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MANCHIN CONGRATULATES MARSHALL UNIVERSITY FOR ITS SUCCESSFUL FOOTBALL SEASON

The Gilmer Free Press

Urges West Virginians to show their support this Friday

Senator Manchin issued a statement congratulating Marshall University on its football season so far and encouraging West Virginians to rally behind the Herd this Friday.

“I’m incredibly proud of the Marshall University football team, Coach Doc Holliday, the staff and the athletic department, and the entire state of West Virginia should be, too.

“Throughout this season, the Thundering Herd has brought positive national exposure to our state and proudly showcased the true Marshall spirit.

“The biggest reason for Marshall’s success, both on the athletic field and off, has been the tremendous level of support that the community has shown to the students of Marshall. In fact from its founding in 1837 to the 1970 tragic plane crash to today, the one constant has been the loyal fans.

“The Marshall story is perhaps one of the greatest tales of perseverance, courage and the incredible spirit of a community and a university determined to succeed and overcome. Today’s football program is further proof of this amazing spirit. Marshall has taken the national stage by storm this season, and that is great for our state. Now the Herd has an opportunity to host the Conference USA Championship game, which will give our entire state positive national attention.

“That is why I am encouraging all Marshall fans to come out and pack the stadium for Friday’s game. All West Virginians should join the Huntington community to cheer for the Thundering Herd to soundly defeat the Hilltoppers and continue this historic football season.

“Put simply, Marshall’s success is the Mountain State’s success. Gayle and I wish Coach Holliday and the team the best of luck!”

WEST VIRGINIANS ARE ENCOURAGED TO SHOP SMALL THIS SATURDAY

The Gilmer Free Press

Small Business Saturday is November 29

U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) encouraged West Virginians to shop at Mountain State small businesses this Saturday, November 29 in celebration of the fifth annual Small Business Saturday.

“Whether it is the local grocer, the corner coffee shop or the family-owned diner, our small businesses are what fuel our economy, and their success is critical to our communities. Today, West Virginia’s more than 120,000 small businesses make up an estimated 96 percent of the state’s economy, providing thousands of jobs as well as the goods and services we depend on every day. As a small businessman myself, I can relate to the challenges our small businesses face, and I understand the vital contributions they make to our nation’s livelihood.

“Small Business Saturday is a great opportunity for all West Virginians and Americans to show support for our small businesses. At a time when many folks are preparing their holiday shopping lists, it is important to remember that when you support your small businesses, you are investing in our communities. By working together to support local businesses, we are helping them stay competitive, which in turn helps them create more jobs and move our economy forward. I encourage all West Virginians to remember to shop at our small businesses not just this Saturday, but for the entire holiday season and throughout the year.”

Small Business Saturday was launched in 2010 by American Express. It is celebrated every year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, to promote shopping at small businesses throughout the country.

G-FYI™: It’s Official, Women Are the Decision-Makers Even When It Comes to Roofs

The Gilmer Free Press

What do shoes have to do with choosing the perfect shingles for your roof?

If you have to ask, then you haven’t been paying attention to the seismic shift going on when it comes to marketing to women.  For a while now, we’ve been told that females make more than 80 percent of purchasing decisions. But it’s only relatively recently that companies across the spectrum have begun embracing—no, bear hugging—women consumers in ways that show they actually “get” the societal changes behind that stat.

Cadillac just released its first-ever commercial depicting a CEOish-looking woman behind the wheel of one of its luxury vehicles, for example, while American Express is out with a new no-fee rewards card targeted to “busy moms.“ Heck, even the NFL now has a line of sleek, fitted team jerseys that the Seattle Seahawks’ Marshawn “Beast Mode” Lynch couldn’t even get over his neck. 

“Women in the fall are thinking about football as much as the guys are,“ one executive told Adweek magazine.

Which brings us back to those shoes—and what may actually go down as one of the most eye-opening nods to women’s clout.

Females, according to She-Conomy, now make “the majority of home renovation decisions.“ (Relax, guys. They’re still even less likely than you to want to undertake do-it-yourself projects.)

And so GAF, North America’s largest roofing manufacturer—yes, roofs—now features a “Style Guide” on its website (www.gaf.com) that couldn’t be more female-friendly if Eve had designed it herself while Adam was off dozing.

“Women are extremely important decision-makers, and therefore we’re focusing on providing them solutions that not only perform but also provide the sophistication and style to match their personal taste,“ says Emily Videtto, vice president of shingles and new product development at GAF, which has won the Women’s Choice Award for America’s Best Roofing Brand for the past three years based on input from general contractors and female customers.

HGTV’s design expert Carter Oosterhouse takes a mostly straightforward approach to walking users through the process of picking the right shingles for the desired effect. But GAF apparently realizes that women share a secret (or not so secret) vice that’s foreign to most men: a love of shoes.

And so users get to have some fun by matching their fave shoe style to the corresponding shingle type. High heels your thing? “Explore Monaco Shingles,“ they’re told. More the sneakers type? “Explore Timberline Lifetime Shingles.“

Now that’s getting it.

DEP Hosting “Energy Tree” Lighting Event on December 04

The Gilmer Free Press

Considering new lights for your tree this holiday season?

If you are, or if you’re just curious about LED (light-emitting diodes) lights, stop by the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) headquarters in Charleston from 6 PM to 8 PM on Thursday, Dec. 4, for the kickoff of the agency’s Energy Tree display.

The display will allow you to provide the power, via hand crank, to light up a traditional 100-bulb incandescent tree and also an 800-plus light, 35-foot LED tree, draped to the side of the DEP building. By turning the crank, you’ll gain a better understanding of the difference in the amount of electricity it takes to illuminate each tree.

DEP staff will be on hand to answer questions and pass out refreshments. A special visitor – from the North Pole – will be with us as well, so be sure to bring the kids and a camera!

LED lights use 90 percent less electricity than traditional incandescent lights and last up to 50,000 hours. Less energy use equals less pollution. Other advantages of LED holiday lights include:

• The ability to connect up to 43 premium strands, compared to five premium strands of incandescent lights;

• Since their color is in the diode and plastic, the lights will never fade, chip or peel like traditional lights can;

• LEDs operate at lower temperatures – reducing fire risk indoors and out; and

• While LED holiday lighting can be more expensive initially than traditional incandescent string lighting, LED lights will pay for themselves in a few seasons in terms of durability and lower power costs.

The LED display will be on the front of the DEP headquarters building, located at 601 57th Street S.E., Charleston, across from The Shoppes at Kanawha, and will be available for viewing from 6 PM to 9 PM every evening through January 09.

West Virginia News   141128

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SHOPPERS ENCOURAGED TO SPEND LOCALLY WITH SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY

Small business owners throughout West Virginia are calling on shoppers to spend more of their holiday dollars closer to home. Saturday is Small Business Saturday throughout the Mountain State and across the United States.

“West Virginia’s small businesses are major contributors to the strength of our local economies,” said Kristina Oliver, state director of the West Virginia Small Business Development Center.

“When you invest in small business, that makes sense as an economic development strategy.”

Special sales, promotions, giveaways and other events were planned to attract shoppers to local independent businesses in West Virginia’s communities as opposed to big box stores or online retailers.

Participating communities include Charleston, Fairmont, Kingwood, Mannington, Martinsburg, Morgantown, Philippi, Point Pleasant, Ripley, Ronceverte and White Sulphur Springs along with Belington, Beverly, Kenova, Madison, Marlinton, Parkersburg, Parsons, Charles Town, Romney, Rowlesburg, Shinnston, Sutton and Wheeling.

During last year’s Small Business Saturday, those with Casto’s Department Store in Ripley said business was up by at least 35%.

Nationwide, the Small Business Administration estimated shoppers spent approximately $5.7 billion at locally-owned stores during 2013’s Small Business Saturday. This year, the SBA is partnering with the National Restaurant Association to encourage people who are “shopping small” on Saturday to also “dine small” at locally-owned restaurants.

More than 95% of West Virginia’s businesses are considered small businesses.

Oliver said, overall, those small businesses are thriving.

“There have been some hills and valleys with the economic challenges within the state as throughout the country,” she said. “But I believe that our small businesses are strong and they’re seeking the opportunities that they need to be successful.”

Oliver said West Virginia’s most successful small businesses have several factors in common.

“They focus on getting the skills and talents that they need. They reach out for technical assistance and management assistance. They try to learn all that they can and put together a strategic plan and keep focused on that,” she said.

Movie Review: ‘Diplomacy’ - Behind the Decision to Save Paris

Everyone knows how World War II ended (with the possible exception of some Texas Tech students who, judging by their answers to questions about history in a recent viral video, seem to have slept through high school). But one detail might not be common knowledge, at least for those too young to have seen “Is Paris Burning?”: On the eve of being driven out of occupied Paris by advancing Allied troops, the Nazis had rigged the city with explosives and were ready to push the plunger — destroying the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower and the bridges while killing many of the city’s inhabitants — as they left.

It wasn’t a strategic move, but rather a spiteful one. According to “Diplomacy,” a movie that dramatizes — spoiler alert — the Nazis’ decision not to carry out this insane plan, Hitler’s order to his fleeing troops was in retaliation for the Allies’ destruction of Berlin.

So there isn’t a lot of suspense here.

The Gilmer Free Press


Nevertheless, “Diplomacy” manages to engage the mind, if not the adrenal gland. Set in the wee hours of Aug. 25, 1944, just preceding and following sunrise, the movie imagines a conversation between the Wehrmacht’s commander in Paris, Gen. Dietrich von Choltitz (Niels Arestrup) and a neutral Swedish diplomat, Raoul Nordling (André Dussollier), who has sneaked into the German’s office through a secret staircase in order to dissuade him from blowing up the city they both love (but which one feels duty-bound to obliterate).

Nordling’s arguments appeal to the general on logical, aesthetic, historical and personal grounds. The diplomat also cites the rules of war, which would typically preclude such an immoral action. But Choltitz offers a pretty good reason to go through with the plan: The Führer’s policy of “Sippenhaft” (or “kin liability”), which allowed for the arrest of family members of those who had defied him. Choltitz doesn’t really want to extinguish the City of Light — he thinks Hitler’s insane, for one thing — but he’s worried about the fate of his wife and children back in Germany if he doesn’t.

Based on a 2011 play by Frenchman Cyril Gély, who wrote the script with German director Volker Schlöndorff, “Diplomacy” is static and talky. With the exception of a few brief scenes that take us, momentarily, outside Choltitz’s office, the film is largely about two men debating each other in a room. And they’re not even that much in disagreement. Choltitz gets along with Nordling. And Nordling is polite, i.e., diplomatic, with his adversary, whom he treats with respect, even if he finds the selfishness of Choltitz’s reasoning obscene.

The movie is an intellectual puzzle, the outcome of which is never in doubt. Its minor thrills come not from not knowing what will happen, but from watching the cagey choreography of two acrobatic minds.

★ ★ ½

Unrated.  Contains brief violence and some crude language. In French and German with subtitles. 85 minutes.

C-GCC: NEW High School Equivalency Test

The Gilmer Free Press

8.75% passing rate!!!!

That is the current status of the new West Virginia High School Equivalency exam.

That means that out of every one hundred people that take the test, almost eighty of them pass it.

So if you have been scared off from taking the new test, don’t be!

Besides, classes are available to help you prepare for it.

Classes will be available according to the following schedule:

•  Calhoun County classes will be held at the Career Center on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 11:30 Noon to 3:00 PM

•  Gilmer County classes will be held at St. Marks Church on Tuesday and Thursday from 3:30 - 5:30 PM.

The test will continue to be free, and candidates will still have to pass a practice test prior to test enrollment.

Please call 304.354.6151 Extension 106 for more information.

FD650xxx03F

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Log Cabin Crafts

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Sports News   141128

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►   NFL fines Lions C Raiola $10K

Detroit Lions center Dominic Raiola was fined $10,000 by the NFL this week for striking a New England player in the back of the helmet in the final minute of Sunday’s 34-9 loss to the Patriots.

NFL spokesman Michael Signora said Wednesday Raiola was fined for unnecessary roughness for violating a rule prohibiting “striking, swinging at, or clubbing the head, neck, or face of an opponent” with your wrist, arm, elbow or hand.

Raiola swung at rushing Patriots defensive lineman Zach Moore on a 3rd-and-9 pass play, hitting him in the back of the helmet and knocking him to the ground.

Signora said Raiola was not fined for diving at Moore’s legs on the final snap of the game as the Lions kneeled to run out the clock

Raiola drew criticism for the attempted cut block and for implying he did it because the Patriots scored a late touchdown in a rout.


►   Eagles crush Cowboys to grab NFC East lead

Mark Sanchez threw a touchdown pass and ran for another score as the Philadelphia Eagles seized sole possession of first place in the NFC East with a 33-10 win over the Dallas Cowboys.

Sanchez had 217 yards on 20-of-29 passing, and LeSean McCoy posted 159 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries for the Eagles (9-3), who raced out to a 14-0 first-quarter lead and never looked back on their way to improving to 6-0 on Thanksgiving.

The only thing preventing the score from being even more lopsided was Philadelphia’s inefficiency in the red zone. The Eagles scored a touchdown only once and settled for four Cody Parkey field goals in five trips, but it didn’t come back to haunt them because of a strong defensive effort.

The Eagles ended Tony Romo’s consecutive games streak with a touchdown pass at 38 and held league rushing leader DeMarco Murray to under 100 yards.

Romo completed 18-of-29 passes for 199 yards and threw two interceptions as Dallas (8-4) dropped its third straight home game.

Murray failed to reach the century mark for only the second time in 2014. He finished with a season-low 73 yards on 20 carries against the Eagles.

The teams will meet again at Philadelphia on December 14.

The Eagles started quickly as back-to-back runs of 13 yards by Darren Sproles and 36 yards by McCoy placed the ball at Dallas 22. Sanchez capped the game’s opening drive by scoring on an option keeper from the 2.

After a Dallas punt, Sanchez picked apart the Cowboys secondary, completing 5- of-6 passes on an 88-yard drive that ended with a 27-yard touchdown grab by rookie wide receiver Jordan Matthews.

The Cowboys responded as Dez Bryant’s 38-yard catch along the right sideline set up Murray’s 1-yard touchdown run on the first play of the second quarter.

Philadelphia got another big play the next time on offense. Sanchez found an uncovered Jeremy Maclin, who cut across the field to the Dallas 20 on a 58- yard catch-and-run. Sanchez had fumbled on the previous play, but offensive lineman Andrew Gardner alertly pounced on the ball.

Parkey nailed a 31-yard field goal to put the Eagles up 17-7 with 12:10 left in the first half.

Parkey added two more field goals inside the final two minutes to put Philadelphia up 23-7 at halftime. The rookie made a 22-yarder and then hit a 26-yarder following a fumble by Dallas wideout Cole Beasley.

McCoy fumbled on the Eagles’ first drive of the second half, leading to a 28-yard Dan Bailey field goal, but he atoned for the turnover with a 38-yard touchdown run later in the third quarter.

Parkey made a 25-yarder in the fourth quarter.

Game Notes

The Eagles won the only previous meeting between the teams on Thanksgiving by a 27-0 score on November 23, 1989 ... The Cowboys fell to 29-17-1 all-time on the holiday ... Maclin had 108 yards on eight receptions and posted his first career 1,000-yard receiving season ... McCoy eclipsed 1,000 yards rushing for the fourth time in five seasons ... Bryant caught four passes for 73 yards ... The Eagles converted 8-of-15 third downs and outgained the Cowboys by a 464-267 margin.


►   NFL Game Results

(THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 27)


Final Score: Detroit 34, Chicago 17

Joique Bell and Calvin Johnson each scored twice as the Detroit Lions grabbed a 34-17 victory over the Chicago Bears on Thanksgiving. Matthew Stafford was 34-for-45 for 390 yards with two touchdown passes for the Lions (8-4), who bounced back from a pair of road losses to Arizona and New England. The victory moves Detroit a half-game back of Green Bay for first place in the NFC North. The Packers host the Patriots on Sunday. Bell totaled 91 yards on 23 carries while Johnson had 11 catches for 146 yards for Detroit, which had lost nine straight games in its traditional Thanksgiving Day game, but have now won its past two thanks to this win and a victory over Green Bay last year. Jay Cutler was 31-for-48 for 280 yards with a pair of touchdown passes to Alshon Jeffery along with two interceptions for the Bears (5-7), who had won their previous two coming into the contest. Jeffery had nine catches for 71 yards.


Final Score: Philadelphia 33, Dallas 10

Mark Sanchez threw a touchdown pass and ran for another score as the Philadelphia Eagles seized sole possession of first place in the NFC East with a 33-10 win over the Dallas Cowboys. Sanchez had 217 yards on 20-of-29 passing, and LeSean McCoy posted 159 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries for the Eagles (9-3), who raced out to a 14-0 first- quarter lead and never looked back on their way to improving to 6-0 on Thanksgiving. The only thing preventing the score from being even more lopsided was Philadelphia’s inefficiency in the red zone. The Eagles scored a touchdown only once and settled for four Cody Parkey field goals in five trips, but it didn’t come back to haunt them because of a strong defensive effort. The Eagles ended Tony Romo’s consecutive games streak with a touchdown pass at 38 and held league rushing leader DeMarco Murray to under 100 yards. Romo completed 18-of-29 passes for 199 yards and threw two interceptions as Dallas (8-4) dropped its third straight home game. Murray failed to reach the century mark for only the second time in 2014. He finished with a season-low 73 yards on 20 carries against the Eagles. The teams will meet again in Philadelphia on Dec. 14.


