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Pac 12 Earlier Outlook Washington & Washington State

Washington & Washington State

Pac 12 North – The Northwest can be nasty late in the year, if play either team at home pray for no snow. Last season Washington lost 30-22 to the Oklahoma State Cowboys in Tempe at the Cactus Bowl. Washington State fell few games short of being bowl eligible with a lot of youth stepping into starting rolls. Both programs are looking for that next All American to step up from among the ranks this season.

Washington Head Coach Chris Petersen Pondering over a question at Pac 12 Media day 2014. Photo by Jevone Moore
Washington Head Coach Chris Petersen Pondering over a question at Pac 12 Media day 2014. Photo by Jevone Moore

2015-2016

Washington

Head Coach Chris Peterson enters his second season with the big boys of Pac 12 with a record of 8-6 thus far. Most hope that the bumpy road is behind him for year two.

The Huskies return 12 starters from last year team 5 Offensive, 5 Defensive, kicker & punter. Players to watch WR Jaydon Mickens from Dorsey HS (Los Angeles) who finished last year with 145 career receptions, good for sixth in UW history to start the year. WR Donte Pettis will have opportunity to try outshine his freshman spectacular season. SS Budda Baker who started every game as true freshman is labeled a star in the making, he’s leading Huskies tackler with 80. They will miss the playmaker John Ross III who out for the season with a leg injury. New comer QB Jake Browning from Folsom in Calif. turned down Alabama to enroll earlier and become a Huskies. The Huskies ended up signing six of the top eight prospects from the state of Washington in 2015.

The Huskies will be young upfront on both sides of ball filling the voids left by seniors. If they can give little time for the QB to hit their playmakers they will play .500 ball. Prediction 5th in Pac 12 North, Maybe Poinsettia Bowl if Navy/Army not bowl eligible.

 

WSU Coach Mike Leach, "Yes we are going to Air it Out!" Photo by Jevone Moore
WSU Coach Mike Leach, “Yes we are going to Air it Out!” Photo by Jevone Moore

Washington State

Head Coach Mike Leach now approaching his fourth season after straying from Lubbock Tx with record of 12-25 in three seasons. He will be handing the controls of his “Air Raid” offensive to new QB sophomore Luke Falk.

The Cougars return 14 starters from last year team 7 Offensive, 6 Defensive, & kicker. Players to watch RB Gerard Wicks from Long Beach Poly whose durability will allow for few more running plays called. WR River Cracraft had solid season with 66 receptions, 771 yards,  8 touchdowns & added to Biletnikoff Award Watch List. My sleeper pick to shine this year in that deep WR core is Zaire Andre of Inglewood HS. His raw natural ability and versatility will shine on gameday. LB Jeremiah Allison will add leadership to the you defensive with his 78 tackles, 8.5 tackles for loss, & 3.5 sacks at WIL LB spot. New comer SS Shalom Luani who was Cal JC Defensive player of the year, who comes down hard on the run that will make teams think twice.

WR Zaire Andre off for a Touchdown at Inglewood HS. Photo by Jevone Moore
WR Zaire Andre off for a Touchdown at Inglewood HS. Photo by Jevone Moore

The Washington State Cougars are youthful but have done some strategic JUCO recruiting along with top defensive signings that will allow for few more wins this year. If they can start the season off with non conference wins they could be bowling now. Prediction: 4th in Pac 12 North, Royal Purple Las Vegas Bowl.

 

Tomorrow Outlook will be Pac 12 South,  Colorado & Utah,

Pac 12 Earlier Outlook – Arizona & Arizona State

Arizona & Arizona State

Pac 12 South – The Desert can be a very tricky place to play depending on the weather and the time of year. Both Arizona & Arizona State play in college towns with great student fans support. Last season both teams reached a post season bowl, Boise State made a late defensive stand to hold off Arizona 38-30 in the Fiesta Bowl. While Arizona State outlasts Duke in Sun Bowl 36-31.

