STARKVILLE -- For the first time this season, Mississippi State defensive tackle tandem Fletcher Cox and Josh Boyd dominated the line of scrimmage. Cox and Boyd, who had been nominated as Southeastern Conference second-team selections, combined for 13 tackles, two and a half sacks, and four and a half tackles for loss Saturday in a 14-12 loss to the No. 15 University of South Carolina.
STARKVILLE -- Mississippi State sophomore quarterback Tyler Russell provided a spark Saturday afternoon. However, the spark wasn't enough to put the Bulldogs in the win column for the first time this season in the Southeastern Conference. MSU couldn't make a fourth-quarter lead hold up, falling 14-12 to No. 15 South Carolina at Davis Wade Stadium.
OXFORD -- The University of Alabama's Trent Richardson now has his signature Heisman Trophy highlight. The Crimson Tide's bullish back set career marks with 183 yards rushing and four touchdowns and destroyed the University of Mississippi's defense with a 76-yard touchdown run that displayed his uncommon power and speed in a 52-7 win Saturday night.
JACKSON -- Mackenzie Harvey couldn't escape the butterflies. As an eighth-grader, she had imagined what it would be like to start for the New Hope High School varsity slow-pitch softball team in a state title series, but she didn't realize it would feel like this when she finally earned her chance. She also didn't know her nerves would make even the simplest things -- like catching an underhanded toss from pitcher Anna McCrary -- so difficult. But Harvey and the rest of the Lady Trojans showed Saturday they were up for the challenge and then some.
JACKSON -- Anna McCrary and Kasey Stanfield operate well in stealth mode. It didn't matter they were lugging a blue cooler filled with ice that rustled as they tried to crouch down and avoid being seen by their coach.
POPLARVILLE -- Three unanswered second-quarter touchdowns helped propel the No. 3 East Mississippi Community College football team to a 41-17 victory against Pearl River C.C. in a non-division MACJC game at Dobie Holden Stadium.
STARKVILLE -- Mississippi State football coach Dan Mullen started watching a videotape of the University of South Carolina's offense and wondered if he had put in a tape of his guys. The Bulldogs third-year coach preached Monday that fans who show up to Davis Wade Stadium at 11:21 a.m. today (WCBI) to watch MSU take on No. 15 South Carolina will see teams very similar in style.
STARKVILLE -- Friday night at Humphrey Coliseum was an evening of firsts for the Mississippi State basketball programs. For the first time in more than a decade, MSU celebrated in a public Maroon Madness pep rally for the fans to get an initial look at the teams for the 2011-12 season.
The New Hope High School football team's defense spent much of Friday night on the field, and the offense struggled to get in a groove. That combination spelled doom for New Hope in a 15-12 loss to Lake Cormorant in a Class 5A, Region 1 game at Trojan Field.
The New Hope High School slow-pitch softball team will take the final step today. Thirteen times previously, the Lady Trojans have celebrated that last step with a championship. At 11 a.m. today, New Hope (23-7) will take on Picayune in the Mississippi High School Activities Association Class 5A best-of-three state title series for a chance to win the 14th state championship, and fifth in a row, in program history. The past two championships have come in Class 5A.
STARKVILLE -- The Starkville High School football team recovered four Canton fumbles, and running back Preston Baker scored two touchdowns to lead the Yellow Jackets to a 45-8 win Friday night. The blowout win keeps the Jackets (6-2, 4-0) undefeated in the Mississippi High School Activities Association Class 5A, Region 2 standings and clinches a playoff berth.
At 6-foot-3, Michael Graise is an imposing sight at defensive end. Graise is even more dominating on the basketball court. His leaping ability gives him the ups to touch the top of the box on the backboard. Fortunately, Graise knows when to jump for the sky and when to hold a little something back.
LOUISVILLE -- The Louisville High School football team scored on its first play from scrimmage The Caledonia Confederates committed a turnover on their first play. It was that kind of night as the Wildcats were dominant in a 42-0 shutout Friday night. Louisville built a 21-0 lead in the first quarter and never looked back.
WEST POINT -- West Point High School junior tailback Tez Lane readily admits his team struggled through the first four weeks of the prep football season. Lane also readily admits those struggles are in the past.
STARKVILLE -- For the first time in program history, the Mississippi State volleyball team defeated a ranked opponent. It accomplished that feat Friday night in front of the largest crowd to see a match at the school.
LOUISVILLE -- The Starkville Academy football team's tune-up for East Rankin couldn't have went smoother. Starkville Academy rushed for 378 yards and cruised to a 55-12 win at Winston Academy on Friday night.
STARKVILLE -- Matt Wyatt is convinced he has a good idea what is going through the minds of Chris Relf and Tyler Russell this week. He feels that way because he experienced something similar for four years.
The Starkville Academy football team secured its first football playoff berth in six seasons last week with a victory. The Volunteers don't plan to stop and celebrate now. Starkville Academy (7-1) will play its final non-division game of the season at 7 p.m. when it travels to Louisville to take on Winston Academy.
STARKVILLE -- Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen responded to talk radio chatter about play calling in the second half of MSU's 21-3 victory last weekend at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
MACON -- Brandon Johnson's list is finally dwindling to nothing. As the certified athletic trainer who works with the Noxubee County High School football team, Johnson has been busy with myriad injuries that have kept the Tigers from being at full strength for nearly the entire season.