Standings after Week 14

In another extremely balanced week, not a lot of changes in positions — although Lee is now hearing faint footsteps for first place.

Lee — who has led this little game since Week 10 — has seen his once-overwhelming lead shrink to four games over a quartet of Jackson, three-time blog pick ‘em champ JWade, Randy Capps and Jourbet.

Five of us had the best week at 11-4 — myself, Taplie Coile, John Q. Awesome, ECPirates11 and Jackson.

No one was perfect in preps with the toughest games being Jones Senior’s win at Manteo (six correct) and Ayden-Grifton’s victory at Wallace-Rose Hill (seven correct). Only two players — ECPirates11 and Jackson — were perfect in college while RJarman, John Q. Awesome and Jourbet were 5-0 in the NFL, where the toughest game was Washington’s upset at Seattle (six correct).

As always, thanks to the love of my life, my beautiful Hot Blonde, who makes the charts for these games for me every week. Any mistakes are mine, not hers.

Leaders by percentage (min. 180 games selected)

Rank (LW)

1. (1) Lee                                149-61 (.710)

T2. (6) Jackson                      145-65 (.690)

T2. (T3) JWade                      145-65 (.690)

T4. (2) Randy Capps              134-61 (.687)

T4. (5) Jourbet                       134-61 (.687)

T6. (T3) B                               143-67 (.681)

T6. (8) Hanks                         143-67 (.681)

8. (T9) ECPirates                   142-68 (.676)

9. (7) BehindTheCounter      131-64 (.672)

10. (NR) Patriotflash              119-61 (.661)

Leaders by total wins

Rank (LW)                               OA record      Last weeek

1. (1) Lee                                     149-61 (.710)       9-6 (.600)

T2. (4) Jackson                          145-65 (.690)      11-4 (.733)

T2. (T2) JWade                         145-65 (.690)      10-5 (.667)

T4. (T2) B                                   143-67 (.681)      8-7 (.533)

T4. (5) Hanks                             143-67 (.681)      11-4 (.733)

6. (T6) ECPirates11                   142-68 (.676)     11-4 (.733)

T7. (T9) Eastern                        138-72 (.657)      10-5 (.667)

T7. (T9) Heelatious                   138-72 (.657)     10-5 (.667)

T7. (T9) Jeff Howard                138-72 (.657)     10-5 (.667)

10. (T6) PeteyPablo                  137-73 (.652)      6-9 (.400)

T11. (T9) BealeStBuc                136-74 (.648)       8-7 (.533)

T11. (8) Deep Run Dynasty       136-74 (.648)       7-8 (.467)

T11. (15) Blake H.                       136-74 (.648)      9-6 (.600)

T11. (T9) Sealgirl                       136-74 (.648)     8-7 (.533)

T15. (16) Randy Capps               134-61 (.687)    9-6 (.600)

T15. (19) Jourbet                        134-61 (.687)     10-5 (.667)

17. (21) Horns                             134-76 (.638)     10-5 (.667)

18. (17) Smokin’ Aces                 133-72 (.649)    8-7 (.533)

19. (20) JacqueStrappe            132-73 (.644)     8-7 (.533)

20. (18) Canyoureadthis           132-78 (.629)     7-8 (.467)

21. (23) BehindTheCounter     131-64 (.672)     9-6 (.600)

T22. (24) Jagshouse                  130-80 (.619)    8-7 (.533)

T22. (25) RouseHouse              130-80 (.619)     9-6 (.600)

24. (T9) Ryan Herman              128-67 (.656)     —–

25. (T27) John Q Awesome      128-82 (.610)     11-4 (.733)

26. (26) Kelly Rouse                  127-68 (.651)      8-7 (.533)

27. (T27) RJarman                    126-84 (.600)       9-6 (.600)

28. (29) TrumpetingPenguin    124-86 (.590)     8-7 (.533)

29. (22) The Kid                          123-67 (.647)     —–

30. (30) Patriotflash                     119-61 (.661)     10-5 (.667)

31. (31) Shandsp                          119-76 (.610)     10-5 (.667)

32. (32) Taplie Coile                    117-78 (.600)     11-4 (.733)

33. (33) Comet65                        74-60 (.552)    9-6 (.600)

34. (34) CCPirate                         33-21 (.611)      —–

35. (35) JDog                                 21-9 (.700)        —–

T36. (T36) Deep Run Pirate          10-5 (.667)       —–

T36. (T36) Wimpy57                      10-5 (.667)        —–

38. (38) Richard Clark                  9-6 (.600)         —–

39. (39) Lesboulez                           7-8 (.467)            —–

Podcastious goodness

On this week’s very special episode of The Free Press High School Football Podcast – Championship Edition, Ryan Herman, Jon Dawson and Bryan Hanks are joined by Kinston football coach Nick Anderson, WRAL/’s Nick Stevens, Ayden-Grifton football coach Paul Cornwell,’s Chris Hughes and Jones Senior football coach John Davis. The guys preview the three state championship games — Kinston/West Stokes (2AA), Ayden-Grifton/Swain County (1AA) and Jones Senior/Murphy (1A) and offer their own predictions.

