October 29, 2012 Rotogram: 17

MSU WOMEN’S BASKETBALL

The Mississippi State University women’s basketball team takes to the court under new Head Coach Vic Schaefer, who will review his team and his expectations for the season.

NEXT WEEK: COUNTY TAXES

Allen Morgan, Oktibbeha County tax collector, will speak on the major tasks of his office and the county’s fiscal status.

BETWEEN THE LIONS

The Between the Lions reading program partnership with Mississippi Public Broad- casting restarted last week. Volunteers are needed to read to preschoolers each week. The commitment takes about one hour.

We are reading to two classes at the Emerson Family Resource Center at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, and at Brickfire and First Presbyterian at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday. Let Hal Rowland know when you can help.

CHILI CHAMPS

Rotarians J.C. Patton and Larry Mullins are Starkville’s first ever chili-cooking champions. Sponsored by fellow Rotarian George Sherman, the duo won the inaugural Chilifest competition sponsored by the Junior Auxiliary on Oct. 19.

TROOP 14

Our Boy Scout Troop 14 has seen six boys complete the Eagle rank recently. Scoutmaster Cliff Taylor reported a very busy half year as he accepted the biannual $1,500 support check. The Rotary-chartered unit sent boys to two summer camps, Seminole, located north of Starkville, and Kia Kima in Arkansas. Six boys took the trek to Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico this summer.

HOSTS NEEDED

The Mississippi State Political Science Department is seeking host families for five visiting Russians on Dec. 7 through 15. The visitors will be here through a grant to study local government and accountability. W.C. Johnson has information about the visit.

ROTARY SCHOLARS

Ryan    Lawrence, a Starkville Christian School graduate, was presented the Rotary Excellence in Education Mentor Scholarship of $1,000 by Warren Housley.

The Mississippi State University freshman history major plans to attend seminary following a year’s internship at a Bible college in Russia. He is a Troop 14 Eagle Scout

The Club sponsors three annual scholarships for Oktibbeha County high school graduates enrolling in MSU. This year’s other nominees are from Starkville High School and Starkville Academy.

Joe Thompson followed the scholarship presentation with a Rotary Minute saying, “It’s always good when we hear a success story.” Seven years ago a Rotary scholarship was presented to Starkville High graduate Brooke Presley who now, at the age of 25, has her PhD.

FOR THE RECORD—OCTOBER 22

Invocation and Pledge:            Jim Ormon

Attendance:                                    49.2%

Present — 89 (30 exempt)

Absent — 89 (15 exempt, 11 honorary)

Makeup reported: Eddie Keith

Guests: Visiting Rotarians were Henry Welch from Gordo, Ala., and Jimmy McCluskey from Waco, Tex. Member guests were Art Cosby of Dave Boles, Cedric Gathings of Eddie Keith, and Marcus Grant of Tommy Tomlinson. Guests of the Club were Cliff Taylor and Giulia Martinoli, RYE student.

TIP OFF TIME DRAWS NEAR

Oct. 22 — “Our team this year will be interesting and exciting,” said George Brooks, MSU assistant men’s basketball coach. “Exciting is when your guys are jumping up and playing well. Interesting is when you go home and say, ‘What was he thinking when he did that?’”

Under new Head Coach Rick Ray, the Bulldog team is working hard to get used to a new style of play. The motion offense is more freelance than running set plays that tell everybody where to go. Motion gives players rules to go by while the defense dictates a reaction.

There are only nine scholarship players since Jacoby Davis went down with an ACL injury. Reviewing the team, Brooks says Guard Jalen Steele is shaping up as the leader. Center Wendell Lewis has really improved his offensive game. Forward Roquez Johnson, another returnee, is playing well.

Of the new players, Starkville’s own Gavin Ware, a freshman forward, is doing well. Forward Colin Borchert, a transfer from East Mississippi Community College is really making shots well and should have an immediate offensive impact. However, Brooks said he has to get used to SEC-style physical play. He is expected to really help with three-point shots.

Fred Thomas, a guard, missed the entire pre-season with a stress fracture. “He’s the one with the funny haircut who can really shoot,” said Brooks. “In two weeks of practice he hasn’t missed a beat. I don’t know whether that demonstrates what a great player he is or something about the guys he’s going against.”

Craig “Chicken” Sword, a guard, did something Brooks never had a player do at any level. When the team lost Jacoby, Sword had a chance to fill in. One day, after practice, he told Brooks, “You know you need to go sign a point guard.”

“After a couple of more days of watching him I agreed,” quipped Brooks.

“Trivante Bloodman, a guard, has made the cultural transition from New York,” said Brooks. “But, I told him, just because we talk slow doesn’t mean we think slow.”

Due to the new SEC rotation, State only faces Kentucky and Florida once each.

“There aren’t a lot of Mississippi high school prospects this year,” said Brooks. “But, we’ve got to stay in touch. There will be some kids emerge that we don’t know about right now.”

 

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