Final Score: Seattle 19, San Francisco 3

Richard Sherman’s two interceptions highlighted a dominant defensive effort, as the Seattle Seahawks routed the San Francisco 49ers, 19-3, in a highly anticipated NFC West Thanksgiving clash. The outspoken cornerback, whose key defensive stop against San Francisco receiver Michael Crabtree in January’s NFC Championship Game helped vault the Seahawks into the Super Bowl, picked off Colin Kaepernick twice as Seattle (8-4) limited the 49ers offense to just 164 total yards. Russell Wilson completed 15-of-22 passes for 236 yards and a touchdown pass to Robert Turbin, Marshawn Lynch ran for 104 yards on 20 carries and Steven Hauschka kicked five field goals for the Seahawks, who have won five of their last six games. The Seahawks now sit all alone for second place in the NFC West behind Arizona, which owns a 9-2 record heading into its matchup against Atlanta on Sunday. Kaepernick threw for 121 yards on 16-of-29 passing as the 49ers (7-5) had their three-game win streak come to an end.



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►   Week 13 player fantasy rankings - quarterbacks

It is extremely rare to not see Peyton Manning ranked among the top three quarterbacks on any given week let alone out of the top five. That, however, is the case for Week 13 as the Broncos visit the Chiefs.

Manning broke out of his mini-slump throwing four touchdown passes last week, but that was at home, and Manning’s “mini-slump” of 986 yards and eight touchdowns came in the previous three games, all of which were on the road. In a loud Arrowhead Stadium and with an angry Chiefs team with extra time to prepare after coming off a heart-breaking loss, Manning could be due for another “average” day, by his standards anyway.

Even though Manning is not ranked in the top five, owners will find fantasy stud quarterbacks Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady near the top of the list. The two Pro Bowl No. 12 quarterbacks will face off for the first time ever, and it should be a dandy. It wouldn’t be wise to start a defense in this game.

Tony Romo has just been on fire lately, so he holds the No. 3 spot for Week 13. In Romo’s two games since his return from the back injury, he has thrown for 521 yards, seven touchdowns and no interceptions with a lost fumble being his only real blunder. Against the Eagles, who allow the third-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks, Romo should feast on Thanksgiving.

Ryan Tannehill has the juiciest matchup of the weekend versus the Jets, and with his performance in the Mile High City last week, fantasy owners shouldn’t hesitate to use him. He threw for 228 yards and three touchdowns against the Broncos. No one has given up more touchdown passes this season than the Jets.

Matt Ryan’s production seems to have plateaued for the season, which is both good and bad. In the last four games, Ryan has scored somewhere between 15 and 16 fantasy points.

Owners love the consistency, but Ryan’s upside is limited. Other quarterbacks such as Eli Manning, Mark Sanchez, Andy Dalton and Russell Wilson have much bigger upsides, but they also come with bigger risks. If owners want a “safe play,“ Ryan is the guy.

Usually, Wilson wouldn’t join a group with Eli Manning, Sanchez and Dalton, but he does this week versus the 49ers. Seattle and San Francisco give up the least and second-fewest fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks, so it appears fans are in for another brutal defensive battle.

That makes Colin Kaepernick a risky play in Week 13 as well.

Top-25 Quarterback Rankings

—————————————-

1) Andrew Luck, Indianapolis

2) Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay

3) Tony Romo, Dallas

4) Tom Brady, New England

5) Drew Brees, New Orleans

6) Peyton Manning, Denver

7) Ryan Tannehill, Miami

8) Matthew Stafford, Detroit

9) Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh

10) Philip Rivers, San Diego

11) Joe Flacco, Baltimore

12) Matt Ryan, Atlanta

13) Eli Manning, New York Giants

14) Mark Sanchez, Philadelphia

15) Andy Dalton, Cincinnati

16) Russell Wilson, Seattle

17) Alex Smith, Kansas City

18) Cam Newton, Carolina

19) Jay Cutler, Chicago

20) Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco

21) Kyle Orton, Buffalo

22) Drew Stanton, Arizona

23) Teddy Bridgewater, Minnesota

24) Zach Mettenberger, Tennessee

25) Blake Bortles, Jacksonville


►   Week 13 player fantasy rankings - wide receivers

No one has enjoyed Tony Romo’s return from his back injury more than Dez Bryant.

No. 88 still scored a touchdown the week Romo didn’t play against the Cardinals, but he only had two catches for 15 yards, both season-lows. In the last two games, Bryant has 13 catches for 244 yards and four touchdowns. Against the Eagles, who allow the third-most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers, Bryant should gobble up the points.

A.J. Green is officially back and ready to roll for the fantasy playoffs. He has 18 catches for 248 yards and a touchdown over the last two weeks. Green takes the No. 2 spot for Week 13 facing the Texans defense that yields the second-most fantasy points to wide receivers.

All fantasy owners, well except the one’s facing him, loved seeing Josh Gordon back on the field. Hopefully owners took our advice and reaped the benefits of Gordon’s eight-catch, 120-yard performance in Atlanta. The matchup isn’t as favorable in Buffalo, but Gordon, who received 16 targets in his first regular-season action in 11 months, is a solid WR1 option.

Keenan Allen has emerged from his fantasy slumber as he had his first 100-yard with a touchdown game of 2014. He has 14 catches the past two weeks and has once again become Philip Rivers’ favorite target. The Chargers take on the Ravens, who are the only team allowing more fantasy points to wide receivers than the Eagles and Texans.

The 2014 wide receiver draft class might be the best ever with Kelvin Benjamin, Mike Evans, Sammy Watkins and Odell Beckham Jr. just to name a few. All those guys are must-starts in 12-team leagues, but don’t forget about other rookies such as Jarvis Landry. The Dolphins rookie wide out is still only owned in 32% of Yahoo leagues despite four touchdowns in the last four weeks.

Speaking of Beckham Jr., it’s too bad fantasy owners don’t get extra points for that spectacular one-handed catch on Sunday night. It might have taken a dramatic catch like that to get the attention of casual fans, but fantasy owners who picked him up after Victor Cruz’s season-ending injury know he has scored at least nine fantasy points in each of the last five games and has two multi-touchdown games.

Keep riding Beckham’s hot streak to the fantasy playoffs.

Top-50 Wide Receiver Rankings

——————————————-

1) Dez Bryant, Dallas

2) A.J. Green, Cincinnati

3) Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh

4) Calvin Johnson, Detroit

5) Demaryius Thomas, Denver

6) Josh Gordon, Cleveland

7) Jordy Nelson, Green Bay

8) Odell Beckham Jr., New York Giants

9) T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis

10) Julio Jones, Atlanta

11) Golden Tate, Detroit

12) Emmanuel Sanders, Denver

13) Randall Cobb, Green Bay

14) Brandon Marshall, Chicago

15) Mike Wallace, Miami

16) Jeremy Maclin, Philadelphia

17) Kelvin Benjamin, Carolina

18) Alshon Jeffery, Chicago

19) Keenan Allen, San Diego

20) Julian Edelman, New England

21) Mohamed Sanu, Cincinnati

22) Mike Evans, Tampa Bay

23) Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona

24) Sammy Watkins, Buffalo

25) Michael Floyd, Arizona

26) Terrence Williams, Dallas

27) Roddy White, Atlanta

28) Jordan Matthews, Philadelphia

29) Marques Colston, New Orleans

30) Jarvis Landry, Miami

31) Kendall Wright, Tennessee

32) Torrey Smith, Baltimore 20over

33) DeAndre Hopkins, Houston

34) Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis

35) Steve Smith, Baltimore 10under

36) Martavis Bryant, Pittsburgh

37) Brandon LaFell, New England

38) John Brown, Arizona

39) Anquan Boldin, San Francisco

40) Cecil Shorts, Jacksonville

41) Malcolm Floyd, San Diego

42) DeSean Jackson, Washington

43) Andre Johnson, Houston

44) Justin Hunter, Tennessee

45) Percy Harvin, New York Jets

46) Vincent Jackson, Tampa Bay

47) Pierre Garcon, Washington

48) Michael Crabtree, San Francisco

49) Reuben Randle, New York Giants

50) Dwayne Bowe, Kansas City


►   Week 13 player fantasy rankings - running backs

We have a “first-timer” on top of the fantasy running back rankings in Week 13. Pittsburgh Steelers tailback Le’Veon Bell gets the nod.

Here’s why.

Just like every single one of his fantasy owners, we loved his performance in the last game when he rushed for a career-high 204 yards and a touchdown. But that’s just the start of it. He’s a valuable asset whether the Steelers are ahead and running out the clock or trying to catch up because he’s also one of the best receivers on the team.

Add in a well-timed bye in Week 12 and Bell should be healthy and ready to run against a New Orleans defense that just yielded 182 yards to Justin Forsett and is in the bottom 10 for rushing yards allowed (123.8).

Dallas running back DeMarco Murray slips down one spot. It’s not like Murray isn’t running well, he notched his 10th 100-yard rushing game last Sunday night against the New York Giants, but he hasn’t been getting into the end zone much of late. In fact, he hasn’t scored in a month.

I’d normally have Arian Foster slotted in the No. 3 hole, but he’s still a question mark due to his groin injury. For that reason, even if he plays, the team will likely monitor his workload to prevent any setbacks.

We have Green Bay’s Eddie Lacy cracking the top-10. He’s coming off his best rushing game of the season and one way to slow down this week’s opposing quarterback, Tom Brady, is to not let him have the football.

We are also believer in Denver running back C.J. Anderson. Of course, we have always been a believer in whatever running back is standing behind Peyton Manning. That’s because every defense is focused on stopping Manning, Demaryius Thomas and the passing game. It has never mattered who was back there, be it Edgerrin James, Joseph Addai or Knowshon Moreno, running backs are successful in a Peyton Manning offense. This weekend it’s Anderson.

In the ever-changing, hard-to-predict world of the Patriots’ backfield I like them to go back to Jonas Gray. He’s likely learned his lesson and won’t miss any practices. And New England faces the hottest quarterback in the NFL - Aaron Rodgers. They should employ the same strategy they used against Indianapolis and Andrew Luck. The Pats will run the ball against the 30th- worst run defense which is yielding 136.7 ypg on the ground.

Top-50 Running Back Rankings

——————————————

1) Le’Veon Bell, Pittsburgh

2) DeMarco Murray, Dallas

3) Jamaal Charles, Kansas City

4) Matt Forte, Chicago

5) LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia

6) Arian Foster, Houston

7) Justin Forsett, Baltimore

8) Marshawn Lynch, Seattle

9) Eddie Lacy, Green Bay

10) C.J. Anderson, Denver

11) Jeremy Hill, Cincinnati

12) Alfred Morris, Washington

13) Isaiah Crowell, Cleveland

14) Mark Ingram, New Orleans

15) Denard Robinson, Jacksonville

16) Frank Gore, San Francisco

17) Joique Bell, Detroit

18) Rashad Jennings, New York Giants

19) Andre Ellington, Arizona

20) Tre Mason, St. Louis

21) Ryan Mathews, San Diego

22) Trent Richardson, Indianapolis

23) Giovani Bernard, Cincinnati

24) Lamar Miller, Miami

25) Jerick McKinnon, Minnesota

26) Jonas Gray, New England

27) Latavius Murray, Oakland

28) Fred Jackson, Buffalo

29) Chris Ivory, New York Jets

30) Bishop Sankey, Tennessee

31) Darren Sproles, Philadelphia

32) Terrance West, Cleveland

33) Reggie Bush, Detroit

34) DeAngelo Williams, Carolina

35) Knile Davis, Kansas City

36) Alfred Blue, Houston

37) Theo Riddick, Detroit

38) Shane Vereen, New England

39) Carlos Hyde, San Francisco

40) Steven Jackson, Atlanta

41) Matt Asiata, Minnesota

42) Benny Cunningham, St. Louis

43) Jonathan Stewart, Carolina

44) Charles Sims, Tampa Bay

45) Juwan Thompson, Denver

46) Branden Oliver, San Diego

47) LeGarrette Blount, New England

48) Roy Helu, Washington

49) Bobby Rainey, Tampa Bay

50) James Starks, Green Bay


►   Week 13 player fantasy rankings - tight ends

One of the feature matchups in Week 13 will be in the frozen tundra of Green Bay where the Packers and Aaron Rodgers face off against the New England Patriots and Tom Brady.

It’s a huge game for each team and for that reason we think Brady will feature his best pass catcher and that’s Rob Gronkowski. “Gronk” has averaged 95 yards and a touchdown over his last seven games. That’s not a lot for a wideout, but at the tight end position, “that’s gold Jerry, gold.“

The Saints’ Jimmy Graham is the No. 2 choice. Graham’s yards per game average is the lowest in the past four seasons (60.9 ypg), but he’s still a touchdown maker and that has been the saving grace for fantasy owners. Monday night he caught six balls for just 47 yards, but two were for scores. He’ll face a Pittsburgh Steelers team that is stuck in the bottom-10 for yielding fantasy points to opposing tight ends.

With Dwayne Allen still a huge question mark because of his sprained ankle, Coby Fleener cracks the top-10. He came up short last weekend, but should see plenty of targets against a Washington defense known for giving up points to opposing tight ends. Note: if Allen does return, he should be substituted for Fleener in the top-10.

The most difficult decision at the tight end position this weekend is trying to decipher whether Julius Thomas will play and how effective he can be?

I don’t think Thomas plays, but if he does he’s mainly a decoy for Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders. That limits Thomas’ upside and he should be bypassed by most owners in Week 13. Getting a zero from your tight end is too big a risk to take in what is likely the first round of your fantasy playoffs.

If you are searching for a needle in a haystack, you can try Detroit’s rookie Eric Ebron. Ebron has been a disappointment this season, but faces a Chicago Bears team that is yielding a league-worst 12.7 ppg to tight ends.

Top-25 Tight End Rankings

————————————-

1) Rob Gronkowski, New England

2) Jimmy Graham, New Orleans

3) Greg Olsen, Carolina

4) Jason Witten, Dallas

6) Delanie Walker, Tennessee

5) Coby Fleener, Indianapolis

7) Larry Donnell, New York Giants

8) Martellus Bennett, Chicago

9) Antonio Gates, San Diego

10) Julius Thomas, Denver

11) Travis Kelce, Kansas City

12) Scott Chandler, Buffalo

13) Heath Miller, Pittsburgh

14) Tim Wright, New England

15) Mychal Rivera, Oakland

16) Vernon Davis, San Francisco

17) Charles Clay, Miami

18) Jared Cook, St. Louis

19) Zach Ertz, Philadelphia

20) Owen Daniels, Baltimore

21) Gavin Escobar, Dallas

22) Eric Ebron, Detroit

23) Niles Paul, Washington

24) Luke Wilson, Seattle

25) Jermaine Gresham, Cincinnati


►   Week 13 player fantasy rankings - kickers

It is pretty tough to rank any kicker above New England Patriots’ place kicker Stephen Gostkowski right now.

Which is why we did no such thing, and have Gostkowski as our top-ranked kicker heading into Week 13. The selection is warranted, as he has made the most field goals in the NFL (26), and has missed just once all season. Gostkowski is also an impressive 11-of-11 from opportunities between 40 and 49 yards, which is also tops in the league.

Philadelphia Eagles’ kicker Cody Parkey has been one the biggest, pleasant surprises in 2014. According to Yahoo, he is third among kickers, with 118 fantasy points, and is coming off his most productive game of the season, scoring 21 points against Tennessee. The Eagles’ offense gets into the red zone 3.7 times per game (eighth in the NFL), yet only scores a touchdown 46.3% of time, giving Parkey even more chances to produce.

The only player yet to miss a field goal attempt this season, is Indianapolis Colts’ kicker Adam Vinatieri, who continues to add to his Hall-of-Fame resume. He is second in fantasy football with 122 points, and has made nine field goals on kicks over 40 yards. The Colts have one of the best offenses in the league, and get into the red zone 4.3 times per game (fourth in the NFL), but convert a touchdown only 53.2% of the time, and only 40% of the time during the past three games. As a result, Vinatieri’s value continues to increase.

A kicker who owners may want to plug into their lineups for Week 13, is the Detroit Lions’ Matt Prater. His opponent, the Chicago Bears, give up the most fantasy points to opposing kickers (11.3 points against), and combined with the fact that Prater has recorded double-digits in three of the past four games, makes for a solid option on Sunday.

