TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Barrett Jones is reminded of his lost teammate sometimes when he sees the empty locker that once belonged to Aaron Douglas. The University of Alabama football players need only drive a short distance from campus to see the wreckage from a deadly tornado that struck the town and surrounding communities in the spring.
HATTIESBURG -- The two huge scars that run down the sides of Tim Green's neck have faded slightly over the months. That doesn't mean the Southern Miss linebacker has forgotten how lucky he is to be running around a football field on a steamy Friday morning that marked the Golden Eagles' first preseason practice.
STARKVILLE -- It was a large day of firsts for the Mississippi State football program. Whether it was a first look in a maroon and white jersey or a first time getting significant playing time with the first string, MSU coach Dan Mullen had a lot to watch in the Bulldogs' opening day of practice for the 2011 season.
OXFORD -- Twenty-six new players, including 19 members of the state's top recruiting class, were welcomed to the University of Mississippi football program Thursday, as newcomers reported for the start of preseason camp.
MACON -- Scott Parenteau's job is to keep the momentum rolling. Word already is out that the Noxubee County High School football team will play host to Louisville High as part of season three of Cellular South's "Y'all vs. Us" prep football series.
There's bad and then there's really bad. From Madison Clark's perspective, the Heritage Academy girls soccer team had left bad behind in its first games at the Lee University Soccer Camp and was trying to avoid having multiple uses of really associated with its play. Then something changed.
CALEDONIA -- Elisha Collins was concerned. On paper, Collins knew the Caledonia High School volleyball team lost key pieces from the 2010 team that advanced to the Mississippi High School Activities Association Division I State Tournament.
PHEBA -- Making adjustments sounds simple. But it's easy to lose sight of the little things when the adrenaline is flowing and the pitcher is rushing the ball to the plate. Three times Katlyn Petty tried to get a hit against Chloe Tapley. Three times she struck out. Her fourh at-bat was different in a big way.
STARKVILLE -- James Carmon has soaked up every piece of advice and studied tirelessly to complete his offseason transition from backup defensive tackle to starting offensive tackle.
STARKVILLE -- One phone call is all it took for Mississippi State baseball coach John Cohen to be assured each of his three drafted high school signees would arrive on campus this month. MSU signee Jacob Lindgren, a left-handed pitcher from St. Stanislaus High School, confirmed in a text response Wednesday afternoon he would be "coming to college" instead of taking a contract offer from Major League Baseball's Chicago Cubs.
STARKVILLE -- Accountability is paramount in college soccer.
STEENS -- Football is football. It sounds simple, but that's how Greg Watkins has approached his transition from Hebron Christian to Immanuel Christian.
STEENS -- The bar has been raised. A loss in the first round of the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools Division II tournament gave the Immanuel Christian girls soccer team a taste of the postseason in 2010.
The best advice my parents gave me was to find a profession that suited my personality and passion. It was easy for me to see that's what they did. My mother worked for years as a registered nurse, while my father was employed as a chef at country clubs, restaurants, and health care facilities.
OXFORD -- Newcomers to the University of Mississippi football team will report Thursday and varsity players will report to campus Friday.
STARKVILLE -- Anxious to return to the field, members of Mississippi State's football team reported to campus Monday. Players unanimously agree maintenance to sustain the team's intensity and work ethic wasn't needed despite new-found success and accolades after a 9-4 season and a top-25 ranking.
Opposing quarterbacks beware. Blake Sharp is a changed man, and he is about to drop some knowledge on you.
WEST POINT -- Mamie Allen didn't look different. But when you factored in temperatures near 100 degrees with a weekend off following a season-opening victory, something appeared not right with the junior right-hander.
The summer is Chloe Tapley's time. Ever since she can remember, the time after one school year and the period before the beginning of another season has been one to relax, to recharge, and to improve.
STARKVILLE -- The motto of Mississippi State's football team has been "go from good to great." When players report to campus Monday for preseason camp, they'll be in an unfamiliar position coming off a winning season and a bowl victory.
1. Arkansas-Pine Bluff hands MSU its first loss COLLEGE SPORTS
2. MSU announces pricing plans for new Dudy Noble COLLEGE SPORTS
3. MSU men need two wins, help to get SEC bye COLLEGE SPORTS
4. Rankin has Aberdeen boys focused on state title LOCAL COLUMNS