Monday, June 9, 2014  SUBSCRIBE   
MSU Riley Center goes high-tech
MSU Riley Center has gone high-tech thanks to a grant from the Riley Foundation. Recent upgrades at the Riley Center include, among other things, new computers with an upgraded network, website advances, 90-inch LED flat-panel television displays, and new Peavey Electronics MediaMatrix audio/video control systems. Peavey General Manager Kevin Ivey said Peavey was very excited about being a part of the project and not only teaming up with the Riley Center, but with Mississippi State as well. "I am an alumnus of Mississippi State University," Ivey said. "Our founder, Hartley Peavey, was an alumnus of Mississippi State University, so really it is a hand and glove fit for us to be able to do something with the university, not only in the conference center but also in the opera house and auditorium."
MSU Receives New Genealogy Collection
If you've ever wanted to search your family history, Mississippi State just made it a little easier for you. The university has received a new collection of genealogy materials. The collection of historical materials was donated by the late genealogist E.O. Templeton Jr. Templeton was honored for his work as a scholar and researcher during a ceremony at Mitchell Memorial Library at MSU. The event also included a genealogy fair with seminar topics about how to preserve your family history and a tour of the collections library. "I think it's important for people to connect back with their roots too find out where they came from and how their history began," says MSU's Stephen Cunetto.
Mississippi State studies how bird beak's design may lead to better helmets
A woodpecker may not make a good football mascot, but Mississippi State University researchers think this bird's shock-absorbing beak may help them design a better football helmet. Lakiesha Williams, assistant professor of agriculture and biological engineering in the university's Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, led the study of the woodpecker's beak. Researchers found that the shock a woodpecker absorbs while pecking is typically 10 times greater than anything a football player is likely to experience.
Bird beak's design may lead to better helmets
A woodpecker may not make a good football mascot, but Mississippi State University researchers think this bird's shock-absorbing beak may help them design a better football helmet. Mark Horstemeyer co-directed Nayeon Lee, MSU biological engineering doctoral student, on the study. He is MSU Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems chairman in computational solid mechanics and professor in mechanical engineering. He has successfully patented specific shock-mitigating materials and methods found in nature for use in man-made design principles.
Jackson Academy to offer pre-engineering class
Mississippi State University and Jackson State University are teaming up to teach a pre-engineering course at a Jackson high school. The pre-engineering course will be offered at Jackson Academy beginning in the fall. It came about after informal discussions with high school administrators in Jackson about providing students with pre-engineering and science classes. Students can earn college-level credit that may be applied at Jackson State or Mississippi State -- or transferred.
Aycock new chief judge of U.S. court in north Mississippi
U.S. District Judge Sharion Aycock is the new chief judge for the federal court in north Mississippi. Aycock was nominated for the federal bench by President George W. Bush in 2007. She is the first woman to serve on the federal bench in Mississippi. She is a 1977 graduate of Mississippi State University and received her law degree from Mississippi College School of Law in 1980.
Haney named Coahoma judge
Gov. Phil Bryant has appointed C. Kent Haney as county court judge of Coahoma County. A vacancy will occur when Judge Thomas W. Allen, who has served since 2002, retires effective June 30. Haney will be sworn in on July 1. Before beginning his legal career, Haney worked as a farmer for 15 years and owned an agricultural aviation operation from 1974-1995. Haney holds a bachelor's degree from Mississippi State University and earned his law degree from the University of Mississippi School of Law.
Farm water, wildlife research within farmers' REACH
Mississippi farmers are finding it easier to determine which water and wildlife resource practices will work on their farms and learn what's working on their neighbor's farms, thanks to a farmer-driven program called REACH -- Research and Education to Advance Conservation and Habitat. "With REACH, if a farmer has an interest in evaluating a water resource practice on his land, like a 2-stage ditch or a low-grade weir, we sign them up," says Dan Prevost, watershed specialist with DELTA F.A.R.M. in Stoneville. "Then Mississippi State University gets involved in helping set up a research project on the farm, demonstrating the scientific results of the practices and showcasing the results through Extension."
