMPS

LATEST TECHNOLOGY

LIPSCOMB UN IVERSIT U NIVER SIT Y Excellent Instruction in a Character-Building Environment BASEBALL

NAME BRANDS YOU KNOW & TRUST AT LOW PRICES Brentwood 1701 Mallory Lane (Next to Barnes & Noble) ........................ 370-8650 Nolensville Road 5300 Nolensville Road ............................................ 445-4565 West End Avenue 2714 West End Avenue .......................................... 329-1700 Cool Springs Market 2000 Mallory Lane (Kroger Center) ................. 771-7423 Hermitage 5108 Old Hickory Blvd. (Next to Home Depot)........................ 846-1208 Hickory Hollow Mall Antioch (Between Dillard’s & Hecht’s) .............. 731-6513

BASKETBALL

SOCCER

SPEED & STRENGTH

SONY • SHARP • PANASONIC •TOSHIBA • HITACHI • LG • JVC • PIONEER • SAMSUNG

100 Oaks Mall Nashville (Lower Level Next to Pet Mart) ....................... 297-1000 Post Sq. Shopping Center 21 White Bridge Road .......................... 352-4510 Rivergate Marketplace 2101 North Gallatin Road........................... 851-0346 Murfreesboro 2047 Old Fort Pkwy. (Next to Toys ‘R Us) ........................ 217-7444 Gallatin 825 Nashville Pike (Next to Kroger) ............................................. 206-9102 Clarksville Wilma Rudolph Blvd. ...................................................931 648-3029

www.electronicexpress.com

Columbia S. James Campbell Blvd. ...............................................931 381-7811 Cookeville 596 S. Jefferson St. .....................................................931 372-2332 Tullahoma N. Jackson St. (Next to Wal-Mart).................................931 461-7000 Spring Hill 1041 Crossing Blvd. (Next to Target) ............................931 489-9090

A TENNESSEE COMPANY FAMILY OWNED & OPERATED SINCE 1983

DAY CAMPS • BOARDING CAMPS • CAMPUS SETTING • EXCELLENT FACILITIES • EXPERIENCED STAFF

(615) 966-5899

LIPSCOMB UNIVERSITY • ONE UNIVERSITY PARK DRIVE • NASHVILLE • www.lipscombsports.com

 

   

  I I 

I 2

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

3


Th e L i n e U p

A Word from the Publisher..........6 Publisher/Editor Jane Hutson

FCA.................................................8

Account Executives Jane Hutson Doc Smith Jon Williams

Ask the Coach............................ 10

Photographers

Sports Mom Spotlight................17

Kevin Pieper

Contributing Writers Autumn Boaz Paul Erland Rudy Kalis Roger Lipe Jim Muir Kevin Pieper Kathy Steakley

Shut Up and Serve..................... 23

34

12

Ask the AD - Lipscomb.............. 26 The A Game................................ 42 Ask the Trainer........................... 44

For more information regarding Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine contact Jon at 615-480-6455 or email jwilliams@midtensportsmag.com or contact Doc at 615-586-9615 or email docsmith85@hotmail.com.

32 28

Rudy Kalis Looks Between the Lines.......... 46

20 38 24

4

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

5


Th e L i n e U p

A Word from the Publisher..........6 Publisher/Editor Jane Hutson

FCA.................................................8

Account Executives Jane Hutson Doc Smith Jon Williams

Ask the Coach............................ 10

Photographers

Sports Mom Spotlight................17

Kevin Pieper

Contributing Writers Autumn Boaz Paul Erland Rudy Kalis Roger Lipe Jim Muir Kevin Pieper Kathy Steakley

Shut Up and Serve..................... 23

34

12

Ask the AD - Lipscomb.............. 26 The A Game................................ 42 Ask the Trainer........................... 44

For more information regarding Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine contact Jon at 615-480-6455 or email jwilliams@midtensportsmag.com or contact Doc at 615-586-9615 or email docsmith85@hotmail.com.

32 28

Rudy Kalis Looks Between the Lines.......... 46

20 38 24

4

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

5


A Word from the

Publisher Y

ou know, there’s much truth to the saying, “When one door closes, another one always opens.” And sometimes what’s behind that new door is bigger and better than you ever imagined. That’s where I find myself these days with the launch of Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine. Transitioning from a comfortable career of 24 years to a completely new line of business is challenging, scary and thrilling but mostly it’s just fun – especially when it involves high school and college sports right here in Middle Tennessee. In late January of this year, I talked with an old friend of mine, Jim Muir, who has been publishing a sports magazine in Southern Illinois that I’ve subscribed to for years. In that conversation, we fell upon the idea of starting a local magazine in the Nashville area too. We quickly decided to make a go of it, developed our business plan, and stepped through a big, new door. When I started my first job out of college many years ago, my father gave me what I know now to be some sound advice. “Surround yourself with good people, JanieBabe, and you’ll find it much easier to succeed.” And that’s exactly what we’ve done here at MTSM. Some of the outstanding sports notables joining us for this and upcoming issues are Rudy Kalis (everyone’s favorite sportscaster), Connie Mitchell at Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Dave DeRocher, former standout at USC, professional volleyball player, and head of “Shut up and Serve.” Freelance writers Kathy Steakley,

6

Paul Erland, Autumn Boaz, and Kevin Pieper have all joined us to put together the foundation of our magazine. Additionally, we will also regularly feature articles on sports medicine, what’s happening in sports at our local colleges as written by the athletic directors from Belmont, TSU, and Lipscomb University. We’ve even added a little something for the sport’s moms out there too. You know us – we’re the ones in the SUVs and minivans full of kids. We have the coolers and chairs and sunscreen and we’re cheering loudly for our little sluggers, goalies, and outfielders, whether they are 6 or 16. And of course, we’ve included coverage of local high school standouts and some great pictures of our local athletes will be in each issue too. When Jim and I started talking with local sports fans around town, the same name kept coming up. “Have you checked out CoachT.com yet?” they would ask. We quickly decided we needed to meet this guy. So we did. Coach T is one of our first feature articles in MTSM and we’re pretty sure you’ll find his story as interesting as we did. In the world of high dollar travel sports, the “little league of their own” takes center stage year after year. At $120 a year, the Dixie Youth League baseball program out of Hendersonville is developing D-1 players at an impressive rate. Autumn Boaz takes you inside the league that competes with the travel teams and wins. Coaches and athletic directors are great sources of stories so I emailed about a hundred in the mid-state back in February. Within minutes, I received my first response from James Festervand of Blackman High School in Murfreesboro. He said he has an outstanding runner on his track team and that if we were covering all sports, we should consider doing a story on Jared Phillips. So we did. This isn’t your ordinary track kid. He’s extraordinary and

ASK THE AD

ASK THE AD

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

someone we think you need to know about. And we think you’ll find Coach Festervand isn’t an ordinary coach either. Kevin Pieper’s story and pictures tell the story of a gifted natural runner and his dedicated coach. We all have our favorite TV stations we watch for news, sports and weather. Well, Rudy Kalis is my “sports guy” so I picked up the phone and called WSMV one morning. I left Rudy a message and he called me back that afternoon. I couldn’t believe it! We met the next day and Rudy said, “Sure, I’ll be glad to write for you and I already know what story I’ll write for the first issue.” It’s a great story about teamwork and staying true to your faith. Get ready to be inspired. So why would we launch a high school and college sports magazine right as school is getting out for summer? Great question, but what we’ve found is that there are sports stories walking the halls, courts, and fields of our schools every day. Let us hear from you about those stories, old or new. Whether it’s living legends or new raw talent, we want to share the stories that are virtually going untold. We’ll keep it positive and inspiring and we’ll share it in our publication and on our website. Jim and I hope you’ll enjoy Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine as much as we enjoy putting it together for you. Let us know what you think at jhutson@midtnsportsmag.com.

Tennessee State U

BlackBerry® Appreciation Event NOW OPEN!

New BlackBerry® CurveTM 2

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after mail-in rebate debit card. $100.00-$100.00 mail-in rebate debit card = FREE With new 2 yr activation on voice plan with data pak $29.99 or higher req’d.

American Cellular AmericanCellular.net

FRANKLIN WIRELESS SUPERSTORE

®

1120 Murfreesboro Rd - Hwy 96

615-591-9999

Activation fee/line: $35 ($25 for secondary Family SharePlan lines w/ 2 yr Agmts) IMPORTANT CONSUMER INFORMATION: Subject to Customer Agmt, Calling Plan & credit approval. Up to $175 early termination fee ($350 for advanced devices) & other charges. Offers & coverage, varying by service, not available everywhere. While supplies last. Shipping charges may apply. Rebate takes up to 6 wks. © 2010 Verizon Wireless. Visual Voice Mail available on select phones; data charges apply for application download; Std. txt msging rates; add’l charges for voice mail access & other features apply. Subject to Customer Agmt & Calling Plan. VZ Navigator-capable phone, subscription, & download charges req’d for use; accuracy & completeness of info is not guaranteed; info about location of device will be used to deliver service; coverage not available everywhere. Research In Motion, the RIM logo, BlackBerry, the BlackBerry logo, SureType and SurePress are registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and may be pending or registered in other countries - these and other marks of Research In Motion Limited are used under license.

Italian B.M.T.® Flatbread

Belmont University Warm Regards,

Jane Hutson Publisher

For a limited time only. Valid at participating SUBWAY® restaurants. SUBWAY® is a registered trademark of Doctor's Associates Inc. ©2009 Doctor's Associates Inc.

subpad_6685_09_SI_SportsConnection_Ad_F.indd 1

6/1/09 3:55 PM

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

7


A Word from the

Publisher Y

ou know, there’s much truth to the saying, “When one door closes, another one always opens.” And sometimes what’s behind that new door is bigger and better than you ever imagined. That’s where I find myself these days with the launch of Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine. Transitioning from a comfortable career of 24 years to a completely new line of business is challenging, scary and thrilling but mostly it’s just fun – especially when it involves high school and college sports right here in Middle Tennessee. In late January of this year, I talked with an old friend of mine, Jim Muir, who has been publishing a sports magazine in Southern Illinois that I’ve subscribed to for years. In that conversation, we fell upon the idea of starting a local magazine in the Nashville area too. We quickly decided to make a go of it, developed our business plan, and stepped through a big, new door. When I started my first job out of college many years ago, my father gave me what I know now to be some sound advice. “Surround yourself with good people, JanieBabe, and you’ll find it much easier to succeed.” And that’s exactly what we’ve done here at MTSM. Some of the outstanding sports notables joining us for this and upcoming issues are Rudy Kalis (everyone’s favorite sportscaster), Connie Mitchell at Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Dave DeRocher, former standout at USC, professional volleyball player, and head of “Shut up and Serve.” Freelance writers Kathy Steakley,

6

Paul Erland, Autumn Boaz, and Kevin Pieper have all joined us to put together the foundation of our magazine. Additionally, we will also regularly feature articles on sports medicine, what’s happening in sports at our local colleges as written by the athletic directors from Belmont, TSU, and Lipscomb University. We’ve even added a little something for the sport’s moms out there too. You know us – we’re the ones in the SUVs and minivans full of kids. We have the coolers and chairs and sunscreen and we’re cheering loudly for our little sluggers, goalies, and outfielders, whether they are 6 or 16. And of course, we’ve included coverage of local high school standouts and some great pictures of our local athletes will be in each issue too. When Jim and I started talking with local sports fans around town, the same name kept coming up. “Have you checked out CoachT.com yet?” they would ask. We quickly decided we needed to meet this guy. So we did. Coach T is one of our first feature articles in MTSM and we’re pretty sure you’ll find his story as interesting as we did. In the world of high dollar travel sports, the “little league of their own” takes center stage year after year. At $120 a year, the Dixie Youth League baseball program out of Hendersonville is developing D-1 players at an impressive rate. Autumn Boaz takes you inside the league that competes with the travel teams and wins. Coaches and athletic directors are great sources of stories so I emailed about a hundred in the mid-state back in February. Within minutes, I received my first response from James Festervand of Blackman High School in Murfreesboro. He said he has an outstanding runner on his track team and that if we were covering all sports, we should consider doing a story on Jared Phillips. So we did. This isn’t your ordinary track kid. He’s extraordinary and

ASK THE AD

ASK THE AD

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

someone we think you need to know about. And we think you’ll find Coach Festervand isn’t an ordinary coach either. Kevin Pieper’s story and pictures tell the story of a gifted natural runner and his dedicated coach. We all have our favorite TV stations we watch for news, sports and weather. Well, Rudy Kalis is my “sports guy” so I picked up the phone and called WSMV one morning. I left Rudy a message and he called me back that afternoon. I couldn’t believe it! We met the next day and Rudy said, “Sure, I’ll be glad to write for you and I already know what story I’ll write for the first issue.” It’s a great story about teamwork and staying true to your faith. Get ready to be inspired. So why would we launch a high school and college sports magazine right as school is getting out for summer? Great question, but what we’ve found is that there are sports stories walking the halls, courts, and fields of our schools every day. Let us hear from you about those stories, old or new. Whether it’s living legends or new raw talent, we want to share the stories that are virtually going untold. We’ll keep it positive and inspiring and we’ll share it in our publication and on our website. Jim and I hope you’ll enjoy Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine as much as we enjoy putting it together for you. Let us know what you think at jhutson@midtnsportsmag.com.

Tennessee State U

BlackBerry® Appreciation Event NOW OPEN!

New BlackBerry® CurveTM 2

FREE

after mail-in rebate debit card. $100.00-$100.00 mail-in rebate debit card = FREE With new 2 yr activation on voice plan with data pak $29.99 or higher req’d.

American Cellular AmericanCellular.net

FRANKLIN WIRELESS SUPERSTORE

®

1120 Murfreesboro Rd - Hwy 96

615-591-9999

Activation fee/line: $35 ($25 for secondary Family SharePlan lines w/ 2 yr Agmts) IMPORTANT CONSUMER INFORMATION: Subject to Customer Agmt, Calling Plan & credit approval. Up to $175 early termination fee ($350 for advanced devices) & other charges. Offers & coverage, varying by service, not available everywhere. While supplies last. Shipping charges may apply. Rebate takes up to 6 wks. © 2010 Verizon Wireless. Visual Voice Mail available on select phones; data charges apply for application download; Std. txt msging rates; add’l charges for voice mail access & other features apply. Subject to Customer Agmt & Calling Plan. VZ Navigator-capable phone, subscription, & download charges req’d for use; accuracy & completeness of info is not guaranteed; info about location of device will be used to deliver service; coverage not available everywhere. Research In Motion, the RIM logo, BlackBerry, the BlackBerry logo, SureType and SurePress are registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and may be pending or registered in other countries - these and other marks of Research In Motion Limited are used under license.

Italian B.M.T.® Flatbread

Belmont University Warm Regards,

Jane Hutson Publisher

For a limited time only. Valid at participating SUBWAY® restaurants. SUBWAY® is a registered trademark of Doctor's Associates Inc. ©2009 Doctor's Associates Inc.

subpad_6685_09_SI_SportsConnection_Ad_F.indd 1

6/1/09 3:55 PM

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

7


Faith on the Field Significance in Sport

T

THE

THE

HOTTEST PRODUCTS

LATEST TECHNOLOGY

NAME BRANDS YOU KNOW & TRUST AT LOW PRICES

SONY • SHARP • PANASONIC •TOSHIBA • HITACHI • LG • JVC • PIONEER • SAMSUNG

Brentwood 1701 Mallory Lane ............................ 370-8650 Nolensville Road 5300 Nolensville Road .......... 445-4565 West End Avenue 2714 West End Avenue ........ 329-1700 Cool Springs Market Kroger Center ............... 771-7423 Hermitage 5108 Old Hickory Blvd.. ...................... 846-1208 Hickory Hollow Mall Antioch .......................... 731-6513 100 Oaks Mall Nashville .................................... 297-1000 Post Square Center 21 White Bridge Rd ......... 352-4510

Rivergate 2101 North Gallatin Road...................... 851-0346 Murfreesboro 2047 Old Fort Pkwy ..................... 217-7444 Gallatin 825 Nashville Pike (Next to Kroger) ........... 206-9102 Clarksville Wilma Rudolph Blvd. .................931 648-3029 Columbia S. James Campbell Blvd. .............931 381-7811 Cookeville 596 S. Jefferson St. ...................931 372-2332 Tullahoma N. Jackson St.............................931 461-7000 Spring Hill 1041 Crossing Blvd ...................931 489-9090

www.electronicexpress.com

A TENNESSEE COMPANY FAMILY OWNED & OPERATED SINCE 1983

8

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

his is possibly the most annoying thing in sport today. The media seems fixated on adding significance to sporting events by dredging up the most obscure statistics and stories to spice up their reporting. Every day on local and national sportscasts we’re subjected to information like, “That was the first time since 1956 that a Wildcat quarterback threw for 400 yards in a game.” Sometimes it’s even worse, “This is the first time since 1922 that a left-handed pitcher from Blue Dog, Texas named Johnny has struck out 14 batters in a 9 inning game.” All this research and effort seems to be aimed at adding significance to this day’s game or this season’s achievements. Some of us hear these things and don’t understand the compulsion with such strained efforts to bring significance to sport. We see the inherent significance that is in every season, each competition, and every possession of the ball, each at bat, each pitch and every second. Sport has significance all by itself for those who compete. The exertion of will, the concentration of mind, the spiritual energy expended and the teamwork executed brings significance to each practice, conditioning period, film session and even more to the competition itself. That seems to be lost on certain ones who stand on the periphery of the world of sport. The significance of sport to them is found in statistics (the more remote the better) or the stories (endless “behind the scenes” stories of players or coaches). Join me and all those who play their hearts out as we experience the real significance in sport. It’s in the daily life of sacrifice, teamwork, aches, pains, exhilaration, joy, disappointment and satisfaction. Leave the research for the media and for those outside who just don’t get it.

MTSM is proud to partner with the Middle Tennessee chapter of Fellowship of Christian Athletes. We will publish the column, Faith on the Field, each month written by staff of FCA. (Excerpt from article written by Connie Mitchell, FCA Middle Tennessee.) In 1973, Steve Robinson had just finished four years at the University of Tennessee playing football and was preparing to start life after graduation, but not as a missionary in a foreign country. Steve applied for a job with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. He had been involved with FCA on UT’s campus and was excited to pursue a job within this mission field. He was the only employee at the FCA Middle Tennessee office when he was hired. Steve has now been serving God through athletics all his life. Many of the first athletes he introduced to Christ now also work with and in FCA. The FCA goal “is to present to coaches and athletes and all that they influence the challenge and adventure of receiving Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and serving him in the fellowship of the church. During the past 37 years Steven Robinson has seen Middle Tennessee FCA grow tremendously. There are now 220 FCA Huddles in operation with 15 people on staff. FCA is an inter-denominational ministry in middle schools, high schools and colleges. If anyone is interested in knowing more they can visit the website at www.fcanashville.org where there is information about events, staff and summer camps.

Sports Trivia 1. How many professional sports teams are there in Tennessee? 2. Who is the only Tennessee-born Heisman Trophy winner? 1. 3 – Titans, Predators, and Grizzlies 2. Steve Spurrier

Fellowship of Christian Athletes

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

9


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Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

his is possibly the most annoying thing in sport today. The media seems fixated on adding significance to sporting events by dredging up the most obscure statistics and stories to spice up their reporting. Every day on local and national sportscasts we’re subjected to information like, “That was the first time since 1956 that a Wildcat quarterback threw for 400 yards in a game.” Sometimes it’s even worse, “This is the first time since 1922 that a left-handed pitcher from Blue Dog, Texas named Johnny has struck out 14 batters in a 9 inning game.” All this research and effort seems to be aimed at adding significance to this day’s game or this season’s achievements. Some of us hear these things and don’t understand the compulsion with such strained efforts to bring significance to sport. We see the inherent significance that is in every season, each competition, and every possession of the ball, each at bat, each pitch and every second. Sport has significance all by itself for those who compete. The exertion of will, the concentration of mind, the spiritual energy expended and the teamwork executed brings significance to each practice, conditioning period, film session and even more to the competition itself. That seems to be lost on certain ones who stand on the periphery of the world of sport. The significance of sport to them is found in statistics (the more remote the better) or the stories (endless “behind the scenes” stories of players or coaches). Join me and all those who play their hearts out as we experience the real significance in sport. It’s in the daily life of sacrifice, teamwork, aches, pains, exhilaration, joy, disappointment and satisfaction. Leave the research for the media and for those outside who just don’t get it.

MTSM is proud to partner with the Middle Tennessee chapter of Fellowship of Christian Athletes. We will publish the column, Faith on the Field, each month written by staff of FCA. (Excerpt from article written by Connie Mitchell, FCA Middle Tennessee.) In 1973, Steve Robinson had just finished four years at the University of Tennessee playing football and was preparing to start life after graduation, but not as a missionary in a foreign country. Steve applied for a job with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. He had been involved with FCA on UT’s campus and was excited to pursue a job within this mission field. He was the only employee at the FCA Middle Tennessee office when he was hired. Steve has now been serving God through athletics all his life. Many of the first athletes he introduced to Christ now also work with and in FCA. The FCA goal “is to present to coaches and athletes and all that they influence the challenge and adventure of receiving Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and serving him in the fellowship of the church. During the past 37 years Steven Robinson has seen Middle Tennessee FCA grow tremendously. There are now 220 FCA Huddles in operation with 15 people on staff. FCA is an inter-denominational ministry in middle schools, high schools and colleges. If anyone is interested in knowing more they can visit the website at www.fcanashville.org where there is information about events, staff and summer camps.

Sports Trivia 1. How many professional sports teams are there in Tennessee? 2. Who is the only Tennessee-born Heisman Trophy winner? 1. 3 – Titans, Predators, and Grizzlies 2. Steve Spurrier

Fellowship of Christian Athletes

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

9


years. Dustin played four years of college baseball at Austin Peay State University. He was All Ohio Valley Conference his senior year on the OVC championship team. He was drafted that summer by the Detroit Tigers. After his playing career ended he took over the Northeast High School baseball program.

Do you count pitches?

