Looking for hoops? Go to BIGGersville Saturday

BIGG Christmas Classic

Saturday at Biggersville

Southaven will be without Ole Miss commit Terence Davis (in Montgomery for the MS-AL Game) but the finale of the BIGG Classic should still be a fun one.

Also below is the East Webster Shootout in the Wolves’ new digs.

9 a.m. (G) Ashland vs. Booneville

10 (B) Ashland vs. Alcorn Central

Noon (B) Holly Springs vs. Ingomar

1:30 p.m. (B) West Point vs. Booneville

3 (G) West Point vs. Biggersville

4:30 (B) Shannon vs. DeSoto Central

6 (B) Nettleton vs. Biggersville

7:30 (B) Southaven vs. Corinth

Beef O’ Brady’s Wolverine Shootout

Today at East Webster

1 p.m. (B) Kossuth vs. Choctaw Central

2:30 (B) Calhoun City vs. West Lowndes

4 (B) French Camp vs. Eupora

5:30 (G) East Webstervs. East Union

7 (B) East Webster vs. East Union

Posted in Basketball, Recruiting

BREAKING: New Albany to name Hill new football coach

New Albany has made official what sources confirmed to the Daily Journal’s John Davis and Brandon Speck that Oxford assistant Jake Hill has been approved as its new head football coach.

“I am super excited. Being my first head coaching job at an unbelievable place,” said Hill, son of Oxford coach Johnny Hill, “we’ve got an administration wanting to win and wanting to do it the right way. Again, I’m just super excited to be able to work for those guys, to be a part of that football team and that community.”

Hill, defensive backs coach and co-defensive coordinator, takes over for Ron Price, who stepped down after seven years. Price went 44-40 and won two division titles.

Hill, 36, helped Oxford to the last two Class 5A title games. He accepted the job on Thursday.

There will be a meet-and-greet with Hill at 6 p.m. on Tuesday.

More on Hill from John Davis

Sources say Hill was approved last night.

Posted in Football

Scores from Thursday, Dec 11

(G) Vardaman 51, Hebron Christian 49
(G) Hickory Flat 45, Blue Mountain 43
(G) East Webster 52, French Camp 34
(G) Baldwyn 64, Okolona 24
(G) Biggersville 74, Myrtle 45
(B) Hebron Christian 59, Vardaman 23
(B) Biggersville 71, Myrtle 68
(B) Baldwyn 70, Okolona 36
(B) Blue Mountain 48, Hickory Flat 43
(B) Marshall Academy 59, West Memphis Christian 29

(G) Mooreville 8, Strayhorn 1

(G) Tupelo 6, Starkville 2
(B) Tupelo 7, Starkville 1

Posted in Sports

Bruce Ole Miss commit to sign with EMCC

Bruce WR/S Jay Johnson, an Ole Miss WR commit, tells the Journal’s Gene Phelps he will sign with East Mississippi. Johnson still plans on attending Ole Miss after a year with the reigning NJCAA champs.

Johnson had 11 catches for 202 yards and a touchdown for Bruce. He was mainly used at running back, where he rushed 75 times for 362 yards and eight touchdowns. On defense, he had 26 tackles, five for loss. He also had two fumble recoveries and a blocked field goal.

Posted in Football, Recruiting

Belmont coach Moody steps down


Belmont football coach Kerry Moody has stepped down. Moody, Cardinals’ coach for 12 years, tells me via text he will remain as the school’s AD and will assist the principal in the coaching search.

In 2010, Moody led the Cardinals to an undefeated regular season and finished at 12-1 with a loss at Aberdeen in the third round of the Class 3A playoffs.

Elsewhere, New Albany hasn’t made a hire yet, but I hear they have interviewed more than 10 people. The interest is high.

Posted in Sports

Week 3 Daily Journal Hoops Rankings

*Records updated through Monday


1. Pontotoc 9-0

2. Itawamba AHS 7-2

3. Booneville 9-1

4. Tupelo 4-2

5. Belmont 5-1

6. Ripley 9-1

7. H.W. Byers 5-2

8. New Albany 6-1

9. Starkville 6-1

10. New Site 5-5


1. Baldwyn 6-0

2. Aberdeen 6-0

3. Corinth 5-1

4. Oxford 7-0

5. Saltillo 10-0

6. Ripley 11-0

7. Tupelo 6-2

8. Pontotoc 7-2

9. Calhoun City 5-2

10. New Albany 3-1

Posted in Basketball

Highlights: Tupelo gets a big win over Aberdeen

No. 7 Tupelo is starting to make a statement. The Golden Wave beat No. 2 Aberdeen 79-52 on Tuesday.