Broadway Street depot plans 90 percent complete
Plans for the renovation of the downtown railroad depot in Natchez could be ready for review by the Mississippi Department of Transportation next month. Plans include constructing an open-air building for the Natchez Farmers Market, as well as office space for Alcorn State and Mississippi State University Extension Services, Alcorn's School of Agriculture, Research, Extension and Applied Science Dean Barry Bequette said.
Severe storm move across north Mississippi
A line of thunderstorms continues to move east along the U.S. Highway 82 corridor in northern Mississippi bringing with it high winds and heavy rain. Mike Edmonston with the National Weather Service in Jackson says the storms will continue Monday to produce heavy downpours, hail and strong winds. Edmonston says the storms brought down trees in the Starkville-Columbus area. He says a tree was blown down on the Mississippi State University campus by winds estimated at 50 mph. No injuries or structure damage have been reported.
Starkville mayor, two aldermen late with economic filings
The Mississippi Ethics Commission website shows Starkville Mayor Parker Wiseman and Ward 1 Alderman Ben Carver filed their annual statements of economic interest past the May 1 deadline and lists no such filing yet for Ward 7 Alderman Henry Vaughn. All statewide, district, county and municipal elected officials must file SEIs with the state Ethics Commission each year. Incumbents must file every year on or before May 1, while appointees must file within 30 days of assuming office. Anyone who fails to file within a year of the applicable deadline or who knowingly fails to disclose required information can be fined up to $10,000, according to the commission's website.
School-funding initiative seeks signatures
An effort to force a vote on school funding in Mississippi is gaining momentum, a representative said on Friday. Better Schools, Better Jobs seeks to allow voters to decide on an amendment to the State Constitution to require Mississippi to fully fund its public schools. It has filed language with the Secretary of State's office and must collect about 107,000 signatures before Oct. 1 in order to have the initiative on the November 2015 ballot. The effort has already garnered "tens of thousands" of signatures, said communications director Patsy Brumfield. Many of those were collected at school graduations, award ceremonies and teacher meetings.
Madison County judge subject of AG probe
The Public Integrity Division of the attorney general's office is investigating Madison County Justice Court Judge Bill Weisenberger over allegations he imposed an illegal sentence against an African American arrested for DUI. Public Integrity is reviewing a sentence Weisenberger handed down May 22 when he heard cases involving three people arrested on first-offense DUIs. Two of the defendants, who were white, each received suspended sentences for two days of jail time. In contrast, Weisenberger sentenced the lone African-American defendant to jail for five days -- three days longer than state law allows.
Seeing Squalor and Unconcern in a Mississippi Jail
Open fires sometimes burn unheeded in the solitary-confinement units of the East Mississippi Correctional Facility, a privately run state prison in Meridian, 90 miles east of the state capital, Jackson. For years, the prison, the state's primary facility for inmates with mental illnesses, has been plagued by problems. Civil rights lawyers and medical and mental health experts who toured the facility recently painted a picture of an institution where violence is frequent, medical treatment substandard or absent, and corruption common among corrections officers, who receive low wages and minimal training. The 1,362-bed facility is one of five private prisons in the state system; Mississippi, like other states, has turned to private operators to cut costs. But advocacy groups that oppose the trend say the for-profit companies often economize at the expense of inmate and public safety.
Void left by Southwest among Jackson airport challenges
After 17 years at the airport, Southwest Airlines' final flight out of Jackson-Medgar Wiley Evers International Airport was Saturday. That's the bad news. Airport officials have convinced United Airlines and Delta Airlines to increase their presence in Jackson and are working to bring more carriers to the market. That's news, though not good enough to counter the bad. How the airport reached the point where its most popular carrier is flying off is easily explained. How it will rebound isn't.