Walter Schultz has over 35 years of playing and coaching experience. He holds degrees from Vanderbilt University, Cumberland University, and Vanderbilt’s Owen Graduate School of Management. Higher level playing experience includes both basketball and baseball at the collegiate level and baseball at the professional level, spending several years in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization. Coach Schultz is an assistant basketball coach, varsity pitching coach and varsity running backs coach at Ensworth High School. “Absolutely. It is important to count pitches for the safety of the pitcher. During the offseason, it is the coach’s job to get pitchers ready for the long season. Most pitchers average one game per week, but that game can be very demanding. A pitcher must be strong, mentally and physically. Every pitch takes a toll on the player - good or bad. Durability is one big key to success.

10

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

Effective pitchers must be able to pitch late into the game. A pitcher who has trained his body to withstand a 100 plus pitch outing and not lose focus, velocity, or accuracy is an effective pitcher. A pitching coach must know when his pitcher is reaching his limit and he must act accordingly. It would be nice to have all pitchers at that level, but realistically that isn’t the case. As coaches we do what’s best for the school, the team, and its players. We’ve all been young before, and we all have probably felt a bit ‘invincible.’ Some players would pitch every game, if you’d let them. It is our responsibility to keep them healthy, to teach them, to encourage them, and give them a chance to succeed every time they step on the field.” Dustin Smith is the head baseball coach at Northeast High School, a position he’s held for five

“I do count pitches. Being a former pitcher, who had arm surgery from too many pitches, I keep a very detailed pitch count. During the first half of the season, I allow my pitchers to throw 85-90 pitches. As they build up there arm strength I will gradually increase. I will not allow them to throw more than 115 pitches per game at anytime during the season.” Jeff Forehand enters his fourth season as the head coach for the Lipscomb University Bisons. In 2009 he guided the team to a 17-13 Atlantic Sun Conference record, good enough for second place. The Bisons were 24-32 overall. Forehand coached six seasons at Trevecca Nazarene University in the NAIA, compiling a 211-142-1 record. Trevecca was 42-20 after winning both the TranSouth Athletic Conference regular season and tournament championships in 2005 with a 46-17 record. In 2004 Trevecca was 44-17-1. In 2004 he was named NAIA Region XI Coach of the Year and TranSouth Conference Coach of the Year. He was also named TranSouth Conference Coach of the Year in 2005. One of the more unusual aspects of Forehand’s coaching career is that every one of his jobs, both on the college and high school level, has been in his hometown of Nashville. Jeff and his wife, Karen, have two sons, Gant and Brooks. They live in Nashville. “We do track pitches and keep pitch counts for every pitcher. We generally only use pitch counts when evaluating whether to send a pitcher out for another inning and to determine their recovery plan which includes the amount of rest and workouts.”

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

11


years. Dustin played four years of college baseball at Austin Peay State University. He was All Ohio Valley Conference his senior year on the OVC championship team. He was drafted that summer by the Detroit Tigers. After his playing career ended he took over the Northeast High School baseball program.

Do you count pitches?

Walter Schultz has over 35 years of playing and coaching experience. He holds degrees from Vanderbilt University, Cumberland University, and Vanderbilt’s Owen Graduate School of Management. Higher level playing experience includes both basketball and baseball at the collegiate level and baseball at the professional level, spending several years in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization. Coach Schultz is an assistant basketball coach, varsity pitching coach and varsity running backs coach at Ensworth High School. “Absolutely. It is important to count pitches for the safety of the pitcher. During the offseason, it is the coach’s job to get pitchers ready for the long season. Most pitchers average one game per week, but that game can be very demanding. A pitcher must be strong, mentally and physically. Every pitch takes a toll on the player - good or bad. Durability is one big key to success.

10

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

Effective pitchers must be able to pitch late into the game. A pitcher who has trained his body to withstand a 100 plus pitch outing and not lose focus, velocity, or accuracy is an effective pitcher. A pitching coach must know when his pitcher is reaching his limit and he must act accordingly. It would be nice to have all pitchers at that level, but realistically that isn’t the case. As coaches we do what’s best for the school, the team, and its players. We’ve all been young before, and we all have probably felt a bit ‘invincible.’ Some players would pitch every game, if you’d let them. It is our responsibility to keep them healthy, to teach them, to encourage them, and give them a chance to succeed every time they step on the field.” Dustin Smith is the head baseball coach at Northeast High School, a position he’s held for five

“I do count pitches. Being a former pitcher, who had arm surgery from too many pitches, I keep a very detailed pitch count. During the first half of the season, I allow my pitchers to throw 85-90 pitches. As they build up there arm strength I will gradually increase. I will not allow them to throw more than 115 pitches per game at anytime during the season.” Jeff Forehand enters his fourth season as the head coach for the Lipscomb University Bisons. In 2009 he guided the team to a 17-13 Atlantic Sun Conference record, good enough for second place. The Bisons were 24-32 overall. Forehand coached six seasons at Trevecca Nazarene University in the NAIA, compiling a 211-142-1 record. Trevecca was 42-20 after winning both the TranSouth Athletic Conference regular season and tournament championships in 2005 with a 46-17 record. In 2004 Trevecca was 44-17-1. In 2004 he was named NAIA Region XI Coach of the Year and TranSouth Conference Coach of the Year. He was also named TranSouth Conference Coach of the Year in 2005. One of the more unusual aspects of Forehand’s coaching career is that every one of his jobs, both on the college and high school level, has been in his hometown of Nashville. Jeff and his wife, Karen, have two sons, Gant and Brooks. They live in Nashville. “We do track pitches and keep pitch counts for every pitcher. We generally only use pitch counts when evaluating whether to send a pitcher out for another inning and to determine their recovery plan which includes the amount of rest and workouts.”

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

11


Phillips, second from left, and his teammates have a little fun after practice, with a speedwalking challenge. While he describes himself as “sometimes shy and calm,” his coach says he can be a “lively one”.

Born to Run Blackman’s Jared Phillips has taken his God-given talent and combined it with determination, desire and a strong work ethic to emerge as one of the top runners in Middle Tennessee 12

By Kevin Pieper MTSM Reporter “Look at those legs.” “He’s built like a deer. An ostrich,” whisper voices from within the small crowd gathered near the finish line. “Who is that guy?” For a moment, it almost sounds like the intro to the Superman TV show. But this person isn’t a superhero, and his identity is not secret. You’ll find his name at the top of many of this year’s track and crosscountry results in Rutherford County. But he isn’t just another fast runner – Blackman High School junior Jared Phillips is on his way to toppling a Rutherford County speed record set by Dale Short in 1975. Coach James Festervand discovered Phillips in his first year of teaching track and cross country at Blackman Middle School, when Phillips was in his 8th grade year. Phillips had been playing basketball and football, but his interest in those sports waned as time passed. So he made the switch to track, with Festervand as his coach and mentor. For a competitive middle school track team, that’s a pretty late time to get started in the sport. “But he just blew away the competition,” says Festervand. “It was after that, that we realized there was something pretty special going on.”

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

There was one particular Macon County meet where “Jared beat a field of 150 runners by a minute and a half – it was pretty incredible.” That first year, the Blackman Middle School team never experienced a loss, winning both county and mid-state competitions. Success would follow Phillips into his freshman year of high school where he ran on the varsity team and qualified for the state track meet. “This is also one of those sports where you hate it and never want to do it again, or you love it and want to do it forever,” says Festervand. “And I loved it,” adds Phillips. “After playing football for so long, I finally found a sport I enjoyed doing.”

“Go through the season and don’t get hurt. You don’t need to kill yourself to still have the results you want,” he advised. He not only recovered, but Phillips again qualified for that spring’s state track meet as the only sophomore to compete in the 800-meter where all of his competition were juniors and seniors. As a junior, Phillips qualified for the state cross-country championships where he was the highest-placing junior on the field., where a majority of his competition was juniors and seniors. “He competed extremely well, and placed 8th overall,” says Festervand. “There were two seniors directly behind me, and then a couple

Phillips laps two runners in the twomile.

“It (running) is how I live, what I eat, what I drink, how I sleep.” – Jared Phillips, Blackman track and cross country standout –

And he was quite good at it. However, while the love continued, the winning record did not. He was also separated from Festervand that next year, having moved on to high school. “Jared was pretty injury prone,” says Festervand. “He pushed himself too hard. He had the impression that if you ran as much as you could, that you could possibly get better, but that’s not the case. You need to run smarter, as opposed to running harder and longer.” His sophomore season ended with an injury before the final state meet that fall. While no longer his coach, Festervand continued to be Phillips’ mentor.

of juniors,” Phillips said. Outrunning older and more experienced track athletes has become the norm for this young star, including his teammates.

“I’m not going to say I’m a better coach than all the others, but I want to run smart. There’s no point in running somebody until they puke.”

Final race positions, with Phillips as leader. www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

13


Phillips, second from left, and his teammates have a little fun after practice, with a speedwalking challenge. While he describes himself as “sometimes shy and calm,” his coach says he can be a “lively one”.

Born to Run Blackman’s Jared Phillips has taken his God-given talent and combined it with determination, desire and a strong work ethic to emerge as one of the top runners in Middle Tennessee 12

By Kevin Pieper MTSM Reporter “Look at those legs.” “He’s built like a deer. An ostrich,” whisper voices from within the small crowd gathered near the finish line. “Who is that guy?” For a moment, it almost sounds like the intro to the Superman TV show. But this person isn’t a superhero, and his identity is not secret. You’ll find his name at the top of many of this year’s track and crosscountry results in Rutherford County. But he isn’t just another fast runner – Blackman High School junior Jared Phillips is on his way to toppling a Rutherford County speed record set by Dale Short in 1975. Coach James Festervand discovered Phillips in his first year of teaching track and cross country at Blackman Middle School, when Phillips was in his 8th grade year. Phillips had been playing basketball and football, but his interest in those sports waned as time passed. So he made the switch to track, with Festervand as his coach and mentor. For a competitive middle school track team, that’s a pretty late time to get started in the sport. “But he just blew away the competition,” says Festervand. “It was after that, that we realized there was something pretty special going on.”

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

There was one particular Macon County meet where “Jared beat a field of 150 runners by a minute and a half – it was pretty incredible.” That first year, the Blackman Middle School team never experienced a loss, winning both county and mid-state competitions. Success would follow Phillips into his freshman year of high school where he ran on the varsity team and qualified for the state track meet. “This is also one of those sports where you hate it and never want to do it again, or you love it and want to do it forever,” says Festervand. “And I loved it,” adds Phillips. “After playing football for so long, I finally found a sport I enjoyed doing.”

“Go through the season and don’t get hurt. You don’t need to kill yourself to still have the results you want,” he advised. He not only recovered, but Phillips again qualified for that spring’s state track meet as the only sophomore to compete in the 800-meter where all of his competition were juniors and seniors. As a junior, Phillips qualified for the state cross-country championships where he was the highest-placing junior on the field., where a majority of his competition was juniors and seniors. “He competed extremely well, and placed 8th overall,” says Festervand. “There were two seniors directly behind me, and then a couple

Phillips laps two runners in the twomile.

“It (running) is how I live, what I eat, what I drink, how I sleep.” – Jared Phillips, Blackman track and cross country standout –

And he was quite good at it. However, while the love continued, the winning record did not. He was also separated from Festervand that next year, having moved on to high school. “Jared was pretty injury prone,” says Festervand. “He pushed himself too hard. He had the impression that if you ran as much as you could, that you could possibly get better, but that’s not the case. You need to run smarter, as opposed to running harder and longer.” His sophomore season ended with an injury before the final state meet that fall. While no longer his coach, Festervand continued to be Phillips’ mentor.

of juniors,” Phillips said. Outrunning older and more experienced track athletes has become the norm for this young star, including his teammates.

“I’m not going to say I’m a better coach than all the others, but I want to run smart. There’s no point in running somebody until they puke.”

Final race positions, with Phillips as leader. www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

13


But this doesn’t bother them – in fact, they look up to Phillips. “I mentally prepare for it, so age doesn’t matter,” says Joel Corado, a senior and teammate of Phillips for the past three years. “We’re good runners, but he’s

strides.” Phillips downplays this, though. “We do a lot of speed and sprint workouts, and they’re always on my tail.” Festervand has taught them to work as a team. “It’s great if you’re good, but you need your team,” he

There are two to three kids in this county that have what he has, and some days he’s better than them. I hope that he’ll be peaked by the end of the season. I fully expect his best times before the end of May.” – James Festervand, Blackman track and cross country coach – just a natural,” adds senior Ben Stevens “If it wasn’t for Jared, we probably wouldn’t run well on the weekend. He always makes us do

coaches. Watching Phillips interact with his coaches and teammates, you can’t help but notice

Phillips is has natural talent and dedication. Or as track coach James Festervand puts it, a mix of “smart running, guts and confidence.”

14

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

that he has an unassuming and reserved character. He has skill without ego, confidence without conceit. “I don’t want to really brag on myself,” he says, responding to one interview question. At the April 2 meet – that one with all the whispers – Phillips ran a two-mile in 10:32, lapping most of the competition. The congratulation by his coach was met by a small nod, and a smile found only on the Mona Lisa – a humble but modest acknowledgement. Festervand says Phillips has the “most God-given form, like a gazelle. He strides right, head up.” But it still takes work, and he has a secret formula: “It (running) is how I live, what I eat, what I drink, how I sleep,” says Phillips. It’s not just a few hours after school, but a lifestyle commitment, adds Festervand. It’s also part mental skill. “I feel like whenever I get out on the track, I’m there to win and nothing else,” says Phillips, although he quickly follows up with, “but I know winning isn’t everything.” “You have to adapt to a race, adjust to the opponents’ weaknesses,” say Festervand. “Find the top two to three runners, and let them run.” And Phillips has run with this advice, no pun intended, as proven by his junior record. For several years, Jared has whittled down his best times, and his current 5K time is within a minute and a half of the 1975 all-time 14:41 set by Short. He’s trimmed his 800-meter down to 1:59, and the one-mile to 4:40. He also runs the 4x800 relay and cross country. “There are two to three kids in this county that have what he has, and some days he’s better

A little last-minute adjustment before hitting the track.

than them,” says Festervand. “I hope that he’ll be peaked by the end of the season. I fully expect his best times before the end of May.” But even if it doesn’t happen, he still has next year to try again, barring any injuries. There’s also college to consider. “Not many think about it,” say Festervand. “Could they compete in college? Yeah, but it’s not really their interest.” “For college, I want to go to a school with the best of both worlds – something that suits my academic pursuits (athletic medicine),” says Phillips, “but also has a good running program.” Kentucky and Vanderbilt are high on

his list. “My pitch [to colleges] for Jared is that I’ve never told him a single thing to do that he couldn’t do. I have confidence in him, and he has confidence in me,” says

Festervand. “I plan to start hitting them pretty hard come middle of May,” starting with MTSU. It also helps that he has a 3.75 GPA, and an ACT score of 33.

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

15


But this doesn’t bother them – in fact, they look up to Phillips. “I mentally prepare for it, so age doesn’t matter,” says Joel Corado, a senior and teammate of Phillips for the past three years. “We’re good runners, but he’s

strides.” Phillips downplays this, though. “We do a lot of speed and sprint workouts, and they’re always on my tail.” Festervand has taught them to work as a team. “It’s great if you’re good, but you need your team,” he

There are two to three kids in this county that have what he has, and some days he’s better than them. I hope that he’ll be peaked by the end of the season. I fully expect his best times before the end of May.” – James Festervand, Blackman track and cross country coach – just a natural,” adds senior Ben Stevens “If it wasn’t for Jared, we probably wouldn’t run well on the weekend. He always makes us do

coaches. Watching Phillips interact with his coaches and teammates, you can’t help but notice

Phillips is has natural talent and dedication. Or as track coach James Festervand puts it, a mix of “smart running, guts and confidence.”

14

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

that he has an unassuming and reserved character. He has skill without ego, confidence without conceit. “I don’t want to really brag on myself,” he says, responding to one interview question. At the April 2 meet – that one with all the whispers – Phillips ran a two-mile in 10:32, lapping most of the competition. The congratulation by his coach was met by a small nod, and a smile found only on the Mona Lisa – a humble but modest acknowledgement. Festervand says Phillips has the “most God-given form, like a gazelle. He strides right, head up.” But it still takes work, and he has a secret formula: “It (running) is how I live, what I eat, what I drink, how I sleep,” says Phillips. It’s not just a few hours after school, but a lifestyle commitment, adds Festervand. It’s also part mental skill. “I feel like whenever I get out on the track, I’m there to win and nothing else,” says Phillips, although he quickly follows up with, “but I know winning isn’t everything.” “You have to adapt to a race, adjust to the opponents’ weaknesses,” say Festervand. “Find the top two to three runners, and let them run.” And Phillips has run with this advice, no pun intended, as proven by his junior record. For several years, Jared has whittled down his best times, and his current 5K time is within a minute and a half of the 1975 all-time 14:41 set by Short. He’s trimmed his 800-meter down to 1:59, and the one-mile to 4:40. He also runs the 4x800 relay and cross country. “There are two to three kids in this county that have what he has, and some days he’s better

A little last-minute adjustment before hitting the track.

than them,” says Festervand. “I hope that he’ll be peaked by the end of the season. I fully expect his best times before the end of May.” But even if it doesn’t happen, he still has next year to try again, barring any injuries. There’s also college to consider. “Not many think about it,” say Festervand. “Could they compete in college? Yeah, but it’s not really their interest.” “For college, I want to go to a school with the best of both worlds – something that suits my academic pursuits (athletic medicine),” says Phillips, “but also has a good running program.” Kentucky and Vanderbilt are high on

his list. “My pitch [to colleges] for Jared is that I’ve never told him a single thing to do that he couldn’t do. I have confidence in him, and he has confidence in me,” says

Festervand. “I plan to start hitting them pretty hard come middle of May,” starting with MTSU. It also helps that he has a 3.75 GPA, and an ACT score of 33.

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

15


Dual Duty

Coach James Festervand issues a little last-minute advice, as Phillips enters his final lap in the two-mile race April 2. “I have confidence in him, and he has confidence in me,” says Festervand.

16

Can you take a kid and run him for seven years? That’s the question James Festervand posed to the administrations of both Blackman Middle School and Blackman High School, where he now has the dual role of coaching at both schools. “One year in, I’ll know if I’ll have them for six more years,” he says. He starts his high school practice 20 minutes earlier than the middle school team, to remind the older students that they are the role models for the younger ones. “If you have high school students doing the right things, the middle school students will copy them,” he says. The two age groups can learn in a group, such as how to stretch, and lessons on the whiteboard, but are not allowed to practice together. Festervand says it’s also important to remember how their priorities change over time. - The 6th-7th graders are just starting out, and need help learning how to focus. “They’re all over the place,” he says. “It’s like herding cattle (but in a good way).” You have to teach them a routine. - The 8th graders are typically the “core group” for middle school competition. - By 9th grade, “they’ve matured,” and will continue to grow each year until graduation. “Teenage conversations are different,” says Festervand. “You can maybe relate to them a little more than you can the middle school athletes. There was this one time we went to Alabama for a race, and headed back, the middle school kids were all asleep with their iPods. On the high school trip, we did karaoke, and I wasn’t worried as much about sticking heads/hands out windows. They’re more prepared and have it together.” Above all else, he has one rule: “You can’t be negative in practice; it’s just not allowed. As soon as a negative thought creeps in, you’re done.” Teaching proper health is another key element to raising quality runners long-term. “It’s a 3:30 to 5:30 sport to run, but you need to be eating the right things, watching what you’re doing to your body,” he says. “And I don’t mean those power gels or jelly bean things – that fad stuff.” Festervand has been known to trick his students, when they think they need an extra boost. But instead of those overpriced gimmicks, “I just lie to them and tell them to eat a little taste of honey. It tricks them into thinking they’ve done something special.” Dehydration and diet are the biggest health issues, he says, as you can burn 1,000 or more calories per practice. “Some coaches have this run-run-run mentality, but you just can’t do that,” he says. “There’s no point in running runners until they puke, or you may as well cut the season in half.” Jared Phillips is his “five-year guy”, but even the best runners make mistakes, he says. Phillips ended up in the hospital thanks to sinus medicine inducing dehydration. “It just sucks it all out of you.” Festervand ran four years at Oakland High School, one of only two high schools in Murfreesboro with a track program at the time, and as a college student, he returned to coach two seasons as a student teacher. In 2006, he rebooted the Blackman Middle School track program, and in 2009, became head cross-country and assistant track coach at Blackman High School after Coach Patton departed for a principal job. “If my mentor could do it across town, then surely I could do it across the street,” says Festervand, referring to Steve Williams, who at one point had coached at both Riverdale High School and Central Middle School.

