SEC Player of the Year

Brent Rooker

This is 6’4” 220lbs Brent Rooker the best hitter in the SEC and the nation. Rooker has 74 hits, 25 doubles, 3 triples, 19 home runs, 65 Rbis, and 17 stolen bases. This is what scouts would call a five told player. The Mississippi first basemen has done it all for State this year and leads the SEC in all hitting categories.  In his last season “Only” hitting .324 with 11 home runs he has improved all of his number from last year to this year. This is even more impressive because there is still time left in the regular season for him to put up even more power numbers and rbis.

The most impressive part of these number is the league he is doing it in. The SEC Friday night starting pitcher is more times than not just as good as a AA professional starter according to several scouts I have talked to. Not only is Rooker having the best season of his life he is also doing it at the perfect time. Rooker is a Junior First baseball for the bulldogs which means he is draft eligible after this year. He is one of the only players that I have seen in this years draft to truly have all five tools. It is safe to say that if Mississippi State did not have the best hitter in the country that they would not be in first place in SEC west just one game ahead of LSU.

In every 9.6 at bats the Rooker goes to the plate he hits a home run. This is hitting at least two home runs every week of play. The SEC player of the year has not been announced because the season is not over, but it is safe to say that Brent Rooker’s name should be at the top of the list. In June is the MLB draft and I am excited to see where Rooker gets picked up having the type of season he is and if scouts think his number will translate to the pros.





What Makes the Nationals the Hottest team In the MLB?

The Washington Nationals are the hottest team in the MLB right now. They are the only team in the MLB to have twenty-one wins though thirty games this season. The Nationals are being led by Ryan Zimmerman who is leading the league in batting average at .435 and Rbi’s with 34. He is tied with Aaron Judge with 13 homeruns in the Mlb  and leading the NL. If the season was over today he would win the Triple crown which is one of the hardest things to accomplish in professional baseball where he leads all the hitting categories (Average, Home runs, and Runs Batted In).  One of the most interesting states that Zimmerman holds is a stat ESPN has provided “(tie game, up one or having the tying run at least on deck in seventh inning or later). He’s 5-for-11 in those spots with four home runs. Harper is 5-for-12 with one home run and four walks” Bryce harper is also another hot bat in the Nationals lineup right now and Espn is comparing the Harper- Zimmerman duo to Rizzo-Bryant duo of the Cubs team who won the World Series Last year. Along with the Nationals having the hottest hitter in the MLB they also having the NL leading pitching in Gio Gonzalez who has a incredible ERA (Earned Run Average) with a 1.64 allow opposing batters to only have a .222 batting average off him through 38.1 innings pitched.

Zimmerman- Harper

The Nationals are had a great start to the beginnings of the season, but baseball is a funny game and you never know what can happen. It is tough to keep up the numbers that Zimmerman and Gonzalez have had so far this year and only time will tell if Zimmerman has what it takes with withstand a full MLB season having the outstanding numbers he does. Thirty games is a small portion of the 168 games that they will play not including playoffs , but it is still very impressive to see the performance that the Nationals are playing at right now. The remainder of the season they will be the team to beat and this will make the stage for failure that much greater.


Fountain of Youth

When something seems to be working for the Spurs, and they refuse to discuss on it, you know it is bound to be something extraordinary. You know you’ve discovered something really interesting when former Air Force intelligence officer and current Spurs coach Gregg Popovich goes through the trouble of hiding or covering exclusive information.  That’s how we come to find ourselves talking quietly about the mystery of cold-pressed juice.

Some of the superstars of the San Antonio Spurs have created this magical juice that might be the key to their success.  Kawhi Leonard’s custom cold-pressed juice has 4d24c8555a932f53a52b182515126601been named “Kawhi-Zilla” by Spurs staff, and features strawberry, watermelon, lemon and chia seed. LaMarcus Aldridge drinks one with a label that reads “LaLa Leave My Juice Alone,” which is a mixture of pineapple, orange, strawberry, spinach and secrecy. For the last three years, nearly every player on San Antonio’s roster drinks the magic juice made by the Spurs Staff and it is made for the ultimate recovery.  The juices contain all sorts of fruits, vegetables and nutrients to help the players recovery faster for their next game.