Delta Council fears new delay in Asian catfish inspections in works
Delta Council officials are worried that U.S. Department of Agriculture inspections of imported catfish may be delayed two years beyond next year's expected start of USDA inspections of domestically produced catfish. Council officials relayed concerns over the possible inspection delays to U.S. Deputy Agriculture Secretary Krysta Harden during her visit to Cleveland to deliver the keynote address to the 79th annual meeting of the Delta Council last Friday. Delta officials are especially disturbed that another delay would mark a continuation of a series of delays in an inspection mandate initially enacted in the 2008 Farm Bill.
Senators pledge continued support for tornado victims
Mississippi's two U.S. Senators said on Friday they are continuing to monitor the region's recovery from the April 28 tornado that severely damaged Tupelo and parts of Lee and Itawamba counties. Both Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker briefly visited Joyner Elementary, which was damaged by the twister, as was much of the surrounding neighborhood. "This is a fact-finding visit to see how things are going and make sure we are in it for the long haul," said Wicker, who also lives in Tupelo. "We've still got a long way to go," Cochran said, calling the recovery, "a huge challenge." During the visit, School Board and City officials greeted the federal lawmakers and thanked them for their efforts in having the region quickly declared a federal disaster area. The two Senators toured the area on April 30, along with U.S. Reps. Alan Nunnelee and Gregg Harper.
Greg Davis trial set
The embezzlement trial of ex-Southaven mayor Greg Davis is slated for 9 a.m. Monday in DeSoto County Circuit Court. Sources close to the situation say Davis' attorney Steve Farese will likely move for a change of venue due to publicity surrounding the high profile case. Farese has argued in the past that it would be difficult for Davis to get a fair trial in DeSoto County. Farese told the court in February the constant media attention, Davis' sexual orientation, individuals who might be prejudiced against him on religious grounds and other factors prevented Davis from getting a fair trial in DeSoto County.
3Qs: Delbert Hosemann, Mississippi secretary of state
Six-term incumbent Sen. Thad Cochran and challenger Chris McDaniel, a state senator from Ellisville, will vie in a June 24 runoff election after neither garnered the required majority vote count to capture the nomination in Tuesday's Republican Party primary. Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, whose office oversees elections in the state, answers three questions about the upcoming runoff and about Tuesday's first primary from Daily Journal capitol correspondent Bobby Harrison.
Runoff history: Increased turnout unlikely
If six-term incumbent U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran believes his path to victory in the June 24 runoff election with Tea Party favorite Chris McDaniel is increasing voter turnout, as some have suggested, he has his work cut out for him. "I think we can increase the electorate," former Gov. Haley Barbour was quoted as saying in a national publication. Barbour has formed a political action committee to advocate for Cochran. As far as what regions of the state Cochran and McDaniel will look for votes, the contest was close in most counties, as was the statewide outcome, with a few notable exceptions.
Hinds DA agrees to investigate courthouse lock-in
The Hinds County District Attorney's office will investigate how a staffer for state Sen. Chris McDaniel's U.S. Senate campaign and two other McDaniel supporters ended up locked inside the county courthouse hours after everyone had left on Tuesday's primary election night. Hinds County District 1 Supervisor Robert Graham said Friday he has asked Hinds County District Attorney Robert Shuler Smith to investigate the incident. Smith said late Friday he agreed to his office conducting an investigation. He said the investigation would begin immediately and he hopes to have it completed over the next several days.
Barbour: McDaniel will cut federal education funding
Establishment Republicans backing Sen. Thad Cochran have launched a campaign to brand GOP challenger Chris McDaniel a candidate who would deeply cut federal education dollars on which Mississippi schools rely. The six-term senator, they said, would protect money for students and teachers. Former Gov. Haley Barbour offered a preview for what his pro-Cochran super PAC and its allies had planned for the weeks before McDaniel and Cochran face off in a June 24 runoff for the GOP nomination for the Senate. That contest reflects the philosophical split between the establishment-minded Republicans and the new-to-politics tea party outsiders who relish upending longtime political figures.
