Coaches vs Cancer Competition

By Johnny Ferrara and Jack January

     Chick-Fil-A has teamed up with Shawnee Mission East and Rockhurst High School to help fight cancer in the Coaches vs Cancer fundraiser. Coaches vs. Cancer is an annual fundraiser held at the Ward Parkway Center Chick-Fil-a. According to Leslie Swyden, the contest has been taking place at the Ward Parkway Center Chick-Fil-a the past 5 or 6 years, and that the results have been generally split. The contest, Coaches vs. Cancer is a national contest that started out raising money for Norm Stewart, a coach at Missouri University. Now, it is a national fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.

Monday, January 25 until the afternoon of Friday, January 29th leading up to the Lancers’ and Hawklets’ basketball games, twenty percent of all profits made during the allotted time period will go to Pinky Swear Foundation, a local pediatric cancer support organization.

     Pinky Swear’s mission is helping kids with cancer and their families with financial and emotional support. The Pinky Swear Foundation was established by Steve and Becky Chepokas in memory of their son, Mitch. Before nine-year-old Mitch Chepokas died from cancer, his dad made a pinky swear promise with him to continue to help children with cancer and their families by providing immediate needs support and unique family programs.

     Pinky Swear Foundation eases the financial and emotional experience for children with cancer and their families by providing basic needs support during a very challenging time. Pinky Swear does not limit requests from families, nor discriminate on socioeconomic status. Since Mitch’s death on April 11, 2003, Pinky Swear Foundation has provided more than $4.5 million in financial assistance and quality of life support. They’ve helped thousands of families whose children are bravely battling the ugliness of cancer. Last year $1600 was donated from this friendly rivalry game and is expected to grow this year.

 

SME Rivalry- A Coaches Perspective

By Edwin Yanez

     The infamous Shawnee Mission East Rivalry is picking back up with the basketball game tonight. Our varsity basketball record is 20-0. Meanwhile, SME varsity team has a record of 8-5. I’ve decided to interview our varsity basketball coach Mr. Peter Campbell on his opinion of the rivalry with SME.

     I asked Campbell what he believes the rivalry is, how it affects the players and he said “The SME game is the biggest game on the regular season schedule for our players.  The game atmosphere is intense and the sellout crowd is amazing. We appreciate everyone who comes out and cheers on the basketball teams.” It’s quite clear that Campbell understands the volume of this game, how different the atmosphere of the game can be, and how important the game is to his players.

The SME vs RHS basketball game is a non-conference game.  See you tonight at 7pm!

ROCK STATE! Beat East!

Basketball Update

rhs19bball     Rockhurst basketball brings true athletic entertainment to the school. Rockhurst is currently ranked #1 in the state of Missouri. The team is led by seniors Glen McClintock, Darrius Hughes, Tyler Nelson, A.J. White, and Al Ba along with Head Coach Pete Campbell. The basketball team is full of senior leadership and talent that will hopefully bring them far in the postseason. Rockhurst hasn’t had a sniff of a state title since 2013, a championship is well needed. Senior starters on the team who have received NCAA Division 1 offers including Glen McClintock who is committed to Air Force and Darrius Hughes who is committed to the University of Nebraska Omaha. The team kept their #1 ranking in the KC metro area defeating Bishop Miege 55-52. Rockhurst basketball has brought home some hardware this year. They were champions of the C.W. Stessman Tournament where McClintock took home the Hustle award and Nelson made the all-tourney team. Furthermore, in the William Jewell, Holiday Tournament Rockhurst was victorious in the Cardinal Division! Senior Darrius Hughes named MVP, A.J. White made the All-Tournament Team, and Glen McClintock earned the Hustle Award.  Rockhurst takes on Shawnee Mission East at home Friday, January 25th. Let’s cheer on the Hawklets to a 17-0 season! ROCK STATE!