While Prater may be a good option for this week, Atlanta Falcons’ place-kicker Matt Bryant may not be. The Falcons are 30th in the NFL in red-zone opportunities (2.4 chances per game), but do convert 69.2% of the time, which is good for the third-best efficiency in the league. With Bryant’s opponent, the Arizona Cardinals giving up the eighth-fewest fantasy points (6.7 points against) to opposing kickers, we simply recommend staying away from the Falcons’ kicker during Week 13.

Top-25 Kicker Rankings

———————————

1) Stephen Gostkowski, New England

2) Cody Parkey, Philadelphia

3) Adam Vinatieri, Indianapolis

4) Caleb Sturgis, Miami

5) Dan Bailey, Dallas

6) Justin Tucker, Baltimore

7) Steven Hauschka, Seattle

8) Cairo Santos, Kansas City

9) Mason Crosby, Green Bay

10) Dan Carpenter, Buffalo

11) Billy Cundiff, Cleveland

12) Nick Novak, San Diego

13) Phil Dawson, San Francisco

14) Matt Prater, Detroit

15) Chandler Catanzaro, Arizona

16) Matt Bryant, Atlanta

17) Josh Brown, New York Giants

18) Randy Bullock, Houston

19) Greg Zuerlein, St. Louis

20) Mike Nugent, Cincinnati

21) Shaun Suisham, Pittsburgh

22) Shayne Graham, New Orleans

23) Blair Walsh, Minnesota

24) Graham Gano, Carolina

25) Connor Barth, Denver


►   Week 13 player fantasy rankings - defense

After seeing the New York Jets score only three points on Monday night of Week 12 against the Buffalo Bills, we most likely would have ranked any team facing the Jets in Week 13, as our top defense.

Not only do we like their matchup on Monday night versus the Jets, but the Miami Dolphins also have the third-most fantasy points (according to Yahoo) this season, making them a must-start option. Miami has produced in a number of categories, as they have given up the fourth-fewest yards in the NFL (3,475) and are tied for fourth, with 31 sacks. The Jets have given up the second-most sacks (36) in 2014, giving the Dolphins an opportunity to put together a big game.

We are “buying” into the Bills’ defensive unit. They have the second-most fantasy points this season, with 123, and after scoring a season-high 24 points against the Jets, we like that trend to continue this week at home versus the Cleveland Browns.

Buffalo has recorded at least nine fantasy points over their last five games, and have scored under that mark just two times this year. The Bills seemingly always find a way to either force a turnover or get a sack. They have notched at least two sacks in every game, and even had seven during Week 12, and along with the fact they are tied for third in the league, with 22 takeaways, Buffalo is another must-start option.

Our third-ranked defense heading into Week 13, is also coming off a nice performance against the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Indianapolis Colts notched 15 fantasy points, the second-most they have accumulated this season, and with another enticing matchup Sunday against the Washington Redskins, the Colts will have a great chance to continue to build in the right direction. Not only does Washington score just 19.7 points per game, but they also are giving up the third-most fantasy points to opposing defenses (10.7 points against), which should give owners even more confidence to start Indianapolis.

An under-the-radar play that owners may want to consider starting this week, is the St. Louis Rams’ defense. The Rams’ defense has played well of late, and has scored at least 10 points in three of the past four games. With a matchup against the Oakland Raiders’ inept offense, which is scoring only 16.0 points per game, we like St. Louis to produce from a fantasy standpoint on Sunday.

The New York Giants have one of the worst fantasy-defenses this season, but if there was ever a week to start them, it would be Week 13 against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Jacksonville’s offense is so abysmal, that they are dead last in the NFL, scoring only 14.6 points per game, and on top of that, the Jaguars also give up the most fantasy points to opposing defenses, allowing 14.0 points per game. If owners are in a bind this week, look no further than the Giants.

Top-25 Defense/Special Teams Rankings

——————————————————-

1) Miami Dolphins

2) Buffalo Bills

3) Houston Texans

4) Indianapolis Colts

5) San Francisco 49ers

6) Seattle Seahawks

7) Philadelphia Eagles

8) St. Louis Rams

9) Arizona Cardinals

10) Cleveland Browns

11) Cincinnati Bengals

12) New York Giants

13) Pittsburgh Steelers

14) Detroit Lions

15) Chicago Bears

16) Minnesota Vikings

17) New York Jets

18) Carolina Panthers

19) Kansas City Chiefs

20) Green Bay Packers

21) Baltimore Ravens

22) Dallas Cowboys

23) New England Patriots

24) Denver Broncos

25) Tampa Bay Buccaneers



<The Gilmer Free Press

►   Top-25 College Basketball Game Results

(Thursday, November 27)


Final Score: (2) Wisconsin 68, Georgetown 65

Sam Dekker had 17 points, Nigel Hayes scored 15 and second-ranked Wisconsin held on to beat Georgetown 68-65 on Thursday in the Battle 4 Atlantis semifinals. Bronson Koenig supplied 14 points and four assists for the Badgers (6-0), who will face Oklahoma in Friday’s championship game. D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera sank five 3-pointers but missed one at the buzzer that could have forced overtime. He led the Hoyas (4-1) with 29 points on 11-of-18 shooting. Joshua Smith was the only other Georgetown player to reach double figures in points as he finished with 10.


Final Score: (5) North Carolina 78, (22) UCLA 56

Marcus Paige totaled 21 points and five assists and No. 5 North Carolina got back on track with a 78-56 dismantling of 22nd-ranked UCLA in the second round of the Battle 4 Atlantis. Justin Jackson scored 12 points while J.P. Tokoto and Isaiah Hicks netted 10 apiece for the Tar Heels (4-1), who were upset by Butler in the opening round of the tournament. Nothing went right in this one for UCLA (4-2), which was pressured into 23 turnovers and went just 1-of-14 shooting from behind the arc. Norman Powell finished with 15 points and five steals in the setback.


Final Score: (11) Kansas 76, Rhode Island 60

Perry Ellis totaled 17 points and five rebounds as No. 11 Kansas subdued Rhode Island, 76-60, in the Orlando Classic. Frank Mason III picked up 12 points, with Devonte’ Graham and Wayne Selden, Jr. contributing 10 points each for the Jayhawks (3-1), who will face Tennessee on Friday. E.C. Matthews poured in a game-high 20 points for the Rams (3-1), who were coming off an overtime win against Nebraska. Gilvydas Biruta added 16 points and seven boards in defeat.


Final Score: (18) Florida 56, UAB 47

The 18th-ranked Gators got an unexpected boost from freshman Chris Chiozza, who came off the bench and supplied 13 points with six steals in Florida’s 56-47 win over UAB in the second round of the Battle 4 Atlantis. Chiozza, who went scoreless in Wednesday’s overtime loss to Georgetown in round 1, had scored just 19 points in his collegiate career prior to Thursday’s win. The reserve guard made three of Florida’s seven 3-pointers, including consecutive triples during a crucial stretch midway through the second half. Tosin Mehinti made a layup around Chiozza’s 3s and UAB scored the next five points to tie the game at 39. The Blazers led by two after Mehinti split a pair of free throws out of the final media timeout. But Florida climbed in front when Chris Walker and Jon Horford made two free throws and Kasey Hill had a layup with 1 1/2 minutes to play. After Hakeem Baxter missed twice at the rim out of a timeout, Dorian Finney-Smith’s dunk and more free throws secured the game for the Gators.


Final Score: (20) Michigan State 77, Rider 45

Denzel Valentine scored a game-high 19 points with five rebounds to lead No. 20 Michigan State to a 77-45 victory over Rider in the Orlando Classic. Bryn Forbes finished with 15 points, Travis Trice and Gavin Schilling both had 10 points and six rebounds and Matt Costello supplied six points, nine rebounds and three blocks for the Spartans (4-1), who won their third straight game. Michigan State will face the winner of the Georgia Tech-Marquette game on Sunday. Matt Lopez scored 14 points and Kahlil Thomas contributed seven points and six rebounds for the Broncs (2-3), who dropped a second straight game.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   NHL Game Results

(Thursday, November 27)


Final Score: Nashville 1, Edmonton 0 (OT)

Filip Forsberg scored with 1:05 remaining in overtime to lift the Nashville Predators to a 1-0 win over the Edmonton Oilers on Thanksgiving. The Oilers began overtime on a power play, then were awarded a penalty shot 13 seconds into the extra session when Nashville defenseman Shea Weber closed his hand on the puck while in the crease. Pekka Rinne stretched with his left pad to deny Jordan Eberle at the right post. Moments later, Forsberg spun to shield the puck from an Edmonton player and fired a wrist shot from the left circle past Viktor Fasth. Rinne made 37 saves to earn his second shutout of the season and 34th of his career. The Predators won their third straight game, all beyond regulation, and welcomed back forward Mike Fisher to the lineup. Fisher missed the first 21 games of the season after suffering a ruptured Achilles tendon during the summer. Fasth finished with 24 saves for the Oilers, who lost their eighth consecutive game. They are now 0-11-2 against Western Conference teams this season.

The Gilmer Free Press


References
ABC - American Broadcasting Company
CBS - Columbia Broadcast System
FOX - Fox Entertainment Group
NBC - National Broadcasting Company
JIP - Joined in Progress
DSS - DIRECTV
TSN - Sports Network (Canada)
SNET/SN - Rogers SportsNet (Canada)
RDS - Reseau des sports
MSG - Madison Square Garden Network
TNT - Turner Network Television
TBS - Turner Broadcasting System
SNY - SportsNet New York
CBSSN - CBS - College Sports Network
CSN - Comcast SportsNet
TCN - The Comcast Network
NBCSN - NBC Sports Network
NESN - New England Sports Network
MASN - Mid-Atlantic Sports Network
ROOT - Root Sports (Pittsburgh, Northwest, Rocky Mountain)
CST - Cox Sports Television
FCS - FOX College Sports
FS - FOX Sports Regional
RSN - Regional Sports Networks
CPTV - Connecticut Public Broadcasting
TVG - Horse Racing Channel
FS1 - FOX Sports 1
TWC - Time Warner Cable Sports Channel
* - If Necessary


FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 28, 2014


National Basketball Association
Chicago at Boston, 1:00 PM - CSN-Chicago, New England, DSS
Golden State at Charlotte, 7:00 PM - CSN-Bay, SportSouth, DSS
Milwaukee at Detroit, 7:30 PM - FS-Wisconsin, Detroit, DSS
New Orleans at Atlanta, 7:30 PM - FS-New Orleans, SportSouth, DSS
Dallas at Toronto, 7:30 PM - FS-Southwest, TSN2, DSS
New York at Oklahoma City, 8:00 PM - MSG, FS-Oklahoma, DSS
LA Clippers at Houston, 8:00 PM - FS-Prime Ticket, ROOT-SW, NBA TV, DSS
Orlando at Indiana, 8:00 PM - FS-Florida, Indiana, DSS
Sacramento at San Antonio, 8:30 PM - CSN-California, FS-Southwest, DSS
Phoenix at Denver, 9:00 PM - FS-Arizona, Altitude, DSS
Memphis at Portland, 10:00 PM - SportSouth, CSN-Northwest, DSS
Minnesota at LA Lakers, 10:30 PM - FS-North, Time Warner, DSS


National Hockey League
NY Rangers at Philadelphia, 1:00 PM - NBC
Chicago at Anaheim, 4:00 PM - WGN, FS-Prime Ticket, NHL Network, DSS
NY Islanders at Washington, 5:00 PM - MSG, CSN-DC, DSS
Carolina at Pittsburgh, 7:00 PM - FS-Carolina, ROOT-Pittsburgh, NHL Network
Detroit at New Jersey, 7:00 PM - FS-Detroit, MSG+, DSS
Montreal at Buffalo, 7:00 PM - RDS, MSG-Buffalo, DSS
Vancouver at Columbus, 7:00 PM - SNET-Pacific, FS-Ohio, DSS
Winnipeg at Boston, 7:00 PM - TVA, TSN3, NESN, DSS
Ottawa at Florida, 7:30 PM - RDS2, TSN5, FS-Florida, DSS
Edmonton at St. Louis, 8:00 PM - SNET-West, FS-Midwest, DSS
Minnesota at Dallas, 8:30 PM - FS-North+, Southwest+, DSS


College Basketball
Orlando Classic, 12:00 PM - ESPN
New Orleans at Texas A&M, 11:00 PM - SEC Network
Battle 4 Atlantis, 2:00 PM - ESPN
Orlando Classic, 2:30 PM - ESPN U
Wright State vs. FIU, 3:30 PM - ESPN3.com
Wooden Legacy, 3:30 PM - ESPN 2
Penn State at Bucknell, 4:00 PM - Patriot League Network
James Madison at Ohio State, 4:00 PM - Big Ten Network
Yale at Providence, 4:00 PM - FS1
Battle 4 Atlantis, 4:30 PM - ESPN
NIT Season Tip-Off, 4:30 PM - ESPN U
Charleston Southern at Florida State, 6:00 PM - ESPN3.com
CS Fullerton at USC Upstate, 6:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Orlando Classic, 6:30 PM - ESPN U
Monmouth at Maryland, 7:00 PM - Big Ten Network
South Alabama at Miami-Florida, 7:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Boise State at NC State, 7:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Vanderbilt vs. Rutgers, 7:00 PM - NBCSN
Holy Cross at Syracuse, 7:00 PM - ESPN3.com
NIT Season Tip-Off, 7:00 PM - ESPN 2
Bradley vs. TCU, 7:00 PM - CBSSN
Delaware State at Wake Forest, 7:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Samford at Louisiana Tech, 8:00 PM - American Sports Net, MASN
UT Martin at Nebraska, 8:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Battle 4 Atlantis, 8:00 PM - AXStv
Las Vegas Invitational, 8:00 PM - FS1
SE Louisiana at Tulane, 8:00 PM - ESPN3.com
North Texas at Arkansas, 9:00 PM - SEC Network
UNC Greensboro at Indiana, 9:00 PM - Big Ten Network
Orlando Classic, 9:00 PM - ESPN 2
Miss State vs. Saint Louis, 9:30 PM - CBSSN
La Salle vs. Virginia, 9:30 PM - NBCSN
North Dakota at Utah, 10:00 PM - Pac-12 Network
Battle 4 Atlantis, 10:30 PM - AXStv
Las Vegas Invitational, 10:30 PM - FS1
Wooden Legacy, 11:30 PM - ESPN 2
Great Alaska Shootout, 12:00 AM - CBSSN


Women’s College Basketball
Binghamton vs. St. John’s, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Nebraska at UCLA, 4:00 PM - Pac-12 Network
Miami-Ohio vs. Oakland, 7:00 PM - ESPN3.com
College of Charleston vs. Connecticut, 8:30 PM - ESPN3.com, SNY


College Football
Northern Ill at Western Mich, 11:00 AM - ESPN U
Nebraska at Iowa, 12:00 PM - ABC
UCF at So Florida, 12:00 PM - ESPN 2
Houston at SMU, 12:00 PM - CBSSN
Western Ky at Marshall, 12:00 PM - FS1
Toledo at Eastern Mich, 1:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Buffalo at Massachusetts, 1:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Akron at Kent State, 1:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Ball State at Bowling Green, 1:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Arkansas at Missouri, 2:30 PM - CBS
Navy at South Alabama, 3:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Arizona State at Arizona, 3:30 PM - FOX
Colorado State at Air Force, 3:30 PM - CBSSN
Stanford at UCLA, 3:30 PM - ABC
Virginia at Virginia Tech, 8:00 PM - ESPN
East Carolina at Tulsa, 8:30 PM - ESPN U


College Hockey
St. Cloud State at Bemidji State, 8:30 PM - Lakeshore Public TV


International Soccer
Olympique de Marseille vs. FC Nantes, 2:25 PM - beIN Sport


Golf
Australian Open, 8:00 PM - Golf Channel

G-Biz™:  Pioneer Grille Operation Hours

The Gilmer Free Press

FD640xxx01U

The Gilmer Free Press

Glenville: Black Friday/Saturday Bazaar - 11.28.14 & 11.29.14 - Friday and Saturday

The Gilmer Free Press

U.S. Policies in Mexico Have Made Bad Situation Worse

Missing Mexican students are collateral damage of drug-war capitalism

The disappearance and presumed murder of 43 Mexican students from the rural teacher’s college in Ayotzinapa on Sept. 26 has exposed Mexico’s inability to contain the rising tide of drug-fueled violence plaguing the country. Within days, a search team looking for the students unearthed mass graves that contained the remains of 30 others, barely eliciting a response from officials for whom the macabre discovery of clandestine graves has become all too common.

The lack of answers about the fate of missing students has unleashed massive protests and discontent across Mexico and abroad, as enraged demonstrators direct their fury at systemic and entrenched problems: drug-trafficking violence, rampant corruption, neoliberal economic reforms and pervasive poverty and inequality. The tension poses the most critical challenge yet for the presidency of Enrique Peña Nieto, but this tragedy is not a crisis for Mexico alone. The carnage south of our border is closely intertwined with U.S. security and trade policies that have intensified rather than stanched the flow of blood in Mexico.