Thad Cochran likely to stay home for runoff
Thad Cochran is likely to stay in Mississippi for the duration of his three-week runoff against primary challenger Chris McDaniel, according to several Senate sources. With much of the important policy work in Washington essentially stalled until the November election, Capitol Hill Republicans acknowledged that it doesn't make much sense for the six-term senator to shuttle between Washington and Mississippi. Cochran campaign spokesman Jordan Russell left open the door for Cochran to return home to Washington. "He plans to be here primarily, but we don't want to rule out going back if his job requires it," Russell said.
Mississippi's Unpredictable Senate Runoff
Mississippi's veteran Republican senator, Thad Cochran, is the latest of the latter, thrust into a June 24 runoff with state Sen. Chris McDaniel. With his tea-party backing, Mr. McDaniel is considered to have a more intense following than Mr. Cochran, a 36-year Senate veteran. Yet there is talk that Sen. Cochran might try to treat the runoff like a general election and seek to attract the votes of independents and Democrats who might be swayed by his clout in Washington or their own discomfort with Mr. McDaniel. The latter has made a number of controversial remarks on race and social issues. It would be an unusual approach for Sen. Cochran to try to broaden the runoff electorate, but for such an unpredictable race it would also be fitting.
Cochran sits down for exclusive interview
U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran sat down for an exclusive interview with 16 WAPT's Bert Case. Cochran shared his thoughts on the campaign Saturday at his home in Oxford. The six-term senator discussed last Tuesday's election and his plans for the Republican primary runoff against Chris McDaniel. "I am going to win," Cochran said. "It's just a matter of turning out the voters and having their support on Election Day." The McDaniel campaign also sounds confident going into the June 24 runoff election. The state senator was campaigning in Olive Branch over the weekend.
Childers gearing up for Senate run
Real estate broker and appraiser Travis Childers can stick around drinking coffee and telling another story these days. But the other Childers, the former U.S. Congressman and current Democratic Party nominee for U.S. Senate, will soon kick into high gear with a belief he can win, especially if his opponent's name isn't Thad Cochran. Mississippi's primary elections Tuesday resulted in Childers, 56, easily advancing to the general election on Nov. 4. National and state political observers largely ignored the Democratic ticket. Childers said he doesn't like to speak in hypotheticals about which opponent he prefers, but a few minutes of political conversation make clear he's gunning for McDaniel. Childers visited with the Daily Journal at Fisher's Restaurant in Booneville for an extended interview this week.
Report: Cybercrime and espionage costs $445 billion annually
A Washington think tank has estimated the likely annual cost of cybercrime and economic espionage to the world economy at more than $445 billion --- or almost 1 percent of global income. The estimate by the Center for Strategic and International Studies is lower than the eye-popping $1 trillion figure cited by President Obama, but it nonetheless puts cybercrime in the ranks of drug trafficking in terms of worldwide economic harm. "This is a global problem and we aren't doing enough to manage risk," said James A. Lewis, CSIS senior fellow and co-author of the report, released Monday.
Paper Planes Transform Into Tiny Drones
It took Chuck Pell less than a minute to build his drone. He folded a piece of paper 11 times, clipped on a battery-powered plastic propeller and rudder, then opened an app on his iPhone. Next he flung the aircraft skyward, steering it above the trees with turns of his phone. The plane soared out of sight. It's a good technology, according to Mr. Pell, who has suffered plenty of nose dives. It just "needs more pilot training." Aerial drones have fought in wars, filmed movies and factored into the ambitious plans of high-tech executives who want to supply Internet service from the air. Now there is a new but familiar shape to the fast-growing world of unmanned aircraft: the paper airplane.
Rise of the 'flex' economy
The rise of the independent workforce is reshaping the life-work balance for thousands of Americans and altering the relationship many others have with their employers. Its emergence marks one more change in the often one-dimensional work model that existed for much of the postwar era, in which people toiled loyally for one firm for 40 years, then took a pension and retired to Tampa or Tucson. In today's work world, people shift jobs and careers at the click of a mouse. Now comes the independent economy, which takes the culture of flexibility one step further -- with some people working on their own terms, others scrambling for whatever short-term gigs they can find, and virtually all missing out on traditional company-provided dental plans and 401(k)s.