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

Sports Mom by Kathy Steakley “There was never a child so lovely but his mother was glad to get him to sleep.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson –

M

ichele King hid it well when I first met her. There were no tell-tale dark circles under her eyes, no food stains on her clothes and no fatigue in her voice. In fact, she had energy, an ease of conversation and such an infectious personality that I never guessed the chaos – albeit organized – that is her life. When she casually mentioned having seven children, my jaw dropped. When she continued with the fact that they are twelve and under, I had to sit down. Michele and her husband, Bill King, are parents to sons Billy (12) and Cameron (11), twin daughters Jilian and Rachel (9) and sons Brandon (7), Harrison (6) and Benton (4). Five of their children are currently playing baseball and are on a combined six teams, ranging from Grassland Middle School, competitive rec, travel ball for Music City and GAA Baseball, with Jilian being a key player on a boys’ team. I won’t even mention the basketball schedule. Once upon a time they would stay at every practice & watch every game. That has understandably become impossible. With three or four games a night, their world is now divide and conquer. In addition to week night games, they will be involved in at least one tournament every weekend from now until mid July at parks spread out from Franklin to Spring Hill, Murfreesboro to Crieve Hall and on it goes. The weekend tourneys are unpredictable. There may be a three hour delay, games cancelled, games rescheduled and then the fun starts all over again the next day. To keep the brood busy in the down time between games, the Kings pack whip sticks, scooters,

candy, skateboards but no Band-Aids – she is over Band-Aids. The day we sat to talk at a picnic table behind Grassland Elementary while one of the boys had practice, it felt a little like being at Daytona, with her other children – who are equally as engaging as their mom – whipping all around us. If someone crashed, she would not hover but just have them get back up, keep going and let the scrapes all air out. Michele has several tips that she advises to stay sane. The first is Plan Ahead – at least a month ahead. With her older kids sometimes not starting games until 8:00 or 9:00 at night, it is normal for her to be up until 2:00 in the morning getting things done, uniforms washed, schedules planned. The next suggestion is to Cook Ahead. When the kids get off the bus every afternoon and make their way down the half-mile driveway, dinner is waiting. If they don’t eat then, they are out of luck for the evening. She also advises doing A Little Each Day to get ready for the weekends. She will plan out the exact take along food and money for meals they will need for a weekend tournament, start loading drinks in the freezer early in the week and go ahead and load whatever food she can in a cooler. And finally the last tip from Michele is Stay on Top of the Clothes. She always lays out game clothes the night before, if not days before. Michele is a fan, by the way, of Fels Naptha soap to remove the loads of clay they bring home on their uniforms. On top of all the crazy fun with the kids, Michele is an Independent Consultant for Southern Living at Home. She hosts either day time or evening parties, which are a blast, working around the sports calendar. Even that

takes a lot of planning and organization on her part, and even one little kink can throw off an entire day. Bill’s car is a stick shift, which Michele cannot drive. When she hosts a party she will drive her van to someone’s house and unload the Southern Living pieces she’s presenting. Bill will follow her there in his car, take the van full of kids & drop whoever needs to be dropped at their respective practice or game, then circle back to leave the van for Michele and be on his merry way in his car. Whew! Before children, Michele worked for Nortel from 1988 through 1997, and was extremely successful thanks to her competitiveness and drive. She has no regrets, though, about her choice to be at home with her children and is not looking to change that any time soon. With her youngest two still at home except for pre-school days, it is a challenge to have down time just for herself. Michele laughingly comments, “I potentially have two hours and 15 minutes alone in my house two times a week, but it has not happened yet!” So how did they land here? They just got started playing ball and it kept going. There is a closeness that comes with playing with the same team, friends and parents for a length of time. Mostly, though, they question: if you don’t play sports, what are you going to do? Bill and Michele want their children to stay active, be motivated and not just sit around all day playing video games and watching Sponge Bob. And in this season of their lives what better arena to accomplish those things than the world of team sports. And who knows … maybe Michele will finally find that two hours and 15 minutes of free time some day!

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

17


Dual Duty

Coach James Festervand issues a little last-minute advice, as Phillips enters his final lap in the two-mile race April 2. “I have confidence in him, and he has confidence in me,” says Festervand.

16

Can you take a kid and run him for seven years? That’s the question James Festervand posed to the administrations of both Blackman Middle School and Blackman High School, where he now has the dual role of coaching at both schools. “One year in, I’ll know if I’ll have them for six more years,” he says. He starts his high school practice 20 minutes earlier than the middle school team, to remind the older students that they are the role models for the younger ones. “If you have high school students doing the right things, the middle school students will copy them,” he says. The two age groups can learn in a group, such as how to stretch, and lessons on the whiteboard, but are not allowed to practice together. Festervand says it’s also important to remember how their priorities change over time. - The 6th-7th graders are just starting out, and need help learning how to focus. “They’re all over the place,” he says. “It’s like herding cattle (but in a good way).” You have to teach them a routine. - The 8th graders are typically the “core group” for middle school competition. - By 9th grade, “they’ve matured,” and will continue to grow each year until graduation. “Teenage conversations are different,” says Festervand. “You can maybe relate to them a little more than you can the middle school athletes. There was this one time we went to Alabama for a race, and headed back, the middle school kids were all asleep with their iPods. On the high school trip, we did karaoke, and I wasn’t worried as much about sticking heads/hands out windows. They’re more prepared and have it together.” Above all else, he has one rule: “You can’t be negative in practice; it’s just not allowed. As soon as a negative thought creeps in, you’re done.” Teaching proper health is another key element to raising quality runners long-term. “It’s a 3:30 to 5:30 sport to run, but you need to be eating the right things, watching what you’re doing to your body,” he says. “And I don’t mean those power gels or jelly bean things – that fad stuff.” Festervand has been known to trick his students, when they think they need an extra boost. But instead of those overpriced gimmicks, “I just lie to them and tell them to eat a little taste of honey. It tricks them into thinking they’ve done something special.” Dehydration and diet are the biggest health issues, he says, as you can burn 1,000 or more calories per practice. “Some coaches have this run-run-run mentality, but you just can’t do that,” he says. “There’s no point in running runners until they puke, or you may as well cut the season in half.” Jared Phillips is his “five-year guy”, but even the best runners make mistakes, he says. Phillips ended up in the hospital thanks to sinus medicine inducing dehydration. “It just sucks it all out of you.” Festervand ran four years at Oakland High School, one of only two high schools in Murfreesboro with a track program at the time, and as a college student, he returned to coach two seasons as a student teacher. In 2006, he rebooted the Blackman Middle School track program, and in 2009, became head cross-country and assistant track coach at Blackman High School after Coach Patton departed for a principal job. “If my mentor could do it across town, then surely I could do it across the street,” says Festervand, referring to Steve Williams, who at one point had coached at both Riverdale High School and Central Middle School.

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

Sports Mom by Kathy Steakley “There was never a child so lovely but his mother was glad to get him to sleep.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson –

M

ichele King hid it well when I first met her. There were no tell-tale dark circles under her eyes, no food stains on her clothes and no fatigue in her voice. In fact, she had energy, an ease of conversation and such an infectious personality that I never guessed the chaos – albeit organized – that is her life. When she casually mentioned having seven children, my jaw dropped. When she continued with the fact that they are twelve and under, I had to sit down. Michele and her husband, Bill King, are parents to sons Billy (12) and Cameron (11), twin daughters Jilian and Rachel (9) and sons Brandon (7), Harrison (6) and Benton (4). Five of their children are currently playing baseball and are on a combined six teams, ranging from Grassland Middle School, competitive rec, travel ball for Music City and GAA Baseball, with Jilian being a key player on a boys’ team. I won’t even mention the basketball schedule. Once upon a time they would stay at every practice & watch every game. That has understandably become impossible. With three or four games a night, their world is now divide and conquer. In addition to week night games, they will be involved in at least one tournament every weekend from now until mid July at parks spread out from Franklin to Spring Hill, Murfreesboro to Crieve Hall and on it goes. The weekend tourneys are unpredictable. There may be a three hour delay, games cancelled, games rescheduled and then the fun starts all over again the next day. To keep the brood busy in the down time between games, the Kings pack whip sticks, scooters,

candy, skateboards but no Band-Aids – she is over Band-Aids. The day we sat to talk at a picnic table behind Grassland Elementary while one of the boys had practice, it felt a little like being at Daytona, with her other children – who are equally as engaging as their mom – whipping all around us. If someone crashed, she would not hover but just have them get back up, keep going and let the scrapes all air out. Michele has several tips that she advises to stay sane. The first is Plan Ahead – at least a month ahead. With her older kids sometimes not starting games until 8:00 or 9:00 at night, it is normal for her to be up until 2:00 in the morning getting things done, uniforms washed, schedules planned. The next suggestion is to Cook Ahead. When the kids get off the bus every afternoon and make their way down the half-mile driveway, dinner is waiting. If they don’t eat then, they are out of luck for the evening. She also advises doing A Little Each Day to get ready for the weekends. She will plan out the exact take along food and money for meals they will need for a weekend tournament, start loading drinks in the freezer early in the week and go ahead and load whatever food she can in a cooler. And finally the last tip from Michele is Stay on Top of the Clothes. She always lays out game clothes the night before, if not days before. Michele is a fan, by the way, of Fels Naptha soap to remove the loads of clay they bring home on their uniforms. On top of all the crazy fun with the kids, Michele is an Independent Consultant for Southern Living at Home. She hosts either day time or evening parties, which are a blast, working around the sports calendar. Even that

takes a lot of planning and organization on her part, and even one little kink can throw off an entire day. Bill’s car is a stick shift, which Michele cannot drive. When she hosts a party she will drive her van to someone’s house and unload the Southern Living pieces she’s presenting. Bill will follow her there in his car, take the van full of kids & drop whoever needs to be dropped at their respective practice or game, then circle back to leave the van for Michele and be on his merry way in his car. Whew! Before children, Michele worked for Nortel from 1988 through 1997, and was extremely successful thanks to her competitiveness and drive. She has no regrets, though, about her choice to be at home with her children and is not looking to change that any time soon. With her youngest two still at home except for pre-school days, it is a challenge to have down time just for herself. Michele laughingly comments, “I potentially have two hours and 15 minutes alone in my house two times a week, but it has not happened yet!” So how did they land here? They just got started playing ball and it kept going. There is a closeness that comes with playing with the same team, friends and parents for a length of time. Mostly, though, they question: if you don’t play sports, what are you going to do? Bill and Michele want their children to stay active, be motivated and not just sit around all day playing video games and watching Sponge Bob. And in this season of their lives what better arena to accomplish those things than the world of team sports. And who knows … maybe Michele will finally find that two hours and 15 minutes of free time some day!

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

17


Sharing the Victory Magazine - vsItemDisplay

http://www.sharingthevictory.com/vsPrintPage.lsp?OriginalPageOID=B...

Honestly, though, I don’t know of anything different. I’ve always been a female, and I’ve always been AfricanAmerican, so I’m used to it.

1 of 3

18

STV: You were the first woman to coach a Division I men’s basketball team. Do you think more women could do that? TP: I’ve been asked that question a lot, and I’m going to say no. I think part of being a coach is that you reTeresa L. Phillips is a sports pioneer. A former Vanderbilt basketball player, Phillips spent time as the head women’s “Reprinted from FCA’s Sharing Now I see a bigger picture for myself ally have basketball coach at Fisk University (Tenn.) and Tennessee State University for a number of years before becoming the to firstbe accepted, especially the Victory magazine. and she for took whatover I do myforjob andtime in my on the theTSU college level with recruiting woman to coach a Division I www.sharmen’s basketball team, which at in TSU a short in 2003. Now ingthevictory.com” personal life. athletic director, Phillips .was named one of the 101 Most Influential Minorities in Sports by Sports Illustrated andrelationship-building. Until womand Being an AD can becoming be a tough Tennessee’s second-most influential sportswoman by TheSTV: Tennessean—all this while just one ofen a handful of start being assistant coaches and female athletic directors in the country. By Clay Meyer job with highly scrutinized decisions, being worked into the structure of that controversies and, many times, concoaching staffs and recruiting, they Also noteworthy about Phillips is that she is the mother of two boys and an active volunteer with several community Teresa L. Phillips is a sports piofrontation. How do you handle those organizations, including FCA. just aren’t going to jump to becoming neer. A former Vanderbilt basketball situations? head coaches. This month,Phillips Phillips donated STV At to share what it’s like walk a mile—or, perhaps, drive the player, spenta few timeof her as busy theminutes toTP: every level of toathletic adIt isn’t the X’s and O’s part. It isn’t athletic lane—in her shoes. head administration women’s basketball coach at ministration you will have controverthe handling of personnel. It’s the Fisk University (Tenn.) and Tennessies. You’ll be placed in the middle culture—the institution of coaching. STV: You’ve got quite a list of achievements and awards. What do all of those honors mean to you? see State University for a number of situations where you have to arbiThere is more to it than running a of At years before becoming the first trate, and will TP: the time I received them it was a compliment, and it felt likethere some of thealways work I’d be donetough was being acknowledged. program and coaching a team. You But now, I don’t pay as a much attentionI to awards or recognitions the pastyou because athletics can be such a woman to coach Division men’s decisionsfrom because areI think working have to crawl before you can walk. “What have you done for me lately?” vocation. to people continue to and excel make things happen. Now I see basketball team, which she took overYou have with onwork a variety of and levels. You have to get into the room before a bigger picture for myself and for what I do in my job and in my personal life. at TSU for a short time in 2003. Now In my job, I work with the public, you can sit at the head of the table. the TSU director, Phillips washighly scrutinized the community, thecontroversies alumni, the and, staff,many times, STV: Beingathletic an AD can be a tough job with decisions, Until women are integrated into the named one of thedo101 Influential the coaching staffs and, most imporconfrontation. How youMost handle those situations? system as assistant coaches, I don’t Minorities in Sports by Sports Illustantly, the young people. Not a week think that’s a natural progression. TP: At every of athletic administration you will have controversies. placedaindecision the middle of situations where trated andlevel Tennessee’s second-most goes by that I You’ll don’tbemake you have to arbitrate, and there will always be tough decisions because you are working with people on a variety of levels. influential sportswoman by The Tenthat impacts someone’s future. That STV: A s a mother and a major nessean—all this while becoming just is very and itstaffs can and, alsomost be importantly, In my job, I work with the public, the community, the alumni, thehumbling, staff, the coaching the youngAD, your schedule must university’s people. a week goes by that I athletic don’t make that impacts someone’s future. That is very humbling, and it can one ofNot a handful of female di-a decision very stressful. There are many sleepbe pretty full. What’s your typical day also be very There are many sleepless nights. rectors in stressful. the country. less nights. like? Also noteworthy about Phillips is One of the things I wish I could do One of the things I wish I could do better is lay my burdens on the Lord and just leave them there. That is one TP: of theOh, my goodness. I have two that she is the mother of two boys better layover myallburdens on thelisten Lord biggest challenges I’ve had to face being in my position. But I is pray of my decisions, to everything, the13 and 15. My schedule in sons,make ages anddecision an active several and just leave them there. That is one best I can.volunteer Then I movewith forward.” the morning revolves around getting community organizations, including of the biggest challenges I’ve had to them up and getting them to school. I STV: What is it like to be a female in a stereotypically role? FCA. facemale being in my position. But I pray cook them breakfast every day. I think This month, Phillips donated a few over all of my decisions, listen to eveit’s very TP: I actually think that has changed since I’ve been in this role. There are more women in athletic administration thanimportant for us to sit down of herthink. busy minutes to STV to share rything, make the best decision I can. people and have breakfast together because what it’s like to walk a mile—or, perThen I move forward.” there are a lot of things going on. But theredrive have been awkwardadministration times. Athletics is always more of a man’s world. You know your decisions are going to be haps, the athletic After I drop my kids off at their questioned you’ll be under different levels of scrutiny. my life, so I lane—in and herthat shoes. STV:That’s Whatnotisabnormal. it like toI’ve beencountered a female that allschools, I get to work at about 8:30 don’t view it as a negative but just a part of the challenge I wake up to every day. in a stereotypically male role? a.m. From there, it just depends. STV:though, You’ve got quite a listdifferent. of TP: been I actually Honestly, I don’t know of anything I’ve always a female, think and I’ve that always has been African-American, I could besositting in marketing and achievements and awards. What do changed since I’ve been in this role. promotion meetings or dealing with all of those honors mean to you? There are more women in athletic adbudget issues. I’m also involved with TP: At the time I received them ministration than people think. 4/13/2010 3:24 PM a lot of university events that aren’t it was a compliment, and it felt like But there have been awkward athletically related and sit on comsome of the work I’d done was betimes. Athletics is always more of a mittees that have nothing to do with ing acknowledged. But now, I don’t man’s world. You know your deciathletics. But really, as you can impay as much attention to awards or sions are going to be questioned and agine, everything at the university afrecognitions from the past because I that you’ll be under different levels of fects athletics, and athletic success think athletics can be such a “What scrutiny. That’s not abnormal. I’ve enimpacts the university. A lot of my day have you done for me lately?” vocacountered that all my life, so I don’t is dealing with our 15 sports, head tion. You have to continue to work view it as a negative but just a part of coaches and compliance; dealing and excel and make things happen. the challenge I wake up to every day. with academic matters; and dealing Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

with circumstances and situations that have occurred between coaches and student-athletes, especially if they are problematic situations. It can be a little bit of everything. STV: Is it hard to balance all of that and keep your faith as your top priority? TP: It is hard to balance it all because it really is too much. You can’t do all of those things. I have a very supportive staff here at Tennessee State, and I have a mighty God. No matter what things are thrown on me in a work day, I can pretty much release those, which I wasn’t able to do earlier in my life. But I have been spiritually strengthened to understand how to put everything in its place. That isn’t an easy thing to do, and it has been a challenge. But the challenge has humbled me to know that I can’t do it by myself. That is one of the most important things you learn in your Christian journey: You can’t do things by yourself. No matter how smart, good, strong or tough you are, you need to allow God to work in your life and to experience how much easier life is once you lay your burdens down. STV: That is a great point. God’s strength is made perfect in our weaknesses. Are there any Scripture verses you turn to in tough situations? TP: One verse that I’ve always liked and that has helped me through tough times is Isaiah 12:2 (NASB) – “Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid; for the LORD GOD is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation.”

FCA Connection:

As a basketball player in the late 1970s at Vanderbilt University, Teresa Phillips got her first taste of FCA by attending one of the ministry’s small group Bible studies for athletes. Once she began coaching at Tennessee State, she was reunited with the ministry through FCA’s Lee Brown and his work in the Nashville urban ministry. Currently, Phillips assists the ministry wherever she can, including helping in FCA fundraising efforts. According to Phillips, FCA has made an incredible impact on her Christian walk and has allowed her to witness life changes in many TSU coaches and athletes. “Lee Brown has done great things here in Nashville,” she said. “He is off the chain! He has brought so many of our student-athletes and coaches to Christ. I am so thankful for FCA’s presence on our campus. It has made, and will continue to make, a huge impact.” According to Brown, who came on staff with FCA 11 years ago when Phillips was TSU’s head women’s basketball coach, Phillips has made an impact on the lives of the student-athletes simply by opening doors for the gospel to be shared. “Through Teresa’s influence, FCA has been able to have an awesome impact on the students and coaches at Tennessee State,” he said. “I get to speak to every team on campus every year, and all of the freshmen and transfer students are provided with an FCA Bible. I am grateful that she trusts me to be on that campus.” Phillips also made a lasting impact on the FCA ministry from a different angle when she served on the local board of directors in Nashville. “By serving on the board, she was able to see the ministry from behind the scenes,” Brown said. “I admire the way she is so down to earth, an easy person to approach, kind, has a sense of humor and is very encouraging. She is just a good person and a great lady.”

STV: What is something you tell your children every day? TP: That I love them. I think that is very important. We take for granted reminding people—especially our children—of that. There are a lot of kids in the world who aren’t told that every day, week, month or year, or who have never been told it. But I don’t just tell them; I show them. And that’s just like every person we come in contact with. Through us, they all need to hear and see the love of Christ.

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

19


Sharing the Victory Magazine - vsItemDisplay

http://www.sharingthevictory.com/vsPrintPage.lsp?OriginalPageOID=B...

Honestly, though, I don’t know of anything different. I’ve always been a female, and I’ve always been AfricanAmerican, so I’m used to it.

1 of 3

18

STV: You were the first woman to coach a Division I men’s basketball team. Do you think more women could do that? TP: I’ve been asked that question a lot, and I’m going to say no. I think part of being a coach is that you reTeresa L. Phillips is a sports pioneer. A former Vanderbilt basketball player, Phillips spent time as the head women’s “Reprinted from FCA’s Sharing Now I see a bigger picture for myself ally have basketball coach at Fisk University (Tenn.) and Tennessee State University for a number of years before becoming the to firstbe accepted, especially the Victory magazine. and she for took whatover I do myforjob andtime in my on the theTSU college level with recruiting woman to coach a Division I www.sharmen’s basketball team, which at in TSU a short in 2003. Now ingthevictory.com” personal life. athletic director, Phillips .was named one of the 101 Most Influential Minorities in Sports by Sports Illustrated andrelationship-building. Until womand Being an AD can becoming be a tough Tennessee’s second-most influential sportswoman by TheSTV: Tennessean—all this while just one ofen a handful of start being assistant coaches and female athletic directors in the country. By Clay Meyer job with highly scrutinized decisions, being worked into the structure of that controversies and, many times, concoaching staffs and recruiting, they Also noteworthy about Phillips is that she is the mother of two boys and an active volunteer with several community Teresa L. Phillips is a sports piofrontation. How do you handle those organizations, including FCA. just aren’t going to jump to becoming neer. A former Vanderbilt basketball situations? head coaches. This month,Phillips Phillips donated STV At to share what it’s like walk a mile—or, perhaps, drive the player, spenta few timeof her as busy theminutes toTP: every level of toathletic adIt isn’t the X’s and O’s part. It isn’t athletic lane—in her shoes. head administration women’s basketball coach at ministration you will have controverthe handling of personnel. It’s the Fisk University (Tenn.) and Tennessies. You’ll be placed in the middle culture—the institution of coaching. STV: You’ve got quite a list of achievements and awards. What do all of those honors mean to you? see State University for a number of situations where you have to arbiThere is more to it than running a of At years before becoming the first trate, and will TP: the time I received them it was a compliment, and it felt likethere some of thealways work I’d be donetough was being acknowledged. program and coaching a team. You But now, I don’t pay as a much attentionI to awards or recognitions the pastyou because athletics can be such a woman to coach Division men’s decisionsfrom because areI think working have to crawl before you can walk. “What have you done for me lately?” vocation. to people continue to and excel make things happen. Now I see basketball team, which she took overYou have with onwork a variety of and levels. You have to get into the room before a bigger picture for myself and for what I do in my job and in my personal life. at TSU for a short time in 2003. Now In my job, I work with the public, you can sit at the head of the table. the TSU director, Phillips washighly scrutinized the community, thecontroversies alumni, the and, staff,many times, STV: Beingathletic an AD can be a tough job with decisions, Until women are integrated into the named one of thedo101 Influential the coaching staffs and, most imporconfrontation. How youMost handle those situations? system as assistant coaches, I don’t Minorities in Sports by Sports Illustantly, the young people. Not a week think that’s a natural progression. TP: At every of athletic administration you will have controversies. placedaindecision the middle of situations where trated andlevel Tennessee’s second-most goes by that I You’ll don’tbemake you have to arbitrate, and there will always be tough decisions because you are working with people on a variety of levels. influential sportswoman by The Tenthat impacts someone’s future. That STV: A s a mother and a major nessean—all this while becoming just is very and itstaffs can and, alsomost be importantly, In my job, I work with the public, the community, the alumni, thehumbling, staff, the coaching the youngAD, your schedule must university’s people. a week goes by that I athletic don’t make that impacts someone’s future. That is very humbling, and it can one ofNot a handful of female di-a decision very stressful. There are many sleepbe pretty full. What’s your typical day also be very There are many sleepless nights. rectors in stressful. the country. less nights. like? Also noteworthy about Phillips is One of the things I wish I could do One of the things I wish I could do better is lay my burdens on the Lord and just leave them there. That is one TP: of theOh, my goodness. I have two that she is the mother of two boys better layover myallburdens on thelisten Lord biggest challenges I’ve had to face being in my position. But I is pray of my decisions, to everything, the13 and 15. My schedule in sons,make ages anddecision an active several and just leave them there. That is one best I can.volunteer Then I movewith forward.” the morning revolves around getting community organizations, including of the biggest challenges I’ve had to them up and getting them to school. I STV: What is it like to be a female in a stereotypically role? FCA. facemale being in my position. But I pray cook them breakfast every day. I think This month, Phillips donated a few over all of my decisions, listen to eveit’s very TP: I actually think that has changed since I’ve been in this role. There are more women in athletic administration thanimportant for us to sit down of herthink. busy minutes to STV to share rything, make the best decision I can. people and have breakfast together because what it’s like to walk a mile—or, perThen I move forward.” there are a lot of things going on. But theredrive have been awkwardadministration times. Athletics is always more of a man’s world. You know your decisions are going to be haps, the athletic After I drop my kids off at their questioned you’ll be under different levels of scrutiny. my life, so I lane—in and herthat shoes. STV:That’s Whatnotisabnormal. it like toI’ve beencountered a female that allschools, I get to work at about 8:30 don’t view it as a negative but just a part of the challenge I wake up to every day. in a stereotypically male role? a.m. From there, it just depends. STV:though, You’ve got quite a listdifferent. of TP: been I actually Honestly, I don’t know of anything I’ve always a female, think and I’ve that always has been African-American, I could besositting in marketing and achievements and awards. What do changed since I’ve been in this role. promotion meetings or dealing with all of those honors mean to you? There are more women in athletic adbudget issues. I’m also involved with TP: At the time I received them ministration than people think. 4/13/2010 3:24 PM a lot of university events that aren’t it was a compliment, and it felt like But there have been awkward athletically related and sit on comsome of the work I’d done was betimes. Athletics is always more of a mittees that have nothing to do with ing acknowledged. But now, I don’t man’s world. You know your deciathletics. But really, as you can impay as much attention to awards or sions are going to be questioned and agine, everything at the university afrecognitions from the past because I that you’ll be under different levels of fects athletics, and athletic success think athletics can be such a “What scrutiny. That’s not abnormal. I’ve enimpacts the university. A lot of my day have you done for me lately?” vocacountered that all my life, so I don’t is dealing with our 15 sports, head tion. You have to continue to work view it as a negative but just a part of coaches and compliance; dealing and excel and make things happen. the challenge I wake up to every day. with academic matters; and dealing Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