QB Anu Solomon back to pass verse Ucla. Photo by Jevone Moore
QB Anu Solomon back to pass verse Ucla. Photo by Jevone Moore

2015-2016

Arizona

Head Coach Rich Rodriguez is back for his fourth season at the helm in Tucson with a record of 26-14 in 3 seasons.

The Wildcats return 14 starters from last year team 6 offensive, 6 defensive, punter & kicker. Players to watch QB Anu Solomon who lead the nation’s freshman with 3,793 passing yards. RB Nick Wilson emerged as true freshman as their primary back rushing for 1,375 yards and 16 touchdowns. WR Cayleb Jones a former five-star recruit had 73 catches, 1,019 yards, 9 touchdowns. This trio of players will allow for Arizona to be a strong threat.  On Defensive LB Scoby Wright had one of the greatest defensive season in school history 163 tackles, 29 for loss, 14 sacks & 6 forced fumbles. Safety Will Parks will be the leader of the secondary that is rebuilding itself looking toward converted WR Davonte’ Neal to turn into ball hog. New comers will add depth on offensive line with #8 ranked recruiting class in the conference.

Head Coach Rich Rodriguez at Media Day 2015. Photo by Jevone Moore
Head Coach Rich Rodriguez at Media Day 2014. Photo by Jevone Moore

This is still a rising program that will hope to hang in games late and then steal a few wins while they continue to mature as a program. Prediction: 4th in Pac 12 South, Sun Bowl.

Arizona State

2014 NCAA Pac-12 Football Media Day
ASU Alternative Fire Ball Helmet. Photo by Jevone Moore

 

Head Coach Todd Graham is back for his fourth season in Tempe with a record of 28-12 in 3 seasons.

The Sun Devils return 17 starters from last year team 6 offensive, 9 defensive, punter & kicker. Players to watch WR D.J. Foster who moved from RB to allow from him to shred defensives more in open space. QB Mike Bercovici is a senior will be starter with some veteran leadership and top wins defeating Stanford & USC will called on due to injury.  ASU expects this offensive to be in top 20 in scoring in nation like his past three teams did. On Defensive with the 9 returners, and maybe Graham top linebacker crew. In the secondary flashes of greatness from Corner Lloyd Carrington and Jordan Simone that could be both all conference selections. Just as its hot in Tempe so does the pocket for opposing QB, expect more blitz and pressure because multiple players can handle zero (man to man) coverage. Sun Devils incoming freshman will have some time watch and grow so the program will be greatly impacted in near future. One local recruit athlete Stanley Norman will look to be a star quick from Serra High School / Culver City HS.

Stanley Norman 2015-16 incoming Freshman from Serra High School. Photo by Jevone Moore
Stanley Norman 2015-16 incoming Freshman from Serra High School. Photo by Jevone Moore

The Sun Devils have posted back to back 10 win seasons but they will find out quickly that the Pac 12 is tough place to play. Starting off with USC, then UCLA to open their conference schedule make it journey to rise to the top. Prediction: 3rd in Pac 12 South, Foster Farms Bowl.

Stay Tune Next Outlook will be Pac 12 North, Washington & Washington State.

Sparks Let The Mercury Rise

Nneka Ogwumike rising high for the jump shot. Photo by Jevone Moore
Nneka Ogwumike rising high for the jump shot. Photo by Jevone Moore

Los Angeles, Ca – The Los Angeles Sparks let the Phoenix Mercury steal a 94-91 victory at home. Even with all five Sparks starters scoring in double figures it wasn’t enough. Today’s game went into overtime after being  tied 85 at end of regulation. In the extra period the Mercury Leilani Mitchell hit game wining 3 pointer with 3.9 seconds on the clock.

This Spark team has began to gel and knowing their sets on both side of the ball to play a complete game. The Sparks held a four point lead at half with theirlast game hero Kristi Toliver hitting her first two 3 pointers finishing with 16 points, and 8 assist. The team captain Nneka Ogwumike played a solid game being a force in the paint and active on both sides of court with 26 points and 19 rebounds. Erin Phillips was called on to be more of a scorer in the flow of the game, adding 20 points, and 5 assist.