This Magic Juice may or may not actually work but over the lasti decade the Spurs have ranked first in the league with only 1,054 missed games to injury. During the 2015-16 season, Spurs players missed only 59 games due to injury.  Is this juice the real deal?  “Man, we ain’t gonna talk about that,” Leonard says. “It’s just juice.”  The great Greg Popovich talked about how when he first became a part of the Spurs organization he was the trainer. “You guys get over there and lift those weights over there. You guys go over here … 10 times, yeah, that’s it. That’s a good weight.’ Seriously, that’s what it was like. Now, I get on the bus, and no sooner than we sit on the bus last night after the game, Will Sevening, our trainer comes on: ‘Water, water, water.’ He’s giving everybody [these drinks and says], ‘The sooner you eat, the sooner you rehydrate, the sooner you get the protein back in and the electrolytes and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, the more you’re gonna recover for tomorrow night’s game.’ And all that sort of thing. So none of that existed back in the day. Not a bit”

The Spurs have gone up 2-1 in the series with the Rockets, the Spurs have looked dominating especially Kawhi leading the charge.  Is this Magic Juice part of the Spurs success?  Only time will tell on with the old fashioned Spurs.



The Big Day

Samford baseballs own Phillip Ervin is called up for MLB Debut


It has been a long-awaited moment for Phil after being drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the first round of the 2013 draft. He had struggled for some time going through the minors but still was on the Reds top 20 prospect list. Phil Ervin said he was in shock after hearing Thursday night that the Cincinnati Reds would be calling him up to the majors. Friday afternoon, it apparently had not yet worn off. “I just feel like I’ve been so close,” Ervin said. “I’ve finally achieved it. It’s just a life goal. I don’t know how to explain it. I’m all worked up right now.” That is exciting to see someone that went to your school just a few years ago finally living out their dreams in the major leagues. It brings a sense of hope that no matter how big or small the school you go to in college is, if you are good then scouts will find you.

Phil Ervin

This year, the Phillip began the year with his first taste of Triple-A, and has started the season hot. In 14 games, he’s hit .286. He’s hit three home runs already, after never topping 14 in any minor-league season. “I feel like before I was trying to drive the ball out,” Ervin said. “I’m just having fun now and reaping the benefits.” Ervin’s stay may not be long with the Red’s because he is replacing someone on the disabled list for the time being. Ervin is expected to serve as a bench bat for a few days until the team makes another roster move. Ervin won’t let that spoil his mood as he says, “I’m just here until they tell me I’m not anymore,” he said. “I’m going to enjoy it and have fun with it.” That is a great mind set and it is best to just live in the moment and be thankful for the opportunity that is given to him. His time may be short or it may be long term, no one knows, but he has finally made a dream turn into reality and I am very happy for Phil.

Participation “Rewards”?

Parents want their children to be the best people they can possibly be and to do this, they often insert their kids into various sports and activities to build character. Refrigerators are decorated with certificates and gold stars while the walls are ornamented with ribbons, trophies, and other memorabilia. While this may seem uplifting and confidence- boosting, the message in between the lines could actually be more threatening than rewarding. In the midst of the ribbons and trophies, there is bound to be an unfortunate participation trophy.

Participation trophies have been around for years, allowing equal and fair rewards to be distributed throughout all team members and participants. Just for showing up and playing, you get a trophy. Even if you don’t play, you still get a trophy. This attempts to minimize kids “feeling bad” and acknowledge good work that was invested. However, if this is the case then children will continue growing up with this mindset. We raise kids to prepare for the real world but this is when the idea gets contradictory. We raise them as if they are entering a kind, understanding world just to tell them that the world is actually harsh, unfair, and unjust when they’re older. Participation trophies being given out as kids establish a sense that if they do something, a reward will simply be handed to you. This eventually does the opposite of its intention and inputs a lack of discipline, effort, and patience.

In 2015, Pittsburgh Steelers James Harrison spoke out on Facebook about participation trophies after his sons each received one- claiming he was going to take the trophies away.


While you should 100% earn what you receive, Kevin Kilgour of The Emory Wheel stated, “I find it unlikely that Harrison declines his paycheck following a Steelers loss, nor that he feels any better about the loss despite his reward. Likewise, participation trophies in no way deceive children into being satisfied with losing.”