Source: Couple who killed two Vegas officers, one civilian were extremists
A married couple yelling "revolution" gunned down two Las Vegas police officers at a pizza restaurant, then ran across the parking lot to a Walmart, where they killed a shopper at the store's entrance. Investigators found what appears to be a "manifesto" or some sort of writings at one of the scenes, a law enforcement official told CNN Monday. The official did not describe what the writings said, and police have yet to publicly disclose a motive for the shootings. A law enforcement source told CNN the couple held extremist views toward law enforcement.
Turmoil at USM's Gulf Park campus
Recent attempts to unify the University of Southern Mississippi's administrative operations have opened up deep-seated divisions between the Hattiesburg campus and the Gulf Coast. In fact, Diane Peranich, a former legislator who represented Harrison County, said she's fed up after the resignation in May of Gulf Park Vice President Frances Lucas. "It's like a child abused by the parent," said Peranich, who pushed for Gulf Park to offer four-year university classes, among other campus efforts, during her 24 years in the Legislature. "You love your parent, but you're abused by your parent," she explained. "Very soon, you're ready to be adopted by something else. I'm ready to be adopted by Mississippi State."
Southern Miss, Pearl River Community College confront utility rate hikes
Don't blame local college officials for wanting to avert their glances when they receive their campus utility bills these days. "Just to be able to keep the lights on and the water going is a big, big challenge," Pearl River Community College President William Lewis said. While area public colleges and universities received an uptick in state funding from the Legislature this year, administrators from those schools fear that a surge in utility costs will gobble up these new dollars. "The hard part about it is that when you get new money, you want to be able to make improvements," said Douglas Vinzant, University of Southern Mississippi vice president for finance and administration. "It's a tough sell when you're spending significantly more to basically stay where you are."
Delta State graduate David Abney named new CEO of UPS
The UPS board of directors on Friday announced that it has named David Abney, currently the company's chief operating officer, as its new chief executive officer and appointed him to the board. Abney, 58, began his UPS career in 1974 as a part-time package loader. Over the course of his 40-year career, he held various operational positions leading to his current position. A native of Greenwood, Abney earned his bachelor's degree in business administration from Delta State University. He serves on the board of directors of the Delta State University Alumni Foundation.
Delta State alumnus new CEO of UPS
United Parcel Service Inc. (NYSE:UPS) announced last week that Chief Operating Officer David Abney, Delta State University graduate of 1976, has been promoted as its next chief executive. Delta State President William N. LaForge was thrilled to hear about Abney's most recent development. "Abney's appointment indicates an outstanding accomplishment by an outstanding individual," said LaForge. "It reflects prestige and credibility on Delta State University, where he received his education. The Delta State family is thrilled with this announcement of his promotion. We know he will serve with great distinction, and he is clearly one of our best and brightest graduates."
It's academic signing day at Jackson State University
They may not be able to run 4.2 in the 40, dunk a basketball, or hit the game winner, but Jackson State University hopes to land some prize recruits today. These recruits aren't known for their athletic abilities, but rather their academic abilities. The university is conducting an "Academic Signing Day" for many of the incoming top freshmen scholars who have been admitted to the school. Today will feature a luncheon with greetings from each college dean and sessions on academic advisement, financial aid, housing and general information.
Machen offers update on U. of Florida's push for pre-eminence
A year has passed since Gov. Rick Scott signed into law a pre-eminence program for the State University System -- along with a set of 12 criteria that put UF at the top of the list with millions of dollars to spend in its attempt to climb farther in the national rankings. UF has been busy since then -- as President Bernie Machen told the board of trustees Friday in his first comprehensive update since pre-eminence became the buzzword of higher education in the Sunshine State. "Everyone's been talking about it for a year," Machen said. "I've avoided any milestone check on it until today."