Nneka Oqwumike getting after loose ball. Photo by Jevone Moore
Nneka Oqwumike getting after loose ball. Photo by Jevone Moore

Phoenix kept within striking distance all game only allowing the Sparks to have a max 6 point lead. The lead changed 18 times during the course of the game. The big three for Phoenix were DeWanna Bonner 22 points, Candice Dupree 21, and Brittney Griner 19 points. There were plenty of high lights but one stands out for a WNBA game which was in first quarter a big Dunk by Griner.

Phoenix Brittney Griner on turn around jumper. Photo by Jevone Moore
Phoenix Brittney Griner on turn around jumper. Photo by Jevone Moore

Both teams kept the intensity all game finishing 47% shooting for Sparks while Phoenix was little more efficient at 51% from field and 57% behind the arc. They both are still playing without their teams All Stars so far this season Candace Parker & Diana Taurasi. If these teams continue to play this well we might see this match up in first round of the playoffs at the end of the season.

Next up for the LA Sparks will travel to play San Antonio Stars on Wednesday July 8th at 5pm PST.

For more game photos click here Sparks vs Mercury

BET Awards & Experience 2015

A conversation with Kobe Bryant about his career.

 

The BET Experience had great fun events for the fans to enjoy daily with likes of Celebrities and Athletes.

Here are few glimpse in at what you missed if didn’t join in the festivities.

Young Hollywood, Brandon T. Jackson, Quincy Brown, and Karrueche talk about their careers in the industry.
Young Hollywood, Brandon T. Jackson, Quincy Brown, and Karrueche talk about their careers in the industry.

 

Kristi Toliver Shocks Tulsa

Kristi Toliver draining  one of her seven 3 pointers. Photo by Jevone Moore
Kristi Toliver draining one of her seven 3 pointers. Photo by Jevone Moore

Los Angeles, Ca – The Los Angeles Sparks looking energized and focused in tonight’s 98-95 game over Tulsa Shock, winning their second  in a row after beating San Antonio Stars the night before.  Tonight’s game definitely was not a 1-possession game, the Sparks energy stayed high throughout and the defense was on point.  The high light of the night was Kristi Toliver’s career high of scoring 43 points, surpassing the record made by MVP legend Lisa Leslie.

Sparks Marianna Tolo defending the paint contesting shots. Photo by Jevone Moore
Sparks Marianna Tolo defending the paint contesting shots. Photo by Jevone Moore

In the beginning jump ball the Sparks gained the ball leading to their first basket by Nenka Ogwumike followed by Johnson hitting another basket.   Plenette Pierson of Tulsa shoots a basket, then the Sparks picking the ball back up to score 2 more points by Jantel Lavender who finished 10 points. Tulsa’s Karima Christmas began her streak of points by shooting an open 3 pointer and finished with 20.  Brianna Keisel kept the Tulsa advantage by then scoring 2 points.   The Sparks were weary of the immediate loss in control of the ball and decided to regroup in a time-out in the first 10 minutes of the 1st quarter, they decided to strategize a new game plan.  The 1st quarter was then a back and forth of controlling the flow of the game.  The announcer ringing out the names of Plenette Pierson, Riquna Williams and Jordan Hooper of The Tulsa Shocks and Nneka Ogwumike, Kristi Toliver and Tameka Johnson  of the Sparks as they racked up the beginning scoring. An efficient play took place when Erin Philips made a clean pass to Johnson whom passed it to Ogwumike to shoot a basket, ending the 1st quarter at 14-23, Tulsa.

The 2nd quarter was deceiving with Tulsa gaining the ball up out the gate, but Ogwumike came back with a good move to the basket an assist from Johnson. Toliver followed with straight away shot dribbling down the court and scoring basket, she then is fouled and makes the and one free throw. Tulsa picked up the pace then scoring a string of 2-pointers by Pierson and Paris pushing the score to 24-29, Tulsa. The Sparks came back in 2nd quarter and began to tighten up their defense.  Toliver’s streak of 3 pointers began, allowing The Sparks have their 1st lead at 32-31.  Johnson rounded out the first half scoring 2 baskets & a free throw, ending 1st half and tied 42-42.