with circumstances and situations that have occurred between coaches and student-athletes, especially if they are problematic situations. It can be a little bit of everything. STV: Is it hard to balance all of that and keep your faith as your top priority? TP: It is hard to balance it all because it really is too much. You can’t do all of those things. I have a very supportive staff here at Tennessee State, and I have a mighty God. No matter what things are thrown on me in a work day, I can pretty much release those, which I wasn’t able to do earlier in my life. But I have been spiritually strengthened to understand how to put everything in its place. That isn’t an easy thing to do, and it has been a challenge. But the challenge has humbled me to know that I can’t do it by myself. That is one of the most important things you learn in your Christian journey: You can’t do things by yourself. No matter how smart, good, strong or tough you are, you need to allow God to work in your life and to experience how much easier life is once you lay your burdens down. STV: That is a great point. God’s strength is made perfect in our weaknesses. Are there any Scripture verses you turn to in tough situations? TP: One verse that I’ve always liked and that has helped me through tough times is Isaiah 12:2 (NASB) – “Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid; for the LORD GOD is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation.”

FCA Connection:

As a basketball player in the late 1970s at Vanderbilt University, Teresa Phillips got her first taste of FCA by attending one of the ministry’s small group Bible studies for athletes. Once she began coaching at Tennessee State, she was reunited with the ministry through FCA’s Lee Brown and his work in the Nashville urban ministry. Currently, Phillips assists the ministry wherever she can, including helping in FCA fundraising efforts. According to Phillips, FCA has made an incredible impact on her Christian walk and has allowed her to witness life changes in many TSU coaches and athletes. “Lee Brown has done great things here in Nashville,” she said. “He is off the chain! He has brought so many of our student-athletes and coaches to Christ. I am so thankful for FCA’s presence on our campus. It has made, and will continue to make, a huge impact.” According to Brown, who came on staff with FCA 11 years ago when Phillips was TSU’s head women’s basketball coach, Phillips has made an impact on the lives of the student-athletes simply by opening doors for the gospel to be shared. “Through Teresa’s influence, FCA has been able to have an awesome impact on the students and coaches at Tennessee State,” he said. “I get to speak to every team on campus every year, and all of the freshmen and transfer students are provided with an FCA Bible. I am grateful that she trusts me to be on that campus.” Phillips also made a lasting impact on the FCA ministry from a different angle when she served on the local board of directors in Nashville. “By serving on the board, she was able to see the ministry from behind the scenes,” Brown said. “I admire the way she is so down to earth, an easy person to approach, kind, has a sense of humor and is very encouraging. She is just a good person and a great lady.”

STV: What is something you tell your children every day? TP: That I love them. I think that is very important. We take for granted reminding people—especially our children—of that. There are a lot of kids in the world who aren’t told that every day, week, month or year, or who have never been told it. But I don’t just tell them; I show them. And that’s just like every person we come in contact with. Through us, they all need to hear and see the love of Christ.

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

19


We’re Here! “We applaud the efforts of those contributing to this magazine. Our student-athletes deserve to have their stories told.” – Bernard Childress, executive director TSSAA

Those two little words mark the beginning of big changes in the way sports stories are reported in Middle Tennessee By Jim Muir

A

“MTSM will focus on amateur athletes who need to be recognized and raised up as the future leaders of our community. “ – Trigg Wilkes, executive director, A-Game Sportsplex

20

fter months of painstaking planning, marketing, promoting and far more ups than downs the inaugural issue of Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine has hit newsstands. MTSM Publisher Jane Hutson, the driving force behind the new monthly publication, said a new era has been launched in Middle Tennessee sports coverage and emphasized that the MTSM goal is a simple yet powerful one. “Our mission at MTSM is to publish a positive, non-confrontational, non-controversial magazine about high school and college sports in Middle Tennessee,” she said. “We will tell the stories about athletes, coaches, fans, officials, teams, sports writers, and much more. Our purpose is to inspire our readers with positive stories surrounding sports from our own schools and teams.” With a front cover displaying a map of the Middle Tennessee coverage area and two little but powerful words – ‘We’re Here!’ – MTSM will deliver an innovative new concept in sports reporting,

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

according to Hutson. “We have been overwhelmed with the positive responses we have received so far about the magazine,” said Hutson. “People throughout Middle Tennessee have shared with us how excited they are about the publication and website and the story ideas and suggestions are endless! Our contributing writers, photographers and partners have joined together with a common cause to create a new publication and website that we hope you truly enjoy – and on top of that we are having a blast putting it together for you!” MTSM is a free publication and will be distributed at all YMCAs and various fitness centers throughout Middle Tennessee, A-Game Sportsplex, in Franklin, Dick’s Sporting Goods and hundreds of other locations in Davidson, Williamson, Rutherford, Maury, Wilson, Cheatham, Robertson, Sumner, Montgomery, and Dickson counties. Additionally, complimentary issues of Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine will be sent directly to 75 high schools and seven area colleges that include Vanderbilt, Trevecca, Middle Tennessee State, Lipscomb, Belmont, Tennessee State and Austin Peay. A native of Southern Illinois Hutson was a basketball standout at Benton High School before taking her athletic skills to Western Kentucky where she played four years for the Lady Hilltoppers. Hutson, her husband John and daughters Madelyn and Kathryn, live in Brentwood. After more than two decades in the wireless communication business

Hutson tackled a career where she said “I hope to make a difference in people’s lives.” Noticing a lack of positive feature stories about athletes from throughout the region Hutson said she opted for change rather than complaints. “I believe MTSM will fill a void by telling great high school and college sports ‘stories behind the stories’ happening right here in Middle Tennessee,” Hutson said. “There are great stories walking the halls of our schools right now that aren’t being told. We plan to change that.” According to Hutson each issue of MTSM will feature a monthly “MTSM Standout” athletes of the month and during the calendar year will also highlight sports that are oftentimes overlooked by the news media. MTSM will also have monthly columns on sports activities at Vanderbilt, Trevecca, Lipscomb, Middle Tennessee State, Belmont, Tennessee State and Austin Peay. MTSM will also have a monthly contribution from a variety of columnists/sports enthusiasts that include Kathy Steakley’s “Sports’ Mom Spotlight” – a look at the sometimes hectic and oftentimes wacky world of raising young children that are involved in multiple sports. Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine will also feature a monthly column by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes entitled “Faith on the Field” and another recurring monthly column called “Shut up and Serve” written by well-known sports figure Dave Derocher. While Hutson is quick to point

out the gap that MTSM will bridge in covering sports in Middle Tennessee an impressive group of well-known sports figures are lining up to tout the mission of the new monthly magazine. Bernard Childress, a 1973 graduate of Columbia Central High School where he was an all-state basketball player and a 1978 graduate of Belmont where he led the conference in scoring back-to-back years, said he’s excited about what MTSM has set out to accomplish. Childress, who currently serves as executive director for Tennessee Secondary Schools Athletic Association (TSSAA), said many of the greatest athletic stories are going untold. “There are so many positive and inspirational stories surrounding the coaches and student-athletes that participate in our programs,” said Childress. “As a matter of fact 98 percent of the things we are involved in are very positive. Unfortunately, we only hear about the other two percent.” Childress said MTSM’s mission is to showcase the great stories that many times only those who coach and oversee high school sports hear about. “Now the entire state will be able to share and read about some very courageous young athletes,” said Childress. “Many of them stare adversity in the face and rise above it. They enhance their education through participation in athletics and go on to become successful citizens in life. We applaud the efforts of those contributing to this magazine. Our student-athletes de-

“I think the positive and powerful value of having a magazine like MTSM is that it represents what is great and valuable about high school sports in this area.” – Rudy Kalis, sports anchor, WSMV-TV

“There are great stories walking the halls of our schools right now that aren’t being told. We plan to change that.” – Jane Hutson, MTSM publisher –

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

21


We’re Here! “We applaud the efforts of those contributing to this magazine. Our student-athletes deserve to have their stories told.” – Bernard Childress, executive director TSSAA

Those two little words mark the beginning of big changes in the way sports stories are reported in Middle Tennessee By Jim Muir

A

“MTSM will focus on amateur athletes who need to be recognized and raised up as the future leaders of our community. “ – Trigg Wilkes, executive director, A-Game Sportsplex

20

fter months of painstaking planning, marketing, promoting and far more ups than downs the inaugural issue of Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine has hit newsstands. MTSM Publisher Jane Hutson, the driving force behind the new monthly publication, said a new era has been launched in Middle Tennessee sports coverage and emphasized that the MTSM goal is a simple yet powerful one. “Our mission at MTSM is to publish a positive, non-confrontational, non-controversial magazine about high school and college sports in Middle Tennessee,” she said. “We will tell the stories about athletes, coaches, fans, officials, teams, sports writers, and much more. Our purpose is to inspire our readers with positive stories surrounding sports from our own schools and teams.” With a front cover displaying a map of the Middle Tennessee coverage area and two little but powerful words – ‘We’re Here!’ – MTSM will deliver an innovative new concept in sports reporting,

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

according to Hutson. “We have been overwhelmed with the positive responses we have received so far about the magazine,” said Hutson. “People throughout Middle Tennessee have shared with us how excited they are about the publication and website and the story ideas and suggestions are endless! Our contributing writers, photographers and partners have joined together with a common cause to create a new publication and website that we hope you truly enjoy – and on top of that we are having a blast putting it together for you!” MTSM is a free publication and will be distributed at all YMCAs and various fitness centers throughout Middle Tennessee, A-Game Sportsplex, in Franklin, Dick’s Sporting Goods and hundreds of other locations in Davidson, Williamson, Rutherford, Maury, Wilson, Cheatham, Robertson, Sumner, Montgomery, and Dickson counties. Additionally, complimentary issues of Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine will be sent directly to 75 high schools and seven area colleges that include Vanderbilt, Trevecca, Middle Tennessee State, Lipscomb, Belmont, Tennessee State and Austin Peay. A native of Southern Illinois Hutson was a basketball standout at Benton High School before taking her athletic skills to Western Kentucky where she played four years for the Lady Hilltoppers. Hutson, her husband John and daughters Madelyn and Kathryn, live in Brentwood. After more than two decades in the wireless communication business

Hutson tackled a career where she said “I hope to make a difference in people’s lives.” Noticing a lack of positive feature stories about athletes from throughout the region Hutson said she opted for change rather than complaints. “I believe MTSM will fill a void by telling great high school and college sports ‘stories behind the stories’ happening right here in Middle Tennessee,” Hutson said. “There are great stories walking the halls of our schools right now that aren’t being told. We plan to change that.” According to Hutson each issue of MTSM will feature a monthly “MTSM Standout” athletes of the month and during the calendar year will also highlight sports that are oftentimes overlooked by the news media. MTSM will also have monthly columns on sports activities at Vanderbilt, Trevecca, Lipscomb, Middle Tennessee State, Belmont, Tennessee State and Austin Peay. MTSM will also have a monthly contribution from a variety of columnists/sports enthusiasts that include Kathy Steakley’s “Sports’ Mom Spotlight” – a look at the sometimes hectic and oftentimes wacky world of raising young children that are involved in multiple sports. Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine will also feature a monthly column by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes entitled “Faith on the Field” and another recurring monthly column called “Shut up and Serve” written by well-known sports figure Dave Derocher. While Hutson is quick to point

out the gap that MTSM will bridge in covering sports in Middle Tennessee an impressive group of well-known sports figures are lining up to tout the mission of the new monthly magazine. Bernard Childress, a 1973 graduate of Columbia Central High School where he was an all-state basketball player and a 1978 graduate of Belmont where he led the conference in scoring back-to-back years, said he’s excited about what MTSM has set out to accomplish. Childress, who currently serves as executive director for Tennessee Secondary Schools Athletic Association (TSSAA), said many of the greatest athletic stories are going untold. “There are so many positive and inspirational stories surrounding the coaches and student-athletes that participate in our programs,” said Childress. “As a matter of fact 98 percent of the things we are involved in are very positive. Unfortunately, we only hear about the other two percent.” Childress said MTSM’s mission is to showcase the great stories that many times only those who coach and oversee high school sports hear about. “Now the entire state will be able to share and read about some very courageous young athletes,” said Childress. “Many of them stare adversity in the face and rise above it. They enhance their education through participation in athletics and go on to become successful citizens in life. We applaud the efforts of those contributing to this magazine. Our student-athletes de-

“I think the positive and powerful value of having a magazine like MTSM is that it represents what is great and valuable about high school sports in this area.” – Rudy Kalis, sports anchor, WSMV-TV

“There are great stories walking the halls of our schools right now that aren’t being told. We plan to change that.” – Jane Hutson, MTSM publisher –

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

21


serve to have their stories told.” Sure to be a hit with readers each month will be a column written by Nashville sports’ icon Rudy Kalis, sports anchor at WSMV-TV. Kalis has crossed paths during his long and exciting career as one of the nation’s premiere sports newscasters with some of the greatest names in sports history including Muhammad Ali, Michael Jordan, Jack Nicklaus, Wayne Gretzky, Wilma Rudolph, and Darrell Waltrip. Kalis said MTSM will fill a void in Middle Tennessee. “I think the positive and powerful value of having a magazine like MTSM is that it represents what is great and valuable about high school sports in this area,” Kalis said. “The stories about the coaches and athletes who want more than anything to use sports as a teaching tool for character and determination to never give up are much-needed. Plus the

22

touching and sometimes humorous stories that make us smile and feel better about life.” Hutson said MTSM will also feature a high-quality website that will compliment the print version. “That’s one of the most exciting aspects of our strategy – the launch of our website (midtnsportsmag.com) which will quickly follow the launch of the magazine,” Hutson said. “Our website will have more stories, more information and pictures on the published stories, columns and articles in the monthly publication and will archive the monthly issues in easy to find formats.” Trigg Wilkes, a fixture in Middle Tennessee sports for more than three decades, currently serves as executive director of AGame Sportsplex in Brentwood. Wilkes played basketball at Belmont University in the last 1970s and early 1980s when, as he

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

describes it, “the rivalry between Belmont, Lipscomb and Trevecca was second to none.” Wilkes has served as a certified basketball official with TSSAA for more than 20 years. Wilkes said MTSM will provide coverage of an area long overlooked. “From a media standpoint, Middle Tennessee has become a professional sports region,” Wilkes said. “MTSM will focus on amateur athletes who need to be recognized and raised up as the future leaders of our community. These young student athletes deserve to be recognized as leaders within their peers groups for their accomplishment on and off the field. MTSM is well positioned to be a game-changer for our kids, our schools and our community.”

What’s up Middle Tennessee? Dave and Mandy Derocher

M

y name is Dave Derocher AKA Davey D and I want to tell you a little story. I am going way back to 1992 to a whole other world, the University of Southern Cal. Yes Trojan Fans, it’s the same place that has launched superstars like Reggie Bush, Matt Leinert, Carson Palmer and the list goes on. (Sidenote: My best friend tells me that if USC were its own country, it would rank 20th in Olympic Medals.) The tradition at SC is sick and somehow I was part of it all. I will never forget being one of the players of the 1990 National Championship volleyball team. Besides getting a sweet championship ring and being on national television we had the honor of standing in the Coliseum during halftime to be honored by 80,000 screaming cardinal and gold Trojan fans. Do I seem a bit nostalgic? I can’t help it because it was one of the highlights of my life. During my junior year, after a disappointing season filled with injuries, I saw that my volleyball career was more fragile than an egg dropped out of the fridge. I lost my starting spot and found myself on the dreaded bench watching my little career fade away. The great basketball coach

John Wooden once mentioned ‘the bench was one of the greatest teachers in the world.’ In my case, ‘the bench’ helped lead me to God. I began praying a lot and asking God for a better way to live. Soon I started seeing my life more through the eyes of my Heavenly Father and I received His gift of Jesus Christ into my life. Soon after my new life, I started attending bible studies on campus. I was learning all about the bible from a really cool minister who played hoops at Loyola Marymount University. I loved his stories and totally jibed with him. One night I finished practice and wore a shirt that said “SHUT UP AND SERVE” across the front. A Latino grad student came up to me and said “Man that’s what we need; people just need to shut up and serve Jesus.” I laughed real hard and told him it was a volleyball shirt I received from a beach sponsor.

Eighteen years later I still remember that moment. Since then, I have been doing everything I can to help people learn to ‘SHUT UP’ all the excuses, fears, and doubts, so they can learn how to ‘SERVE’ the most wonderful person that ever walked this earth. As a minister for 16 years, I have seen God touch thousands of lives all over the world. I pray that you would join my sweet family on our journey as we learn how to “Shut Up and Serve” together. It would be an honor to travel this road with you. To God be the glory.

ASK THE TRAINER

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

23


serve to have their stories told.” Sure to be a hit with readers each month will be a column written by Nashville sports’ icon Rudy Kalis, sports anchor at WSMV-TV. Kalis has crossed paths during his long and exciting career as one of the nation’s premiere sports newscasters with some of the greatest names in sports history including Muhammad Ali, Michael Jordan, Jack Nicklaus, Wayne Gretzky, Wilma Rudolph, and Darrell Waltrip. Kalis said MTSM will fill a void in Middle Tennessee. “I think the positive and powerful value of having a magazine like MTSM is that it represents what is great and valuable about high school sports in this area,” Kalis said. “The stories about the coaches and athletes who want more than anything to use sports as a teaching tool for character and determination to never give up are much-needed. Plus the

22

touching and sometimes humorous stories that make us smile and feel better about life.” Hutson said MTSM will also feature a high-quality website that will compliment the print version. “That’s one of the most exciting aspects of our strategy – the launch of our website (midtnsportsmag.com) which will quickly follow the launch of the magazine,” Hutson said. “Our website will have more stories, more information and pictures on the published stories, columns and articles in the monthly publication and will archive the monthly issues in easy to find formats.” Trigg Wilkes, a fixture in Middle Tennessee sports for more than three decades, currently serves as executive director of AGame Sportsplex in Brentwood. Wilkes played basketball at Belmont University in the last 1970s and early 1980s when, as he

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

describes it, “the rivalry between Belmont, Lipscomb and Trevecca was second to none.” Wilkes has served as a certified basketball official with TSSAA for more than 20 years. Wilkes said MTSM will provide coverage of an area long overlooked. “From a media standpoint, Middle Tennessee has become a professional sports region,” Wilkes said. “MTSM will focus on amateur athletes who need to be recognized and raised up as the future leaders of our community. These young student athletes deserve to be recognized as leaders within their peers groups for their accomplishment on and off the field. MTSM is well positioned to be a game-changer for our kids, our schools and our community.”

What’s up Middle Tennessee? Dave and Mandy Derocher

M

y name is Dave Derocher AKA Davey D and I want to tell you a little story. I am going way back to 1992 to a whole other world, the University of Southern Cal. Yes Trojan Fans, it’s the same place that has launched superstars like Reggie Bush, Matt Leinert, Carson Palmer and the list goes on. (Sidenote: My best friend tells me that if USC were its own country, it would rank 20th in Olympic Medals.) The tradition at SC is sick and somehow I was part of it all. I will never forget being one of the players of the 1990 National Championship volleyball team. Besides getting a sweet championship ring and being on national television we had the honor of standing in the Coliseum during halftime to be honored by 80,000 screaming cardinal and gold Trojan fans. Do I seem a bit nostalgic? I can’t help it because it was one of the highlights of my life. During my junior year, after a disappointing season filled with injuries, I saw that my volleyball career was more fragile than an egg dropped out of the fridge. I lost my starting spot and found myself on the dreaded bench watching my little career fade away. The great basketball coach

John Wooden once mentioned ‘the bench was one of the greatest teachers in the world.’ In my case, ‘the bench’ helped lead me to God. I began praying a lot and asking God for a better way to live. Soon I started seeing my life more through the eyes of my Heavenly Father and I received His gift of Jesus Christ into my life. Soon after my new life, I started attending bible studies on campus. I was learning all about the bible from a really cool minister who played hoops at Loyola Marymount University. I loved his stories and totally jibed with him. One night I finished practice and wore a shirt that said “SHUT UP AND SERVE” across the front. A Latino grad student came up to me and said “Man that’s what we need; people just need to shut up and serve Jesus.” I laughed real hard and told him it was a volleyball shirt I received from a beach sponsor.