Questions raised about legality of private meetings held by U. of Kentucky trustees
The University of Kentucky Board of Trustees will vote Tuesday on a proposed annual budget of more than $3 billion, but don't expect many questions or much discussion of how the money gets spent. They already will have been briefed extensively on the budget in private meetings that administrators hold with small groups of trustees. Those behind-the-scenes meetings, however, might violate the Kentucky Open Meetings Act because they appear to be held in an effort to avoid public discussions, according to multiple attorneys familiar with the law.
U. of Tennessee report shows ex-judicial affairs director alleged intimidation by athletics
An investigation that cost $66,015.50 found no evidence that a former University of Tennessee judicial affairs director had sexual relationships with student-athletes, according to a 28-page report released Friday by the university. That former director, Jenny Wright, however, did have a brief affair with an athletics department employee who she said later threatened her job and questioned how she adjudicated disciplinary cases against athletes, according to the report. Wright is relieved the investigation into "baseless allegations against her" is over and that she has spent the last year enduring "constant public scrutiny and embarrassment," according to a statement released by her lawyer Robert R. Kurtz on Friday.
LSU, SU scholarships evade lawmaker scrutiny; auditor cites shortcomings in LSU process
A little-known program that gives board members at LSU and Southern University the ability to grant lucrative scholarships to students survived legislative threat this session, but some legislators say they are still eyeing the programs for restructuring -- particularly following a legislative audit of the LSU awards. The LSU Board of Supervisor scholarships -- offered as waivers, rather than cash assistance -- cost more than $1.35 million in tuition during the 2012-13 school year. Figures weren't immediately available for recipients from the school year that just ended, per the university's response to an open records request from The Advocate.
Texas A&M launching audit in wake of U. of North Texas expenses revelation
Texas A&M University System officials are reviewing their finances following revelations of millions of dollars in misspent funds at the University of North Texas System. Texas higher education came under scrutiny this month after an internal audit by UNT found the institution has misspent $83.5 million in taxpayer funds since 2004. The report found the money largely paid for employee benefits and salaries, which raised questions about how millions of tax dollars were misused without being caught by the state, campus or UNT System. This week, Gov. Rick Perry sent a memo to Phil Adams, the A&M system's board chairman, A&M System Chancellor John Sharp and other top Texas higher education administrators requesting audits from each of the state's university systems.
U. of Missouri studies three options for future of radiation-contaminated Pickard Hall
There are three options for the future of Pickard Hall, a historic building on the University of Missouri campus that is contaminated with radiation, and the university is seeking more time to determine how to proceed, MU Chief Operating Officer Gary Ward told the MU Faculty Council on Thursday afternoon. The first option would be to save Pickard, if possible, regardless of how much time it takes or how much it costs. The second option would be to demolish the building and take the contaminated material to a radioactive landfill and the uncontaminated material to a regular landfill. The third option would be to demolish the building and take all the materials to a radioactive landfill. The source of the radiation is thought to be from chemistry Professor Herman Schlundt, who extracted radioactive materials from natural ores for research in the early 1900s.
As Congress Bickers, Obama Takes Executive Action on Student Loans
On the eve of a Senate fight over student-loan refinancing, President Obama is taking executive action to ease students' debt burdens. At a White House event on Monday, Mr. Obama will announce that he will expand a law that caps borrowers' loan payments at 10 percent of their income to individuals with older loans -- those who borrowed before October 2007 or stopped borrowing by October 2011. The president will also announce plans to renegotiate contracts with federal student-loan servicers to provide them with financial incentives to keep students out of default. The percentage of students defaulting on their loans within two years of graduating reached 10 percent last year, the highest rate in nearly two decades.