 

Hawklet vs Lancer

By Austin Schuster

On a frigid Friday night in January, people will flock to the Rockhurst High School gym to watch the battle of the century. The mighty Hawklet is about to duel with the mediocre Lancer. The battle begins with a bang. The Lancer thrusts his sword towards Chesty the Hawklet, who dodges the attack and chirps a mighty chirp. Chesty kicks at the Lancer, who drops his shield. He begins to punch at the Lancer, delighting the Rockhurst crowd. However, the Lancer does not give up, and rises to his feet to take a swing with his sword at the Hawklet, who takes a hit, but does so with courage. The mighty Hawklet builds up enough anger to begin to take down the Lancer for good. He rears back for the final punch, both fighters know the end is near. However, the Hawklet simply shouts, “Rock Don’t Quit!”, and the Lancer falls defeated. Chesty stands alone as the victor, proving once and for all that no competitor will ever defeat the Hawklets of Rockhurst.

RHS vs SME-The Basics

     As we prepare for the annual Shawnee Mission East vs. Rockhurst basketball game, our basketball armies are ready, but how do we compare with East?

     The Shawnee Mission East Lancers was founded in 1958, and Rockhurst was founded in 1910 by Fr. Michael P. Dowling. East has won 115 State Championships, in Kansas. Rockhurst, on the other hand, has only won 76 championships in Missouri.

     East has 1,743 students, 49% female, and 51% male students. Their school is 85.9% White, 6.8% Hispanic 3.8% Multiracial, 1.8% Asian, 1.4% African American, and .1% Native American.

     On the other hand, Rockhurst has 1,016 students, 100% male. Our school is 81.2% White, 7% African American, 4.5% Multiracial, 4.2% Hispanic, 2.7% Asian, and .4% Native American.

     East has a 19:1 student to teacher ratio, which is more than the national average (17:1). On the contrary, Rockhurst has an 11:1 ratio, which is less than the national average.

     Who knows who has a better army, but the only way we will tell is by the number of students at the game. So give up your Friday night, and go to the game to support your school. BEAT EAST!

Is Saban’s Reign Over?

By Johnny Ferrara

     Nick Saban’s Crimson Tide were absolutely embarrassed by Dabo Swinney’s Clemson Tigers. The Tigers won the College Football National Championship game against The Crimson Tide, 44-16.  The Tigers dominated Alabama not only physically, but mentally as well. Saban was outcoached and unprepared compared to Swinney. Joel Klatt, Fox Sports Contributor, reported that Clemson was preparing for Alabama during the week Clemson was playing Notre Dame. The Clemson Tigers Football team look confident and well prepared compared to the Alabama team that looked worn and confused.

     With the emergence of Clemson and their true freshman quarterback, Trevor Lawrence, Clemson is now the favorite to win the 2020, 2021 National Championships. The Swinney and Lawrence legacy is just starting to grow,  Saban’s legacy is beginning to a slow death. Alabama has been deemed a Factory of NFL talent. While Clemson has become known for their family environment. This has also been had an impact on the coaching staff for Saban.

     Over the past four years, Saban has lost thirteen assistant coaches who have left for other programs. Meanwhile Swinney has only lost two assistants over four years. In the four national championship games between Saban and Swinney, Saban has had a different offensive coordinator and defensive coordinator for every game and Swinney has had the same OC and DC for the four games. Saban has recently been declining in the recruiting game.

     In 2018, Alabama had the fifth best recruiting class behind SEC east powerhouse Georgia. In the 2018 National Championship Georgia lost to Alabama. It is odd that more players committed to Georgia than Alabama even though Alabama won the Championship. This past year, the number one recruit, Justyn Ross, committed to Clemson over Alabama and was asked why he chose Clemson. Ross stated, “Clemson had a better atmosphere, more like a home feeling.” Many analysts believe Saban and Alabama have lost their charm to attract number one recruits. We will just have to wait and see.