Eighteen years later I still remember that moment. Since then, I have been doing everything I can to help people learn to ‘SHUT UP’ all the excuses, fears, and doubts, so they can learn how to ‘SERVE’ the most wonderful person that ever walked this earth. As a minister for 16 years, I have seen God touch thousands of lives all over the world. I pray that you would join my sweet family on our journey as we learn how to “Shut Up and Serve” together. It would be an honor to travel this road with you. To God be the glory.

ASK THE TRAINER

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

23


Riverdale Lady Warrior Southern Classic Lawrence County is the 2010 winner of the prestigious Riverdale Lady Warrior Southern Classic – a three-day event that featured 43 teams playing in front of huge crowds at 10 different locations. It’s been said ‘that a picture is worth a thousand words’ and Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine photojournalist Kevin Pieper proved that old adage is correct as he captured through his lens the excitement and determined play of the annual event.

ons Ash Lady Falc , left, an ton Tywm Pressn ly u a C and wly miss o rr a n ll ne ld collian outfie eir April sion in th coln Lin 2 game. t dged ou e County n a ti hris Trinity C ady yL m e d a Ac , issuing -1 Lions 2 loss in their only ent. am the tourn Lions y The Lad place, d ir took th . .7% score with a 85

Warrior M eg riors defe an Kelley beats o ated the Brock, T ut Lady Eagle Ry game. exas Lad lee Whit e. The R y Eagles iverdale 9-0, in th Wareir April 2 tourna ment

Brock outfielder Morgan Bailey snags an out with the narrowest of margins, just able to hold onto the ball with the tip of her glove.

The Beech dugout makes some noise for their batter and baserunners. Riverdale’s Taylor Lee evades second baseman Sarah Roberts in a failed run-down attempt by the Brock Lady Eagles.

Buccaneer Alex Banks pitched a shutout, allowing only three hits in five innings. Beech defeated the Brock, Texas Lady Eagles 9-0.

24

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

25


Riverdale Lady Warrior Southern Classic Lawrence County is the 2010 winner of the prestigious Riverdale Lady Warrior Southern Classic – a three-day event that featured 43 teams playing in front of huge crowds at 10 different locations. It’s been said ‘that a picture is worth a thousand words’ and Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine photojournalist Kevin Pieper proved that old adage is correct as he captured through his lens the excitement and determined play of the annual event.

ons Ash Lady Falc , left, an ton Tywm Pressn ly u a C and wly miss o rr a n ll ne ld collian outfie eir April sion in th coln Lin 2 game. t dged ou e County n a ti hris Trinity C ady yL m e d a Ac , issuing -1 Lions 2 loss in their only ent. am the tourn Lions y The Lad place, d ir took th . .7% score with a 85

Warrior M eg riors defe an Kelley beats o ated the Brock, T ut Lady Eagle Ry game. exas Lad lee Whit e. The R y Eagles iverdale 9-0, in th Wareir April 2 tourna ment

Brock outfielder Morgan Bailey snags an out with the narrowest of margins, just able to hold onto the ball with the tip of her glove.

The Beech dugout makes some noise for their batter and baserunners. Riverdale’s Taylor Lee evades second baseman Sarah Roberts in a failed run-down attempt by the Brock Lady Eagles.

Buccaneer Alex Banks pitched a shutout, allowing only three hits in five innings. Beech defeated the Brock, Texas Lady Eagles 9-0.

24

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

25


ASK THE AD

Lipscomb University

MTSM Points to Ponder By Roger Lipe

I

n Phillip Hutc heso

t’s a great time to be a Bison! That’s a line you’ll hear a lot around Lipscomb University Athletics this year because with each passing month there has been more and more to celebrate. Our ‘celebration’ list includes Atlantic Sun Conference Championship winners in men’s basketball, women’s volleyball and individually in indoor and outdoor track. Conference athlete-of-theyear awards in multiple sports and 30-year old school records being broken in track and crosscountry. And the list goes on with an NCAA Division I Top-25 ranking in softball, the grand opening of a state-of-the-art tennis facility that reaches three stories into the sky and the awarding of the rights to host the A-Sun Baseball Championships in 2010 and 2011. And with a month and a half to go in this academic year, there is still time to add even another chapter or two to what is already a great story. While we are proud of our teams the mission of Lipscomb Athletics extends far beyond the constraints of competition. Luke 2:52 says, “And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.”

26

We readily admit that we have never and will never reach that level of perfection, but we do think that one sentence holds a great set of guideposts in helping to measure the progress we are making. …”in wisdom” – There’s a reason the word “student” comes before “athlete” at Lipscomb. We understand, as the NCAA slogan goes, “most of our studentathletes will ‘go pro’ in something other than athletics.” Our programs collectively are in the top ranks of the A-Sun All-Academic race, and we work to consistently turn out student-athletes that will excel in the classroom, boardroom, operating room, courtroom and many other fields in their professional lives after their Lipscomb days have ended. …”in stature” – In the 10-short years since Lipscomb University decided to make the move to NCAA Division I athletics, we have won championships, broken records and achieved heights that many other schools years farther down the Division I road have yet to reach. We have positioned ourselves to compete at the highest level that collegiate athletics has to offer, and as each year passes, Lipscomb continues to make a broader and bolder mark on the highly-competitive NCAA Division I landscape. …”in favor with God and men” – More than the competition, even more than the classroom, our mission is to encourage our student-athletes to grow in service for the communities in which they find themselves

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

and to grow closer to the Lord in their Christian walk. Whether it’s through a trip to teach tennis in Haiti, taking meals to and building houses for the homeless in Nashville, running with elementary school children during their after-school fitness programs, helping to rehab a former crackhouse turned community center or participating in student-led Bible studies and service opportunities, Lipscomb Athletics desires to graduate student-athletes every year that will take the lessons learned from the classroom and competition and, in Christian love, will look to instill them in whichever community they might find themselves. Continuing to grow in the classroom, in competition, in the community and in our Christian walk – many schools may work to shine in one of these areas and some may achieve in two. Few still excel in three. But at Lipscomb, it’s our desire as a department for continual improvement in all four areas that makes Lipscomb Athletics different than almost any other program around. For those of you who have stood with us throughout the years in this mission – our sincerest “thank you.” And to those of you who might be new to Lipscomb, but who also embrace this mission of all intercollegiate athletics can be we invite you to join us in encouraging our student-athletes to “grow in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.”

Character Tests Sport provides character tests with each competition, practice session, team meeting, training room appointment and recovery period. We are tested throughout the process by success, failure, frustration, fatigue, disillusionment, pain, indulgence, pride and more. Success tests our character as we learn how to handle praise and an inordinate sense of our importance. It checks our heart for how we deal with privilege and media hype. Will we be humble and deflect praise toward our teammates, coaches and our God, or will we become unapproachable, proud and arrogant? Failure tests our character in other ways. It probes our hearts’ darker recesses regarding frustration, anguish, feelings of inadequacy, bitterness and envy. Will we separate ourselves from teammates, friends and family to stew in our self-pity or will we press through the pain and maintain the healthy, healing relationships which help restore our broken spirits? Sport will test your character every day. Play your heart out and you’ll pass the test with a high mark and no regrets, win or lose.

Why is Winning so Important? I recently watched a Division I Women’s Basketball game from the visiting team’s bench in the gym of their strongest conference rival. This game and the brief moments after the game were a vivid reminder of why winning is so important. This season had been one of great frustration, loss and division for our team. We entered the game near the bottom of the conference and the team we were to play was tied for first in the conference. (They eventually won the regular season and post-season conference tournament championships.) The whole game was an

uphill battle, but our team had a short lead at halftime. In the second half we played very well and one could feel the momentum growing as three players made big shots and defensive plays. This swing of momentum put down all the feelings of frustration, division, jealousy, bitterness and more as the whole team was focused on the win which was within their grasp. The team was unified, at least for the final twenty minutes of the game and we won a huge road victory. As the players ran from the floor with smiling faces, excited voices and victorious gestures, one would never know the true nature of the team’s past three months. In the locker room, the celebration continued with the coaching staff congratulating players, affirming the way they played and smiling at their achievement. A couple of players commented in the hall shortly thereafter about how much fun the game is when we win. This is why winning is so important. When we win, the selfish nature of people is more easily kept in check and it’s much easier to selflessly seek the best for our team and for each teammate. When we lose, it’s infinitely easier to selfprotect, to shift blame and to “look out for number one.” It requires much more self-control to love our teammates and coaches when we’re struggling to succeed. Play your heart out. Pursue wins strongly, because when you win the game pays you back for all the hours of hard work, the miles of running and the years of training you’ve invested. You experience the best of sport when you strongly compete for victory.

Valuable lesson: “After switching from coaching college men’s golf to college women’s golf, I learned an important lesson. Men are happy when they win. Women win when they’re happy.” –Greg Allen, head women’s golf coach at Vanderbilt www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

27


ASK THE AD

Lipscomb University

MTSM Points to Ponder By Roger Lipe

I

n Phillip Hutc heso

t’s a great time to be a Bison! That’s a line you’ll hear a lot around Lipscomb University Athletics this year because with each passing month there has been more and more to celebrate. Our ‘celebration’ list includes Atlantic Sun Conference Championship winners in men’s basketball, women’s volleyball and individually in indoor and outdoor track. Conference athlete-of-theyear awards in multiple sports and 30-year old school records being broken in track and crosscountry. And the list goes on with an NCAA Division I Top-25 ranking in softball, the grand opening of a state-of-the-art tennis facility that reaches three stories into the sky and the awarding of the rights to host the A-Sun Baseball Championships in 2010 and 2011. And with a month and a half to go in this academic year, there is still time to add even another chapter or two to what is already a great story. While we are proud of our teams the mission of Lipscomb Athletics extends far beyond the constraints of competition. Luke 2:52 says, “And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.”

26

We readily admit that we have never and will never reach that level of perfection, but we do think that one sentence holds a great set of guideposts in helping to measure the progress we are making. …”in wisdom” – There’s a reason the word “student” comes before “athlete” at Lipscomb. We understand, as the NCAA slogan goes, “most of our studentathletes will ‘go pro’ in something other than athletics.” Our programs collectively are in the top ranks of the A-Sun All-Academic race, and we work to consistently turn out student-athletes that will excel in the classroom, boardroom, operating room, courtroom and many other fields in their professional lives after their Lipscomb days have ended. …”in stature” – In the 10-short years since Lipscomb University decided to make the move to NCAA Division I athletics, we have won championships, broken records and achieved heights that many other schools years farther down the Division I road have yet to reach. We have positioned ourselves to compete at the highest level that collegiate athletics has to offer, and as each year passes, Lipscomb continues to make a broader and bolder mark on the highly-competitive NCAA Division I landscape. …”in favor with God and men” – More than the competition, even more than the classroom, our mission is to encourage our student-athletes to grow in service for the communities in which they find themselves

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

and to grow closer to the Lord in their Christian walk. Whether it’s through a trip to teach tennis in Haiti, taking meals to and building houses for the homeless in Nashville, running with elementary school children during their after-school fitness programs, helping to rehab a former crackhouse turned community center or participating in student-led Bible studies and service opportunities, Lipscomb Athletics desires to graduate student-athletes every year that will take the lessons learned from the classroom and competition and, in Christian love, will look to instill them in whichever community they might find themselves. Continuing to grow in the classroom, in competition, in the community and in our Christian walk – many schools may work to shine in one of these areas and some may achieve in two. Few still excel in three. But at Lipscomb, it’s our desire as a department for continual improvement in all four areas that makes Lipscomb Athletics different than almost any other program around. For those of you who have stood with us throughout the years in this mission – our sincerest “thank you.” And to those of you who might be new to Lipscomb, but who also embrace this mission of all intercollegiate athletics can be we invite you to join us in encouraging our student-athletes to “grow in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.”

Character Tests Sport provides character tests with each competition, practice session, team meeting, training room appointment and recovery period. We are tested throughout the process by success, failure, frustration, fatigue, disillusionment, pain, indulgence, pride and more. Success tests our character as we learn how to handle praise and an inordinate sense of our importance. It checks our heart for how we deal with privilege and media hype. Will we be humble and deflect praise toward our teammates, coaches and our God, or will we become unapproachable, proud and arrogant? Failure tests our character in other ways. It probes our hearts’ darker recesses regarding frustration, anguish, feelings of inadequacy, bitterness and envy. Will we separate ourselves from teammates, friends and family to stew in our self-pity or will we press through the pain and maintain the healthy, healing relationships which help restore our broken spirits? Sport will test your character every day. Play your heart out and you’ll pass the test with a high mark and no regrets, win or lose.

Why is Winning so Important? I recently watched a Division I Women’s Basketball game from the visiting team’s bench in the gym of their strongest conference rival. This game and the brief moments after the game were a vivid reminder of why winning is so important. This season had been one of great frustration, loss and division for our team. We entered the game near the bottom of the conference and the team we were to play was tied for first in the conference. (They eventually won the regular season and post-season conference tournament championships.) The whole game was an

uphill battle, but our team had a short lead at halftime. In the second half we played very well and one could feel the momentum growing as three players made big shots and defensive plays. This swing of momentum put down all the feelings of frustration, division, jealousy, bitterness and more as the whole team was focused on the win which was within their grasp. The team was unified, at least for the final twenty minutes of the game and we won a huge road victory. As the players ran from the floor with smiling faces, excited voices and victorious gestures, one would never know the true nature of the team’s past three months. In the locker room, the celebration continued with the coaching staff congratulating players, affirming the way they played and smiling at their achievement. A couple of players commented in the hall shortly thereafter about how much fun the game is when we win. This is why winning is so important. When we win, the selfish nature of people is more easily kept in check and it’s much easier to selflessly seek the best for our team and for each teammate. When we lose, it’s infinitely easier to selfprotect, to shift blame and to “look out for number one.” It requires much more self-control to love our teammates and coaches when we’re struggling to succeed. Play your heart out. Pursue wins strongly, because when you win the game pays you back for all the hours of hard work, the miles of running and the years of training you’ve invested. You experience the best of sport when you strongly compete for victory.

Valuable lesson: “After switching from coaching college men’s golf to college women’s golf, I learned an important lesson. Men are happy when they win. Women win when they’re happy.” –Greg Allen, head women’s golf coach at Vanderbilt www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

27


Dynasty The Goodlettsville Dixie Youth Baseball League has been churning out championship-caliber teams and top-notch players for more than four decades and 2010 is no exception By Autumn Boaz

F

or most athletes, winning a World Series comes at the peak of a long-time career, and sometimes – it never comes at all. But for the kids of one 2004 Goodlettsville Dixie Youth baseball team, the usual progressive timeline wasn’t in the blueprint. With little bodies and big hearts, the 11 and 12-year old team snagged the first Dixie Youth championship in the state of Ten-

28

nessee in more than 20 years. After claiming the title in a 12-state tournament, the Tennessee team participated in a

My philosophy is that you can have fun and still win. I want people to leave the park and say ‘we had a good team, he was a good coach and we had a lot of fun.’ I think most of the time they do.

Dennis Birdwell, associated with Goodlettsville baseball for 39 years –

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

travel league tournament where they were ranked No. 1 in a 17,000-player competition. The team was part of a league that has only continued to grow since 2004. “It’s easy to find a good travel program, but finding a good recreation league to play in for $120 a student; that’s just a nice program. ... This has pretty well become the dominant program in Tennessee,” long-time program participant and supporter Mitch Warren said. The league, which was established in 1958, is divided into eight competitive districts that stretch across the state. Most Nashville neighborhoods, including Goodlettsville, are categorized within District 4. Districts are then broken down into age groups, which encompass a 9-year age range, beginning with five year olds and closing with league-ending 14 year olds. Tennessee’s Dixie Youth baseball organization is home to teams from more than 70 cities and counties total. The program encompasses 13 Southern states and includes teams from Louisiana, Texas, Florida and Virginia, among others. Goodlettsville league president John Robertson said his league, like many others within the organization, is a family – even when there’s no relation. “I’ve got about seven coaches that are coaching that don’t have any kids or grandkids,” Robertson said. “You can’t beat guys

like that.” The family theme is one that seems to carry throughout the league, with second and third generation players regularly taking the field at Goodlettsville’s Moss Right Park. Dennis Birdwell, who has been associated with the Goodlettsville league for 39 years, said the baseball field is where life has led him to some of his greatest gifts. “The most rewarding thing for me is all the people I’ve met and the kids I’ve met as players that I see everyday,” Birdwell said. “There’s so many of them – thousands. ... “Sometimes I see guys that I’ve coached that have kids and grandkids now, and they still call me Coach or Mr. Birdwell. It brings tears to my eyes to think about it.” Birdwell became part of the Dixie organization as an 18-yearold who was helping a friend out by agreeing to help coach a team. “We didn’t have a very good year,” Birdwell said. “He quit in the middle of the season. I took over from there.” The coaching position proved to be the spark for a lifelong passion for Birdwell. Now, almost 40 years later, Birdwell serves as the chief umpire for the Goodlettsville

league. At the end of his coaching career, however, he had accumulated 1,230 wins. In the early 1990s, Birdwell coached an upper-level team that accounted for six consecutive state tournament championships. “Out of that bunch, there are at least 20 guys that went on to play college ball.” Birdwell’s resume also boasts seven more state championships and 12 World Series appearances, including two second-place finishes. Throughout his career, he’s coached every age group, and has watched the talent-loaded league produce three majorleague players, at least 10 minor-

Dejuan Buford

246 Wilson Pike Circle, Suite C Brentwood, TN 37027-2745 Phone: (615) 371-1234 www.dejuanbuford.com

I’ve got about seven coaches that are coaching that don’t have any kids or grandkids playing.You can’t beat guys like that.

Goodlettsville league president John Robertson–

league players and countless college-bound athletes. At the end of this season, league members are hopeful of two or three major league draft possibilities. Warren’s son, Wes Warren, who started playing in the league at age five, is slated to play baseball at Murray State (Division I) next season. With veteran coaches who

Celeste Middleton

803 N. Thompson Ln, Ste B102 Murfreesboro, TN 37129 Phone: 615-895-2700 www.celestemiddleton.com

Mitch Warren

1191 W. Main St. Hendersonville, TN 37075 615-822-FARM (3276) www.mitchwarren.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

29


Dynasty The Goodlettsville Dixie Youth Baseball League has been churning out championship-caliber teams and top-notch players for more than four decades and 2010 is no exception By Autumn Boaz

F

or most athletes, winning a World Series comes at the peak of a long-time career, and sometimes – it never comes at all. But for the kids of one 2004 Goodlettsville Dixie Youth baseball team, the usual progressive timeline wasn’t in the blueprint. With little bodies and big hearts, the 11 and 12-year old team snagged the first Dixie Youth championship in the state of Ten-

28

nessee in more than 20 years. After claiming the title in a 12-state tournament, the Tennessee team participated in a

My philosophy is that you can have fun and still win. I want people to leave the park and say ‘we had a good team, he was a good coach and we had a lot of fun.’ I think most of the time they do.

Dennis Birdwell, associated with Goodlettsville baseball for 39 years –

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

travel league tournament where they were ranked No. 1 in a 17,000-player competition. The team was part of a league that has only continued to grow since 2004. “It’s easy to find a good travel program, but finding a good recreation league to play in for $120 a student; that’s just a nice program. ... This has pretty well become the dominant program in Tennessee,” long-time program participant and supporter Mitch Warren said. The league, which was established in 1958, is divided into eight competitive districts that stretch across the state. Most Nashville neighborhoods, including Goodlettsville, are categorized within District 4. Districts are then broken down into age groups, which encompass a 9-year age range, beginning with five year olds and closing with league-ending 14 year olds. Tennessee’s Dixie Youth baseball organization is home to teams from more than 70 cities and counties total. The program encompasses 13 Southern states and includes teams from Louisiana, Texas, Florida and Virginia, among others. Goodlettsville league president John Robertson said his league, like many others within the organization, is a family – even when there’s no relation. “I’ve got about seven coaches that are coaching that don’t have any kids or grandkids,” Robertson said. “You can’t beat guys

like that.” The family theme is one that seems to carry throughout the league, with second and third generation players regularly taking the field at Goodlettsville’s Moss Right Park. Dennis Birdwell, who has been associated with the Goodlettsville league for 39 years, said the baseball field is where life has led him to some of his greatest gifts. “The most rewarding thing for me is all the people I’ve met and the kids I’ve met as players that I see everyday,” Birdwell said. “There’s so many of them – thousands. ... “Sometimes I see guys that I’ve coached that have kids and grandkids now, and they still call me Coach or Mr. Birdwell. It brings tears to my eyes to think about it.” Birdwell became part of the Dixie organization as an 18-yearold who was helping a friend out by agreeing to help coach a team. “We didn’t have a very good year,” Birdwell said. “He quit in the middle of the season. I took over from there.” The coaching position proved to be the spark for a lifelong passion for Birdwell. Now, almost 40 years later, Birdwell serves as the chief umpire for the Goodlettsville

league. At the end of his coaching career, however, he had accumulated 1,230 wins. In the early 1990s, Birdwell coached an upper-level team that accounted for six consecutive state tournament championships. “Out of that bunch, there are at least 20 guys that went on to play college ball.” Birdwell’s resume also boasts seven more state championships and 12 World Series appearances, including two second-place finishes. Throughout his career, he’s coached every age group, and has watched the talent-loaded league produce three majorleague players, at least 10 minor-

Dejuan Buford

246 Wilson Pike Circle, Suite C Brentwood, TN 37027-2745 Phone: (615) 371-1234 www.dejuanbuford.com

I’ve got about seven coaches that are coaching that don’t have any kids or grandkids playing.You can’t beat guys like that.