The whole episode is emblematic of Mexico’s corruption, impunity and weak democratic institutions, with elected officials and security forces colluding with the drug cartels. In this case, the students were apparently abducted by local police on direct order from Iguala’s mayor and handed over to the local Guerreros Unidos gang, which has close ties to the mayor’s wife, who claim to have killed them, burned the bodies and dumped the ashes in Cocula. And though nearby, the military evinced indifference to the students’ plight.

Despite these entanglements, however, the U.S. continues to engage in a bi-national strategy with Mexico to combat drug trafficking, entrusting the very politicians and security forces whose ties to criminal enterprises are readily apparent.

In the last six years alone, Washington spent $3 billion on the Mérida Initiative, a border security, counter-narcotics and counterterrorism program established by the George W. Bush administration in 2008. The U.S. also funnels millions of dollars through the Department of Defense to train state security forces. In 2006, Peña Nieto’s predecessor Felipe Calderón declared war on the cartels, and the human cost has been staggering. During his six-year tenure from 2006 to 2012, 83,000 people were killed and at least another 26,000 disappeared. The death toll has now reached 100,000.

Mexico’s U.S.-backed anti-drug policies are inherently counterproductive. The criminal networks associated with the illicit and unregulated drug trade are intrinsically violent, and dismantling one cartel does little to curb overall drug trafficking and violence. Instead, interdiction and drug-related arrests can escalate violence by creating power vacuums that spur fragmentation, decentralization and competition among cartels for the freed-up market share.

The Gilmer Free Press

Washington has been virtually silent about the Iguala tragedy and
stubbornly unwilling to reflect on how its own policies play a role in the bloodshed.

In September, the Global Commission on Drug Policy, a panel of international political leaders, issued a report deeming the so-called “war on drugs” an abject failure. The Commission concluded that the current global drug prohibition regime has fueled the flow and profitability of illicit substances. Moreover, the campaign had undermined human rights, development and security — while failing to direct funds toward ameliorating the overlapping and intractable health and social problems engendered by drug consumption. The United Nations has estimated that public health initiatives for drug-related programs would cost $3.2 billion. This figure pales in comparison to the $15 billion the U.S. government spends annually on counter-narcotics programs.

The militarized policing that accompanies the war on drugs has also been catastrophic for human rights. “Soldiers involved in policing are notoriously unable to relinquish the military paradigm,” a UN Special Rapporteur, said after visiting Mexico last year. “The primary objective of the military is to subdue the enemy through the use of superior force.” The Rapporteur called for a human rights-based approach that focuses on the prevention, investigation and prosecution of crimes through a robust justice system, with force employed only as a last resort.

The human toll of militarization has been painfully evident. In September, Amnesty International reported that allegations of torture in Mexico increased 600 percent from 2003 to 2013. And last year, Human Rights Watch reported 250 cases of disappearances in Mexico during Calderon’s rein, with the government implicated in 149 of them, and these are just the tip of the iceberg. And in June, the Army executed 22 civilians in Tlatlaya. Prosecutors coerced witnesses to exonerate the soldiers, threatening to rape the three women and beating two of them.

Beefed up state security extends beyond counter-narcotics efforts, and includes economic objectives that journalist Dawn Paley has dubbed “drug war capitalism.” The incentives include assuring foreign investors of the safety of their investments, supporting privatization, and enriching military contractors and arms manufacturers. Militarized security also facilitates the political repression of groups resisting historical exploitation and neoliberal policies, including activists, trade unions, teachers, and indigenous and campesino communities fighting dispossession, such as those in the impoverished state of Guerrero that is home to the Ayotzinapa teachers’ school. In fact, reports suggest that the vanished students may have been targeted in part because of their poor, rural left-wing school’s activism against regressive educational reforms.

Mexico’s war on drugs also plays out against the backdrop of U.S. trade policy. For example, the North American Free Trade Agreement has had a devastating effect on the country: Depressing wages, displacing small farmers, increasing migration to the U.S. and exacerbating poverty, which in turn fuels continued activism against the government.

The humanitarian crisis in Mexico spills back over our borders as well. Since the escalation of Mexico’s drug war in 2006, the government’s inability to stem the ensuing violence has forced many to flee for their lives. Applications for political asylum in the U.S. rose fourfold during that period, though Mexican refugees are rarely granted relief. Yet Washington has been virtually silent about the Iguala tragedy and stubbornly unwilling to reflect on how its own policies play a role in the bloodshed.

A short video of the students before they were abducted provides a visceral and haunting reminder that they are not faceless statistics. Instead of continuing to pour taxpayer money into state-sponsored repression, corruption and narco-violence in Mexico, Barack Obama’s administration should heed the advice of the emerging global consensus on the failure of the current militarized drug-prohibition framework. It is time to re-think the war on drugs, end the Mérida Initiative and adopt an enlightened and sensible policy that will ease the mounting death toll in Mexico and diminish the damage at home.

~~  Lauren Carasik - A clinical professor of law and the director of the international human rights clinic at the Western New England University School of Law ~~

The Wrong Priorities: Shifting Spending on Violence

The Gilmer Free Press

In the lead-up to the grand jury outcome in the Michael Brown murder the St. Louis and Ferguson-area police have ramped up their preparation- with stockpiles of more weapons and rhetoric that contributes to the public frenzy.

While I understand the need for security, does the narrow-minded focus on military and weapons actually make us more secure? Human security and peace economists understand that increased weaponization makes us more insecure.

Researchers for some time now have been able to understand how freedom from violence and the threat of violence, community-based economic development, authentic democratic processes and transparency increase human security. Violence and security have often been linked; human security research suggests they are mutually exclusive. Choosing violence to attain security precludes that very security for anyone who critiques violence, as thousands have learned in Ferguson. Clanging claims that we live in a great democracy that protects everyone’s rights sound awfully hollow to an unarmed protestor who has just been injured and arrested by a jack-up cop strapped with an official lethal sidearm and a legal system that affords him every benefit of every doubt.
Democracy is not just a system of voting but an approach to governing that recognizes obstacles to participation and development and listens, trying to hear what communities need. It is not ever envisioned as a system where the majority can vote itself immunity and vote the minority vulnerable to brutality committed by agents of the state. That sort of system is a false democracy. We want a real one.

Communities don’t want handouts- people want to work to determine their own futures. But many young people question the very concept of future. In the immediate aftermath of the murder of unarmed Michael Brown last August, St. Louis City police gunned down another African American youth, Kejeme Powell across the street from my parents’ home. He had a little knife and was simply depressed and told the police, “Shoot me.” They were exceedingly unprofessional and lacking even a whit of compassion as they did just that—at least six shots each. Where is the hope?

The current state of affairs concerning the outcome of the grand jury is extremely disconcerting, contributing to an increased sense of insecurity. Governor Nixon needs to appoint an independent prosecutor to avoid the perception of injustice. A real involvement of the community in plans for any grand jury outcome as hands up united suggested, or focusing on all of the positive efforts the community in Ferguson and Beyond are doing to teach nonviolence would be actions that ease the air of panic of the entire region.

People of color in the US, in general, don’t trust the legal system to bring justice. Fixing that might seem like a daunting task, but democratic theorists point out that even the smallest communities must have their needs addressed if we as a society are to maintain the promise of democracy. The Tea Party movement illustrates how the needs of a few should be given serious attention in addressing public policy.

The lack of real understanding of the protestors, beyond the sense that they are a nuisance, is part of the continuing failure of local and national officials. Their response continues to point out the deep racial divide and necessity of deep conversation and action. For instance, there was a demonstration for second amendment rights in downtown St. Louis in October where demonstrators carried guns openly. Some had three or four weapons including automatic assault weapons. This gathering of an all white crowd was not met with riot gear, but only a few police with luminescent vests. In San Franciso, exuberant Giants fans set fires broke windows and destroyed property. While some police arrested some- where was the rethoric around violent whites or even the call for the national guard? Fans were excited, expressing joy, although a bit much, but Whites are allowed to be angry, express emotions. But don’t protestors, who are rightly angered over police killings of Blacks, have the same humanity to express their frustration?

I reiterate the need for dialogue, for listening to people’s truth so they can move forward. This is not just desirable, but actually required for reconciliation. If that is not what our society is about, then there needs to be a conversation about who we really are as Americans. But as it stands, the assertion by our elected leadership is that this is a democratic nation concerned with all of its citizens. My message to government officials is that all of the preparation for the violence following the grand jury; the cost of increased overtime for police, money spent on weapons and security with the threat of violence does not provide authentic security, but instead exacerbates the root causes of the protests- the inattention to the dignity of already marginalized. Governor Nixon, you and Ferguson area officials are bracing for a storm you helped to create.

~~  Dr. David Ragland ~~

Bon Appétit: Hillshire Farm® Sausage Alfredo

The Gilmer Free Press

Ingredients:

Recipe makes 6 servings

  1 (14 ounce) package Hillshire Farm® Smoked Sausage, diagonally cut into 1/4-inch slices
  8 ounces pasta, cooked, drained
  2 cups heavy cream
  2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
  1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese


Directions:

Prepare pasta according to package directions; drain and set aside.

Saute sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat for 5 minutes, turning occasionally.

Add cream and Cajun seasoning; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer gently for 3-4 minutes or until mixture begins to thicken. Remove from heat, stir in Parmesan cheese. Add pasta to sauce and toss.

GFP - 11.28.2014
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G-MM™: Meditation Moment

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Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.
Amen.


1 Thessalonians 4:3-6 (DP)

3-6 In particular, be careful not to stray into sexual immorality, such as fornication. Those who do not know God, believing themselves to be free, are enslaved to passion and lust like animals, but you have been set free by Christ: so control your own bodies in holiness and honor, for it is God’s will that you be sanctified. And especially, do not seduce anyone or take sexual advantage of another person, for God will avenge them.

Verbatim Translation

3 For this is will of god, the sanctification of you, to abstain you from the fornication,

4 to know how each of you the of himself vessel to control in holiness and honor,

5 not in passion of lusts just as also the not-knowing-god Gentiles,

6 the not to transgress against and to take advantage of in the matter the brother of him, because avenger lord is concerning all these, as we both previously told to you and witnessed or warned.


Notes on the Scripture

Sexual Morals

To read Paul, or for that matter the New Testament, involves the difficult task of unlearning the definitions of several words. “Sanctify” (and its cognate noun, “sanctification”) is one such. Theological usage of the term distorts it into a difficult technical term; its use in church ritual and doctrine make it sound sanctimonious.

To sanctify means to set something apart for God, taking it out of the general realm of the world. A sanctuary is a sanctified room, a room set aside for worship. If you sometimes hear it used to mean something more complicated or different — in your church, in a theology book, in a lecture or discussion — you will be well-served to unlearn it when you read the Bible. The basic definition is simple and should be the only meaning we understand, when we see it in Scripture.

It is the will of God that we be sanctified; 1 Thess. 4:3 tells us this unambiguously. We are, therefore, to be special people whose lives are set apart for God. It may be an impossible goal, without the grace of Christ, for the most devout monk will confess his sins. But it is nevertheless a goal for which we must strive, to which we must always grow closer.

The first item in Paul’s teaching of sanctification, the first direct command, is abstinence from sexual immorality. A secular moralist might call fornication a victimless crime, but Paul disagrees. Reading the “Literal” version of this passage, one sees that Paul is especially concerned about the cumulative effect of having two persons engaged in sin together. It is easy enough to see his point where one seduces another person, or commits adultery; and even an act of simple fornication will involve collaborative sin.

But how can this be harmonized with Christ’s teaching in Matthew 5:28, “everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart”? Sin begins in the heart. A dieter ensures her downfall when she starts to dwell on her craving for “just one piece ”of chocolate. One begins the process of murder when one points a gun at another person.

Paul does not teach contrary to Christ, but he does teach about sexual morals with more emphasis on the act itself, and the impact it has on others. His theology strongly emphasizes freedom from slavery, the same idea as Christ’s teachings about purity of heart, but where Christ’s intention was to show a group of self-righteous Jews their sin, Paul’s intention is to teach a group of Greeks, brought up in an environment of superheated lasciviousness, to break the chains of slavery to animal passion.

This is a basic disparity in the point of view of a Christian and a pagan. An atheist will complain about the straitjacket of Christian morals. He sees Christianity as slavery, because it would hinder him from doing what he wants to do. A Christian understands that the atheist’s “freedom of choice” is not freedom at all; the atheist is simply obedient to his base instincts rather than the higher and holy law of God.

Margie L. Jones

The Gilmer Free Press

Margie L. Jones

Age 74 of Pennsboro, WV, departed this life on Wednesday, November 26, 2014, at her residence.

Margie was born March 07, 1940, in Butler, PA, a daughter of the late Daniel and Virginia (Gregg) McGrady.

Margie spent most of her working career working in the garment industry of Ritchie County at the former Myles Manufacturing of Pennsboro. Later, she became a devoted and loving homemaker for her family. She loved her family dearly and was always there to help anybody in need. She greatly enjoyed the annual Ellenboro Bash and her grandchildren were her pride and joy.

She is survived by her loving children, Sherry Mossor of Mineral Wells, WV; Richard Jones (Kenda) of Pennsboro, WV (Highland Community); Terry Jones (Donna) of Pennsboro, WV (Highland Community); Connie Moore (David) of Pennsboro, WV, and Kimberly Layfield of Pennsboro, WV; grandchildren, AJ Mossor, Bobbie Jo Mossor, Justin Jones, Andy Wagoner, Daniel Jones, Samantha Snodgrass (Alan), Dalton Layfield, Chris Jones, Darren Jones; brothers, Donald McGrady of Athens, AL; Edward McGrady of PA; Kenneth McGrady of Harrisville, WV; Rick McGrady of Pennsboro, WV; sister, Mary Sue Ingram of Pennsboro, WV, and her loving sister & brother inlaws, and many nieces & nephews.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her beloved husband, William Guy Jones in 1993; brother, William McGrady and sister, Joann McGrady.

Funeral services will be 2 PM Sunday, November 30, 2014, at the McCullough Rogers Funeral Home, Pennsboro, WV with her son in law, Rev. David Moore officiating.

Burial will follow in the Mount Harmony Masonic Cemetery, Pennsboro.

Friends may call from 4-8 PM on Saturday, at the funeral home.

Samuel Lewis Butler

The Gilmer Free Press

Samuel Lewis Butler

Infant son of Angel Cooper and Eric Butler, born November 22, 2014. Departed this life November 23, 2014 after being baptized surrounded by his parents.

Samuel is survived by his brother, Dakota Butler; sisters, Gracie Cooper, Jade and Rhiana Radcliff, and Abby and Autumn Butler.

Maternal grandparents Emma and Lewis Cooper, Paternal grandparents Sandra and Paul Butler, and many aunts, uncles, and cousins.

Services are November 29, 2014 at 1:00 PM at The Bailey Cemetery, Beech Rd. Orma, WV.

Reverend Rick Metheney will be officiating.

Comics   141128

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Thanksgiving Day 2014

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On Thanksgiving Day we’re thankful for

Our blessings all year through,

For family we dearly love,

For good friends, old and new.


For sun to light and warm our days,

For stars that glow at night,

For trees of green and skies of blue,

And puffy clouds of white.


We’re grateful for our eyes that see

The beauty all around,

For arms to hug, and legs to walk,

And ears to hear each sound.


The list of all we’re grateful for

Would fill a great big book;

Our thankful hearts find new delights

Everywhere we look!

Congressman McKinley: Wishing You and Your Family a Happy Thanksgiving

The Gilmer Free Press

Each year, on the fourth Thursday in November, Americans gather around the table to celebrate Thanksgiving. We take this time to reflect on the many things for which we are grateful: our family and friends; our co-workers; our jobs; our health and the freedoms we enjoy in America. Too often, we get caught up in the pace of everyday life and don’t take the time to appreciate just how fortunate we are. This is a time for such reflection.

As Americans, we have to cherish this special time of thanksgiving and togetherness. We also can give thanks and remember those who have sacrificed for our freedoms.West Virginia is home to a significant number of men and women who have served in our Armed Forces and sacrificed so much so that we may enjoy life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness here at home. Let us give thanks to these men and women, and give thanks for our great country.

Happy Thanksgiving!
                                          The Gilmer Free Press

WEST VIRGINIA GIVES BIG THANKS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES

The Gilmer Free Press

This week as we gather to give thanks this holiday season, many across the Mountain State are also preparing for the hustle and bustle of the biggest shopping days of the year. Each year, squeezed between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Small Business Saturday reminds us, during the biggest shopping weekend of the holiday season, to support West Virginia’s locally owned small businesses.

Small businesses represent a major portion of the economy in communities across West Virginia and across the country.

The U.S. Small Business Administration reports that small businesses employ an estimated 55 million of the country’s private workforce. Small businesses represent 99.7% of all employers nationally. In West Virginia small businesses represent 95.8 percent of all employers in the state and employ more than half of the state’s private workforce.

Who are our local small businesses? They are independent bookstores down the street and the unique clothing boutiques downtown. They are the little diner around the corner that serves the best hot dogs and the restaurant that works with local growers to serve fresh produce in season.

West Virginia’s small businesses are not limited to retail. They include companies in fields such as construction, energy, biotechnology and more.