NFL MVP Race

 

After the Chiefs finished their regular season by clinching the AFC West championship with a win over the Oakland Raiders, Chiefs Head Coach Andy Reid couldn’t contain himself any longer. “He’s been the MVP,” said Reid, “He’s done good. He is a heck of a player. I was fortunate to be around a three-time MVP and a couple of guys who were right on the edge of being the MVP and this guy is in that category,” said Reid.

The two players who I think are in the run for MVP are Patrick Mahomes and Drew Brees. Let’s look at their stats.

Patrick Mahomes

Kansas City Chiefs host military appreciation day at training campQuarterback Patrick Mahomes has led the Chiefs rampage. His pass completion rate for the 2018 regular season for 5097 yards was 66.0 percent. His 113.8 passer rating is the second-highest in the league. Mahomes finished the season with 50 touchdown passes and 5,097 yards, making him the second quarterback to go over 50 TDs and 5,000 yards in a season. The first was Peyton Manning in 2013, and he was the MVP that year. With Mahomes under center, the Chiefs had a record of 12-4, and were the #1 team in the AFC West.


Drew Brees

brees mvp

Drew Brees has finished an amazing season. The 39-year-old lead the NFL in 115.7  passer rating and a 74.4 percent completion rate for 3992 yards. Although he did not score 50 touchdowns like Mahomes, he did score 32, and that’s pretty good.

In the end, the best quarterback will win, but who will it be. Will the new kid Mahomes come out on top, or will the veteran player Drew Brees squash Kansas City’s dreams. Only time will tell.

 

Clemson National Champions, Again

     The Clemson Tigers football team, led by Dabo Swinney, made history in the 2018-2019 NCAA college football season. The Clemson Tigers had a perfect season 15-0 which hasn’t happened in over 120 years. Clemson led the ACC winning the division and going 8-0 in division play. The Tigers scored an average of 44.3 points per game. Clemson had far from an easy season. They played multiple ranked teams including Notre Dame, Boston College, NC State, and Syracuse.  Swinney had a strong group of players this year along with a great coaching staff.

     True freshman Trevor Lawrence caught the eye of almost everyone when talking about college football. Lawrence was named started over senior Kelly Bryant. When you look at it, both (quarterbacks) have played well, done a lot for us. But it just came down to you’ve got to reward productivity,” said Clemson co-offensive coordinator Tony Elliott. “If you look at (Lawrence’s) opportunities, he has taken advantage of them.“Kelly didn’t do anything wrong. It’s just a situation where (Lawrence) has been in the game, he has been productive and to be fair to competition.”Lawrence had a phenomenal year scoring 30 touchdowns and throwing for more than 2,000 yards. Running back Travis Etienne also made a large impact on the season. Etienne averaged 8.1 yards per carry and had 24 touchdowns on the season. Lawrence and Etienne led the offensive backfield throughout the season although Lawrence didn’t start every game.

     Clemson displayed incredible talent this year and the defense led by defensive coordinator Brent Venables played a large role. Clemson had the second best defense in the entire NCAA. Each anchor of Venables’ defense brings a slightly different skill set to the table before they morph together to form a college football Megazord. The  Tigers defense held powerhouse Alabama to a season low of 16 points. The Tigers held a nationwide record only giving up 5 rushing touchdowns on the season.  Next season the Tigers bringing back star Lawrence along with their entire starting front seven from last season. That means defensive ends Clelin Ferrell and Austin Bryant and defensive tackles Dexter Lawrence and Christian Wilkins, all of them potential first-round picks, are back for more. Clemson has a good chance to dominate college football the next few years. The team ended their season with a fast food feast at the White House with president Donald Trump.

   

Chiefs Headed to the AFC Championship Game

     The Kansas City Chiefs are off to the AFC championship game, having defeated the Indianapolis Colts 31-13 in the divisional round on Saturday. It’s the first time the Chiefs have won a home playoff game since 1994, having lost their previous six post-season home games. This huge victory also marks the first time Arrowhead Stadium will host an AFC championship game.