Goodlettsville league president John Robertson–

league players and countless college-bound athletes. At the end of this season, league members are hopeful of two or three major league draft possibilities. Warren’s son, Wes Warren, who started playing in the league at age five, is slated to play baseball at Murray State (Division I) next season. With veteran coaches who

Celeste Middleton

803 N. Thompson Ln, Ste B102 Murfreesboro, TN 37129 Phone: 615-895-2700 www.celestemiddleton.com

Mitch Warren

1191 W. Main St. Hendersonville, TN 37075 615-822-FARM (3276) www.mitchwarren.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

29


It’s easy to find a good travel program, but finding a good recreation league to play in for $120 a student; that’s just a nice program. This has pretty well become the dominant program in Tennessee.

Long-time league supporter Mitch Warren –

have been a part of the park for nearly 30 years, the league has notched 12 state championships in the last three years in various age groups. Birdwell said the atmosphere produced by the coaches helps motivate the kids, regardless of the age. “My philosophy is that you can have fun and still win,” Birdwell said. “I want people to leave the park and say ‘we had a good team, he was a good coach and we had a lot of fun.’ I think most of the time they do.” Birdwell also holds down the dugout as head coach at White House Heritage High School, which includes several players who were once a part of the Dixie program. Other schools that reap the benefit of the young talent include Beech, Hendersonville, Goodpasture and Pope John Paul II High Schools. All three of those teams are having stellar 2010 seasons. “When you have that many good players going into high school and being that dominant, you’re putting out a good product of baseball player,” Warren said. Aside from the win column and trophy display, Robertson said the score of the game is not the only thing that matters inside the park. “You take a good night at the park and there will be kids who don’t even play having fun with their friends,” Robertson said. “I think it’s as much about being there with their friends as it is about baseball.”

30

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

The Sky’s the Limit S

ince arriving on Belmont’s campus in the fall of 2008, Dylan Craig’s impact on the baseball program has been significant to say the least. As a freshman, the Signal Mountain native took his role of the everyday starter in centerfield to new heights by excelling at the national level. At the end of the season his long list of honors included Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American and Atlantic Sun Conference Freshman of the Year. His accolades were due in large part to setting a school record of 92 hits, orchestrating a 26-game hitting streak, and hitting nine triples – second-most between all of NCAA Division I players. But that was just his first year. Mid-way through his sophomore season, Craig leads Belmont in batting average, has two game-winning hits, a 17-game hitting streak, and could very well be the first player in Belmont history to reach 100 hits in a single season. The first of his late-inning heroics came in the first half of the season to preserve the program’s best start at 10-0. With the bases loaded in an extra-inning 11-11 tie against Eastern Illinois at Belmont’s Shelby Park, Craig hit a single just past the second baseman to drive in the winning run. In a recent road game with Arkansas-Little Rock, Craig came through in the clutch again with a three-run double high off the right field wall to give the Bruins a 5-4 lead in the ninth

inning to all but clinch the win. Craig also followed up a rare hitless game on opening day in February with a career-high of five hits the next day. From there he has led the team with 19 multi-hit games and soon thereafter began his 17-game hitting streak. Already, Craig has proved himself as one of the most prolific offensive forces in Belmont baseball history. His .397 career batting average through mid-April is the highest career mark in 25 years and currently ranks third all-time at Belmont (250 at bat minimum). But his goals go far beyond the baseball diamond. Craig came to Belmont with high hopes of entering the medical field after graduation. At first it was to become an orthopedic surgeon, next a pharmacist, and most recently his career ambitions are pointing toward going to law school and becoming a medical lawyer. Although still young in his academic journey, his preparation at the Baylor School, just north of Chattanooga – where he was a two-time all-state performer and 2006 state champion – and Belmont University will set him up for success after baseball. But before he answers his life’s calling in the medical field Craig will have to answer the calls of many pro scouts who see a great deal of potential in the left-handed centerfielder for the next level. No matter the career path for this bright-eyed Tennessean, one thing is for certain: the sky’s the limit.

Bio: 2009 (Freshman): Atlantic Sun Freshman of the Year ... Named to Louisville Slugger Freshman AllAmerican Team by Collegiate Baseball ... A-Sun All-Tournament Team ... A-Sun All-Freshman Team ... Second Team All-Conference ... Set a Bel-

mont record for hits in a season (92), which led the conference ... Tied a Belmont record for triples in a season (9), which also led the conference ... Recorded at least one hit in 51 of 57 games played ... His 26-game hitting streak from March 6 to April 15 is second-longest in Belmont history ... Hit .443 during that 26-game stretch, including 14 multi-hit games ... Ended the season on a 10-game hitting streak ... Sixth in the A-Sun in batting average (.397) ... Hit .405 during conference play ... Drove in 34 runs ... Season-high four hits at Tennessee (4/14) ... Went 3-for-4 against ETSU (3/13) to drive in a seasonhigh of three runs ... Finished with eight multi-RBI games ... Totaled nine stolen bases on 11 attempts ... Hit a homerun at North Florida (3/21) and against Murray State (4/29) ... Started in all 57 games at a true freshman ... Hit .474 when leading off an inning ... Hit .750 (15-for-20) with runners at third and less than two outs. High School: Played in the outfield and occasionally pitched under head coach Gene Etter at the Baylor School in Chattanooga ... Named to TSSAA Division II AA All-State team in 2007 and 2008 by the Tennessee Sports Writers Association ... 2007 Best of Preps All-City team ... Futures All-Star ... Led team in batting average junior and senior, and stolen bases in his final year ... Hit .463 with 56 hits, and held a 3-0 record from the mound, in 2007 ... Key member of the 2006 Red Raider squad that went 38-9 and captured the TSSAA Division II State Championship, the second title in school history ... Led Baylor to the State finals in 2008 ... Member of the National Honor Society. Personal: Born Dylan Hunter Craig on Oct. 15, 1989 in Chattanooga ... Son of James, an adult probation officer, and Shawn, a physical therapist ... Has a brother, Evan.

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

31


It’s easy to find a good travel program, but finding a good recreation league to play in for $120 a student; that’s just a nice program. This has pretty well become the dominant program in Tennessee.

Long-time league supporter Mitch Warren –

have been a part of the park for nearly 30 years, the league has notched 12 state championships in the last three years in various age groups. Birdwell said the atmosphere produced by the coaches helps motivate the kids, regardless of the age. “My philosophy is that you can have fun and still win,” Birdwell said. “I want people to leave the park and say ‘we had a good team, he was a good coach and we had a lot of fun.’ I think most of the time they do.” Birdwell also holds down the dugout as head coach at White House Heritage High School, which includes several players who were once a part of the Dixie program. Other schools that reap the benefit of the young talent include Beech, Hendersonville, Goodpasture and Pope John Paul II High Schools. All three of those teams are having stellar 2010 seasons. “When you have that many good players going into high school and being that dominant, you’re putting out a good product of baseball player,” Warren said. Aside from the win column and trophy display, Robertson said the score of the game is not the only thing that matters inside the park. “You take a good night at the park and there will be kids who don’t even play having fun with their friends,” Robertson said. “I think it’s as much about being there with their friends as it is about baseball.”

30

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

The Sky’s the Limit S

ince arriving on Belmont’s campus in the fall of 2008, Dylan Craig’s impact on the baseball program has been significant to say the least. As a freshman, the Signal Mountain native took his role of the everyday starter in centerfield to new heights by excelling at the national level. At the end of the season his long list of honors included Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American and Atlantic Sun Conference Freshman of the Year. His accolades were due in large part to setting a school record of 92 hits, orchestrating a 26-game hitting streak, and hitting nine triples – second-most between all of NCAA Division I players. But that was just his first year. Mid-way through his sophomore season, Craig leads Belmont in batting average, has two game-winning hits, a 17-game hitting streak, and could very well be the first player in Belmont history to reach 100 hits in a single season. The first of his late-inning heroics came in the first half of the season to preserve the program’s best start at 10-0. With the bases loaded in an extra-inning 11-11 tie against Eastern Illinois at Belmont’s Shelby Park, Craig hit a single just past the second baseman to drive in the winning run. In a recent road game with Arkansas-Little Rock, Craig came through in the clutch again with a three-run double high off the right field wall to give the Bruins a 5-4 lead in the ninth

inning to all but clinch the win. Craig also followed up a rare hitless game on opening day in February with a career-high of five hits the next day. From there he has led the team with 19 multi-hit games and soon thereafter began his 17-game hitting streak. Already, Craig has proved himself as one of the most prolific offensive forces in Belmont baseball history. His .397 career batting average through mid-April is the highest career mark in 25 years and currently ranks third all-time at Belmont (250 at bat minimum). But his goals go far beyond the baseball diamond. Craig came to Belmont with high hopes of entering the medical field after graduation. At first it was to become an orthopedic surgeon, next a pharmacist, and most recently his career ambitions are pointing toward going to law school and becoming a medical lawyer. Although still young in his academic journey, his preparation at the Baylor School, just north of Chattanooga – where he was a two-time all-state performer and 2006 state champion – and Belmont University will set him up for success after baseball. But before he answers his life’s calling in the medical field Craig will have to answer the calls of many pro scouts who see a great deal of potential in the left-handed centerfielder for the next level. No matter the career path for this bright-eyed Tennessean, one thing is for certain: the sky’s the limit.

Bio: 2009 (Freshman): Atlantic Sun Freshman of the Year ... Named to Louisville Slugger Freshman AllAmerican Team by Collegiate Baseball ... A-Sun All-Tournament Team ... A-Sun All-Freshman Team ... Second Team All-Conference ... Set a Bel-

mont record for hits in a season (92), which led the conference ... Tied a Belmont record for triples in a season (9), which also led the conference ... Recorded at least one hit in 51 of 57 games played ... His 26-game hitting streak from March 6 to April 15 is second-longest in Belmont history ... Hit .443 during that 26-game stretch, including 14 multi-hit games ... Ended the season on a 10-game hitting streak ... Sixth in the A-Sun in batting average (.397) ... Hit .405 during conference play ... Drove in 34 runs ... Season-high four hits at Tennessee (4/14) ... Went 3-for-4 against ETSU (3/13) to drive in a seasonhigh of three runs ... Finished with eight multi-RBI games ... Totaled nine stolen bases on 11 attempts ... Hit a homerun at North Florida (3/21) and against Murray State (4/29) ... Started in all 57 games at a true freshman ... Hit .474 when leading off an inning ... Hit .750 (15-for-20) with runners at third and less than two outs. High School: Played in the outfield and occasionally pitched under head coach Gene Etter at the Baylor School in Chattanooga ... Named to TSSAA Division II AA All-State team in 2007 and 2008 by the Tennessee Sports Writers Association ... 2007 Best of Preps All-City team ... Futures All-Star ... Led team in batting average junior and senior, and stolen bases in his final year ... Hit .463 with 56 hits, and held a 3-0 record from the mound, in 2007 ... Key member of the 2006 Red Raider squad that went 38-9 and captured the TSSAA Division II State Championship, the second title in school history ... Led Baylor to the State finals in 2008 ... Member of the National Honor Society. Personal: Born Dylan Hunter Craig on Oct. 15, 1989 in Chattanooga ... Son of James, an adult probation officer, and Shawn, a physical therapist ... Has a brother, Evan.

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

31


STANDOUTS brought to you by CRONS

Cody Tollison

Alysha Clark

After a thumb injury to his pitching hand Cody Tollison has returned to the starting lineup for Ensworth and regained his spot as the team’s number one pitcher. A left, Tollison led the team to a 7-2 win over MBA in his last start. Along with picking up the victory Tollison also had two hits and reached base in four of his five at-bats. A senior, Tollison has signed to play baseball at MTSU next year. “Cody is the ultimate competitor,” says Ensworth varsity pitching coach, Walter Schultz. “He’s the kind of kid you want on your team. The team sometimes waits for Cody to do something before they get things moving, so it’s great to have him back on the field in a leadership role.”

MTSU's Alysha Clark is one of the most decorated basketball players in state history: Led the nation in scoring for the second year in a row … set a Sun Belt and school record with a 28.3 average … was named to the U. S. Basketball Writers All-America team & Associated Press AllAmerican second team … won the WBCA/Robin Roberts Broadcasting Scholarship Award and the TN Sports Writers Association's state college women's basketball player of the year for the second-straight season … was chosen in the second round (17th overall) by San Antonio in the WNBA draft held April 22. “I’ve been blessed to have a player of Alysha’s caliber, on and off the court,” said Blue Raiders Coach Rick Insell. “She’s a remarkable talent, a 5-feet-10-inch post player who dominated the country for two years, playing the tenth-best schedule in the U. S. She’s amazing, absolutely amazing. I expect her to do well in the WNBA. If somebody tells her she can’t do something, she’ll work to do it. And that’s what America’s all about.”

William Tanner Showing his dedication and toughness Montgomery Bell Academy’s William Tanner has battled throughout the current high school baseball season with a broken thumb. “It’s on his throwing hand,” said assistant coach Mike Martin. “It can’t get worse, it just tenses up.” Despite the injury the Big Red center fielder still holds a .260-270 batting average and has done well on the field, Martin said. Tanner was also a receiver for the MBA football team, breaking several school records, and will be a walk-on this fall at the University of Kentucky.

32

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

Wilson Central High (Mt. Juliet) Coach Mike Shepard is blessed with a trio of college-bound softball stars. Tiffany Gooch, OF, has signed with Western Kentucky. Batting .442, she’s scored 25 runs and is 20 for 20 in stolen bases. “It seems like Tiffany is always on base,” Shepard says. She leads the team with 27 hits, including six triples. “She has focused more on hitting this year instead of slapping, as teams are starting to cheat in on her.” Wilson Central High Tiffany is a three year letter-winner for Softball Stars Wilson Central. Taylor Bond, 2B, is bound for Lee University. Batting .377 with five triples, Taylor is 11 for 11 in SB. “She is the heart and soul of the team, a silent leader who speaks up when needed,” her coach says. “Taylor is very patient at the plate.” She’s also a three-year letter-winner. Sara Tichenor, 1B, has signed with Lindsey Wilson College. Batting .259, she had a game-winning double against Station Camp and a two--run home run against Riverdale. www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

33


STANDOUTS brought to you by CRONS

Cody Tollison

Alysha Clark

After a thumb injury to his pitching hand Cody Tollison has returned to the starting lineup for Ensworth and regained his spot as the team’s number one pitcher. A left, Tollison led the team to a 7-2 win over MBA in his last start. Along with picking up the victory Tollison also had two hits and reached base in four of his five at-bats. A senior, Tollison has signed to play baseball at MTSU next year. “Cody is the ultimate competitor,” says Ensworth varsity pitching coach, Walter Schultz. “He’s the kind of kid you want on your team. The team sometimes waits for Cody to do something before they get things moving, so it’s great to have him back on the field in a leadership role.”

MTSU's Alysha Clark is one of the most decorated basketball players in state history: Led the nation in scoring for the second year in a row … set a Sun Belt and school record with a 28.3 average … was named to the U. S. Basketball Writers All-America team & Associated Press AllAmerican second team … won the WBCA/Robin Roberts Broadcasting Scholarship Award and the TN Sports Writers Association's state college women's basketball player of the year for the second-straight season … was chosen in the second round (17th overall) by San Antonio in the WNBA draft held April 22. “I’ve been blessed to have a player of Alysha’s caliber, on and off the court,” said Blue Raiders Coach Rick Insell. “She’s a remarkable talent, a 5-feet-10-inch post player who dominated the country for two years, playing the tenth-best schedule in the U. S. She’s amazing, absolutely amazing. I expect her to do well in the WNBA. If somebody tells her she can’t do something, she’ll work to do it. And that’s what America’s all about.”

William Tanner Showing his dedication and toughness Montgomery Bell Academy’s William Tanner has battled throughout the current high school baseball season with a broken thumb. “It’s on his throwing hand,” said assistant coach Mike Martin. “It can’t get worse, it just tenses up.” Despite the injury the Big Red center fielder still holds a .260-270 batting average and has done well on the field, Martin said. Tanner was also a receiver for the MBA football team, breaking several school records, and will be a walk-on this fall at the University of Kentucky.

32

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

Wilson Central High (Mt. Juliet) Coach Mike Shepard is blessed with a trio of college-bound softball stars. Tiffany Gooch, OF, has signed with Western Kentucky. Batting .442, she’s scored 25 runs and is 20 for 20 in stolen bases. “It seems like Tiffany is always on base,” Shepard says. She leads the team with 27 hits, including six triples. “She has focused more on hitting this year instead of slapping, as teams are starting to cheat in on her.” Wilson Central High Tiffany is a three year letter-winner for Softball Stars Wilson Central. Taylor Bond, 2B, is bound for Lee University. Batting .377 with five triples, Taylor is 11 for 11 in SB. “She is the heart and soul of the team, a silent leader who speaks up when needed,” her coach says. “Taylor is very patient at the plate.” She’s also a three-year letter-winner. Sara Tichenor, 1B, has signed with Lindsey Wilson College. Batting .259, she had a game-winning double against Station Camp and a two--run home run against Riverdale. www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

33


MTSM Goes One-on-One with Coach T de n as a gra Thompso er y otball pla school fo

Built from Scratch

From a humble beginning in 1997 Lawrence County Coach Jim Thompson has built CoachT.com into a website phenomenon that now boasts more than 67,000 members while attracting millions of page views each month 34

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

By Jim Muir

B

ack in 1997 Jim Thompson developed a website – CoachT.com – to cover the basketball success of the Lawrence County Lady Cats. Perhaps it was an omen or a prelude of things to come that the Lady Cats won the Class AAA state championship that

season. And it was from that humble start that CoachT.com has become one of the most-recognized and mostvisited websites in the Nashville and Middle Tennessee area. “It started out just to be girl’s basketball and that was because my daughter was playing and she was a freshman,” said Thompson.

“The fact that the team won the state championship certainly added to the excitement.” Fast forward the calendar a dozen years and CoachT.com has enjoyed unparalleled success with more than 67,000 current members and millions of page views each month. But be assured that Thompson is not

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

35


MTSM Goes One-on-One with Coach T de n as a gra Thompso er y otball pla school fo

Built from Scratch

From a humble beginning in 1997 Lawrence County Coach Jim Thompson has built CoachT.com into a website phenomenon that now boasts more than 67,000 members while attracting millions of page views each month 34

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

By Jim Muir

B

ack in 1997 Jim Thompson developed a website – CoachT.com – to cover the basketball success of the Lawrence County Lady Cats. Perhaps it was an omen or a prelude of things to come that the Lady Cats won the Class AAA state championship that

season. And it was from that humble start that CoachT.com has become one of the most-recognized and mostvisited websites in the Nashville and Middle Tennessee area. “It started out just to be girl’s basketball and that was because my daughter was playing and she was a freshman,” said Thompson.

“The fact that the team won the state championship certainly added to the excitement.” Fast forward the calendar a dozen years and CoachT.com has enjoyed unparalleled success with more than 67,000 current members and millions of page views each month. But be assured that Thompson is not

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

35


“We’ve had days when we get 600,000 and 700,000 hits in a day and we’ve had more than three million hits in a month. On those days it’s region and section basketball tournament finals and state playoffs in football that create all the traffic. When you have the boy’s and girl’s teams playing in basketball in the post season at the same time it gets really busy.” your typical website/tech support guy and there is much more to the man affectionately referred to as “Coach T” than the celebrity-status that CoachT.com has brought him. Thompson is personable, clearly a family man and he loves to talk sports. In fact it takes only a brief conversation to realize that sports has remained a constant in his life since he was a youngster. “I grew up on Lawrenceburg and basically played whatever sport was in season,” recalls Thompson. “I started playing in the third grade and from that point that was all I wanted to do. After a stellar career at Lawrence County High School (1970 graduate) where he quarterbacked the football team, was a top-notch pitcher in baseball and a starter in basketball, Thompson took his considerable athletic talents to Austin Peay where he played four years of football and one year of basketball. “Looking back if I have any regrets in sports it’s that I didn’t start to school a year later,” said Thompson. “I graduated high school when I was 17 and actually played three college

36

football games before I turned 18. I went from 164 pounds as a senior in high school, little skinny kid, to 194 pounds when I reported to Austin Peay my freshman year.” After graduating college Thompson taught for three years in Charleston, South Carolina before returning back to his alma mater – a place that he’s called home for the past 32 years. During his long tenure at Lawrence County High School Thompson has kept active in sports while also showing his versatility by serving as head coach of four different sports. Thompson coached 11 years of football (three years in South Carolina and eight years at Lawrence County), eight years of basketball (two as head coach and six as an assistant), two years as head baseball coach and 18 years as head golf coach. In a surprising answer Thompson said his favorite sport to coach is baseball and by his own admission said “I’m not a good head coach because I’m not good at delegating authority.” “I tried to do everything myself,” said Thompson. “And you can’t do that as a head coach.” Remembering those early days when the website was launched Thompson quickly points out that CoachT.com was “beyond humble.” “To say that we had a humble start really doesn’t even do justice, we had a very, very humble beginning,” Thompson said with a chuckle. “I’m not a tech guy but I knew how to do HTML code so I could figure out, by trial and error, how to get something on a page and get by. I’d look at and then play around until I got it like I wanted it. I have a tech guy now that is unbelievably talented and I always tell him, drive safely because if something would happen to you I don’t know what I would do.” After the successful 1997-98 basketball season came to an end Thompson wanted to continue on with the website, not out of necessity but out of love. “I really enjoyed doing, I quit playing golf, I quit coaching golf,” said Thompson. “I don’t do anything but

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

the website and my family right now.” Thompson said approximately two years after he began the website he realized that from that humble beginning a monster had been created. “I remember one time calling the kids in and showing them the little counter where we had more than a thousand hits in one night and we all went ‘wow’ – now we do a thousand hits a minute some nights now,” Thompson said. Shortly after that Thompson expanded the website to a message board that allowed visitors to make comments, a move that he says increased the flow of traffic exponentially. “After that basketball season I started tracking seven football teams and updating their scores on Friday night, it was very crude message board that we used to post football scores,” said Thompson. “Then people started telling other people and really word-of-mouth was a big thing.” Thompson learned quickly that the creation of a message board goes hand-in-hand with sometimes over-zealous fans that sometimes make comments in the heat of the moment. “I’ve got four great moderators and we simply don’t put up with any nonsense,” said Thompson. “If you make a comment that is unacceptable then we’re going to boot you off and you’re not coming back. If it’s bad enough I’ll block their IP address and they’re done. And if I have to block and entire school to get one guy we’ll do it. I can’t afford not to, it’s our reputation on the line.” Thompson said keeping tabs on posters has created some fun moments. He related a story about receiving some off-color comments that according to the IP address were coming from a local high school. Thompson contacted the principal and told him a student was on the site making the comments at that very moment. “I told him that according to the IP address it was the third computer, depending on which way they were numbered. So the principal, who was

on a cell phone, found the student,” said Thompson. “I told the principal that I was going to send a message back to the student and tell him to look over his shoulder that the principal wanted to talk to him. So, the kid looked at the screen and read my message and looked over his shoulder and the principal was standing there. That problem stopped right there.” Thompson’s website has become the go-to location for rabid high school fans following teams throughout the entire state. He said from that ‘wow moment’ when his family marveled at 1,000 hits in a night the numbers are now off the charts. As might be expected Friday night high school football action and boys and girls post-season basketball action creates the highest level of traffic. “We’ve had days when we get 600,000 and 700,000 hits in a day and we’ve had more than three million hits in a month,” said Thompson. “On those days it’s region and section basketball tournament finals and state playoffs in football that create all the traffic. When you have the boy’s and girl’s teams playing in basketball in the post season at the same time it gets really busy.” Despite the growth in numbers during the past 12 years the actionpacked location for updating scored live during high school sporting events is still Thompson’s front room. “I have a laptop going and it stays on the scoreboard, I have my desktop on broadcasts with headphones and I’m listening to three games at one time. I have an answering machine beside me where people call in scores and my wife and I are both working our cell phones,” said Thompson. “On Friday night during football season we’ll get scores from all but four or five games from throughout the state of Tennessee posted before I go to bed.” Thompson and his wife, Elaine, have been married for 32 years and have three children: Brynn is married (husband Philipp) and living in Karlsruhe, Germany where she is teaching at Berlitz while getting

Program picture from Austin Peay

her Masters at the University of Berlin and is the proud new parent of a beautiful baby girl, Isabella; Mark is now enrolled at Columbia State again while working towards a degree in radiology; and Katie is attending ETSU. The 57-year-old Thompson said that he sometimes is in awe at what he’s created and has no plans to slow down. “I’ll be honest with you, I don’t really understand how it all works,” said Thompson. “It used to take me about four hours a day to update and now we can do it in less than an hour. Sports have always been very important to me and this keeps me close to the game. I love what I do and I plan to keep on doing it.”