DAVID HAWKINGS (OPINION): Thad Cochran Primary: Race Against Trent Lott Foreshadowed Runoff
David Hawkings writes for Roll Call: "Last week marked only the second time in his life that Thad Cochran did not win an election outright. The previous instance was 18 years ago this month, when he was defeated for Senate majority leader by Mississippi's other Republican senator at the time, Trent Lott. ...the only primary defeat of an incumbent senator this year would bring down the curtain on a fading era at the Capitol. Cochran was already an anomaly because he never wavered from the view that being urbane and soft-spoken in public, and collegial and collaborative behind the scenes, was the surest route to institutional success and job satisfaction. But that approach, of course, has almost entirely fallen out of fashion on both sides of the aisle and on both sides of the Capitol --- supplanted by a pathway in which partisan bombast and reflexive combativeness are rewarded while cordiality and thoughtfulness are ridiculed."
BOBBY HARRISON (OPINION): Mississippi operates with circuitous election laws
The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal's Bobby Harrison writes: "If Tuesday's election was the November general election and Chris McDaniel was running on the Tea Party ticket and not as a Republican supported by Tea Partiers, he would be the new U.S. Senator-elect for the state of Mississippi. McDaniel, a state senator from Ellisville, came close Tuesday to doing the unthinkable by defeating political icon and six-term U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran. As it stands, though, neither candidate garnered a majority vote because of a third candidate in the field, forcing a June 24 runoff election. ...It is a bit perplexing how Mississippi law reads as it relates to whether a candidate must or must not win a majority vote to capture a political office."
PAUL HAMPTON (OPINION): Shutdown presages life with McDaniel in D.C.
The Sun Herald's Paul Hampton writes: "...some in the Washington-centric faction of the McDaniel team are already looking past June 24 to the November general election. Barney Keller of the Club for Growth first suggested Cochran bow out to save Republican money for that race, then Friday morning began griping about Democrat Travis Childer's liberal record. I would snicker but this is the group that convinced Mississippi Cochran is a liberal. The government shutdown was just a preview of McDaniel's proposed gutting of the federal government. But Cochran will have to be more active in this campaign to get that message across and to allay concerns over his age and health."
BILL CRAWFORD (OPINION): Jackson County vote for McDaniel risks Ingalls jobs
Syndicated columnist Bill Crawford of Meridian writes: "Jackson County went for Chris McDaniel over Thad Cochran in the Senate Republican primary, putting the jobs of relatives, friends, and neighbors at risk. Talk about killing the goose that lays the golden eggs. No county is more dependent on military spending than Jackson County. Think Ingalls Shipbuilding, the state's largest private sector employer with approximately 11,000 jobs. ...As Jackson County voters play Russian roulette with their economic future, voters in counties like Hancock, Harrison, Lauderdale, Lowndes, Rankin, Scott, and Warren may want to up their ante for Cochran. These counties also depend heavily on military spending for ships, aircraft, weapons systems, or facilities."
SID SALTER (OPINION): If Cochran loses runoff, Alabama neighbors will be huge beneficiaries
Syndicated columnist Sid Salter writes: "The $12.1 million (and counting) Republican U.S. Senate primary in Mississippi is one of the more intriguing political exercises in my more than three decades of writing about politics in this state -- and in no state is that concept better understood than in Alabama. ...for Mississippians -- political philosophies aside -- the practical stakes of the GOP Senate second primary remains whether state voters choose to retain the invaluable seniority they already given Cochran to give our state powerful influence in the federal spending process or voters choose to cede that influence to our neighbors and direct economic development competitors across the state line in Alabama."

Curtis Cup: Mississippi State's McDonald, U.S. on top of the world
As Ally McDonald looked over her final putt of the Curtis Cup, she showed what might have been her first sign of nerves during the three-day tournament. The Fulton native took a deep breath, another look, then another deep breath before sinking a seven-foot putt on the 15th hole at the St. Louis Country Club. That shot on Sunday secured her singles match over Britain and Ireland's Annabel Dimmock, 4 up. McDonald helped the U.S. team claim 3 points during the weekend as the Americans recaptured the Cup with a 13-7 victory. Next up for the rising Mississippi State senior is the U.S. Women's Open, starting June 19 at Pinehurst in North Carolina. She said playing at the Curtis Cup got her ready for the big stage of the Open.