Senior guard Antonio Green is averaging more than 20 points a game for Tupelo (7-2). He had a game-high 24 and you can see an emphatic Tre Jenkins slam below.

Aberdeen (6-1) took its first loss, despite 19 points from Marcus Carouthers.

Thanks to Braden Bishop’s WTHS crew for the highlight package.

Posted in Basketball, Recruiting, Sports

Scores from Tuesday, Dec. 9

(G) North Pontotoc 51, Pine Grove 27
(G) Itawamba AHS 59, Corinth 40
(G) TCPS 43, Falkner 38
(G) New Albany 66, Byhalia 59
(G) Calhoun City 90, Houlka 39
(G) Belmont 62, Mantachie 35
(G) Blue Mountain 52, Myrtle 49
(G) Shannon 52, Nettleton 46
(G) Tishomingo County 47, Mooreville 44
(G) Walnut 61, East Union 45
(G) Tupelo 55, Aberdeen 27
(G) Vardaman 54, Ethel 44
(G) Ingomar 54, Hickory Flat 30
(G) South Pontotoc 87, Tremont 21
(G) Jumpertown 52, Wheeler 50
(G) Ripley 68, Senatobia 28
(B) Ethel 59, Vardaman 39
(B) North Pontotoc 51, Pine Grove 28
(B) Shannon 57, Nettleton 54
(B) Belmont 87, Mantachie 36
(B) Tupelo 79, Aberdeen 52
(B) Ingomar 71, Hickory Flat 64
(B) Calhoun City 83, Houlka 48
(B) Oxford 84, Charleston 64
(B) Wheeler 68, Jumpertown 59
(B) Myrtle 66, Blue Mountain 54
(B) Mooreville 63, Tishomingo County 55
(B) Walnut 56, East Union 43
(B) Marshall Academy 68, DeSoto, Ark. 26
(B) Ripley 93, Senatobia 72

Posted in Sports

SPECK: Recruiting would be great for Mississippi high schools


Open it up, Don. Staff to ground. Red Sea parted. Walk on through.

If the Mississippi High School Activities Association truly wants what is best for Mississippi high school athletes (and I mostly believe it does), then take your foot off the throat.

It will take all of 22 seconds for someone to email me a rebuttal with an argument against what I’m about to say. And some of those will be accurate. But nothing is perfect and nothing is done without work. So this, as crazy as it sounds and as much as some won’t agree, could – and should – happen.

Take down this faux wall of recruiting and let players play where they want. The current district lines are nothing but a hinder, anyway. Think about it like this. What if my son goes to Pine Grove because I live in the Pine Grove district. Pine Grove doesn’t have a football team. One summer, my kid grows to about 6-foot-8 with great hands and a huge build, I mean Rob Gronkowski build. The MHSAA says he can’t go to Corinth and play football.

Does that not harm my child just because of where I live? What if your daughter plays a mean trumpet and goes to a school without band? That can cost her – and your wallet – a scholarship, all because of where you live.

Not to get all rebel on you, but if you and me are willing to drive our children, or let our children drive to a school 25 miles from our front door, shouldn’t that be ok? Right now (and I know there are rules people think are good behind it), the MHSAA tells you what is best for your kid. If it requires tuition and the parents want to pay it, cool. If a booster wants to pay tuition for an asset to the baseball team, good.

There would have to be rules. Maybe you put a two-move limit on it. If I’m playing at Booneville and basketball coach Michael Smith really ticks off my 16-year-old ego and I want to move, I can, but can’t play until next year. If daddy is made about playing time and moves his daughter from Tremont to Smithville, can’t play until next year. Want to move before a school year? Go for it: eligible. But can only do that twice. And once you start a year, you’re there, happy with playing time or not. You can’t play football with Duke Upshaw at Baldwyn and baseball with Jacob Wilcher at Kossuth, at least not in the same year.