Thompson as a defensive back at Austin Peay

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

37


“We’ve had days when we get 600,000 and 700,000 hits in a day and we’ve had more than three million hits in a month. On those days it’s region and section basketball tournament finals and state playoffs in football that create all the traffic. When you have the boy’s and girl’s teams playing in basketball in the post season at the same time it gets really busy.” your typical website/tech support guy and there is much more to the man affectionately referred to as “Coach T” than the celebrity-status that CoachT.com has brought him. Thompson is personable, clearly a family man and he loves to talk sports. In fact it takes only a brief conversation to realize that sports has remained a constant in his life since he was a youngster. “I grew up on Lawrenceburg and basically played whatever sport was in season,” recalls Thompson. “I started playing in the third grade and from that point that was all I wanted to do. After a stellar career at Lawrence County High School (1970 graduate) where he quarterbacked the football team, was a top-notch pitcher in baseball and a starter in basketball, Thompson took his considerable athletic talents to Austin Peay where he played four years of football and one year of basketball. “Looking back if I have any regrets in sports it’s that I didn’t start to school a year later,” said Thompson. “I graduated high school when I was 17 and actually played three college

36

football games before I turned 18. I went from 164 pounds as a senior in high school, little skinny kid, to 194 pounds when I reported to Austin Peay my freshman year.” After graduating college Thompson taught for three years in Charleston, South Carolina before returning back to his alma mater – a place that he’s called home for the past 32 years. During his long tenure at Lawrence County High School Thompson has kept active in sports while also showing his versatility by serving as head coach of four different sports. Thompson coached 11 years of football (three years in South Carolina and eight years at Lawrence County), eight years of basketball (two as head coach and six as an assistant), two years as head baseball coach and 18 years as head golf coach. In a surprising answer Thompson said his favorite sport to coach is baseball and by his own admission said “I’m not a good head coach because I’m not good at delegating authority.” “I tried to do everything myself,” said Thompson. “And you can’t do that as a head coach.” Remembering those early days when the website was launched Thompson quickly points out that CoachT.com was “beyond humble.” “To say that we had a humble start really doesn’t even do justice, we had a very, very humble beginning,” Thompson said with a chuckle. “I’m not a tech guy but I knew how to do HTML code so I could figure out, by trial and error, how to get something on a page and get by. I’d look at and then play around until I got it like I wanted it. I have a tech guy now that is unbelievably talented and I always tell him, drive safely because if something would happen to you I don’t know what I would do.” After the successful 1997-98 basketball season came to an end Thompson wanted to continue on with the website, not out of necessity but out of love. “I really enjoyed doing, I quit playing golf, I quit coaching golf,” said Thompson. “I don’t do anything but

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

the website and my family right now.” Thompson said approximately two years after he began the website he realized that from that humble beginning a monster had been created. “I remember one time calling the kids in and showing them the little counter where we had more than a thousand hits in one night and we all went ‘wow’ – now we do a thousand hits a minute some nights now,” Thompson said. Shortly after that Thompson expanded the website to a message board that allowed visitors to make comments, a move that he says increased the flow of traffic exponentially. “After that basketball season I started tracking seven football teams and updating their scores on Friday night, it was very crude message board that we used to post football scores,” said Thompson. “Then people started telling other people and really word-of-mouth was a big thing.” Thompson learned quickly that the creation of a message board goes hand-in-hand with sometimes over-zealous fans that sometimes make comments in the heat of the moment. “I’ve got four great moderators and we simply don’t put up with any nonsense,” said Thompson. “If you make a comment that is unacceptable then we’re going to boot you off and you’re not coming back. If it’s bad enough I’ll block their IP address and they’re done. And if I have to block and entire school to get one guy we’ll do it. I can’t afford not to, it’s our reputation on the line.” Thompson said keeping tabs on posters has created some fun moments. He related a story about receiving some off-color comments that according to the IP address were coming from a local high school. Thompson contacted the principal and told him a student was on the site making the comments at that very moment. “I told him that according to the IP address it was the third computer, depending on which way they were numbered. So the principal, who was

on a cell phone, found the student,” said Thompson. “I told the principal that I was going to send a message back to the student and tell him to look over his shoulder that the principal wanted to talk to him. So, the kid looked at the screen and read my message and looked over his shoulder and the principal was standing there. That problem stopped right there.” Thompson’s website has become the go-to location for rabid high school fans following teams throughout the entire state. He said from that ‘wow moment’ when his family marveled at 1,000 hits in a night the numbers are now off the charts. As might be expected Friday night high school football action and boys and girls post-season basketball action creates the highest level of traffic. “We’ve had days when we get 600,000 and 700,000 hits in a day and we’ve had more than three million hits in a month,” said Thompson. “On those days it’s region and section basketball tournament finals and state playoffs in football that create all the traffic. When you have the boy’s and girl’s teams playing in basketball in the post season at the same time it gets really busy.” Despite the growth in numbers during the past 12 years the actionpacked location for updating scored live during high school sporting events is still Thompson’s front room. “I have a laptop going and it stays on the scoreboard, I have my desktop on broadcasts with headphones and I’m listening to three games at one time. I have an answering machine beside me where people call in scores and my wife and I are both working our cell phones,” said Thompson. “On Friday night during football season we’ll get scores from all but four or five games from throughout the state of Tennessee posted before I go to bed.” Thompson and his wife, Elaine, have been married for 32 years and have three children: Brynn is married (husband Philipp) and living in Karlsruhe, Germany where she is teaching at Berlitz while getting

Program picture from Austin Peay

her Masters at the University of Berlin and is the proud new parent of a beautiful baby girl, Isabella; Mark is now enrolled at Columbia State again while working towards a degree in radiology; and Katie is attending ETSU. The 57-year-old Thompson said that he sometimes is in awe at what he’s created and has no plans to slow down. “I’ll be honest with you, I don’t really understand how it all works,” said Thompson. “It used to take me about four hours a day to update and now we can do it in less than an hour. Sports have always been very important to me and this keeps me close to the game. I love what I do and I plan to keep on doing it.”

Thompson as a defensive back at Austin Peay

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

37


By Paul Erland

A

s one of the elite football linemen attending a recent combine and camp for players in three states, Chase Pennycuff is one high-school athlete who’s tackling head-on the task of landing a college scholarship. Pennycuff, a junior at Siegel High in Murfreesboro, relished the opportunity to measure himself against friends, competitors and other peers. “It was cool being there with kids I knew,” he said, “and also with ones from other states.”

Coach Lebron Ferguson puts attendees of the combine/camp through their paces

“We give athletes and their parents everything they need to take control of the recruiting process.” – Christian Hidalgo, owner of RecruitReels.com –

The combine/camp, modeled on the NFL version, was held at D1 Sports Training in Cool Springs; it was put on by Frontline Scouting and featured videotaping by RecruitReels.com. The alliance of those two companies meant that players attending had the chance to provide a “showand-tell” presentation to college coaches. More than 150 athletes, the cream of the crop from Tennessee, Alabama and Kentucky, attended the event, conducted in two sessions. After a weigh-in and warm-up players were put through their paces in a 20-yard

timed sprint, an “L” drill evaluating their explosiveness, a bench press, and a lateral drill for speed. Data from the combine was sent to the 250 or so colleges in the Southeast. Those who chose to avail themselves of the services of Recruit Reels received a highlight video on DVD to send to coaches, and had their every step at the combine filmed and posted online. Pennycuff, a defensive tackle and offensive guard at Siegel, had the third-best 20-yard time and managed 28 repetitions in the 175-pound bench press, fall-

Show & Tell An NFL-like combine/camp complete with video and scouts draws a big crowd of gridiron standouts looking to take their skills to the college level

Chase Pennycuff Brad Hopkins works with aspiring NFL lineman Melvin McDaniel of Whites Creek High

38

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

39


By Paul Erland

A

s one of the elite football linemen attending a recent combine and camp for players in three states, Chase Pennycuff is one high-school athlete who’s tackling head-on the task of landing a college scholarship. Pennycuff, a junior at Siegel High in Murfreesboro, relished the opportunity to measure himself against friends, competitors and other peers. “It was cool being there with kids I knew,” he said, “and also with ones from other states.”

Coach Lebron Ferguson puts attendees of the combine/camp through their paces

“We give athletes and their parents everything they need to take control of the recruiting process.” – Christian Hidalgo, owner of RecruitReels.com –

The combine/camp, modeled on the NFL version, was held at D1 Sports Training in Cool Springs; it was put on by Frontline Scouting and featured videotaping by RecruitReels.com. The alliance of those two companies meant that players attending had the chance to provide a “showand-tell” presentation to college coaches. More than 150 athletes, the cream of the crop from Tennessee, Alabama and Kentucky, attended the event, conducted in two sessions. After a weigh-in and warm-up players were put through their paces in a 20-yard

timed sprint, an “L” drill evaluating their explosiveness, a bench press, and a lateral drill for speed. Data from the combine was sent to the 250 or so colleges in the Southeast. Those who chose to avail themselves of the services of Recruit Reels received a highlight video on DVD to send to coaches, and had their every step at the combine filmed and posted online. Pennycuff, a defensive tackle and offensive guard at Siegel, had the third-best 20-yard time and managed 28 repetitions in the 175-pound bench press, fall-

Show & Tell An NFL-like combine/camp complete with video and scouts draws a big crowd of gridiron standouts looking to take their skills to the college level

Chase Pennycuff Brad Hopkins works with aspiring NFL lineman Melvin McDaniel of Whites Creek High

38

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

39


he says that he’d love to play for the Tennessee Vols – a dream of his since he started playing the game, at age 5 – he looks forward to going “wherever I can get a scholarship and an education.” With the highlight video of his junior year put together by Recruit Reels, Pennycuff’s hopes of reeling in that scholarship should be enhanced, and with Frontline Scouting in his corner, by the time he’s done with high school football he could be on the front line of college prospects. For information about Frontline, call 615-556-9599; email info.frontlinescouting.com. Recruit Reels – who use the slogan “You’ve got to be seen to be discovered” – produces highlight videos to promote the skills of athletes to coaches at over 1,800 colleges and universities offering scholarships in over 20 sports. Call 1-866-356-1247; visit www.RecruitReels.com.

ing just a little short of the 33 attained by his buddy at Riverdale High, Bryson McCluskey. “I did fairly well,” Pennycuff said. “Some were faster, some benched a little more.” Pennycuff was invited to attend by Rick Butler, the owner of Frontline Scouting and head football coach at Lancaster Christian School in Smyrna. Butler has long recognized the sound sense in high school athletes promoting themselves to colleges. After a lot of research he found that there was no one out there providing services to help them at the level he envisioned. He launched Frontline Scouting last fall. Christian Hidalgo owns RecruitReels.com, which specializes in video production and acts as a liaison between high school athletes and college coaches. So far they’ve worked with athletes in football, basketball, baseball, and soccer. “We start by contacting high school coaches,” Hidalgo said, “directing them to our website and encouraging them to work with us. We give athletes and their parents everything they need to take control of the recruiting process.” He said his company has helped more than 20 athletes already, with three having landed scholarships. Recruit Reels’ biggest relationship is with The Sport Source in Dallas, a matchmaker for high school players and college recruiters, which runs showcases for different sports. After filming the company’s elite soccer showcase in Dallas, Recruit Reels became

40

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

The Sport Source’s official video production company. Brian Reed, Recruit Reels’ COO, runs its day-today operations. Reed spent five years as a production manager for the Tennessee Titans and was the team’s executive producer for preseason games on Channel 2. Frontline Scouting and Recruit Reels will be together again at another combine/ camp for linemen, June 24-25 at Cumberland University in Lebanon. Pennycuff said he’ll “probably go” to this one, as well. He plans to spend every day this summer working out, improving his strength and technique. He thinks Siegel will have a good year – “the entire defense is back except for two players, and we’ve got some good young guys coming up on offense” – and he hopes that his individual year will vault him onward and upward. He’s already received letters, including invitations to camps at Louisville and Cincinnati this summer, and while

The T ita coura ns’ Brad Ho ge the pkins comb ine’s in was on han d to e vitees n-

TRY THE Y FOR FREE! Bring in this ad to receive ONE FREE VISIT at any YMCA of Middle Tennessee center.

�!!!!!!�!!!!!!��������!�!!!!!!!!!!!!� �!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!� !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!� !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!���!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!� ]

Get back in!! the game! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !! �!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!�!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!� �!!!!�!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! �!!!!!!!!!��!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!�!!!!�!!�!!!!!!!!!

Visit your local Y or ymcamidtn.org

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

41


he says that he’d love to play for the Tennessee Vols – a dream of his since he started playing the game, at age 5 – he looks forward to going “wherever I can get a scholarship and an education.” With the highlight video of his junior year put together by Recruit Reels, Pennycuff’s hopes of reeling in that scholarship should be enhanced, and with Frontline Scouting in his corner, by the time he’s done with high school football he could be on the front line of college prospects. For information about Frontline, call 615-556-9599; email info.frontlinescouting.com. Recruit Reels – who use the slogan “You’ve got to be seen to be discovered” – produces highlight videos to promote the skills of athletes to coaches at over 1,800 colleges and universities offering scholarships in over 20 sports. Call 1-866-356-1247; visit www.RecruitReels.com.

ing just a little short of the 33 attained by his buddy at Riverdale High, Bryson McCluskey. “I did fairly well,” Pennycuff said. “Some were faster, some benched a little more.” Pennycuff was invited to attend by Rick Butler, the owner of Frontline Scouting and head football coach at Lancaster Christian School in Smyrna. Butler has long recognized the sound sense in high school athletes promoting themselves to colleges. After a lot of research he found that there was no one out there providing services to help them at the level he envisioned. He launched Frontline Scouting last fall. Christian Hidalgo owns RecruitReels.com, which specializes in video production and acts as a liaison between high school athletes and college coaches. So far they’ve worked with athletes in football, basketball, baseball, and soccer. “We start by contacting high school coaches,” Hidalgo said, “directing them to our website and encouraging them to work with us. We give athletes and their parents everything they need to take control of the recruiting process.” He said his company has helped more than 20 athletes already, with three having landed scholarships. Recruit Reels’ biggest relationship is with The Sport Source in Dallas, a matchmaker for high school players and college recruiters, which runs showcases for different sports. After filming the company’s elite soccer showcase in Dallas, Recruit Reels became

40

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

The Sport Source’s official video production company. Brian Reed, Recruit Reels’ COO, runs its day-today operations. Reed spent five years as a production manager for the Tennessee Titans and was the team’s executive producer for preseason games on Channel 2. Frontline Scouting and Recruit Reels will be together again at another combine/ camp for linemen, June 24-25 at Cumberland University in Lebanon. Pennycuff said he’ll “probably go” to this one, as well. He plans to spend every day this summer working out, improving his strength and technique. He thinks Siegel will have a good year – “the entire defense is back except for two players, and we’ve got some good young guys coming up on offense” – and he hopes that his individual year will vault him onward and upward. He’s already received letters, including invitations to camps at Louisville and Cincinnati this summer, and while

The T ita coura ns’ Brad Ho ge the pkins comb ine’s in was on han d to e vitees n-

TRY THE Y FOR FREE! Bring in this ad to receive ONE FREE VISIT at any YMCA of Middle Tennessee center.

�!!!!!!�!!!!!!��������!�!!!!!!!!!!!!� �!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!� !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!� !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!���!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!� ]

Get back in!! the game! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !! �!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!�!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!� �!!!!�!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! �!!!!!!!!!��!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!�!!!!�!!�!!!!!!!!!

Visit your local Y or ymcamidtn.org

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

41


The

Game

Serving Equals Success Simple and reliable has always been a good way to go.

willing to attempt.

M

y first college coaching job was as an assistant in charge of serving while I was a student. It may not have been the most impressive job title, but I was given ownership over a portion of the game, and I’ve loved serving ever since. We weren’t the most sophisticated in our charting, calling, or evaluating our results and opponents at that time, but I grew through that experience to have a great appreciation for serving - the one part of the game that is action instead of reaction. Many times over my years of coaching, we didn’t match up athletically with another team. If score was taken after hitting lines, we would have been crushed. However, control of first ball contact can drastically change the outcome of a match, and it has benefitted us much more than it has hurt us. It allows the smaller team to compete with bigger teams, and it can frustrate opposing teams into many errors. On the other end of the serving spectrum, I once coached against a college team that served at almost 99 percent accuracy for the season. This was shortly after the rule change that allowed serve reception with hands. Knowing that it would be a good challenge for our team, I challenged our team to receive every ball with their hands. We did, we were in system almost the entire match, and we won easily. Our opponent was unwilling to risk missing a serve, but they allowed our middle-dominant team to remain in system. A bit of aggressiveness by our opponent would have made it challenging for our team to win, but that is something they just weren’t

42

Benefits of serving aggressively: 1. It is easier for your players to play aggressively in other aspects of the game. It’s hard for a player to be taught to never miss a serve while being expected to attack the ball aggressively when set. 2. The passers on your team will very rarely see anything in a game that is more difficult to pass than what they see in practice. How to get your players to serve aggressively: 1. Green light from the coach, depending on the situation. Don’t pull a kid, roll your eyes, slam your clipboard, etc. when misses happen. You know they’re going to happen, so move on. A simple phrase like “Way to be aggressive!”, “Good aggressive attempt!” etc. will give a player confidence to continue pushing it on the serve. 2. Understand what zones your player is most comfortable serving. Teach confidence in serving other zones, but know their strengths. If it is match point and there are two below average passers on the other side of the net, you need to know if one of them is standing in the zone your player loves serving. 3. Don’t ever yell “Just get it in” right before a player serves. You might as well take the ball, walk over to the other team, and hand it to their next server. Using a directive such as “Make a good toss” gets the server to focus on the process instead of the result at a critical moment. 4. Explain to the team why it’s important to serve aggressively. They will buy in, but they need to understand why it’s helpful. The scoreboard, their parents in the car

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

Complete Printing Solutions

AmbroseAD3.75x5.qxd:new ambrose bc_1

At Regions, we know our customers want a banking experience that’s personal, helpful and seSimple and reliable cure. And when you bank with us, that’s exactly what you’ll get. We’re dedicated to sound bankhasthatalways been a good way–to ing practices are effective in any environment so go. you can reach for your goals with more peace of mind. Most of all, dedicated to putting you first. Come seeand what At Regions, we know ourwe’re customers want a banking experience that’s personal, helpful se- over 8 million And when you bank with us, that’s exactly what you’ll We’re dedicatedit’s to sound customerscure. across 16 states have already discovered – get. with Regions, timebankto expect more. ing practices that are effective in any environment – so you can reach for your goals with more peace of mind. Most of all, we’re dedicated to putting you first. Come see what over 8 million customers across 16 states have already discovered – with Regions, it’s time to expect more.

on the way home, and a general human desire to not make mistakes tells them otherwise. 5. Practice, practice, practice! Practice serving in pressure situations in practice, so that the pressure felt in games is similar to what they have experienced before. Every experienced coach knows that hitting percentage is the greatest indicator of success in volleyball. Serving is an area that is often overlooked in affecting your opponents’ ability to attack at a high level. Focus on controlling first ball contact, and great things will follow. (Deane Webb serves as the head volleyball coach at Belmont University and as the director for Alliance Volleyball Club, one of the largest club programs in the Southeast based at A-Game in Franklin, Tenn. At the collegiate level, he has coached seven teams (four at NCAA DI and three at NAIA) that have finished the season in the top 25 in aces per game. His career collegiate coaching record is 297-163, has been to the NCAA tournament twice, won an NCCAA National Championship, and has worked with two club teams that finished the season in the top three in the highest division of their age group at junior nationals.)

1.800.regions | regions.com

Printing Co.

4/19/10

12:30 PM

Page 1

Established in 1865

This publication is proudly produced by Ambrose Printing. We support local sporting endeavors, athletes and business; since 1865. Contact an Ambrose sales representative to discuss your project in detail.

Visit our website to learn more.

www.ambroseprint.com

1.800.regions | regions.com

© 2009 Regions Bank. © 2009 Regions Bank.

