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PCA basketball player Chris Taylor scored 33 points Monday

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(photo courtesy C. Taylor)

Porter’s Chapel Academy basketball player Chris Taylor had an outstanding performance Monday in PCA’s 69-37 victory over Mt. Salus.

Taylor scored 33 points in the big win, almost outscoring the entire Mt. Salus team. He also played great defense and had four steals on the night.

Taylor is a junior at Porter’s Chapel and is playing under first-year head coach Walter Hallberg IV. He is now the lead scorer on the team, and the Eagles are getting better with every game.

Taylor and the Eagles will be at home Thursday against North Sunflower Academy. Tipoff is 7 p.m.

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PCA freshman Morson led the Eagles in tackles this season

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(Photo courtesy Brayson Morson)

Porter’s Chapel Academy freshman football player Brayson Morson led the Eagles in tackles this season.

Morson grabbed 71 tackles and was one of the key reasons for his team’s success in 2020. He managed to force two fumbles and recover one fumble, and he helped the Eagles to a 4-6 record under head coach Blake Purvis.

Morson was able to show his athleticism this year despite being one of the youngest guys on the field.

One of Morson’s best games this year was against Benton Academy where he had 11 tackles. He also scored two touchdowns on offense including a 93-yard kick return.

The Eagles can look forward to Morson getting even better over the next three years.

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Jackson State lands a three-star transfer from University of Missouri

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Dylan Spencer (photo courtesy University of Missouri Athletics)

Jackson State University has received a commitment from a three-star offensive lineman from the University of Missouri.

Dylan Spencer announced his intention to transfer to JSU on Twitter Thanksgiving Day and will soon be playing for Deion Sanders.

Spencer is a former All-State football player from Madison Central High School and was selected to play in the Mississippi-Alabama All Star Game last year. He received offers to play for the University of Tennessee and Mississippi State University before choosing Missouri.

Spencer will now be joining other big recruits that Sanders has coming to play for the Tigers. The SWAC season begins in February.

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The Grove: the mecca of tailgating

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(photo by Heather Mullins Williams)

Forget the quarantine, murder hornets, hurricanes and mysterious Chinese seeds. For Helen Duncan, a 1989 graduate of the University of Mississippi, the worst part of 2020 is summed up with two little words: The Grove.

Ah, yes. The long-standing college football tradition of tailgating was canceled this year. This was especially heartbreaking for the tens of thousands of Ole Miss fans who help make The Grove nationally recognized as the absolute best place to tailgate. 

At The Grove at Ole Miss, Saturday afternoons in the fall become memories that last a lifetime.

Until you’ve stepped onto the 10-acre plot of heaven on earth, you can’t truly appreciate its splendor. While The Grove has been in existence for over 100 years, it’s evolved greatly over time. What was originally land set aside for recreation during former Ole Miss Chancellor Robert Fulton’s reign from 1892 to 1903, The Grove has become a virtual tent city on game days at home.

“Ole Miss’s stadium accommodates 60,580 people, and devotees of The Grove argue that The Grove accommodates more,” The New York Times once said. “It is every kind of party you can describe, at once: cocktail party, dinner party, tailgate picnic party, fraternity and sorority rush, family reunion, political handgrab, gala and networking party-hearty — what might have inspired Willie Morris, one of Mississippi’s favorite sons, to declare Mississippi not a state, but a club.”

When Billy Brewer was hired as head coach of the Rebels in 1983, he really wanted to find a way for his players to take part in the excitement fans experienced in The Grove. The coach did just that, and he created yet another Ole Miss tradition.

Roughly two hours before every home kickoff, Ole Miss coaches and players arrive in buses next to the “Walk of Champions.” In front of thousands of exuberant fans and a boisterous “Are You Ready?” proclamation from the crowd, the Rebels make their way through The Grove. Coaches and players throw high fives to fans young and old, as the team eventually makes its way to Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. For Ole Miss fans, it’s one tradition that simply never gets old.

Duncan described the experience: “People in The Grove know how to have a good time down there — they can stretch the party over three days, from Friday night into Sunday morning. It is pimento cheese sandwiches and silver trays, candelabra and fried chicken tenders, button-down shirts, red ties and khaki shorts, pearls, expensive sunglasses and flip-flops in your purse for when your high heels become history.”

“The Grove is a place where truly anyone and everyone is welcome,” she added. “Folks that set up tents each week host extended family, co-workers, colleagues, old friends and even strangers lost in The Grove shuffle. A Saturday in The Grove is the true definition of ‘southern hospitality.'”

While tent space is technically allotted on a first-come basis, there is an unspoken gentlemen’s agreement among Rebels that set up tents in The Grove. While a person may have his or her tent space moved a little every once in a while, especially with large crowds, respect and tradition reign supreme.

Duncan said many of her favorite memories are spending time with family and friends in “the Mecca of tailgating.”

It’s safe to say that the next time she hears the shout “Are you ready?” her answer will be a resounding “Yes!”

 

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