Mississippi State juniors leave draft decision clues on social media
After three days, 40 rounds and 1,215 selections, Mississippi State's three juniors have decisions to make. Jacob Lindgren, Jonathan Holder and Brandon Woodruff were all taken in the first 11 rounds of MLB's First-Year Player Draft this weekend. All three have a year of eligibility remaining at MSU. But judging by the trio's Twitter accounts, the juniors may be heading to the next level.
Bulldogs will be looking for more help in bullpen next season
Mississippi State spent the entire 2014 season relying on the back end duo of a bullpen to overcome any deficiencies. Jacob Lindgren and Jonathan Holder proved to be two of the best relievers in the country and were all set for a do-or-die game against one of the nation's best offenses in Louisiana-Lafayette. The No. 1 ranked Ragin' Cajuns scored runs against both the lefty-righty bullpen arms to end the Bulldogs season.
Mississippi State's Woodruff among Saturday draftees
On the third and final day of the Major League Baseball draft, five current Ole Miss players and two from Mississippi State were selected. Mississippi State junior right-hander Brandon Woodruff, the former Wheeler standout, was selected by the Milwaukee Brewers in Saturday's 11th round (326th overall) of the MLB Draft. The 6-foot-2, 225-pounder appeared in 15 games including six starts this spring. Woodruff went 1-3 with a 6.75 ERA. Woodruff was a fifth-round draft pick by the Texas Rangers out of high school. He has until July 18 to sign with the Brewers or return for his senior season in Starkville.
Yankees pick bullpen pair by drafting Lindgren, Holder
The New York Yankees organization has decided to just transport the best of the Mississippi State bullpen to the big city. A day after selecting left-hander Jacob Lindgren with the No. 55 overall pick, the Yankees selected MSU's school recorder for saves when they took Jonathan Holder in the sixth round Friday. Holder, the 182nd overall selection in the 2014 MLB draft, became the sixth player in school history to be selected by the Yankees organization.
Mississippi State sitting pretty for class of 2015
The commitments continue to pile up for Dan Mullen and Mississippi State for the class of 2015. The influx of talent, especially one of the best in the state, has Mississippi State ranked within the top 10 nationally for the class of 2015. It ranks sixth in the SEC. The 16 commitments are third most among teams ranked within the top 10.
Dispatch reporter apologizes for comments
A journalist who covers Mississippi State University athletics for The Dispatch is apologizing for offensive comments he made about Lafayette, Louisiana, and its residents during an Internet radio broadcast last week. Matthew Stevens called the southwest Louisiana town the "worst place in America." Stevens, 29, had spent three days in Lafayette covering the MSU baseball team as it took part in the NCAA Regional baseball tournament. On Saturday, Stevens said he regretted the comments and had "no excuse." "I'm honestly so very sorry that I said those things and I couldn't regret saying them anymore than I do," Stevens said. "...I wish more than anything that I could take them back but I can't." Late last week, The Dispatch fielded dozens of phone calls from Louisiana residents. Some wanted to make sure the newspaper's management was aware of the statements the sports reporter made.
Face of the N.C.A.A., Battered Early and Often
A large oil painting hangs in the office of Mark A. Emmert, the president of the N.C.A.A. It depicts a boxer in a gym preparing for a bout, a team of trainers huddled around him. Dr. Emmert chose the piece for his corner office at the association's headquarters, and as he stared at the tableau last week, he said: "Most people think I would identify with the boxer, but not always. Sometimes I feel like the doctor, and sometimes I feel like the old curmudgeon in the corner." There is no punching bag in the painting, but if there were, that could be Dr. Emmert, too. Since Dr. Emmert took the helm of the N.C.A.A. in 2010, his organization, the major governing body for college sports, has faced a relentless barrage of criticism, most commonly accusations that it perpetuates what some think is the exploitation of young athletes. On Monday, the N.C.A.A. is scheduled to begin its toughest challenge yet: a trial in federal court.

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