The second half was colored with interceptions by The Sparks gaining leads from The Shocks. Williams and Hoover of the Shocks made good share of baskets in the last segments and Toliver of the Sparks was on a 3 pointer barrage, that led the Sparks win. When asked what helped the team tonight Toliver said, “Staying focused and continuing to build”.  Ogwumike praised Toliver performance, “She is amazing, sharp and a very smart player”, and  “These past 2 games have been the best the team have played.”

Ogwumike and Toliver leaving floor pumped after the victory. Photo by Jevone Moore
Ogwumike and Toliver leaving floor pumped after the victory. Photo by Jevone Moore

Next up for the back to back wining Sparks will host Phoenix Mercury and Brittney Griner Sunday July 5th at 2pm PST at Staples Center.

LA Sparks Win….

LA Sparks Rookie Guard Andrea Hoover. Photo by Jordon Kelly
LA Sparks Nneka Ogwumike driving to the Basket for 2 of team high 27 points.
LA Sparks Nneka Ogwumike driving to the Basket for 2 of team high 27 points. Photo by Jordon Kelly

Los Angeles, Ca – The lid is finaly off the basket as The Los Angeles Sparks get their first victory of the season 86 – 81 over San Antonio Stars. Nneka Ogwumike came up big with game high 27 points, 8 rebounds and 2 steals in victory.

This was a team win having Jantel Lavender 21 points & Kristi Toliver 15 points to give Sparks a triple threat that they been missing this season thus far.

The Stars had solid performances by their front court, Dearica Hamby 19 points & center Sophia Young-Malcom 18 points.

The Sparks and staff will only have less then 24 hours to enjoy this win because they are back on the court July 3 rd to host the Tulsa Shock at 7:30pm.

Cari Champion The Newest Sportscenter Anchor

headshot

Bristol, CT – The co-host of the ESPN2’s “First Take” for two and a half years has been named the newest anchor of ESPN’s “SportsCenter. Cari Champion is ready to Bet on herself, and move her career forward.

The road of a broadcast journalism is a constant Bet on yourself. Champion has always bet on her self with a strong support team. Getting her start in small market as a reporter in the field back East which was the first bet, then over and over moving to bigger markets.  Switch over to Women’s Tennis for the Tennis Channel was another bet that paid off having the opportunity to cover Williams sisters and many other.  Then we all know the story from here after Jamie Horowitz the then VP at ESPN, hired the chipper, witty, fun loving professional with that infectious smile.

on road

Champion will begin her morning “SportsCenter” duties in mid-July and will take part in a series of “interactions” about sports and entertainment with the crew at “Good Morning America,” which airs on ESPN sister station ABC.

Champion joins “SportsCenter”s’ impressive stable of female anchors, including Hannah Storm, Linda Cohn, Sage Steele, Lindsay Czarniak, Jaymee Sire, Sara Walsh, Jade McCarthy and Nicole Briscoe.

This proud Bruin will always have a voice, when you can be heard through the strong personalities of Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith. Champion had announced why she was taking on her next challenge betting on herself on  Champion’s Podcast “Be Honest”.

Go Cari Champion…..Spread your wings……

 

In The Right Direction

In The Right Direction

“Look straight ahead, and fix your eyes on what lies before you..”

Proverbs 4:25

Stop being distracted by the past! It was what it was, and God’s grace has carried you through.  You are exactly where you are supposed to be..

and yes, your steps have been ordered..

It was all allowed to teach you more about God’s unconditional love, and bring you closer to Him.

You haven’t missed a thing, and what God has for you- no one else can take! Stay focused on your goals, and stay in your lane!

Take a little time to revisit your dreams and goals! What has He told you to do that you still haven’t followed through with?