         Patrick Mahomes looked solid in the divisional game win, throwing for 278 yards while completing 27 of his 41 pass attempts, adding a four-yard touchdown run to put the Chiefs up 24-7 heading into halftime.

         The real reason the Chiefs won was that they dominated two key aspects of the game: the run game and defense. Kansas City racked up a staggering 180 yards on the ground, 129 of which came from running back Damien Williams. The Chiefs torched a red-hot Colts defense led by all-pro rookie linebacker Darius Leonard. The Chiefs’ often criticized defense also crushed Indianapolis, rendering Andrew Luck and the Colts’ offense completely ineffective, aside from one TD drive. The Chiefs constantly pressured the Colts’ star QB, and only allowed 266 total yards to the Colts. Mahomes had more passing than yards than that.

         Now, it’s on to the biggest game the Chiefs have played in 25 years, and the biggest game ever at Arrowhead. With Tom Brady and the New England Patriots rolling into town for their remarkable eighth consecutive AFC championship appearance, the Chiefs will have their hands full. You can never count Brady out in the playoffs. Ever!

         New England clobbered the L.A. Chargers last Sunday, cruising to a 35-7 half-time lead with a final score of 41-28 in their victory at home. The score indicates the game was closer than it was. Tom Brady looked great, racking up yards and touchdowns. But the Patriots have a different animal waiting for them this Sunday night.

         All year long people have been talking about Patrick Mahomes as the “Second Coming”, or the “New Tom Brady”. It’s the absolute perfect matchup to decide this year’s AFC representative in the Super Bowl. The G.O.A.T. vs. The Heir to the Throne. Old Dynasty vs. New. Legendary coach vs. seasoned veteran coach looking for his first Super Bowl title. You can’t make this stuff up.

         This is the ultimate test for the Chiefs, and really for the entire AFC. Will Mahomes take down Brady, ending one of the greatest sports dynasties of all time and solidifying the Chiefs as the next great AFC powerhouse for years to come? Or will Ol’ Tom Brady prove he’s not done yet, and prove the Vet always beats the Kid?

My Prediction: Chiefs 34 Patriots 30

         

Chiefs vs Colts Preview

     On Saturday afternoon, the Kansas City Chiefs play the Indianapolis Colts at Arrowhead Stadium in the AFC divisional round of the playoffs. The Chiefs come into the game fresh off a first-round bye, while the Colts beat the Texans last week in Houston, 21-7. The Colts are one of the hottest teams in football as they have won 5 games in a row, and 10 of their last 11 games. The Colts are led by a balanced offense which features quarterback Andrew Luck and wide receiver T.Y. Hilton. This season Luck finished 2nd behind Mahomes in touchdown passes with 39, while Hilton finished 12th in the NFL in receiving yards and with 6 receiving touchdowns. The Colts found success against Houston by running the ball rather than through the air. Running back Marlon Mack finished with 148 yards on the ground against one of the best run defenses in the NFL.

     Meanwhile, the Chiefs are looking to snap a home playoff drought, as they have lost their last 6 home playoff games, 2 of which have been against the Colts. The last time the Chiefs won a playoff game, Joe Montana was the quarterback and they beat the Steelers in the 1994 Wild Card game. The last time the Chiefs played the Colts in the playoffs was the Wild Card game in 2013 when the Chiefs blew a 28 point lead. Overall, this is not a good matchup for the Chiefs. The Colts have a good, not great defense that will most likely have a hard time stopping Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs offense. The thing that will be a challenge for the Chiefs is the Colts offense. The Colts have the ability to expose the Chiefs run defense and keep Mahomes off the field while controlling the clock. Something to keep in mind is that there is a chance of snow on Saturday afternoon during the game. Snow would work against the Chiefs advantage of throwing the ball downfield.

     With all of this said and keeping history in mind, I do not think the Chiefs will be able to overcome their own weaknesses and will lose their 7th straight home game. Prediction: Colts 31 – Chiefs 27.