Also, check out my boy Jon Dawson’s interview with Martin Barre of Jethro Tull in this week’s Free Press Radio Program podcast. Good stuff!

Pick these games, Week 15

Prep football championships

West Stokes vs. Kinston

Swain County vs. Ayden-Grifton

Murphy vs. Jones Senior

West Rowan vs. Havelock

Lincolnton vs. Tarboro


Clemson vs. Virginia Tech

Georgia vs. LSU

Texas at Baylor

Oklahoma at Oklahoma State

Middle Tennessee at North Texas


Carolina at Tampa Bay

N.Y. Jets at Washington

Tennessee at Buffalo

Denver at Minnesota

San Diego at Jacksonville

Morning News Report; Nov. 30, 2011

Well … waiting to post since the powers-that-be are doing a changeover, but too much good stuff to wait! Going to get this MNR, standings update and some other goodies to you today here before the change to the new server, which will have a new URL.


With yet ANOTHER woman stepping forward professing to having improper sexual relations with Republican Herman Cain, the former front-runner for the GOP nomination for president in 2012 is reassessing his decision to run.

My take: You know that old adage about “where there is smoke, there is fire?” There’s a heck of a lot of smoke around Mr. Cain right now — and you have to figure that there has to be a bit of truth to this.

Does that make him unworthy to be president? One of the best presidents in my lifetime was a philanderer and it didn’t stop him from doing a good job.


The North Carolina High School Athletic Association has released its preliminary realignment plan — and there are some local surprises, including:

  • Kinston, North Lenoir, South Lenoir, Ayden-Grifton and Greene Central altogether in one seven-team 2A conference, along with Goldsboro and Midway
  • Jones Senior being placed in a six-team 1A league, along with Warsaw James Kenan, Lakewood, Lejeune, Clinton Union and Wallace-Rose Hill

My take: OK, I can’t speak for the rest of the state (and I saw some questionable moves in other areas of the state), but The Free Press WHOLEHEARTEDLY approves this recommendation! To have five of the six public schools we cover in one league is a dream come true for coverage.

Thanks, Rick Strunk!

But before we all get too giddy about this, remember: this is the first draft. There will be a few more changes before we get close to being through with this.

But … wow. Prep sports fans around here would be duly impressed with what we could do if that league came to be.


The Raleigh holiday tournament that has had GlaxoSmithKline as a primary sponsor for more than a decade has had a name change: it’s now called the Holiday Invitational. Twenty

The, which includes Kinston again this year, has also released the brackets for this year’s tourney, which runs Dec. 26-30. Kinston will face Wheeler (Ga.) in the first-round of the eight-team American Airlines bracket on Wednesday, Dec. 28 at Raleigh Broughton High School.

My take: Pretty exciting news for the tourney, of which I am the media coordinator for the fifth straight year. The hard part is going to be not calling it the “Glaxo!”


Duke suffered its first loss of the year last night when the Blue Devils fell 85-63 at Ohio State in the ACC/Big 10 Challenge.

My take: Much like UNC losing last week to UNLV, no one thought the Dookies would go undefeated.

But to lose by THAT much? Dayum. I did enjoy this K quote: “I was trying not to lose by 30.”

The iPod shuffle

On The Road Again — Canned Heat

I’ve Tried Everything — Eurythmics

Losing My Religion — R.E.M.

Mary Jane’s Last Dance — Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers

Cat Scratch Fever — Ted Nugent


The good folks at Freedom Communications have decided my blog needs to go to another server, so they are in the process of moving it now. I won’t be posting anything for the next few hours/couple of days until this is complete. Check out my Twitter feed at BCHanks for updates — and we’ll have this puppy back up and at it.

Blog Survivor Pool 2011, Part II; Week 6 results (and make your pick for Week 7)

All five players advanced from last week; here’s this week’s picks.

If you have already lost in part 2 of this game, please get your $5 to me; if you still owe money from Part 1 of this season – and there’s still several of you out there who do — please send me your check or cash to 2103 N. Queen St., Kinston, 28501. It’s been well over a month now …

1. Hanks: Green Bay, New Orleans, Baltimore, Houston, Philadelphia, New England: Pittsburgh

2. Drew Meadows: Pittsburgh, Dallas, N.Y. Giants, Houston, Baltimore, New England: Atlanta

3. Shanna Capps: Green Bay, New Orleans, Baltimore, Houston, Philadelphia, New England: N.Y. Jets

4. Sealgirl: Pittsburgh, New Orleans, Baltimore, Dallas, Philadelphia, Green Bay: Atlanta

5. Heelatious: Green Bay, Dallas, N.Y. Giants, Houston, Baltimore, Detroit: Pittsburgh


Hot Blonde (Week 2): Green Bay, Baltimore

Petey Pablo (Week 2): Green Bay, Baltimore

The Kid (Week 2): Oakland, Baltimore

Jonathan Massey (Week 3): Baltimore, Pittsburgh, New Orleans

Randy Capps (Week 3): Pittsburgh, Dallas, New Orleans

John Q. Awesome (Week 3): Green Bay, Dallas, New Orleans

Jeff Howard (Week 4): Oakland, Dallas, San Francisco 49ers, Kansas City

My picks, Week 14

Prep playoffs

Kinston 21, Reidsville 20

Wallace-Rose Hill 23, Ayden-Grifton 21

Manteo 16, Jones Senior 14

Scotland County





South Carolina


Florida State






New England

Morning News Report; Nov. 25, 2011

Happy Black Friday to all my African-American friends, who celebrate this day every year to commemorate the history of their struggles and successes in America.

