What a great day at the Randolph So. Invite. All games played today were best out of 3. We started out the day playing Seton Catholic and won in 3 sets! 25-21, 20-25 & 15-7. Rachel Bischoff and Jalynn Rogers had 4 digs! Anna Sacksteder lead the team with 5 kills. Makyah Richardson added 4 kills. Jalynn had 3 kills. Megan had 2 kills. Then, Layne, Rachel, Kaitlyn,Jenna, Kelly and Meredith each had one kill. Jenna Orschell had 3 ace serves. Meredith, Megan and Rachel each added 1 ace serve. Meredith Bohman lead the team with 4 blocks. Anna Sacksteder had 3 blocks. Makyah Richardson and Rachel Bischoff each added 2 blocks. Layne Steele had 1 block. These girls were not taking no for an answer.After sitting 2 matches, we came back onto the court to defeat Randolph So. in 2 sets. 25-15 & 25-23. Jalynn Rogers had 7 digs and Rachel Bischoff followed with 5 digs! Meredith Bohman had 4 kills. Makyah Richardson and Rachel Bischoff each had 2 kills. Anna, Layne and Megan each added 1. Rachel Bischoff had 2 ace serves and Kelly Layton had 1 ace serve. Makyah Richardson had 6 blocks and Meredith Bohman added 5 more blocks!! These girls came out ready to play and for the first time in a few weeks … I saw my team playing together!!! #proudcoachFinally, we stepped back out on the court to take on Mississinawa Valley. We knew that IF we could take them in 2 sets, we would be handed a trophy for sure!! So, we fought harder than ever and defeated Mississinawa Valley in 2 sets!! 26-24 & 25-21. These 2 sets weren’t handed to us either. We had to fight our way back into the 1st set as we were down by 6 or so. And we did it!! Meredith Bohman had 9 kills and 6 blocks. Anna Sacksteder had 4 kills and 5 blocks. Layne Steele had 2 blocks. Jenna Orschell and Rachel Bischoff each added 3 kills and 1 ace serve. Megan had 1 kill, 2 ace serves and 16 assists. Kelly had 1 kill and 12 assists. After today, our season record is 7-8!!! EIAC record still stands at 3-3. What a great day on the court!!! Girls you played hard and make us proud!!! WE ARE FC!!!We lost to Cambridge City Lincoln Thursday night in 3 sets 25-13, 26-24, 25-14. I am looking back to that night and recalling a few player along with myself fighting a virus going around on top of allergies. We were a little out of sync. But all in all we still put up a fight. Anna Sacksteder and Makyah Richardson each added 3 solo blocks!! Megan Getz and Kaitlyn Obert each had 1 kill. Jalynn Rogers had 10 digs. Rachel Bischoff had 5 digs. Kelsey Vail and Megan Getz had each had 3 digs. Megan Getz had 2 ace serves. Maykah Richardson, Kelly Layton, and Jenna Orschell each added 1 ace serve!!Just a quick review of the Wed. night games against Rushville, we won in 3 sets 25-20, 25-20, 25-17!! Meredith Bohman, Rachel Bischoff and Anna Sacksteder each had 4 kills!! Jenna Orshell had 2 kills! Makyah Richardson and Kaitlyn Obert both added 1 kill each! Megan Getz had 1 ace serve, 7 digs, 1 kill, and 9 assists. Jalynn Rogers had 1 ace serve, 8 digs and 1 assist. Kelly Layton had 1 kill and 5 assists. This brings our season record to 4-7 and our EIAC record to 3-3.Courtesy of Wildcats Coach Jill Mergenthal.
They are calling it the “Brady Rule.”According to new NFL guidelines, defensive linemen, linebackers or whoever else may be in the backfield are not allowed to hit the quarterback below the knees once they have hit the ground. That means once a 300-plus pound man throws you to the ground, you must have the strength to get up, then hit the quarterback.They say this rule is meant to protect quarterbacks. They say it will prevent yearlong injuries like the one which occurred to Patriots’ quarterback Tom Brady week one against the Chiefs. They say it will help teams survive longer if their quarterback goes down.What they aren’t saying is what it is taking away from the game.By creating a virtual strike zone from the knees to the shoulders, they are removing what is most interesting about football and what captivates us — the physicality. Rule makers have already enacted enough rules to protect the quarterback. You can’t touch his head. He is allowed the slide to avoid the tackle. Basically, these rules allow time for the quarterback to sit back in the pocket, have a smoke then figure out who he is going to throw the ball to.Were there other motives to creating the rule? Who knows. Maybe it was because the NFL missed their favorite poster boy. Maybe they didn’t like it when the ratings dropped because the high-flying Patriots were missing their field general.Whatever the reason may be for making the rule, the problem is they are over-protecting the quarterback position. It seems like the days of bone-jarring tackles on quarterbacks are gone. Now, defenders have to not only be concerned with getting past the offensive line, but also if they have the right angle on the quarterback.While I do think the new Brady Rule is over the top, I do understand there needs to be some rules protecting players. I find it heart wrenching to hear stories of former greats such as Dick Butkis or the late Gene Upshaw needing canes or other materials to help them walk because, after years of their bodies taking abuse, they are unable to walk. The rule against horse collar tackling, which came into effect after Cowboys safety Roy Williams caused then Eagles receiver Terrell Owens to break his leg right before the playoffs, seems justified.But adding rules to help protect the quarterback, the most guarded position in the game, not only takes away from the guts needed to be a quarterback, but could also make the game a higher scoring affair. By putting rules into effect further preventing any type of injury to the quarterback, it could also limit what a defense can do. By not allowing a lineman or linebacker to hit the quarterback from the ground, it will inevitably give him more time in the pocket to find the open receiver. This could cause a rise in scoring and a proliferation of the passing game to near collegiate proportions.While I do not agree with the rule, I do understand why the owners would push for a rule such as this. If a starting quarterback gets injured, there is generally a large drop off in talent from the starter to the backup. Most teams were not as lucky as the Patriots, who had Matt Cassel and were able to have