Often these small businesses represent the blood, sweat and dreams of the entrepreneurs who started them. They are the bread and butter of the people who work there. They are our friends and our neighbors.

Last year, consumers spent $5.7 billion on Small Business Saturday supporting local, independent shops. According to the National Federation of Independent Business and American Express, that’s an increase of 3.6% over sales in 2012.

Spending with local merchants keeps more of our dollars at work close to home, in our neighborhood. Studies show shopping with local independents keeps more than three times as much revenue recirculating in local communities. These dollars return to the local economy in the form of profits, wages, purchasing and charitable giving.

The strength of our state economy begins with local businesses in our communities. That’s one reason West Virginia operates programs that specifically address the needs of small businesses.

The West Virginia Small Business Development Center (WVSBDC) guides entrepreneurs through the nuts and bolts of launching their start-up businesses. Established businesses ready to grow and expand call on WVSBDC for practical advice and connections. The statewide network of business coaches includes specialists certified in areas such as access to capital, innovation/technology, exporting and federal contracts.

Scores of West Virginia communities work year round to revitalize their downtown districts and many plan to support their local small businesses with signs, giveaways and other events to add to special deals in stores during the weekend’s celebration.

This Saturday, November 29, join me in supporting these dedicated businessmen and businesswomen. Let’s make a big difference in our communities.

Manchin’s Message from the Hill to the Mountains: THANKSGIVING IS ALL ABOUT GIVING THANKS

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Months after George Washington became the first President of the United States, both houses of Congress requested that the new American leader proclaim a “day of public thanksgiving and prayer.” Washington obliged and called on all Americans to “unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country.”

Although the tradition of gathering to celebrate good fortunes was common for centuries among Native Americans, the pilgrims and even the Puritans, Washington’s 1787 Thanksgiving declaration would be the first time our newly born nation would come together to nationally reflect on the many blessings Americans share.

Since those initial days of Washington’s presidency, the evolution of Thanksgiving Day has come to pass, moving from a more somber day of observance to an established national holiday where large parades and festive turkey dinners became the forefront of Thanksgiving celebrations.

What used to be a day devoted to religious observance, the fourth Thursday in November now brings families and friends together to enjoy roasted turkey with stuffing, mashed potatoes next to scalped potatoes, cranberry pudding and pumpkin pie, and, of course, day-long football games.

But while we gather among family and friends this Thanksgiving, let us remember that our forefathers summoned us together not only to celebrate, but to sincerely give thanks for the many blessings that we enjoy every day in this great country. Because no matter what is happening in the life of our country – whether in war or peace, in boom or bust, in triumph or tragedy – we are still so blessed to live in the greatest country in the world.

One of our nation’s greatest blessings is the courage and commitment of the men and women of our Armed Forces who stand guard around the world, preserving our freedom and protecting us from harm. They may not be with their families for the holiday, but they and their loved ones will be in our thoughts and prayers. As Gayle and I surround ourselves by loved ones, we will offer a special thanks for their service and sacrifice.

But as my parents once taught me, if you can count your blessings, you can share your blessings. I encourage all West Virginians to do the same this year as the holiday season officially kicks off. Take this time to serve, to spend time with those who are lonely, sick or less fortunate, and to reflect upon our values and beliefs with loved ones.

This year, I encourage all West Virginians to not forget Thanksgiving Day’s humble roots and embrace one of America’s favorite holidays by gathering together, saying grace, and reflecting on our many blessings.

On behalf of Gayle and our whole family, we wish you and your family a happy and healthy Thanksgiving. God bless America, and God bless the great state of West Virginia.

Showing Thanks by Giving Year-Round

The Gilmer Free Press

A warm bed, a loving family, or good health—so many of us in West Virginia have much to be thankful for. But as we give thanks, we must also take this time to reflect on the struggles and needs of those less fortunate.

Holidays are more than a celebration—they are a time of giving, compassion, and a generous outpour of care. As West Virginians, it is in our DNA. Our people are some of the strongest, kindest, and most giving, and our greatest work is done when we come together as a community to help those in need. Our neighbors never turn their backs on each other, always quick to offer a helping hand. And we must continue this tradition year-round.

At a time when families are preparing feasts for loved ones, it’s so important that we think of the hungry, the cold, and the less fortunate. Every day, thousands of people depend on the safety net of food security programs such as the Supplemental Food Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP). Household food budgets across the country are severely strained—before and after Thanksgiving. It is through these programs we make sure families do not go hungry and our most vulnerable are fed.

The need is very real:

In West Virginia alone, more than 350,000 people relied on SNAP benefits to get them through rough financial times this past year. Without these benefits, one in five of our fellow West Virginians, including thousands of children, would go to bed hungry. This holiday season, we know we can do more to strengthen our food assistance programs so that nobody goes without food on Thanksgiving.

The power of charity and public service should not be limited to the holiday season, though. We must continue to work for those less fortunate by making sure their basic human needs are met at all times.

Thanks to programs like the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and Head Start, children are given the opportunity to grow and flourish to become leaders of tomorrow. Without the giving individuals advocating for these critical child welfare program year-round, millions of children would be left behind.

With the year coming to a close, many are looking at their health care options before the new year starts. Through the Affordable Care Act, Medicaid, and Medicare, thousands of West Virginians have been given access to health care they could not otherwise afford. No person should have to sacrifice basic needs like health care because of the feared financial repercussions it might have on their family. As neighbors, parents, and friends, it is our responsibility to make sure these basic needs are met for those who need it the most.

As we reflect on this holiday season and look forward to the next year, we are reminded of the critical roles these social programs play for so many West Virginians. They are an investment in the futures of our most vulnerable, and I can think of no better way to show thanks than to make sure they continue.

West Virginia News   141127

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TAYLOR WOMAN SENTENCED IN MURDER-FOR-HIRE PLOT

A Taylor County woman will spend at least three years in prison for trying to hire someone to kill her husband.

Media outlets report that 31-year-old Rebecca D. Crouse of Thornton received a three- to 15-year sentence Tuesday in Taylor Court Circuit Court. She had pleaded guilty in June to felony solicitation to commit murder.

Police say Crouse offered an informant $10,000 to $20,000 to kill her husband in December 2013.


SKI SEASON GETTING STARTED IN WEST VIRGINIA

Ski and snowboard season is getting underway in West Virginia.

Snowshoe Mountain will be first with a Wednesday opening. Winterplace will offer three days of alpine skiing starting Friday, then officially open full time on December 12, along with Timberline. Canaan Valley opens Saturday.

West Virginia Ski Areas Association spokesman Joe Stevens says snow already has fallen in the mountains, where temperatures have been cold enough for man-made snowmaking as well. He says that means excellent season-opening conditions.

The ski and snowboard season traditionally runs from Thanksgiving through early April.


BLACK FRIDAY GUN BUYS TEST BACKGROUND CHECK SYSTEM

As stores crowd with holiday shoppers, gun buyers will be challenging the nation’s background check system to keep up.

There are already nine guns for every 10 people in the U.S. and someone is killed with a firearm every 16 minutes. Stakes are already high with about 40 background checks requested every minute. On Black Friday, it speeds up to nearly two gun checks per second.

Kimberly Del Greco helps run the National Instant Criminal Background Check System. She calls it a perfect storm of time limits and insufficient data and resources.

About 500 FBI agents have just three days to verify information that keeps guns from criminals, the mentally ill and people with restraining orders. Otherwise, the sale goes through. About 512 gun sales a day effectively beat the system in 2013.


WEST MILFORD WOMAN SENTENCED AFTER COMMITTING TAX FRAUD

A Harrison County woman was sentenced in federal court Wednesday after committing tax fraud.

Pamela S. Bailey, age 55, of West Milford, received one year and one day in prison for providing false information on her 2011 income tax return.

An IRS investigation revealed Bailey underestimated her taxable income resulting in unpaid taxes in excess of $42,000.

Bailey pled guilty in July to one count of filing a false personal income tax return.

She will receive credit for time served since August.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert McWilliams, Jr. prosecuted the case on behalf of the government, while U.S. District Judge Irene M. Keeley presided.


NUTTER FORT MAN SENTENCED AFTER THREATENING PRESIDENT

After making threats against the President of the United State, a Harrison County man has been convicted and sentenced in federal court.

Timothy Boram, age 64, of Nutter Fort pleaded guilty Monday and was sentenced to five months in prison with credit served since July on one count of making threats against the president of the United States.

In June 2014, while being treated at the VA Medical Center in Clarksburg Boram called 911 and made a threat against the President of the United States.

Boram, who has a history of such threats, will also serve three years of supervised release with the first five months on home detention with electronic monitoring.

The VA Medical Center Police and the United States Secret Service investigated the case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Shawn Morgan prosecuted the case on behalf of the government, while U.S. District Judge Irene M. Keeley presided.


FBI SEIZES NEARLY $28,000 FROM WV GAMBLING CLUB

Federal authorities have seized nearly $28,000 from an allegedly illegal gambling operation in Martinsburg.

A complaint filed Monday says the FBI seized the funds as part of an investigation into illegal gambling.

The complaint says Big Bucks Bingo operated a charitable bingo license for FOP Lodge 83, which represents police in Morgan, Jefferson, and Berkeley Counties. The FOP lodge had its nonprofit status revoked in 2010, the complaint says, which rendered Big Bucks’ charitable operation illegal.

The complaint says the FBI seized cash from Big Bucks Bingo in June. It says the proprietors of Big Bucks Bingo failed to inform the FOP that their nonprofit status had been revoked. It also says the bingo shop tried to conceal charitable proceeds to avoid reporting them.

No criminal charges have been filed.


WV WOMAN PLEADS NO CONTEST TO EMBEZZLEMENT

A West Virginia woman has agreed to pay $91,000 in restitution after pleading no contest to embezzling from a Winchester company.

Georgia Perry-Ray, also known as Georgia Jenkins, entered the plea Monday in Winchester Circuit Court to embezzlement, forgery and uttering charges.

Police say the 59-year-old resident of Wardensville, West Virginia, took money from Ministering Angels between 2012 and 2013. She was a contract employee of the home health care company at the time.

Winchester senior assistant commonwealth’s attorney Derek Aston tells The Winchester Star that Perry-Ray has paid $75,000 in restitution so far.

Aston says Perry-Ray will be convicted of a reduced misdemeanor embezzlement count if she pays the remainder of the restitution and doesn’t have further trouble with the law. The other charges will be suspended.


PARKERSBURG POLICE SEARCH FOR BUS THIEF

Police Chief Joe Martin says a man stole the bus from the Mid-Ohio Valley Transit Authority’s headquarters last Friday.

Martin tells the Parkersburg News and Sentinel that transit authority workers used the bus’ onboard GPS to track the vehicle. They found it parked several miles away.

He says police are investigating the incident as a joyride.

Transit authority general manager Tim Thomas tells the newspaper that the vehicle’s key was in the ignition when theft occurred during a shift change.

He says the transit authority has changed procedures and security in the terminal area.


EX-WV POLICE ANALYST PLEADS GUILTY TO CHILD PORN

A former West Virginia State Police forensic analyst has pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography.

U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin says 48-year-old Jeffrey Erra Osborne of Clendenin entered his plea Monday. Osborne faces up to 20 years in prison when he is sentenced on February 10.

Osborne worked for the state police for 21 years. According to Goodwin, pictures of children engaged in sexual acts were found on Osborne’s personal computer at his home in January.

As part of a plea agreement, Osborne will abandon certain computers, hard drives, and electronic storage devices seized from him at the time of the execution of the search warrant.


WV MAN SENTENCED IN TIME-SHARE FRAUD SCHEME

A Charleston man has been sentenced to two-and-a-half years in federal prison for a time-share property fraud scheme.

U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin says 47-year-old David Andrew Glynn also was ordered to pay more than $97,000 in restitution during his sentencing in federal court in Charleston.

According to court records, Glynn admitted setting up a company named Mountain State Resales LLC. Time-share owners were told that the company had buyers for their properties and were asked to send fees and expenses necessary to complete the sales.

Glynn also posed as an agent of a fictitious entity investigating.


JENNINGS RANDOLPH ARCHERY RANGE TO BE EXPANDED

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has awarded a grant to help pay for expanding the archery range at Jennings Randolph Lake.

The $15,000 grant comes from the corps’ Handshake Partnership program.

Supervisory park ranger Bill Donellan tells The Cumberland Times-News (http://bit.ly/1tgsD8f ) that the expansion includes 15 additional 3-D animal targets , four to six handicapped-accessible shooting lanes and education.

Donellan says partners are being obtained to provide a $15,000 in-kind match, including Mineral County Parks and Recreation and Mineral County 4-H.

The range is located at the lake’s Robert W. Craig Campground.


ONE DEAD AFTER HOME CATCHES FIRE IN UPSHUR COUNTY

A man was found dead after a fire destroyed his mobile home in a rural area near Hodgesville.

Emergency crews contacted the West Virginia State Police around 3 PM Wednesday after they arrived at 226 New Dawn Road and found the double wide trailer in ashes and no remaining flames.

They were, however, able to locate human remains.

Troopers interviewed family members at the scene and determined the man lived alone and was last seen Tuesday afternoon.

There were no neighbors close to where the trailer was located off of Hackers Creek Road.

The State Police and the State Fire Marshal’s Office will both conduct investigation into the cause of the fire.


WV STORE AGREES TO FINE IN PRICE-GOUGING CASE

A Putnam County store operator has agreed to pay a $5,000 fine to the state to settle a price-gouging complaint after the January water crisis.

Under the terms of the agreement released Tuesday by Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, Mid Valley Mart LLC says it will comply with state consumer protection laws. In exchange, a Putnam County Circuit Court complaint will be dismissed.

According to the agreement, store manager Achraf Assi admitted raising the price of some water products after a chemical spill forced a tap water ban in nine counties.

Morrisey alleged Mid Valley Mart more than doubled prices for one-gallon water jugs at two Hurricane stores.

It’s illegal in West Virginia to raise prices on essential products and services by more than 10% in a state of emergency.


FAIRMONT TO GIVE CENTER TO DOMESTIC VIOLENCE GROUP

Fairmont officials plan to donate a former Army Reserve center to a group that helps domestic violence victims.

Media outlets report that City Council approved the first reading of a proposed ordinance donating the facility on Tuesday. A public hearing is set for December 9.

The ordinance would transfer the former Lt. Harry B. Colburn U.S. Army Reserve Center to the Task Force on Domestic Violence, Hope Inc.

Hope executive director Harriet Sutton says the organization plans to move from its existing building to the center after renovations are complete.

She says the new location will provide services and house victims of domestic violence and sexual assault from Marion, Harrison, Lewis, Doddridge and Gilmer counties.


LAWYER TO HEAD WV INSURANCE PROGRAM

The West Virginia Board of Risk and Insurance Management is getting a new executive director.

The board announced Tuesday that Mary Jane Pickens will succeed Chuck Jones, who is retiring effective January 1. Jones has been executive director since 1994.

Pickens has worked as a lawyer in private practice and for the West Virginia Offices of the Insurance Commissioner. She received her undergraduate degree in political science from West Virginia University and her law degree from Ohio Northern University.

BRIM’s primary responsibility is to provide casualty insurance coverage for state agencies. It operates a similar program for other public entities, including boards of education, local government bodies and many nonprofit organizations.


WV JACKPOT WINNER HELPS 2 HEALTH CARE GROUPS

A charitable fund established by Powerball jackpot winner W. Randy Smith has donated pickup trucks to a hospice and a home health organization.

Media outlets report that The W. Randy Smith Family Fund presented one 2015 truck to Hospice of the Panhandle and a second 2015 truck to Panhandle Home Health on Tuesday.

Smith won a $79 million Powerball jackpot in 2010. He chose the $44 million cash option and pocketed $30 million after taxes.

Smith established the charitable fund at the Eastern West Virginia Community Foundation.

Movie Review: ‘The Homesman’ - Don’t Dare Put Tommy Lee Jones in A Box

Tommy Lee Jones recoils at being pigeonholed, if recent interviews are any indication. He won’t concede that “The Homesman,” his latest effort as director, star and co-writer, is either a western or a feminist movie. And although it has elements of both, those words don’t do the drama justice. That’s because it’s an oddity, and all that strangeness is what makes the movie hard to shake.

The story, based on a novel by Glendon Swarthout, begins in the Nebraska Territory during the 1830s. Times are tough, and the promise of striking it rich out west isn’t quite living up to expectations, especially for three recently settled wives whose traumatic circumstances have led to severe mental illness. Someone needs to take them back east to a church that has generously offered to care for the trio.

A western about going east is something of an anomaly. So is one of the movie’s main protagonists.

The escort tasked with traveling for weeks across desolate land with three raving women in a wagon is Mary Bee Cuddy (Hilary Swank). Cuddy lives alone, despite attempts to strong-arm men into marriage. (They always rebuff her, because they find her too bossy and too plain.) She reasons that she has nothing to lose by going on the trip, unlike some of the men with families who halfheartedly pretend they would go in her place.

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As fate would have it, Cuddy finds a companion for the journey: George Briggs (Jones), who is both a drunk and a criminal. He only accompanies her because Cuddy saves him from certain death: sitting atop a horse with a noose around his neck. He desperately promises to do a-nee-thang for her.