Wait — that’s not what “Black Friday” means? It’s so idiots can stand in line for hours and even days to buy junk? Oh … OK. Well, have a happy one of THOSE, too.

Anyhoo, now on to your MNR:


And yes … the idiots were out, even here in Kinston. Evidently, police/security had to use pepper spray at our Walmart when shoppers got out of hand; here’s a YouTube video of the incident:

Kinston isn’t the only place, though — evidently this type of behavior and results were taking place all over the country.

My take: Craziness. There’s nothing out there that would be worth me being potentially pepper-sprayed to buy it.

And what does this say about us as a society? When it comes down to brass tacks, we’re all just animals who react as such when presented these type of situations. Sad, really.


It’s finally here — the Eastern Regional finals for Kinston (vs. Reidsville), Ayden-Grifton (at Wallace-Rose Hill) and Jones Senior (at Manteo). What’s on the line? Only a trip to the 2AA, the 1AA and the 1A state championships.

My take: Want to know who’s winning but can’t make the game? I’ll be at Kinston but will be updating my Twitter feed at BCHanks throughout the game(s).

KHS quarterback C.J. Bradshaw has organized a “Black Friday” event of his own — he and the Vikings are encouraging everyone to wear black to tonight’s game.

Also, our good friend Michael Moon — an FOB, Free Press free-lancer, KHS softball coach and all-around good fella — let us know the Vikings softball team will be selling raffle tickets at tonight’s game for a new PlayStation3 that will be given away at the end of the third quarter. Tickets are $2 each or three for $5. You know, a PS3 would be an EXCELLENT gift for someone … and you wouldn’t even have to stand in line for 10 hours to get it.


The latest installment of the boorish “Twilight” series is not only terrible, according to critics — it also could be hazardous to your health. Evidently, the vampire birthing scene is causing some male viewers to have seizures. No joke.

My take: As if you — my predominantly male reading audience — needed another reason NOT to see this junk, at least now you have a reason; just tell your significant other, “Hey, if I go, it could give me a seizure! Don’t believe me, check Hanks’ blog!”

The iPod shuffle

You Made Your Bed — Robin Rogers

Beautiful Day — U2

Come As You Are — Nirvana

Dumb — Nirvana

Shake Ya Tailfeather — Nelly featuring P. Diddy & Murphy Lee

P.S.: I had the honor of seeing FOB — and defending Blog Pick ‘em champ — Eastern two weeks ago at the NCISAA 8-man championship game in Raleigh. Eastern — aka Mike Williams — is an official with the NCISAA who has attended EVERY 8-man championship game. And, as evidenced by his great play in our pick ‘em game, he knows his football! Here’s a photo I took at the game two weeks ago:

P.P.S.S.: A dear friend of mine, Michelle Hillison, has a very talented daughter who took some great photos of UNC’s victory against Tennessee State Tuesday night. They were so good, I used one with the game story. To see all of up-and-coming sports photographer Hayley Hillison’s photos from Tuesday’s game, click here.

Morning News Report; Nov. 23, 2011


In an interesting study by the University of Milan and Facebook, it’s been found the degree of separation between one random person and another is only 4.74 — and only 4.37 in America.

My take: If you thought the world was getting smaller … you were correct. Very, very interesting read — check it out!


Former Kinston High School star Reggie Bullock popped for a career-high of 23 points — including a career-best six 3-pointers in seven attempts — in last night’s rout of Tennessee State.

Check out WRAL’s post-game interview with Reggie:


(Also — here’s an excellent video and blog post from former N&Oer and current ESPN reporter Robbi Pickeral in a 1-on-1 interview with Reggie)

My take: It’s good to see that smile on Reggie’s face again — and it’s good to see that shooting stroke back again.


Ryan Herman and The Free Press are ready as Kinston, Ayden-Grifton and Jones Senior all play for their respective first chances for a state championship berth in the 2AA, 1AA and 1A football games.

My take: And who said this area is a basketball area? Should be a heck of a night Friday — if you want to follow updates from the games, follow my Twitter feed at BCHanks; I’ll be at Kinston, while Herman is at the A-G game (and we’re trying to find someone for the Jones Senior game).

And to answer Herman’s initial question in that link above — me, me, me. I picked 19 of the 32 regional finalists in Nick Stevens’ pre-playoffs video — including Kinston, A-G and JS in the regional finals. Yes kids, that’s known as “shameless self-promotion!”

The iPod shuffle

Run To You — Bryan Adams

Girl — Tori Amos

Whenever, Wherever — Shakira

Say You Will — Foreigner

Panama (Live) — Van Halen