a somewhat-successful season despite the loss of Brady. In most instances, teams are left with the likes of career journeyman Brooks Bollinger or Oakland’s Marques Tuiasosopo to head the offense. Naturally, they will be given an abridged playbook, cutting down on the team’s potential.But, injuries are what football is all about. It’s about hitting and finding a way to demolish your opponent. The Brady Rule takes away from the aggressiveness of the game we all love.With this new rule, like always, defenders will have to adapt. Brian Urlacher will have to do his best impression of Carlos Zambrano and Aaron Kampman will have to do his best Yovani Gallardo to hit the quarterback strike zone faster than a 98 mph fastball. Anything higher or lower, however, could prevent the quarterback from walking.Ben Solochek is a senior majoring in journalism and history. Think the NFL protects quarterbacks too much? Email Ben at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Seyram Mawuenyega (aged 11)Sunday 24th February 2013Dear Mr. Nyantakyi (President of The Ghana Football Association)I am writing this letter to discuss how you can improve on the team and better understand the views and opinions of Ghanaians.The first thing I would like to discuss is John Paintsil. The behaviour he exhibited in allegedly mercilessly beating his wife was just appalling! I do not see how he could do such a thing. He is a star and should know that every mistake he makes will be caught by the press and he should also know how to control his temper.As the deputy captain and one of the senior members of the squad I do not see how he can continue his duties because as we have a relatively young squad John is one of the players they would have looked up to. His authority will be questioned and the team might lose faith in him which will affect morale in the camp. As a result, I believe he should be temporarily relieved of his duties even if he is a senior member of the squad. Next, I would like to discuss Asamoah Gyan. A prolific goal scorer, team captain and two goals shy of being the nations top goal scorer as well as serving the team for about 10 years Asamoah Gyan is a perfect striker on paper. However, I believe he cannot deliver.The first and biggest mistake he made was trading the thrill and experience of the English Premier League to join Al Ain in the UAE. Now would any top player aside from one that only cares about money do that? Despite being top scorer in that league he took a significant dip in form and it showed at the recent AFCON 2013.He had gained a lot of weight, lost speed and was not a clinical finisher. I do not think he deserved a place at the tournaments best XI. For me, the best solution is to recall Jordan Ayew and use Mubarak Wakaso (who was the joint top scorer at the tournament) as a striker. Sulley Muntari should replace him as captain. If he can find a club in Europe and show signs of resurgence then he can be called up.Next is the manner in which you treat senior players. According to reports, that is the main reason why Michael Essien will not return to the team. You should talk to the coach about this. Wouldn’t you be frustrated if you were a senior member of the squad and you were warming the bench whilst a bunch of young players that still need to be shown the ropes were in your place? It showed at the AFCON 2013 as we did not have the right blend of youth and experience. I suggest that you wait patiently for Michael to say he’s ready to return and assure him that all players will be given an equal chance to make the starting XI because he is a vital part of this team.I have always been told stories by my father about the Black Stars team of the past. The likes of Abedi Pele, Sammy Kuffour, Anthony Baffour, Tony Baffour, Mohammed Polo, Ibrahim Sunday and as well as Marcel Desaily who was a legend of the game even though he did not play for the Black Stars. I believe that all of these former greats could make fantastic members of the technical bench of the Black Stars. I feel that nobody better knows the game and the team than these former greats and their experience will be key. I feel that in this nations cup our main problem was experience as the team and the technical team were both quite young. Also, the team doctor needs to be replaced in my opinion, as one of our promising players Richmond Boakye Yiadom could not feature in the AFCON 2013 tournament after sustaining a small injury and the doctor worsening it by playing table tennis all night.Another issue is how the FA deals with foreign players who can represent the Black Stars. Classic examples are Mario Balotelli, Danny Welbeck and Kevin Prince Boateng. Two of these opted to play for their European teams having represented them at youth levels and the other retiring after nine appearances. It goes without saying that this is not good enough.Another example is the ridiculous amount of time it took to finalize the deal for Emmanuel Frimpong. Despite the egos of some players, I hope that you exercise patience with the players and try your best to get them to represent the Black Stars because I feel that the coach should only put the best starting 11 out there and they are part of it. You could also use the advantage of some Ghanaians playing alongside them at club level.I also think that the boys should master the art of taking set pieces especially penalties. Penalty shoot outs have been the downfall of the team in competitions they have done extremely well in. Penalties should be practiced at every training session and lastly, the players even though it is their choice should stop having such ridiculous haircuts for example those exhibited by the likes of Issac Vorsah, Asamoah Gyan, John Boye and Mubarak Wakaso.Sir, I submit this piece as my humble and candid opinion of the state of affairs of our beloved Black Stars of Ghana and this is my best Black Stars XI plus substitutes: Ghana 4-2-3-1Fatau DaudaHarrison AffulJohn BoyeIssac VorsahJonathan MensahKevin Prince BoatengSulley Muntari(c)Christian AtsuKwadwo AsamoahDede AyewMubarak WakasoSubstitutes:Emmanuel FrimpongJordan AyewEmmanuel Agyemang BaduRichmond Boakye YiadomAnthony AnnanEmmanuel ClotteyAdam KwaraseySee you in Kumasi on 24th March. Yours truly,Seyram Mawuenyega (lifelong Black Stars fan)