Cuddy is the more able and serious of the mismatched pair, and Swank excels in the strong-willed role that has become her signature. But Briggs is the more memorable character. When he first appears onscreen, Jones seems to be channeling Yosemite Sam. He’s dazed, covered in soot and clad in nothing but long johns, stumbling from a house after some vigilantes have dropped dynamite down the chimney, prompting a cartoonish explosion.

That scene speaks to one of the most peculiar aspects of the movie. It’s often farcical, tickling a viewer in bizarre, laugh-out-loud ways. Yet it can also be hauntingly bleak. The movie is full of arresting images that pinball between extremes, from Jones dancing a jig while shooting his gun in the air to one of the three women (Miranda Otto) throwing her newborn into an outhouse toilet.

The indelible nature of such visuals isn’t always about content, but more often the result of camera angles and cinematography. There is a keen sense of artistry to every frame, as if each moment could survive as its own work of art.

The narrative, too, is unique, shifting in hard-to-predict ways. Certain threads that could have been overly familiar — what happens when an odd couple ends up stuck together, for example — lead in unexpected directions. Although the story goes a little over the top in the second half, in a “Django Unchained” kind of way, the movie ultimately settles back into its banal yet off-kilter groove.

Some recent interviews with Jones paint him as a bit of a curmudgeon. But he’s right to push back against being put into a box. “The Homesman” succeeds mainly because it and he don’t neatly fit into one.

★ ★ ★

R. Contains nudity, troubling scenes, sexual situations and violence. 122 minutes.

Tree Lighting Ceremony at GSC is Monday, December 01, 2014

The Gilmer Free Press


Glenville State College President Dr. Peter Barr and his wife Betsy invite GSC faculty, staff, students, and local residents to kick off the holiday season with the 9th annual GSC Tree Lighting Ceremony to take place on Monday, December 01, 2014 at 4:30 PM in the Luanna T. Smith Amphitheatre.

Festivities will continue at 5:00 PM on the third floor of the Mollohan Campus Community Center with Santa and Mrs. Claus who will pose for pictures with the kids.

Light refreshments also will be served.

“My wife Betsy started this tradition when we came to Glenville in 2006. It has been exciting to see more and more kids each year at the tree lighting. We love to see the kids in the community grow up and lose their fear of telling Santa Claus their biggest wishes,” said Dr. Barr.

This event is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact the GSC President’s Office at 304.462.4110.

Sports News   141127

The Gilmer Free Press


The Gilmer Free Press

►   Redskins bench Griffin for McCoy

Colt McCoy will return to the starting quarterback role for the Washington Redskins.

Redskins coach Jay Gruden confirmed Wednesday the benching of Robert Griffin III, who had started the past three games after recovering from a dislocated ankle suffered in Week 2.

“Colt’s going to start this week,“ Gruden told reporters on a conference call Wednesday. “He’s done some good things. I felt like he deserved a bit of a promotion.“

The Redskins have lost all three games since Griffin’s return, falling to 3-8. Griffin has been sacked 16 times in losses to Minnesota, Tampa Bay and San Francisco, and last Sunday against the 49ers completed 11-of-19 passes for just 106 yards with a lost fumble in the 17-13 setback.

“I’m not putting the blame all on Robert, it seems that way when you make a change at that position,“ Gruden added. “Robert has done some good things. I think he needs a little more time in this system and needs to take a step back and learn. Right now, I felt like Colt would give us a better chance this week.“

McCoy led the Redskins to each of their last two victories. He replaced an ineffective Kirk Cousins in the second half of the Redskins’ Week 7 matchup against Tennessee and rallied the team to a 19-17 decision, then led the way in an overtime road upset of Dallas a week later.

In his limited action, McCoy has connected on 36-of-42 throws for 427 yards with a touchdown and an interception. He finished 25-of-30 for 299 yards in the 20-17 win at Dallas in Week 8.

Griffin has completed 69.7% of his passes for 869 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions in his five starts this season. He has also been sacked 20 times, and has run for 100 yards on 22 carries.

“He’s not happy, nor did I expect him to be,“ Gruden said when asked how Griffin reacted to the decision.

Griffin’s future with the Redskins could also become a topic of consideration, as the team must decide during the offseason whether to exercise an option to extend his contract through 2016.


►   Jets turn back to Geno Smith

The New York Jets will start Geno Smith at quarterback for Monday’s game against the Miami Dolphins.

“Everybody’s on board with this decision,“ Jets coach Rex Ryan said on Wednesday.

Smith, who started the first eight games this season, replaced Michael Vick under center during this past Monday’s 38-3 loss to the Buffalo Bills, a setback that dropped the Jets to 2-9.

Ryan made the decision and informed both quarterbacks Wednesday morning.

“I have said it all along that I feel we have two good quarterbacks, I definitely feel that. And we have another guy that is a decent quarterback as well, in [Matt] Simms. But I feel that way,“ Ryan said.

Smith had been the Jets’ starter for the first 24 games of his career after the team selected him in the second round of the 2013 NFL Draft. He was benched in the Week 8 loss to Buffalo after throwing three interceptions in the first 10 minutes of the contest and Vick was named the starter the following week.

“We purposely put Geno back, let him observe,“ Ryan said. “Now is the opportunity for him to step back in and let’s see how it goes. I, for one, am excited to watch him. He has my support on this, and that’s what I’ll say about it.“

Vick started the past three games for the Jets, leading the team to a victory in Week 10 against Pittsburgh to end an eight-game losing streak. He struggled in Monday’s game against the Bills, completing just 7-of-19 passes for 76 yards with an interception while being sacked five times.

Smith entered in the third quarter and connected on 10-of-12 throws for 89 yards while being sacked twice.

In nine games this season, Smith has thrown for 1,459 yards with seven touchdowns and 10 interceptions.


►   Vikings place Loadholt on IR; add Webb

The Minnesota Vikings placed right tackle Phil Loadholt on injured reserve Wednesday and brought back tackle J’Marcus Webb.

Loadholt suffered a torn pectoral muscle in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s 24-21 loss to Green Bay. He had started the first 11 games this season.

Webb appeared in eight games last season with Minnesota and started once. He spent this summer in training camp with the Kansas City Chiefs.

The 26-year-old product of West Texas A&M was selected in the seventh round of the 2010 draft by the Bears and started 44 of the 46 games he played for Chicago.


►   Patriots’ Slater gets two-year extension

The New England Patriots prevented special teams ace Matthew Slater from hitting the open market in the offseason, with the wide receiver agreeing to terms on a two-year extension on Wednesday.

Financial terms were not disclosed, though an ESPN report said the deal is worth $4 million and includes a $100,000 bonus if Slater is selected to the Pro Bowl.

Slater has been named to the Pro Bowl as the AFC’s special teamer in each of the last three years and was a first team All-Pro in both 2011 and 2012. The 29-year-old has recorded 83 special teams tackles since 2010.

“He’s really pretty much a model player. I’d love to have 53 guys like him,“ said Patriots head coach Bill Belichick of Slater.

“His personality, his intelligence, his toughness, his character—both on and off the field—his leadership is all exemplary. You couldn’t really find anything any better.“

Slater, the son of Hall of Fame offensive tackle Jackie Slater, was in the final season of a three-year contract he signed in March of 2012. The UCLA product entered the NFL as a fifth-round draft pick of New England in 2008.


►   Redskins put CB Porter on IR

The Washington Redskins have placed cornerback Tracy Porter on injured reserve, the team announced Wednesday.

Porter separated the AC joint in his shoulder during Washington’s 17-13 loss at San Francisco on Sunday. The oft-injured veteran had previously missed eight of the team’s first nine games while dealing with a pulled right hamstring before returning to play in the last two contests.

The Redskins signed Porter in the offseason after he made 16 starts with Oakland in 2013, recording 67 tackles, two interceptions, 1 1/2 sacks and 12 passes defensed.

Cornerback Chase Minnifield was added back to the active roster from the practice squad to take Porter’s place. Minnifield appeared in six games with Washington earlier this season prior to being waived on November 04.


►   Bears place Brian de la Puente on IR

The Chicago Bears have placed guard/center Brian de la Puente on injured reserve because of an ankle injury.

The 29-year-old de la Puente appeared in eight contests with six starts (four at center and two at left guard) this season, his first with the Bears.

The Bears also elevated defensive tackle Brandon Dunn to the 53-man roster from the practice squad, signing him to a two-year contract.


►   Lacy among NFC Players of the Week

Green Bay Packers running back Eddie Lacy has been selected as the NFC’s Offensive Player of the Week for games played from November 23-24.

Seattle Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor was named the conference’s top defensive player for Week 12, with Philadelphia Eagles rookie Josh Huff claiming NFC Special Teams Player of the Week recognition after delivering a franchise-record 107-yard kickoff return touchdown in Sunday’s 43-24 win over Tennessee.

Lacy amassed 138 yards from scrimmage while scoring both a rushing and receiving touchdown in the Packers’ 24-21 road victory over fellow NFC North member Minnesota. The 2013 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year finished the game with 125 rushing yards on a season-best 25 carries.

The award is the second of Lacy’s career, having also earned the honor during Week 15 of last season.

Chancellor led an outstanding Seattle defensive effort that lifted the Seahawks to a 19-3 triumph over NFC West-leading Arizona last Sunday. The physical safety recorded eight tackles—seven solo—for a unit that held the Cardinals to 204 total yards.

This is Chancellor’s second Defensive Player of the Week award this season, also receiving the nod for a nine-tackle, one-interception and one forced fumble performance in the Seahawks’ overtime win over Denver in Week 3.


►   Forsett highlights AFC Players of the Week

Baltimore Ravens running back Justin Forsett, Oakland Raiders safety Charles Woodson and Buffalo Bills running back Boobie Dixon were named AFC Players of the Week for Week 12.

Forsett carried the ball 22 times for 182 yards and two touchdowns in the Ravens’ 34-27 win at New Orleans. His 182 yards led all NFL players in Week 12 and marked his third 100-yard performance of the season.

Woodson had eight tackles and one sack in the Raiders’ first win of the season, a 24-20 decision over Kansas City on Thursday night. His sack marked the 20th of his career, and Woodson is the only NFL player with at least 20 sacks and 50-plus interceptions (58) since sacks became an official statistic in 1982.

Dixon blocked a punt that was recovered in the end zone for a touchdown in the Bills’ 38-3 win against the New York Jets at Detroit’s Ford Field on Monday night. The Mississippi State product, who also blocked a punt in Week 2 against Miami, is the first Bills player with two blocked punts in a season since Steve Tasker in 1990.


►   Lions’ Reiff, Bush questionable for Thanksgiving

Detroit Lions running back Reggie Bush and left tackle Riley Reiff are questionable for Thursday’s Thanksgiving Day game against the Chicago Bears.

Bush has missed the last two games with an ankle injury. The USC product was limited in practice this week.

The 29-year-old Bush has carried the ball 53 times for 191 yards and one touchdown in seven games this season. He has also caught 26 passes for 169 yards.

Joique Bell has started the past two games. He has carried the ball 141 times for 490 yards and three touchdowns in 10 games this season.

Reiff was a limited participant in Wednesday’s walkthrough after missing practice on Monday and Tuesday. He suffered a left knee injury on the first play of the Lions’ 34-9 loss to the New England Patriots last weekend.

If Reiff can’t go, expect rookie Cornelius Lucas to make his first start at left tackle.

Guard Larry Warford and defensive tackle Nick Fairley are both out with knee injuries for the Lions.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   10 reasons to be thankful

With the turkey about to go in the oven, it is time to reflect on what we are truly thankful for this year.

Family ... Friends ... and Justin Forsett for saving all our fantasy teams with his 182 rushing yards and two touchdowns on Monday night.

For me, I am not thankful for Forsett because I was playing against him and fell on the losing end last week. However, there are still many things I am thankful for this holiday season.

Tony Romo’s back doctor

Like a majority of fans on the east coast, the blue star on silver helmets makes me vomit a little in my mouth, which doesn’t work too well with the Cowboys taking the field right around when dinner is set on Thanksgiving, but Romo’s play since Week 3 has sure made me smile.

In the last eight games, Romo has thrown for 2,062 yards, 20 touchdowns and has turned it over just five times. He gave us a little scare with a back injury, but since his return, Romo has been better than ever with seven touchdowns and one fumble the last two games.

All fantasy owners, like myself, are glad to see him ‘back’ and pray he can avoid major injury over the next four weeks.

Romo’s favorite target

A mid-season trade gave me the Romo-Bryant combination on one fantasy roster, and nothing has been better the last two weeks. Bryant has 13 catches, 244 yards and four touchdowns since Romo returned. Bryant has also scored six touchdowns during the past four games.

Bryant may or may not feel disrespected from the lack of love from Jerry Jones, but never will I forget to show Bryant the proper amount of thanks.

The Toyota Tacoma

If Jerome Bettis was “The Bus”, fantasy owners may have to find a proper nickname or the more elusive, but nearly as powerful, Le’Veon Bell.

Monday night in Week 11 looked like the old Steelers days with Bell rushing for 204 yards and a touchdown on 33 carries. 200 yards in a single game is something Bettis never achieved in his career.

Bell is one of five running backs with at least five fantasy points every single week, and Bell has failed to score at least 10 fantasy points just once.

There isn’t a better way to get to the playoffs than via a Tacoma, a.k.a. Le’Veon Bell.

My Garbage Time Hero

Kelvin Benjamin has tremendous stats this season: 52 catches, 768 yards and eight touchdowns. But a lot of his numbers have come in garbage time.

Benjamin scored the final two touchdowns against the Eagles in Week 10 when his team was trailing, 45-7. Even though he was shut out much of the game, Benjamin finished with 19 fantasy points and took me to victory.

He did the same against the Packers in Week 7, scoring a touchdown with Green Bay already leading, 38-3.

Just like all fantasy owners, however, I do not care. It doesn’t really matter how they come; all touchdowns are equally special to me.

My Main Wingman

Demaryius Thomas said in his commercial, “Only winners get wings”. Mr. Thomas, you can have all the wings at my house that you want this Thanksgiving.

After a slow start, Thomas leads all wide receivers in standard leagues with 175.2 fantasy points. And just when owners were worried he wasn’t finding the end zone, Thomas scored three times in Week 12.

Eric Decker 2.0

I’m extra thankful for Emmanuel Sanders not because he is a stud, but because he was a steal in the middle rounds.

In a 12-team league, I picked him in the fifth round and in a 10-team league, I managed to land him in the sixth round. That’s excellent value considering he is third in the NFL with 76 catches and fourth with 1,079 receiving yards to go with seven scores.

He is so good, I wish he was on all four of my teams, but no need to be greedy. Be thankful for what you have.

My Best Waiver Wire Pickup

Maybe I should have just made the Broncos offense one big thing to be thankful for. Some may have complained about the lack of production from the Broncos backfield, but with Peyton Manning at quarterback, whatever running back is starting must be in fantasy lineups.

I missed the boat on Ronnie Hillman, but didn’t on C.J. Anderson. He has filled holes the injured Montee Ball and Giovani Bernard left behind, and with Bernard back on the field, Anderson provides excellent production for a FLEX. His 167 yards and a score is just exhibit A.

New England’s Real Golden Boy

Thanksgiving originated in the New England states with the Pilgrims, so a Patriot player had to be included.

This time of year, fantasy owners must be thankful for everything, including kickers and defenses. It is hard to believe I dropped Gostkowski after New England’s rough outing in Kansas City. He scored 21 and 17 points the next two weeks, respectively, and I managed to beg him to return to the roster.

Gostkowski leads all kickers in fantasy points, and over the last seven weeks, he is averaging 13.4 points per game. When every point counts in the fantasy playoffs, it is great to know you have the best kicker in the business.

Gostkowski Jr.

If owners couldn’t get Gostkowski, Cody Parkey is a pretty close second or third. Adam Vinatieri is second among kickers in fantasy points, but Parkey is directly behind.

There is only one week Parkey hasn’t scored at least eight fantasy points, and in Week 12, he scored a season-high 21 points. With the high-powered Eagles offense, Parkey should continue to hit eight fantasy points or more every week, which gives me time to worry about other positions.

The return of the No Name Defense

The Dolphins don’t have many marquee names on the defensive side of the ball, but that hasn’t stopped them from scoring the third-most fantasy points in standard leagues.

With no marquee names on defense, Miami originally just looked to be a one week stream option versus the Jaguars back in Week 8. But when they scored 26 points and nearly single-handedly won my fantasy game, I stayed loyal, and they rewarded me with 20 more points the next week.

Miami did score in the negatives versus the Broncos last week, but the Dolphins have favorable matchups against the Jets, Ravens and Vikings down the stretch. In Week 15, they aren’t the best start on the road versus the Patriots, but I’m already extremely thankful for the help the prior weeks.

That is what I’m thankful for this Thanksgiving, along with turkey, stuffing, a little sister and all that other stuff. Make sure you let the people and fantasy players most important in your life know how you really feel.