210 Cumberland Bend 1-800-334-6524 PO Box 280387 615-256-1151 Nashville, TN 37228 Fax 615-256-6940

A·GAME Athlete of the Month

A-Game of Cool Springs is the premier sports training and development destination for youth athletes, specializing in volleyball, hockey and basketball. With a state-of-the-art facility, including two full rinks, six basketball courts and 12 volleyball courts, and the most knowledgeable staff and coaches in Middle Tennessee, no other facility compares.

If you want to bring your A•Game, play at

A•Game

Courtney Smith Sophomore

Alliance Volleyball Club at A-Game & Bowling Green HS Volleyball team Outside Hitter 6’-0” right handed Approach jump is 9’-8” Sports Achievements Courtney, the captain on her high school and club teams, is an all-around player who can hit the ball from anywhere on the court. She plays high above the net, hitting the ball line or angle. Courtney has also developed shots off the block and rolls & tips. She has an incredible float serve that always gets the score. A leader in aces, Courtney is a go to player in front and she can bomb it from the back. • Set school records with 30 kills in a single match and 780 kills in a whole season • First Team All-State her sophomore year • District and Region MVP her sophomore year • All-District her freshman year Grade Point Average: 3.9

A-Game • 215 Gothic Court • Franklin, TN 37067 • (615) 771-2444 • www.GoAGame.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

43


The

Game

Serving Equals Success Simple and reliable has always been a good way to go.

willing to attempt.

M

y first college coaching job was as an assistant in charge of serving while I was a student. It may not have been the most impressive job title, but I was given ownership over a portion of the game, and I’ve loved serving ever since. We weren’t the most sophisticated in our charting, calling, or evaluating our results and opponents at that time, but I grew through that experience to have a great appreciation for serving - the one part of the game that is action instead of reaction. Many times over my years of coaching, we didn’t match up athletically with another team. If score was taken after hitting lines, we would have been crushed. However, control of first ball contact can drastically change the outcome of a match, and it has benefitted us much more than it has hurt us. It allows the smaller team to compete with bigger teams, and it can frustrate opposing teams into many errors. On the other end of the serving spectrum, I once coached against a college team that served at almost 99 percent accuracy for the season. This was shortly after the rule change that allowed serve reception with hands. Knowing that it would be a good challenge for our team, I challenged our team to receive every ball with their hands. We did, we were in system almost the entire match, and we won easily. Our opponent was unwilling to risk missing a serve, but they allowed our middle-dominant team to remain in system. A bit of aggressiveness by our opponent would have made it challenging for our team to win, but that is something they just weren’t

42

Benefits of serving aggressively: 1. It is easier for your players to play aggressively in other aspects of the game. It’s hard for a player to be taught to never miss a serve while being expected to attack the ball aggressively when set. 2. The passers on your team will very rarely see anything in a game that is more difficult to pass than what they see in practice. How to get your players to serve aggressively: 1. Green light from the coach, depending on the situation. Don’t pull a kid, roll your eyes, slam your clipboard, etc. when misses happen. You know they’re going to happen, so move on. A simple phrase like “Way to be aggressive!”, “Good aggressive attempt!” etc. will give a player confidence to continue pushing it on the serve. 2. Understand what zones your player is most comfortable serving. Teach confidence in serving other zones, but know their strengths. If it is match point and there are two below average passers on the other side of the net, you need to know if one of them is standing in the zone your player loves serving. 3. Don’t ever yell “Just get it in” right before a player serves. You might as well take the ball, walk over to the other team, and hand it to their next server. Using a directive such as “Make a good toss” gets the server to focus on the process instead of the result at a critical moment. 4. Explain to the team why it’s important to serve aggressively. They will buy in, but they need to understand why it’s helpful. The scoreboard, their parents in the car

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

Complete Printing Solutions

AmbroseAD3.75x5.qxd:new ambrose bc_1

At Regions, we know our customers want a banking experience that’s personal, helpful and seSimple and reliable cure. And when you bank with us, that’s exactly what you’ll get. We’re dedicated to sound bankhasthatalways been a good way–to ing practices are effective in any environment so go. you can reach for your goals with more peace of mind. Most of all, dedicated to putting you first. Come seeand what At Regions, we know ourwe’re customers want a banking experience that’s personal, helpful se- over 8 million And when you bank with us, that’s exactly what you’ll We’re dedicatedit’s to sound customerscure. across 16 states have already discovered – get. with Regions, timebankto expect more. ing practices that are effective in any environment – so you can reach for your goals with more peace of mind. Most of all, we’re dedicated to putting you first. Come see what over 8 million customers across 16 states have already discovered – with Regions, it’s time to expect more.

on the way home, and a general human desire to not make mistakes tells them otherwise. 5. Practice, practice, practice! Practice serving in pressure situations in practice, so that the pressure felt in games is similar to what they have experienced before. Every experienced coach knows that hitting percentage is the greatest indicator of success in volleyball. Serving is an area that is often overlooked in affecting your opponents’ ability to attack at a high level. Focus on controlling first ball contact, and great things will follow. (Deane Webb serves as the head volleyball coach at Belmont University and as the director for Alliance Volleyball Club, one of the largest club programs in the Southeast based at A-Game in Franklin, Tenn. At the collegiate level, he has coached seven teams (four at NCAA DI and three at NAIA) that have finished the season in the top 25 in aces per game. His career collegiate coaching record is 297-163, has been to the NCAA tournament twice, won an NCCAA National Championship, and has worked with two club teams that finished the season in the top three in the highest division of their age group at junior nationals.)

1.800.regions | regions.com

Printing Co.

4/19/10

12:30 PM

Page 1

Established in 1865

This publication is proudly produced by Ambrose Printing. We support local sporting endeavors, athletes and business; since 1865. Contact an Ambrose sales representative to discuss your project in detail.

Visit our website to learn more.

www.ambroseprint.com

1.800.regions | regions.com

© 2009 Regions Bank. © 2009 Regions Bank.

210 Cumberland Bend 1-800-334-6524 PO Box 280387 615-256-1151 Nashville, TN 37228 Fax 615-256-6940

A·GAME Athlete of the Month

A-Game of Cool Springs is the premier sports training and development destination for youth athletes, specializing in volleyball, hockey and basketball. With a state-of-the-art facility, including two full rinks, six basketball courts and 12 volleyball courts, and the most knowledgeable staff and coaches in Middle Tennessee, no other facility compares.

If you want to bring your A•Game, play at

A•Game

Courtney Smith Sophomore

Alliance Volleyball Club at A-Game & Bowling Green HS Volleyball team Outside Hitter 6’-0” right handed Approach jump is 9’-8” Sports Achievements Courtney, the captain on her high school and club teams, is an all-around player who can hit the ball from anywhere on the court. She plays high above the net, hitting the ball line or angle. Courtney has also developed shots off the block and rolls & tips. She has an incredible float serve that always gets the score. A leader in aces, Courtney is a go to player in front and she can bomb it from the back. • Set school records with 30 kills in a single match and 780 kills in a whole season • First Team All-State her sophomore year • District and Region MVP her sophomore year • All-District her freshman year Grade Point Average: 3.9

A-Game • 215 Gothic Court • Franklin, TN 37067 • (615) 771-2444 • www.GoAGame.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

43


What is a Concussion? • Change in sleep pattern • Concentration / memory problems

Post-Concussion Syndrome

There are athletes who experience chronic cognitive and neurobehavioral difficulties related to the concussion. Symptoms may include chronic headaches, fatigue, sleep difficulties, personality change (e.g. increased irritability, emotionality), sensitivity to light/ noise, dizziness when standing quickly, deficits in shortconcussion is a disturbance in normal brain term memory, problem solving & general academic function that occurs following a blow to the functioning. This constellation of symptoms is referred to “Post-Concussion Syndrome”. In some cases, such head. In the US, the annual incidence of difficulties can be permanent and disabling. In addition sports-related concussion is estimated at 300,000. to Post-Concussion Syndrome, suffering a second blow The likelihood of an athlete in a contact sport expeto the head while recovering from an initial concussion riencing a concussion may be as high as 19% per season. Although the majority of athletes who experi- can have catastrophic consequences as in the case of ence a concussion are likely to recover, an unknown “Second Impact Syndrome,” which has led to approxinumber of these individuals may experience chronic mately 30-40 deaths over the past decade. cognitive and neurobehavioral difficulties related to recurrent injury.

A

Recovery: Consult a Doctor!

Common Signs and Symptoms: Signs observed • Dazed / stunned appearance • Confused about assignment • Forgets plays • Unsure of game, score, or opponent • Moves clumsily • Answers questions slowly • Loss of consciousness (even temporarily) • Behavior / personality changes • Forgets events prior/after hit Signs reported by athlete • Headache • Nausea • Balance problems /dizziness • Double / fuzzy vision • Sensitivity to light / noise • Feeling sluggish • Feeling “foggy”

Athletes not fully recovered from a concussion are significantly vulnerable for a second concussive injury. No athlete should return to sport or participation when symptoms of concussion are present and recovery is ongoing.

Treatment

The goal of treatment is to allow the brain injury to heal. Concussions are treated differently depending on their level of severity. Treatment may include: Rest. Do not rush back into daily activities for work or school. Preventing re-injury - avoid activities that might jolt or jar your head. Never return to a sports activity until you are cleared by your Doctor. Observation by a responsible adult. Someone may need to awaken you every few hours as advised by your Doctor/Certified Athletic Trainer. Limiting exposure to drugs - do not take medicines without your doctor’s permission: no aspirin, blood thinners, ibuprofen, drugs that cause drowsiness. Avoid use of alcohol or illicit drugs.

Recommendation #1

Recommendation #5

No adolescent with a concussion should continue to play or return to a game after sustaining a concussion.

No athletes should return to contact competitive sports until they are symptom-free, both at rest and with exercises and have normal neuro-cognitive testing. When they have no headaches or other concussion symptoms, athletes begin a graduated returnto-play exercise program as directed by a Doctor. If headaches or other symptoms occur, during any step, the activity needs to be stopped and the Doctor should be contacted.

Recommendation #2 An individual sustaining a concussion should cease doing any activity that causes the symptoms of a concussion to increase (e.g. headaches, nausea, etc.).

Recommendation #3

Recommendation #6

School attendance and activities may need to be modified. While some individuals may be able to attend school without increasing their symptoms, the majority may need some modifications depending on the symptoms. If noise increases symptoms, avoid loud music, dances and parties until noise sensitivity is gone. If light causes increased symptoms, avoid bright sunlight and exposure to flashing lights (computer games).

All sports and health education programs should teach students the specific signs and symptoms of concussions. Instructors must emphasize the serious consequences of ignoring concussion symptoms and the consequences that will occur if concussions are not properly treated. In summary, eachmany concussion should be treated 1. How professional sports individually. No one guideline will work for each pateams are there in Tennessee? tient. The general public, physicians, coaches, athletic trainers, parents, and the athletes themselves, 2. Whoabout is thethe only Tennessee-born must be educated signs, symptoms and treatment of concussions. Generally, the athlete may Heisman Trophy winner? be unaware that they have sustained a concussion. In order to prevent poor outcomes from concussions, it is crucial to educate athletes, parents & coaches.

Recommendation #4 Neuro-cognitive testing is an important component for the management of concussions. The use of neuro-cognitive testing is one piece of the puzzle in assessing recovery from concussions and determining the timing of return to play. It should only be used as a tool, and should not be the only deciding factor in returning a concussed athlete to play. It provides objective data and prevents athletes who hide their symptoms from returning to play before they are fully recovered. While there are several available tests to accomplish this, the one with the widest acceptance and the largest data base is the ImPACT Test. ImPACT is used by the NFL, NHL, universities and in some Tennessee high schools. Generally, the symptoms of a concussion disappear before the neuro-cognitive findings return to normal. A patient with no observable concussion symptoms may take an additional two weeks to score a “normal” ImPACT test. It is for these reasons that symptoms evaluation alone can not be used as the sole criteria for return to play.

Sports Trivia

1. 3 – Titans, Predators, and Grizzlies 2. Steve Spurrier

ASK THE TRAINER

Sports Trivia 1. What TN city is the host of the Liberty Bowl? a. Knoxville b. Nashville c. Chattanooga d. Memphis 2. What is the nickname of the great basketball rivalry games played between Belmont and Lipscomb? 1. Memphis 2. “Battle of the Boulevard”

44

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

45


What is a Concussion? • Change in sleep pattern • Concentration / memory problems

Post-Concussion Syndrome

There are athletes who experience chronic cognitive and neurobehavioral difficulties related to the concussion. Symptoms may include chronic headaches, fatigue, sleep difficulties, personality change (e.g. increased irritability, emotionality), sensitivity to light/ noise, dizziness when standing quickly, deficits in shortconcussion is a disturbance in normal brain term memory, problem solving & general academic function that occurs following a blow to the functioning. This constellation of symptoms is referred to “Post-Concussion Syndrome”. In some cases, such head. In the US, the annual incidence of difficulties can be permanent and disabling. In addition sports-related concussion is estimated at 300,000. to Post-Concussion Syndrome, suffering a second blow The likelihood of an athlete in a contact sport expeto the head while recovering from an initial concussion riencing a concussion may be as high as 19% per season. Although the majority of athletes who experi- can have catastrophic consequences as in the case of ence a concussion are likely to recover, an unknown “Second Impact Syndrome,” which has led to approxinumber of these individuals may experience chronic mately 30-40 deaths over the past decade. cognitive and neurobehavioral difficulties related to recurrent injury.

A

Recovery: Consult a Doctor!

Common Signs and Symptoms: Signs observed • Dazed / stunned appearance • Confused about assignment • Forgets plays • Unsure of game, score, or opponent • Moves clumsily • Answers questions slowly • Loss of consciousness (even temporarily) • Behavior / personality changes • Forgets events prior/after hit Signs reported by athlete • Headache • Nausea • Balance problems /dizziness • Double / fuzzy vision • Sensitivity to light / noise • Feeling sluggish • Feeling “foggy”

Athletes not fully recovered from a concussion are significantly vulnerable for a second concussive injury. No athlete should return to sport or participation when symptoms of concussion are present and recovery is ongoing.

Treatment

The goal of treatment is to allow the brain injury to heal. Concussions are treated differently depending on their level of severity. Treatment may include: Rest. Do not rush back into daily activities for work or school. Preventing re-injury - avoid activities that might jolt or jar your head. Never return to a sports activity until you are cleared by your Doctor. Observation by a responsible adult. Someone may need to awaken you every few hours as advised by your Doctor/Certified Athletic Trainer. Limiting exposure to drugs - do not take medicines without your doctor’s permission: no aspirin, blood thinners, ibuprofen, drugs that cause drowsiness. Avoid use of alcohol or illicit drugs.

Recommendation #1

Recommendation #5

No adolescent with a concussion should continue to play or return to a game after sustaining a concussion.

No athletes should return to contact competitive sports until they are symptom-free, both at rest and with exercises and have normal neuro-cognitive testing. When they have no headaches or other concussion symptoms, athletes begin a graduated returnto-play exercise program as directed by a Doctor. If headaches or other symptoms occur, during any step, the activity needs to be stopped and the Doctor should be contacted.

Recommendation #2 An individual sustaining a concussion should cease doing any activity that causes the symptoms of a concussion to increase (e.g. headaches, nausea, etc.).

Recommendation #3

Recommendation #6

School attendance and activities may need to be modified. While some individuals may be able to attend school without increasing their symptoms, the majority may need some modifications depending on the symptoms. If noise increases symptoms, avoid loud music, dances and parties until noise sensitivity is gone. If light causes increased symptoms, avoid bright sunlight and exposure to flashing lights (computer games).

All sports and health education programs should teach students the specific signs and symptoms of concussions. Instructors must emphasize the serious consequences of ignoring concussion symptoms and the consequences that will occur if concussions are not properly treated. In summary, eachmany concussion should be treated 1. How professional sports individually. No one guideline will work for each pateams are there in Tennessee? tient. The general public, physicians, coaches, athletic trainers, parents, and the athletes themselves, 2. Whoabout is thethe only Tennessee-born must be educated signs, symptoms and treatment of concussions. Generally, the athlete may Heisman Trophy winner? be unaware that they have sustained a concussion. In order to prevent poor outcomes from concussions, it is crucial to educate athletes, parents & coaches.

Recommendation #4 Neuro-cognitive testing is an important component for the management of concussions. The use of neuro-cognitive testing is one piece of the puzzle in assessing recovery from concussions and determining the timing of return to play. It should only be used as a tool, and should not be the only deciding factor in returning a concussed athlete to play. It provides objective data and prevents athletes who hide their symptoms from returning to play before they are fully recovered. While there are several available tests to accomplish this, the one with the widest acceptance and the largest data base is the ImPACT Test. ImPACT is used by the NFL, NHL, universities and in some Tennessee high schools. Generally, the symptoms of a concussion disappear before the neuro-cognitive findings return to normal. A patient with no observable concussion symptoms may take an additional two weeks to score a “normal” ImPACT test. It is for these reasons that symptoms evaluation alone can not be used as the sole criteria for return to play.

Sports Trivia

1. 3 – Titans, Predators, and Grizzlies 2. Steve Spurrier

ASK THE TRAINER

Sports Trivia 1. What TN city is the host of the Liberty Bowl? a. Knoxville b. Nashville c. Chattanooga d. Memphis 2. What is the nickname of the great basketball rivalry games played between Belmont and Lipscomb? 1. Memphis 2. “Battle of the Boulevard”

44

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

45


I

t was March 1991 and I stopped by Martin Luther King Magnet School to do a story on their basketball team which had just earned a spot in the Tennessee Secondary Schools Athletic Association (TSSAA) state high school basketball tournament. I knew the coach, James “Doc” Shelton, and always liked his style – straight forward and a dynamite innova-

tor. The team had a couple of standouts – two brothers Mike and Joey Mitchell, a couple of sandy-haired “Huck Finn” looking kids with big smiles and a love of the game. Mike was an all-state

46

senior forward, averaging 20 points per game and the team’s leading rebounder. His sophomore brother Joey pounded the boards and the team’s defensive stopper. After the story, we followed them to the state tournament. They won their opening game with Mike the high scorer. The semi-final game was Friday afternoon at 4 p.m. and I’ll be if they didn’t win that one as well earning a spot in the coveted championship game that would be played on Saturday afternoon also at 4 p.m. I mention the starting times of the games because there was a ‘catch’ – one that Coach Shelton and the team had known about all along.

ASK THE AD

The Mitchell brothers were devout Seventh Day Adventist and their religion didn’t allow them to take part in any social or athletic events from 6 p.m. on Friday through 6 p.m. on Saturday. They were expected to be in church. But, surely with a state championship on the line and a once-in-a-lifetime opportu-

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

nity in front of them their parents and church would understand. But, it never got that far because the Mitchell brothers, without long, droopy faces, simply made it plain that they wouldn’t be playing. State championship or not, their faith came first. And so on that special Saturday afternoon at 4 p.m., after an inspired locker room speech from Coach Shelton, Martin Luther King took the court with substitutes in the starting lineup while their two star players were attending church back in Nashville. Playing with passion and a gritty determination and in nailbiting fashion Martin Luther King Magnet School shocked all of us covering the tournament by winning the state championship – a state championship that the team dedicated to their two missing ‘brothers.’ About 7 p.m. that night, about an hour after the game was over, Mike and Joey walked into the gym to a standing ovation by the crowd. They hugged and celebrated with their teammates who were still there. The young men who played, found out that believing can result in miracles, and a whole city saw a shining example that there’s more to life that just playing a game – even a state championship game. By the way, Mike was named tournament MVP even though he didn’t play in the championship game.

50% off

all laser skincare packages Bellevue Medispa

Lipscomb University

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

47


I

t was March 1991 and I stopped by Martin Luther King Magnet School to do a story on their basketball team which had just earned a spot in the Tennessee Secondary Schools Athletic Association (TSSAA) state high school basketball tournament. I knew the coach, James “Doc” Shelton, and always liked his style – straight forward and a dynamite innova-

tor. The team had a couple of standouts – two brothers Mike and Joey Mitchell, a couple of sandy-haired “Huck Finn” looking kids with big smiles and a love of the game. Mike was an all-state

46

senior forward, averaging 20 points per game and the team’s leading rebounder. His sophomore brother Joey pounded the boards and the team’s defensive stopper. After the story, we followed them to the state tournament. They won their opening game with Mike the high scorer. The semi-final game was Friday afternoon at 4 p.m. and I’ll be if they didn’t win that one as well earning a spot in the coveted championship game that would be played on Saturday afternoon also at 4 p.m. I mention the starting times of the games because there was a ‘catch’ – one that Coach Shelton and the team had known about all along.

ASK THE AD

The Mitchell brothers were devout Seventh Day Adventist and their religion didn’t allow them to take part in any social or athletic events from 6 p.m. on Friday through 6 p.m. on Saturday. They were expected to be in church. But, surely with a state championship on the line and a once-in-a-lifetime opportu-

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com

nity in front of them their parents and church would understand. But, it never got that far because the Mitchell brothers, without long, droopy faces, simply made it plain that they wouldn’t be playing. State championship or not, their faith came first. And so on that special Saturday afternoon at 4 p.m., after an inspired locker room speech from Coach Shelton, Martin Luther King took the court with substitutes in the starting lineup while their two star players were attending church back in Nashville. Playing with passion and a gritty determination and in nailbiting fashion Martin Luther King Magnet School shocked all of us covering the tournament by winning the state championship – a state championship that the team dedicated to their two missing ‘brothers.’ About 7 p.m. that night, about an hour after the game was over, Mike and Joey walked into the gym to a standing ovation by the crowd. They hugged and celebrated with their teammates who were still there. The young men who played, found out that believing can result in miracles, and a whole city saw a shining example that there’s more to life that just playing a game – even a state championship game. By the way, Mike was named tournament MVP even though he didn’t play in the championship game.

50% off

all laser skincare packages Bellevue Medispa

Lipscomb University

www.midtnsportsmag.com • May 2010 • Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine

47


belmont university Athletics

HoME of CHAMPioNS

45 ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District Honorees 28 Atlantic Sun Conference Championships 9 Conference Coaches of the Year 8 NCAA Tournament Appearances 7-Time Winner of Conference All-Academic Trophy Department GPA: 3.184

www.belmontbruins.com 48

Middle Tennessee Sports Magazine • May 2010 • www.midtnsportsmag.com


May 2010