In this life, there will always be ‘things’ for you to do, but it’s time to ‘do the things’ He’s told you to do! It’s never too late, and He’s provided you with everything you need to get started!

‘Be the change you’d like to see! Stop waiting, and DO something..

BET Experience Kick-Off Concert

Chrisette Michele performs at the BET music Matters Concert on Saturday June 20, 2015 at the Baldwin Crenshaw Mall Photo by Nyema Vernon

 

BET EXPERIENCE @ L.A. LIVE PRESENTED BY COCA-COLA® CELEBRATES WITH FREE KICK-OFF CONCERT FEATURED JORDIN SPARKS, DEBORAH COX AND CHRISETTE MICHELE AT BALDWIN HILLS CRENSHAW.

 

The celebration was action packed at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Promenade. This was the official pre-event celebration, which was free and open to the public, the show began at 3 p.m. The concert event was hosted by and featured music from 102.3 KJLH’s DJ Malski

 

The “BET Awards” will take place on Sunday, June 28 along with the BET Experience at L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles from June 25th-28th. BET.com/Awards is the official site for the “BET Awards” 2015 and will have all the latest news and updates about this year’s show. All information about the BET Experience at L.A. LIVE presented by Coca-Cola® can be found at BETExperience.com.

Meet me @BETXbhcp!”

 

LA Kiss Let The Soul Rise

KEn Richardson on interception for Touchdown in 1st Quarter. Photo by Jordon Kelly
Donovan Morgan high stepping into endzone on one of his six touchdowns. Photo by Jordon Kelly
Donovan Morgan high stepping into endzone on one of his six touchdowns. Photo by Jordon Kelly

Anaheim, Ca – Coming off two wins in row the LA Kiss (2-11) fell a little short to Philadelphia Soul (11-2) 56-48. The home crowd was rocking with their version of a terrible towel that was given to fans as they arrived to the game. At the half the teams were tied 28-28 setting up for great second half of play. The Kiss had won opening coin toss and deferred to second half but was unable to score on first drive in third quarter.

There were some Kiss highlights with a defensive play of game came by Josh Victorian with a 52 yard touchdown interception. That play electrified the crowd and Victorian teammates because this gave the Kiss first lead of the game 41-35 with 4:21 left in third quarter. On the defensive side of ball fellow defensive back Rayshaun Kizer lead the team with 8 solo tackles and 1 tackle for a loss.

The Soul showed their game plan earlier with 3 straight plays down field. The first two fell incomplete, but third pass dropped in Harvey Binford hands for 36 yard touchdown. Binford was prepared for the end zone with a dance move called the “Whip” to give his teammates some energy on the road. Few series later Kiss new quarterback Danny Southwick back shoulder throw to Donovan Morgan was intercepted by Ken Richardson that was returned for 46 yard touchdown and 14-7 lead.

KEn Richardson on interception for Touchdown in 1st Quarter. Photo by Jordon Kelly
Ken Richardson on interception for Touchdown in 1st Quarter. Photo by Jordon Kelly

Southwick came in tonight getting the start and putting up good stats with 6 touchdowns, 241 yards , 55% completion ratio. There were a few opportunities that Southwick missed that could have added few more scores but no one perfect. Morgan again turned in a big game  with 6 catches, 107 yards with 4 touchdowns.  The most impressive came in late in fourth quarter, was one handed grab on short post route that made game 56-48. DeMarco Sampson continues to be great tandem with Morgan also bring in 6 balls for 80 yards and touchdown of his own.

On Slant route from tackle eligible Anthony Parker catches a Touchdown pass. Photo by Jordon Kelly
On Slant route from tackle eligible Anthony Parker catches a Touchdown pass. Photo by Jordon Kelly

The LA Kiss are doing the right things on the field, they will have to dig deep to keep it going all four quarters and not let teams get out in front of them. The personal changes have continued to but the Kiss in position to win games. Now it’s time to let this core group of players gel and make a push to finish the season off strong. Next the Kiss will host Arizona Rattlers (10-2) Saturday June 27th at 7pm PST.

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