►   Three players who will come up big on Turkey Day

Happy Thanksgiving to all the fantasy footballers out there.

Thursday is a special day, and to make matters even better, we are all privileged to have three enticing matchups on Turkey Day, with the Chicago Bears taking on the Detroit Lions, along with the Philadelphia Eagles traveling to Dallas to take on the Cowboys and the Seattle Seahawks taking on their rivals, the San Francisco 49ers.

Not only do all three contests have NFL playoff implications, but there are also a ton of players suiting up who fantasy owners will be relying on. In most standard leagues, Week 13 marks the final week of the regular season, giving owners one last chance to make their playoff push.

Here are three players who will help take those teams to the promise land.

Calvin Johnson, WR, Detroit

Before the readers react to my obvious choice of Lions’ wide receiver Calvin Johnson, let me tell you why he is destined for a solid game.

Over his past six games against the Bears, Johnson has played well, averaging five receptions for 74 yards per game, along with scoring four touchdowns during the span. On top of that, he has played in seven total Thanksgiving Day games, and not only is he averaging another 5.1 receptions for 75.7 yards per game on Turkey Day, but Johnson has also scored a touchdown in six of those seven games.

Johnson is fully recovered from is ankle injury, and with the combination of his success during his career against the Bears and on Thanksgiving, it seems quite fitting that he will have a big afternoon.

LeSean McCoy, RB, Philadelphia

Fantasy owners are most likely disappointed with Eagles running back LeSean McCoy, after he declared himself the best halfback in football before the season, and felt that he would be able to push for 2,000 rushing yards. He will not come close to that mark, yet McCoy has still been productive in 2014.

The fact that he has scored only three touchdowns is the most frustrating part this season, but McCoy is trending in the right direction, after scoring in two of the past three games. Not only does it seem he has busted out of his touchdown slump, but McCoy has also accumulated a lot yards over the past six games.

He has 970 total yards (859 rushing yards, 111 receiving yards) on the year, and is easily on pace for another 1,000-yard rushing season, but over his past six games, McCoy is averaging 22 touches for a solid 105.7 yards per game. He is clearly getting stronger as the season progresses.

While his past six games are nice to see, McCoy has been even better over his last six games against the Cowboys, averaging 22.8 touches for 119.2 yards per game, and scoring three touchdowns during that span.

With McCoy seemingly finding his groove for the first time this season, along with his solid career-numbers versus Dallas, fantasy owners should be confident that he will come up big on Thanksgiving Day.

Matthew Stafford, QB, Detroit

Yes, McCoy has not lived up to expectations this season, but Lions’ quarterback Matthew Stafford has actually been even worse. According to Yahoo, Stafford was the sixth-ranked fantasy quarterback heading into 2014, but he is currently performing as the 16th-ranked signal-caller.

However, with Johnson in line for a nice afternoon, it is only natural that his quarterback has a big game as well.

Stafford has played well over his past four games against the Bears, averaging 249 passing yards per game and throwing for eight touchdowns, along with rushing one into the end zone, during that span.

Those numbers are good, and if Stafford hits those averages on Thursday, it would make for a decent afternoon for fantasy owners ... but I know those owners want more.

More is what owners should receive, as Chicago is giving up the second-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks per game (20.79 against), and with the Bears allowing 276 passing yards and 2.3 passing touchdowns per game, Stafford has a great opportunity to begin a hot streak, to conclude his 2014 season.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   No. 21 West Virginia routs VMI

Jevon Carter had 28 points and No. 21 West Virginia forced a school-record 36 turnovers in a 103-72 win over VMI on Wednesday night.

Juwan Staten added 17 points, six assists and four steals for the Mountaineers (6-0), who captured the Puerto Rico Tip-Off title on Sunday, beating then-No. 17 Connecticut. Jonathan Holton tallied 13 points, seven rebounds, three steals and four blocks.

West Virginia is off to its first 6-0 start since the 2009-10 Final Four team started 11-0. The Mountaineers also tied a school record with 26 steals.

QJ Peterson ended with 13 points for the Keydets (2-3). Craig Hinton donated 10 points in the lopsided defeat.

VMI actually held a 19-16 lead with 12 minutes left in the first half. However, the Mountaineers scored the next eight points for a 24-19 edge.

Ahead 26-24 moments later, West Virginia used a 14-3 run to pull away. Carter scored the final seven points of the surge to make it 40-27 with 3:53 left.

The Mountaineers led 53-35 at the half and extended their lead to as many as 35 in the second half.

Game Notes

Peterson turned the ball over a game-high 11 times ... VMI went 11-of-31 from beyond the arc ... West Virginia got 52 points from its bench.



<The Gilmer Free Press

►   Top-25 College Basketball Game Results

(Wednesday, November 26)


Final Score: (2) Wisconsin 72, UAB 41

Frank Kaminsky had 16 points and eight rebounds and No. 2 Wisconsin took care of UAB, 72-43, in the opening round of the Battle 4 Atlantis. Duje Dukan scored 11 points, Josh Gasser had 10 and Nigel Hayes finished with nine points, five rebounds and a game-high four assists for the Badgers (5-0). Wisconsin, which has won every game this season by at least 24 points, will meet the winner of Florida and Georgetown in the semifinals. Robert Brown was the lone bright spot for UAB (2-3), pouring in 16 points on 7-of-15 shooting.


Final Score: (4) Duke 93, Furman 54

Jahlil Okafor scored 24 points to lead the fourth-ranked Duke Blue Devils to a 93-54 win over Furman at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Amile Jefferson posted 16 points and 12 rebounds and Matt Jones finished with 13 points on 4-of-5 shooting from beyond the arc for Duke (6-0). Kendrec Ferrara paced the Paladins (1-3) with 13 points and Stephen Croone added 12.


Final Score: Butler 74, (5) North Carolina 66

Alex Barlow scored 17 points to lead the Butler Bulldogs over the fifth-ranked North Carolina Tar Heels, 74-66, in quarterfinal round action of the Battle 4 Atlantis at Imperial Arena. Kelan Martin also scored 17 points and added six rebounds for Butler (4-0), which outrebounded Carolina 57-40, grabbing 29 offensive boards, on the way to the upset win. Roosevelt Jones hit four straight free throws down the stretch, ending with 12 points, eight rebounds and six assists for the Bulldogs, who will face Oklahoma in the semifinal round on Thursday. Marcus Paige scored 18 points to lead North Carolina (3-1), which rallied in the final minutes but never had possession of the ball with a chance to take the lead.


Final Score: (6) Louisville 45, Cleveland State 33

Rick Pitino’s 700th career win didn’t come nearly as easy as No. 699. Two days after producing a 61-point blowout on its home court, sixth-ranked Louisville had to scratch and claw against Cleveland State for most of the night before eventually pulling away for a 45-33 victory. The Cardinals led just 38-33 with under six minutes left before ending the game on a 7-0 run to give Pitino the milestone result over a Cleveland State squad that lost in overtime Saturday to Savannah State, the team Louisville walloped by an 87-26 count Monday at the KFC Yum! Center. Montrezl Harrell led a Cardinals’ contingent that shot a troubling 31.9 percent for the game with 15 points and 13 rebounds. Chris Jones added 11 points and Terry Rozier had nine along with a career-high 11 boards for Louisville (5-0). Trey Lewis kept the Vikings in it by pouring in 24 points, but Cleveland State (2-3) made just 25 percent of its field goal attempts in another top-notch effort by the Cardinals’ defense.


Final Score: (10) Gonzaga 88, Georgia 76

Kyle Wiltjer poured in a career-high 32 points and Kevin Pangos scored 22 as 10th-ranked Gonzaga used strong free- throw shooting to beat Georgia, 88-76, in the semifinals of the NIT Season Tip-Off. Byron Wesley had 12 points for Gonzaga (5-0), which will face St. John’s in the championship game Friday night at Madison Square Garden. St. John’s beat Minnesota in the other semifinal. Gonzaga, which made 50 percent from the field, missed only three of its 35 foul shots. Charles Mann finished with 23 points and seven rebounds for Georgia (3-2), which also received 14 points from J.J. Frazier and 10 from Nemanja Djurisic.


Final Score: (16) Ohio State 91, Campbell 64

D’Angelo Russell scored 22 points and handed out seven assists, and Marc Loving tallied a career-high 18 points, as 16th-ranked Ohio State pounded Campbell, 91-64, at Value City Arena. Russell shot 9-of-13 from the field, including hitting four 3-pointers. Shannon Scott and Sam Thompson each chipped in 11 for the Buckeyes (4-0), who shot 60.7 percent from the field. Andrew Ryan paced the Fighting Camels (1-3) with 17 points, including 14 after halftime when he shot 4-of-6 from beyond the arc. D.J. Mason scored 10 with six rebounds.


Final Score: Georgetown 66, (18) Florida 65 (OT)

D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera hit a pull-up jumper with four seconds left in overtime and Georgetown beat 18th-ranked Florida 66-65 in the opening round of the Battle 4 Atlantis. The Hoyas trailed by one following Kasey Hill’s three-point play with just under 12 seconds to play. Out of a timeout, Smith-Rivera isolated at the top of the key and put a move on Michael Frazier II before stepping back and hitting a long two. Smith-Rivera led Georgetown (4-0) with 17 points, while Jabril Trawick and Paul White finished with 10 apiece. Georgetown’s reward for winning is a meeting with No. 2 Wisconsin in the semifinals. Dorian Finney-Smith, who missed the last two games with a wrist injury, returned and scored 16 points to lead Florida (2-2), which shot just 35.9 percent from the field. Frazier had 12 points and Jon Horford finished with 10 points and 11 boards.


Final Score: (21) West Virginia 103, VMI 72

Jevon Carter had 28 points and No. 21 West Virginia cruised past VMI, 103-72, on Wednesday. Juwan Staten added 17 points, six assists and four steals for the Mountaineers (6-0), who captured the Puerto Rico Tip-Off title on Sunday, beating then-No. 17 Connecticut. Jonathan Holton tallied 13 points, seven rebounds, three steals and four blocks. QJ Peterson ended with 13 points for the Keydets (2-3), who turned the ball over 36 times. Craig Hinton donated 10 points.


Final Score: Oklahoma 75, (22) UCLA 65

Buddy Hield collected a game-high 24 points as Oklahoma knocked off No. 22 UCLA by a 75-65 count in a quarterfinal meeting in the Battle 4 Atlantis. Frank Booker had 11 points and Jordan Woodard 10 for the Sooners (3-1), who advance to face Butler—which toppled No. 5 North Carolina earlier Wednesday. Bryce Alford finished with 19 points while Kevon Looney added 16 points and a game-best 15 rebounds for the Bruins (4-1).



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Pulse of the NBA

Two young players have made significant strides in their games, and both are part of rebuilding teams that look like they’re on the upswing.

I’m referring to Tobias Harris of the Orlando Magic and Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks.

Harris, who’s in his fourth year in the league, is putting up career-highs in points (18.8), rebounds (8.4), assists (1.8), steals (1.2), field goal percentage (46.9 percent) and three-point percentage (41.2 percent).

“I’ve taken the next step in my game and the next level now is continuing to trust my teammates and trust that this whole thing is going to work out for us as a team as long as we play the right way,“ Harris said. “I’ve told all of the guys on the team, ‘You look better individually when we win as a team.‘ So it really is all about winning.“

Harris’ scoring average is up over four points from last season, but it’s another part of his game that he’s really tried to improve.

“One of the main focuses for me was making sure that we all play the right type of basketball and that’s team basketball,“ he said. “I’ve taken it upon myself to be the guy who takes that first step for everybody else. Especially in that first quarter, I want to make that extra pass, be patient and trust everyone. The coaches have told me over and over to keep trusting the system. I’ve been doing that, it’s helping my teammates and it’s had a ripple effect on everybody.“

The 22-year old small forward’s motivation to get better is driven by one goal.

“The reason I’m focused and so locked in is because I want our group here to win,“ said Harris . “Our coaches have put in a tremendous amount of time with us and they have given us the right plan and structure to help us win games. And for us as a team, it’s on us to go out there and execute and win games. The games where we’ve been locked in offensively and defensively, that’s when we have won. So we just have to be consistent with it and win games.“

Harris, who will be a restricted free agent next summer, has the benefit this season of playing with his older cousin, Channing Frye, who has imparted some pretty good advice.

“I just constantly tell him, ‘You be you and don’t worry about what happens. Carve out your niche for who you want to be as a player and don’t just be a contract-year guy; be an all-the-time guy and he’s doing that. Winners get paid - I said that since I first got here - and you want to be a winner.“

The Magic front office and coaching staff wanted Harris to come in this season with a more diversified game, and coach Jacque Vaughn is glad to see he’s lived up to the challenge.

“He’s trying to just be a better player overall,“ said Vaughn, who drew up Harris’ game-winning, buzzer-beating basket in Philadelphia two weeks ago because of his confidence in the versatile forward. “A lot of times when we talk about a player trying to get better everybody (looks) at the offensive end of the floor. I think defensively he’s taken some strides in the different matchups that he’s had throughout the course of the season so far. He’s taking pride in both ends of the floor. I’ve been pleased to see that from him.“

Now on to the player who was nicknamed “The Greek Freak” as a teenager playing in Greece.

Giannis Antetokounmpo looks like a totally different player in this his second season and it’s scary to think how good he can be with his skill set and the incredible size and length he brings to the table with his 6-foot-11 frame and huge 7-3 wingspan.

Bucks center Larry Sanders is impressed by his 19-year old teammate and knows how much potential he has.

“He’s such a skilled player,“ Sanders said. “He’s only just scratching the surface of how good he’s going to be. He’s just tapping into new abilities and trying on new things. He’s really learning about himself and it’s amazing to watch.“

Because of his size and his ability to handle the ball so well, Antetokounmpo is a difficult matchup for smaller players who he can post up and for bigger players who he can take off the dribble.

Just ask the Memphis Grizzlies Zach Randolph, who had his hands full when he was matched up against Antetokounmpo on November 7 when the Bucks handed the Grizzlies their first loss of the season.

Antetokounmpo continually beat Randolph off the dribble in the fourth quarter, scoring 12 of his 18 points against the Grizzlies power forward, as the Bucks handed Memphis its first loss of the season.

“We played through Giannis, and he didn’t settle,“ said coach Jason Kidd. “He was getting the ball in the paint and was able to finish. You could see his growth coming along.“

In Antetokounmpo and Jabari Parker, the Bucks have two 19-year olds with a ton of talent and immense potential, and they’re playing well enough along with the likes of Sanders, Brandon Knight and O.J. Mayo to give the Bucks a legitimate chance to be a playoff team.


►   NBA Game Results

(Wednesday, November 26)


Final Score: Portland 105, Charlotte 97

Wesley Matthews had 28 points and the red- hot Portland Trail Blazers used a strong second half to beat the struggling Charlotte Hornets, 105-97, on Wednesday. Damian Lillard added 22 points and seven assists for the Blazers, who have won nine in a row. Robin Lopez tallied 15 points, 10 rebounds and three blocks. Brian Roberts ended with a career- high 24 points off the bench for the Hornets, who have lost seven straight. Al Jefferson donated 21 points and 14 boards. Kemba Walker and Gerald Henderson each had 15 points for Charlotte, which lost forward Marvin Williams to a left shoulder strain.


Final Score: Cleveland 113, Washington 87

LeBron James’ third straight double-double helped the Cleveland Cavaliers to a 113-87 win over the Washington Wizards at Quicken Loans Arena. James, who scored 22 points on just 38 percent shooting in Cleveland’s 91-78 loss to the Wizards last Friday, poured in 29 points on 7-of-14 shooting with 10 rebounds, eight assists and three steals in the Cavs’ second straight win. Kevin Love netted 21 points on an efficient 7- of-10 shooting and Kyrie Irving dropped in 18 with five assists for Cleveland, which committed 19 turnovers in the loss to the Wizards compared to just 10 on Wednesday. Rasual Butler led the Wizards with 23 points off the bench, while Paul Pierce supplied 15 and Marcin Gortat added 12 in the setback, Washington’s second straight.


Final Score: Golden State 111, Orlando 96

Stephen Curry scored 25 of his game-high 28 points in the first half, and Golden State dominated the Orlando Magic, 111-96, in the Warriors’ seventh consecutive victory. Harrison Barnes had 16 points and Shaun Livingston scored 15 off the bench for the Warriors, who at 12-2 are continuing their best start in the franchise’s 69-year history. Additionally, Golden State’s 7-1 road mark is its best ever at this juncture of a season. Curry, who had 14 points in the opening quarter, finished the game 9-of-13 from the field, including 6-of-8 from 3-point range. Tobias Harris, who missed the previous two games due to a strained right calf, scored 16 and pulled down 10 rebounds for the Magic, losers of three straight. Nikola Vucevic had 11 points and 13 boards, while Elfrid Payton and Ben Gordon both scored 13 in defeat.