There would pop up negatives, but here is an overwhelming positive. It would bring to the top of the foam the coaches who care and the ones who couldn’t care less. It would expose the schools who take pride in its programs and embarrass the ones that don’t. Kids would flock to great coaches and facilities, i.e. the mass cry for Cliff Little to be the new girls coach at Biggersville. The coaches not getting flocked to, the reasons would be obvious. Want kids? Make sure they know (insert school) cares about their sports, does everything possible to invest in said sport and hires coaches worth their salt. If it costs some schools their programs, there would be a good reason.

National prep basketball is successful because players go where they have the best chance to succeed. It would work the same way for public and private school sports and education.

It would once and for all do away with the private school argument and be a level ground for all. Right now, some have to go by the rules and some don’t, public and private. According to the MHSAA, moves are NEVER granted for athletic purposes. But this Cathedral QB situation, family is quoted as saying his move was for football. The MHSAA struck out of the Jeremy Newsome situation a few years back and a more recent softball transfer from Eupora.

The MHSAA can’t handle the current setup. Heck, they can’t even keep fans out of media parking and pretend media out of a pressbox and out of the chicken nugget tray. And it’s okay. The setup is bad and the state needs to be opened anyway.

If not, I saw secede from the Union!

Posted in Recruiting

Hinton denies report that Cathedral QB ineligible


In a super weird story, Mississippi High School Activities Association executive director Don Hinton says he doesn’t smell what the Natchez Democrat is cooking.

Hinton, in Tupelo Monday for the District I winter meeting, denied the newspaper’s report that Natchez Cathedral quarterback Wyatt Boothe, who led his team to Friday’s 1A state championship, has been ruled ineligible.

“He’s still eligible. We haven’t ruled him ineligible,” Hinton said.

Boothe, a Louisiana resident, was once ruled ineligible after transferring from Natchez’s Trinity Episcopal, but then granted a waiver to play. Boothe’s father, Leo, told the Democrat the move was due to fear Trinity would not have enough players to field a football team in his senior year.

His eligibility was allegedly brought to the association by an opposing school during the playoffs.


Posted in Football

Video: Chargers come up short again


STARKVILLE – It happened in different fashion, but the end result is the same for Oxford.

The Chargers again came up short in the Class 5A state championship game, falling 29-26 Saturday to Laurel at Davis Wade Stadium.

Last season against Picayune, Oxford blew a 14-point fourth-quarter lead. Saturday, the Chargers chased a missed extra point, the first of a bevy of special teams errors that put the Chargers behind the 8-ball from the start.

There was a missed field goal, a squib kick Laurel recovered (but didn’t score on) and a punt snap that got away and sealed the loss.Down 21-19 in the fourth, Oxford was punting when Liam Cooper couldn’t field the snap. He had to fall on it at the 12. Three plays later, Dontario Drummond caught his second TD pass and Octavious Cooley a two-point pass that put Oxford up 10.

A few numbers

Oxford was out-rushed 169-76., but Jack Abraham’s 363 passing yards helped the Chargers outgain the Tornadoes 439-336. Both teams lost a fumble, Oxford at the Laurel 5 as a helmet hit the ball out of Kenzie Phillips’ hand. Laurel scored 14 points off that fumble and a Jack Abraham pick.

Phillips had a big night, 27 rushes for 103 yards and 3 TDs. Oxford WR Kyree White had seven catches for 129 yards. Jimmy Greaser had seven catches for 84 yards. Laurel QB Keon Carpenter threw for 167 yards and 3 TDs.

YouTube Preview Image
Posted in Sports

Scores from Saturday, Dec. 6

(G) Calhoun City 73, West Oktibbeha 18
(G) Nettleton 48, Hatley 27
(G) Baldwyn 55, West Point 47
(G) Starkville 48, Tupelo 47
(G) Booneville 70, East Union 25
(G) Mooreville 44, Hickory Flat 25
(G) Aberdeen 57, Okolona 41
(B) West Union 63, Hatley 48
(B) Calhoun City 83, Nettleton 58
(B) Shannon 64, Booneville 45
(B) Tupelo 68, Starkville 54
(B) Baldwyn 57, West Point 47
(B) Marshall Academy 71, Lee, Ark. 30
(B) Alcorn Central 62, East Union 50
(B) Aberdeen 81, Okolona 47
(B) Hickory Flat 89, Mooreville 80

Posted in Sports

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