Eventually, with trophies being handed out like candy to kids, the value begins to fade. Also, the outstanding participants are held to the same standard as the ones on the bench are. Participation trophies are an extra pat on back to simply going out and trying. For somebody to find something they truly love, you must fail and figure out what you are and are not good at. If trophies are being handed out “just because”, it will make the process much longer and difficult due to being blind sighted by what they really may not be good at. Losing may reduce confidence, but earning and winning is worth the effort and time put in. It helps separate those who are good and who are not. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing because nobody would want to be consumed in something they’re not good at anyway. Participation trophies encourage that idea. The extra-curricular world would be much better off by having an team dinner or banquet in honor of all the kids who came out and tried.

Would You Play?

This past Saturday a tragic accident happened to Isiah Thomas and his family.  Isaiah Thomas sister, Chyna Thomas was killed in a car acicident the day before the Celtics first round game against the Chicago Bulls.  This was shocking news to the Thomas family and everyone around the league, fans, players and organizations.  Isaiah still played in Sunday’s game with a heavy heart for his sisters passing.  Fans and players were very kind and supportive of Isaiah before, during and after the game.  The Celtics had a moment of silence for the Thomas family before the game started.  Usually Isaiah is the hype man for the Celtics but you could obviously tell that he wasn’t the same player o
n the court.

Both teams were feeling for Isaiah but when the ball tipped off all friendships and the mourning came to a halt.  Isaiah scored 33 points in Sunday’s matchup but the Celtics fell short to the Bulls taking the first game in the series.  As expected Isaiah did not show up and refused any post-game interviews.  Many reporters and NBA analysis tipped their hai (1)ts to Isaiah’s decision to play.  The issue going forward is the struggle and the sinking in of what occurred.  Isaiah will need more and more support as the series goes on.  The sadness will continue to grow as he goes home, goes to the funeral and sees all of his family and friends there that will make the emotions grow and make the comeback harder and harder.  The Celtics organization and the fans will have to support Isaiah in and out of the gym to have their leader take them to the next playoff series.

I can only imagine the turmoil that Isiah is going through.  He is an icon in Boston and a leader for the Celtics.  He will not be able to beat the Bulls by himself in his certain situation.  He will need more and more support as everything starts to sink in.  Prayers go out to the Thomas family and Isaiah especially as he performs in front of thousands of people that are counting on him to lead his team to victory.

Another Knee Injury For Derrick Rose, What Does The Future Hold?

Derrick Rose entered this season with the upmost confidence in his return as well as turning around the Knicks mojo this season. Rose believed the Knicks were one of the “super teams” on the rise of the N.B.A. even after the rough seasons the Knicks had gone through previously. After several injury enduring seasons in Chicago, he would prove, in his first season with the Knicks, that he could reclaim his spot as one of the league’s top point guards. And he would lead his teammates deep into the postseason.

Rose’s return was a big deal for me because I have followed him throughout the years and I want to see him succeed because of his hard work ethic. I have also gone through season-ending injuries and can definitely understand the frustrations Rose has. But, the Knicks season has gone anywhere but forward this season as they have struggled and Rose has become the latest casualty. He was ruled out for the season on Sunday after test scan revealed that he had a torn meniscus in his left knee that would require surgery, with weeks of recovery to follow. It is truly sad to see someone work so hard for their job and have it blown away due to a tear to the knee over and over again.

Derrick Rose Blows Knee For The Fourth Time

Rose’s career has been non stop with operations. It will be the fourth knee operation of his career, all of them within the last five years. He will now enter free agency with a renewed reputation as a talented but known to get hurt easily player, and it seems highly unlikely that any team will offer him a long-term deal this summer. It is just hard to judge him as he continues to tear his knee so I can understand why teams would be very hesitant on taking a chance on him even though he is a great player.

With a lottery pick in an upcoming draft loaded with top of the line point guards, the Knicks should be able to pick a replacement for Rose, whose career in New York may indeed turn out to be a very brief one. He was once a star who leapt over the league, but he is now onto yet one more injury rehabilitation.