Final Score: Brooklyn 99, Philadelphia 91

The Philadelphia 76ers had a fourth- quarter lead but walked off the court with another loss to match the worst start in franchise history. Kevin Garnett and the Brooklyn Nets did just enough to escape with the win. Garnett scored three key points in the final minutes of the game and the Nets held on for a 99-91 victory on Wednesday night, dropping the Sixers to 0-15. That matches the 1972-73 Philadelphia team for the most losses to start a season without a win. Those Sixers ended 9-73, the worst record for an NBA team in an 82-game season. The Sixers are three losses from matching the 2009-10 Nets for the worst start to an NBA season.


Final Score: Toronto 126, Atlanta 115

DeMar DeRozan scored 27 points and Kyle Lowry deposited 14 with 13 assists as the Toronto Raptors rallied past the Atlanta Hawks, 126-115, to win their sixth straight game. Lou Williams and Greivis Vasquez scored 22 and 21 points, respectively, in another dominant bench effort for the Raptors. Toronto’s reserves outscored their counterparts, 52-27. All five starters also reached double figures for the Raptors, who own the best record in the NBA at 13-2 and have won six in a row for the first time since March 22 - April 4, 2009. Terrence Ross scored 12, Jonas Valanciunas had 11 with seven rebounds and Amir Johnson added 10 points.


Final Score: Dallas 109, New York 102 (OT)

Tyson Chandler pulled down an NBA season-high 25 rebounds to go with 17 points and the Dallas Mavericks defeated the Carmelo Anthony-less New York Knicks 109-102 in overtime on Wednesday night. Dallas used a 9-0 run and forced six Knicks turnovers to pull away in the extra session. Monta Ellis stripped Samuel Dalembert from behind and fed Chandler for a dunk for a 101-99 lead with 1:37 in overtime. After a Dallas miss a trip down the floor later, Chandler Parsons forced turnover to give the Mavericks an extra possession. Dirk Nowitzki then hit a fallaway from the foul line with 43.5 seconds left and another Knicks turnover put the game away, with Ellis swiping a pass from Jose Calderon. New York’s J.R. Smith hit a jumper with less than a second remaining in regulation to force overtime. Nowitzki posted his first 30-point game of the season, netting 30 on the number to go with six boards for the Mavericks, who snapped a brief two-game slide. They’ve won seven of their last nine games overall. Calderon tallied 21 points, 10 boards and four assists for New York, which has dropped four of its last five games. Anthony missed the game due to back spasms.


Final Score: Houston 102, Sacramento 89

Isaiah Canaan nailed six 3-pointers and scored a career-high 24 points as the Houston Rockets defeated the Sacramento Kings, 102-89, on Wednesday night. James Harden netted 26 points, but was just 10-of-31 from the field. He added eight assists and seven rebounds. Donatas Motiejunas provided 21 points and six boards for the Rockets, who have won three in a row and six of their last eight games. DeMarcus Cousins posted 29 points, 17 rebounds and six assists for Sacramento, which had a three-game winning streak snapped.


Final Score: LA Clippers 104, Detroit 98

Jamal Crawford scored 25 points in the Los Angeles Clippers’ 104-98 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday. Chris Paul added 23 points and seven assists for the Clippers, who improved to 4-1 on a seven-game road trip. Blake Griffin tallied 15 points, seven rebounds and seven assists. D.J. Augustin ended with 19 points and six assists for the Pistons, who have lost six in a row. Josh Smith, Andre Drummond and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope each had 17 points, with Drummond also pulling down 13 boards.


Final Score: Milwaukee 103, Minnesota 86

In a matchup of the top two picks in the 2014 NBA Draft, Jabari Parker’s Milwaukee Bucks took care of Andrew Wiggins’ Minnesota Timberwolves, 103-86, courtesy of a big fourth-quarter run on Wednesday. Parker, the No. 2 selection out of Duke, had 11 points with seven rebounds, while the top pick Wiggins went for 14 points and eight boards. Wiggins was acquired by the Timberwolves from Cleveland in an offseason trade that sent Kevin Love to the Cavs. Brandon Knight scored 13 of his 15 points during the fourth-quarter run that turned a one-point game into a comfortable win. Larry Sanders also netted 15 with seven rebounds and five blocks for the Bucks, who have won two straight. Corey Brewer paced the Timberwolves with 19 points in their third straight loss. It was the first time in NBA history that four teenagers played in the same game, with Minnesota’s Wiggins and Zach LaVine both starting against Milwaukee’s Parker and Giannis Antetokounmpo.


Final Score: Oklahoma City 97, Utah 82

Reggie Jackson poured in 22 points and Jeremy Lamb scored 21 off the bench in Oklahoma City’s 97-82 rout of the Utah Jazz Wednesday night. Serge Ibaka registered 20 points, eight rebounds and four blocks for the Thunder, who snapped a six-game losing streak and gained just their fourth win in 16 tries this season. The Jazz, losers of four in a row, were led by Gordon Hayward’s 24 points, but he committed eight of his team’s 19 turnovers.


Final Score: San Antonio 106, Indiana 100

Manu Ginobili scored 28 points off the bench and without coach Gregg Popovich on the bench, the San Antonio Spurs beat the Indiana Pacers 106-100 on Wednesday. Two-time Euroleague coach of the year Ettore Messina, who is a first-year assistant with San Antonio, coached in place of Popovich, who underwent a minor medical procedure prior to the game. Popovich will miss an undisclosed amount of time. Tony Parker and Kawhi Leonard both deposited 21 points for the Spurs, winners of five straight. Leonard also pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds, and Tim Duncan went for 17 points with six boards. Rodney Stuckey netted 22 points to pace the undermanned Pacers, who were without center Roy Hibbert for the second straight game. Hibbert left Saturday’s loss to Phoenix with a sprained left ankle.


Final Score: Phoenix 120, Denver 112

Gerald Green scored 24 points off the bench and the Phoenix Suns defeated the Denver Nuggets, 120-112, on Wednesday. Eric Bledsoe deposited 21 points with 10 assists, Goran Dragic scored 20 and Markieff Morris totaled 15 points with 10 rebounds and seven assists for the Suns, who have won five of their last six. Wilson Chandler led the Nuggets with 19 points, while Timofey Mozgov and Arron Afflalo each contributed 18 points, with Mozgov pulling down 13 rebounds in the setback. Denver had its five-game winning streak snapped.


Final Score: Memphis 99, LA Lakers 93

Marc Gasol had 19 points and 11 rebounds as the Memphis Grizzlies defeated the Los Angeles Lakers 99-93 on Wednesday night. Mike Conley posted 19 points and seven assists for the Grizzlies, who have won seven of their last eight games. Kobe Bryant netted 22 points for Los Angeles, which has dropped three in a row and seven of its last nine games.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Rays sign Frieri to one-year deal

The Tampa Bay Rays have signed pitcher Ernesto Frieri to a one-year contract.

Financial terms for the former Angels closer were not disclosed.

Frieri split last season with the Angels and Pittsburgh Pirates after losing his closer role in Anaheim. He finished the year 1-4 with 11 saves and a 7.34 ERA in 48 games.

The 29-year-old right-hander notched 37 saves in 41 chances for the Angels during the 2013 season and has 71 saves in 81 opportunities during a six-year career with the Pirates, Angels and San Diego Padres.

Frieri has a career record of 10-13 with a 3.46 ERA in 276 appearances, all out of the bullpen.

The Rays also designated infielder Sean Rodriguez for assignment to open a spot on the 40-man roster.

Rodriguez batted .228 with 40 homers and 172 RBI over the past five seasons with the Rays. In 2014, he hit only .211, his lowest average during his Tampa Bay tenure, but set career highs with 12 homers and 41 RBI.


►   Orioles acquire LHP Scott Barnes

The Baltimore Orioles acquired left- handed pitcher Scott Barnes from the Cleveland Indians for cash considerations on Wednesday.

Barnes, 27, spent all of 2014 with Cleveland’s Triple-A affiliate, the Columbus Clippers. He finished with a 3-2 record and a 3.69 ERA in 25 appearances, including one start.

In his major league career, Barnes has made 22 appearances out of the Indians bullpen, posting an 0-1 mark with a 5.20 ERA in 27 2/3 innings with 26 strikeouts.

The Orioles also signed infielder Rey Navarro to a major league contract. The 24-year-old has never appeared in the majors. Between Double-A and Triple-A in the Cincinnati organization in 2014, Navarro batted .282 with 12 home runs and 57 runs batted in, splitting time between shortstop and second base.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   NHL Game Results

(Wednesday, November 26)


Final Score: NY Islanders 3, Washington 2 (OT)

John Tavares notched a power-play goal with 24 seconds remaining in overtime as the New York Islanders stayed hot thanks to a 3-2 decision over Washington at Nassau Coliseum. Anders Lee and Travis Hamonic supplied additional offense, with Ryan Strome adding two assists for the Islanders, who have taken five in a row and nine of their last 10 to challenge Pittsburgh for the Metropolitan Division lead. Jaroslav Halak came up with 25 saves for the win. Alex Ovechkin picked up both scores for the Capitals, who can avenge the loss in the latter portion of this home-and-home series on Friday. Braden Holtby played well in defeat, making 32 stops.


Final Score: Winnipeg 2, Buffalo 1

Bryan Little scored in a third straight game, Ondrej Pavelec made 19 saves and the Winnipeg Jets beat the Buffalo Sabres 2-1 on Wednesday. Michael Frolik added a short-handed goal for the Jets, who have won the first two stops on their three-game road trip and three of five overall. Chris Stewart scored in the third period and Jhonas Enroth stopped 24 shots for Buffalo, which had its win streak snapped at three games.


Final Score: Detroit 5, Philadelphia 2

Pavel Datsyuk celebrated his return to the lineup with two goals, and the Detroit Red Wings continued their home dominance over the Philadelphia Flyers thanks to a 5-2 decision at Joe Louis Arena. Stephen Weiss added a goal and assist for the Red Wings, winners in five of their last seven. Tomas Jurco and Henrik Zetterberg also lit the lamp. Darren Helm picked up a pair of assists to back a 22-save effort by Jimmy Howard. Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek tallied for the Flyers, who have lost six of seven since a three-game win streak. Steve Mason took the loss, charged with three goals on 14 shots over 31-plus minutes. Ray Emery subbed for the remainder of the game and made nine stops.


Final Score: Tampa Bay 4, NY Rangers 3

Former Ranger Ryan Callahan had two goals and an assist against his ex-team to spoil Martin St. Louis’ return to Tampa and help the Lightning to a 4-3 victory over New York. The pregame buildup was solely centered on St. Louis’ first game in Amalie Arena since the Lightning’s all-time leading scorer requested and was granted a trade to the Rangers on March 5. However, it was Callahan—the key player Tampa Bay received in the blockbuster swap—who earned the night’s First Star as St. Louis was held off the scoresheet. Steven Stamkos made quite an impact as well, notching a goal and two assists in the Lightning’s fourth win in their last six outings, including two in a row by one goal. Ben Bishop finished with 16 saves in the triumph. New York entered the anticipated matchup off shutout wins over Philadelphia and Montreal, but Henrik Lundqvist stopped just 25-of-29 shots and St. Louis was mostly a non-factor. Rick Nash did record a goal and an assist for the Rangers, with Mats Zuccarello and Dan Boyle also scoring in defeat.


Final Score: Florida 1, Carolina 0

Nick Bjugstad scored 21 seconds into the game and a pair of Florida goaltenders combined to shut out the Carolina Hurricanes in the Panthers’ 1-0 win. About halfway through the game, Roberto Luongo was forced to exit with an upper-body injury after making 11 saves. Al Montoya came in to relieve him, and he stopped all 22 shots sent his way. Cam Ward made 27 saves on 28 shots for Carolina. Brandon Pirri and Jonathan Huberdeau were credited with assists on the lone goal.


Final Score: Pittsburgh 4, Toronto 3 (OT)

Blake Comeau scored 2:53 into overtime to complete a hat trick and lift the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 4-3 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday. Evgeni Malkin had a goal and two assists and Sidney Crosby collected two helpers, giving the Pittsburgh captain 800 career points. Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 24 shots for the Penguins, who won their second straight overtime game. Leo Komarov scored two goals and Tyler Bozak added a short-handed tally for Toronto, which had won its previous two games following an embarrassing 9-2 loss to Nashville on Nov. 18.


Final Score: Los Angeles 4, Minnesota 0

The Los Angeles Kings scored four goals against Darcy Kuemper in the first period to beat the Minnesota Wild 4-0 on Wednesday night. The goals by Mike Richards, Dustin Brown, Tyler Toffoli and Justin Williams helped the Kings salvage a three-game road trip after two losses. It was just their second road win of the season (2-4-4) and marked only the second home loss for the Wild (7-2-0). Martin Jones made 28 saves for his fifth career shutout and first of the season. Kuemper was pulled after giving up the four goals on just 10 shots before Niklas Backstrom stopped all 12 he faced over the last two periods.


Final Score: Chicago 3, Colorado 2

Bryan Bickell broke a tie with 5:17 remaining in the third period as the Chicago Blackhawks beat the Colorado Avalanche 3-2 on Wednesday. Jonathan Toews and Andrew Shaw scored power-play goals in the second period for the Blackhawks, who improved to 3-1-0 on their six-game road trip. Patrick Kane collected three assists, while Corey Crawford made 27 saves for the win. Ryan O’Reilly and Maxime Talbot had the goals for Colorado, which was seeking a third straight win. Calvin Pickard stopped 42 shots in his second career NHL start.


Final Score: Calgary 2, San Jose 0

Karri Ramo made 32 saves for his third career shutout, leading the Calgary Flames to a 2-0 win over the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday night. Jiri Hudler scored both goals in the Flames’ fifth win in seven games. The only one they needed came with 2:44 left in the second period, when he beat Antti Niemi stick-side with a wrister in the slot to make it 1-0. Hudler added an empty-netter in the final minute of the third period, his 10th goal of the season. Ramo had 11 saves in both the first and second period and made 10 in the third for the shutout in his ninth appearance this season. The Sharks, coming off back-to-back shootout losses to Florida and Arizona, dropped their fourth game in a row. They are 0-1-2 on a six-game homestand with just five total goals in the three outings.

The Gilmer Free Press


References
ABC - American Broadcasting Company
CBS - Columbia Broadcast System
FOX - Fox Entertainment Group
NBC - National Broadcasting Company
JIP - Joined in Progress
DSS - DIRECTV
TSN - Sports Network (Canada)
SNET/SN - Rogers SportsNet (Canada)
RDS - Reseau des sports
MSG - Madison Square Garden Network
TNT - Turner Network Television
TBS - Turner Broadcasting System
SNY - SportsNet New York
CBSSN - CBS - College Sports Network
CSN - Comcast SportsNet
TCN - The Comcast Network
NBCSN - NBC Sports Network
NESN - New England Sports Network
MASN - Mid-Atlantic Sports Network
ROOT - Root Sports (Pittsburgh, Northwest, Rocky Mountain)
CST - Cox Sports Television
FCS - FOX College Sports
FS - FOX Sports Regional
RSN - Regional Sports Networks
CPTV - Connecticut Public Broadcasting
TVG - Horse Racing Channel
FS1 - FOX Sports 1
TWC - Time Warner Cable Sports Channel
* - If Necessary


THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 27, 2014


National Football League
Chicago at Detroit, 12:30 PM - CBS
Philadelphia at Dallas, 4:30 PM - FOX
Seattle at San Francisco, 8:30 PM - NBC


National Hockey League
Edmonton at Nashville, 8:00 PM - SNET-360, FS-Tennessee, DSS


College Basketball
Santa Clara vs. Tennessee, 12:00 PM - ESPN 2
Battle 4 Atlantis, 1:00 PM - ESPN
Princeton vs. UTEP, 2:00 PM - ESPN U
Kansas vs. Rhode Island, 2:30 PM - ESPN 2
Battle 4 Atlantis, 3:30 PM - ESPN
FIU at USC Upstate, 3:30 PM - ESPN3.com
Long Island vs. Stony Brook, 4:00 PM - ESPN U
San Diego vs. Xavier, 4:30 PM - ESPN 2
Illinois vs. Indiana State, 5:00 PM - FS1
Western Kentucky vs. Saint Joseph’s, 6:00 PM - ESPN U
CS Fullerton vs. Wright State, 6:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Michigan State vs. Rider, 6:30 PM - ESPN 2
Battle 4 Atlantis, 7:00 PM - AXS.tv
Marquette vs. Georgia Tech, 8:30 PM - ESPN 2
Long Beach State vs. Western Michigan, 8:30 PM - ESPN U
Rice vs. Mercer, 9:30 PM - CBSSN
Battle 4 Atlantis, 9:30 PM - AXS.tv
San Jose State vs. Washington, 11:00 PM - ESPN 2
Baylor vs. Memphis, 12:00 AM - FS1
Washington State vs. UC Santa Barbara, 12:00 AM - CBSSN


College Football
TCU at Texas, 7:30 PM - FS1
LSU at Texas A&M, 7:30 PM - ESPN


International Soccer
Wolfsburg vs. Everton, 1:00 PM - FS1
Tottenham vs. Partizan Belgrade, 3:00 PM - FS1


Golf
Australian Open, 8:00 PM - Golf Channel

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