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Mullen Previews Upcoming Football Scrimmage Under the Lights

Bulldog Beat - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 10:55pm
STARKVILLE, Miss. – Mississippi State football will go through its second scrimmage of preseason camp Thursday night and it will feature more game-realistic conditions, according to head coach Dan Mullen at his weekly media session.

Bulldogs Open SEC Schedule At Home Against Aggies

Bulldog Beat - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 8:00pm
STARKVILLE, Miss. - It won't take long for first-year Mississippi State coach Ben Howland to get a feel for how his team will respond on the road in league action, as the Bulldogs play three of their first five SEC games away from the friendly confines of Humphrey Coliseum.

Roberts Announces Addition Of Four Men’s Tennis Bulldogs

Bulldog Beat - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 5:50pm
STARKVILLE, Miss. – Year two of the Matt Roberts era for the Mississippi State men's tennis Bulldogs is drawing near and with that comes Roberts' 2015-16 signing class, which features a wide range of talent from across the world. Roberts' announced the addition of four tennis stars to the Bulldog family on Wednesday.

Start your semester with Recreational Sports' fitness program

MSU News - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 4:12pm

The Department of Recreational Sports' fitness program at Mississippi State has many opportunities for faculty, staff and students to get fit as the fall semester begins. It is a great time of year to take advantage of personal training, boot camps, group exercise classes, spin classes and AMPED cross-training classes.

Discover more at http://recsports.msstate.edu/programs-and-activities/fitness, or contact Adam Thigpen at agt42@msstate.edu.
 
And remember to save the date for the 6th Annual Strength and Fitness Week at MSU, which will be held Oct. 26-31 at the Joe Frank Sanderson Center. Be on the lookout for additional information.

Former Gov. Haley Barbour to discuss, sign new Hurricane Katrina book

MSU News - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 3:53pm

Contact: Brad Moreland

STARKVILLE, Miss.—Former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour will visit Mitchell Memorial Library at Mississippi State University next week as part of a national book tour.

Free and open to all, the Monday [August 24] event will take place from 2:30-5 p.m. in the third-floor John Grisham Room, where Barbour will discuss and sign copies of his new book titled “America’s Great Storm: Leading through Hurricane Katrina.”

The 276-page personal memoir highlights the many leadership lessons Barbour learned and employed in a time of massive crisis.  

Barbour was assisted by contributing author Jere Nash. The book's foreword is by Ricky Mathews.

Copies of the book will be available for purchase at the event. Purchases also may be made via Amazon at http://bit.ly/BarbourKatrinaBook.

“When Hurricane Katrina hit Mississippi on August 29, 2005, it unleashed the costliest and third-deadliest natural disaster in American history. Barbour had been Mississippi’s governor for only 20 months when he assumed responsibility for guiding his home state’s recovery and rebuilding efforts,” according to the book’s publisher, University Press of Mississippi.

For the book, Barbour and his colleagues interviewed more than 45 key people—local, state and federal officials to private citizens—who played pivotal roles in helping Mississippi recover following Katrina’s landfall.

The book discusses the special legislative session that allowed casinos to build on shore and the role of the recovery commission chaired by Jim Barksdale. Along with providing a behind-the-scenes description of work done with Congress to pass an unprecedented, multi-billion-dollar emergency disaster assistance appropriation, the book discusses the enormous roles played by volunteers in rebuilding the entire housing, transportation and education infrastructure of south Mississippi and the Gulf Coast.

Barbour, a native of Yazoo City, served as governor from 2004-12. In addition to two terms as the state’s chief executive, he is a former chairman of the Republican National Committee and former White House political affairs director.

For more information on the book signing or to request special assistance relating to a disability, contact Mandy Page at 662-325-0813 or mpage@library.msstate.edu.  Additional event details also may be found at http://library.msstate.edu/barbour.

MSU is Mississippi’s flagship research university, available online at www.msstate.edu.

Fred Ross Named To Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award Watch List

Bulldog Beat - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 3:50pm
Mississippi State junior wide receiver Fred Ross was one of 39 native Texans to be named to the Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award Watch List, SPORTyler announced Wednesday at its annual Football Kickoff Luncheon.

MSU Adds Keilani Ricketts To Coaching Staff

Bulldog Beat - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 2:51pm
With recent additions having been made to the roster, the Mississippi State softball coaching staff just received an upgrade as well, in the form of two-time USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Keilani Ricketts.

Maroon Edition co-author to Class of 2019: ‘What will be your legacy?’

MSU News - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 12:06pm
Ron Hall, co-author of MSU’s 2015 Maroon Edition common reading experience selection, “Same Kind of Different as Me,” shared life lessons with the Class of 2019 during the university’s second Freshman Convocation.

Contact: Sasha Steinberg

Ron Hall, co-author of MSU’s 2015 Maroon Edition common reading experience selection, “Same Kind of Different as Me,” shared life lessons with the Class of 2019 during the university’s second Freshman Convocation.

STARKVILLE, Miss.— “You can never be happy letting someone else choose your career,” guest speaker Ron Hall told more than 3,400 students gathered Tuesday [August 18] at Mississippi State University’s second Freshman Convocation in Humphrey Coliseum.

The co-author of the university’s 2015 Maroon Edition common reading experience selection, “Same Kind of Different as Me,” shared those words of wisdom and seven other lessons that he said have served him well throughout his life.

They included:

--Don’t miss an opportunity for God to know you.

--Every “no” gets you closer to a “yes.”

--Hustle. Hustle. Hustle.

--Dream big dreams.

--Make your life and legacy uniquely you.

--God can take trash and turn it into treasure.

--Share your blessings.

In his closing remarks, Hall shared words of wisdom from his fellow “Same Kind of Different as Me” co-author, the late Denver Moore: “Nobody can help everybody, but everybody can help somebody.”

Prior to Hall’s address, MSU President Mark E. Keenum, Provost and Executive Vice President Jerry Gilbert, Robert Holland Faculty Senate President Cody Coyne, along with Student Association President Joseph M. “JoJo” Dodd and Vice President Roxanne L. “Roxie” Raven, officially welcomed the Class of 2019 to the Bulldog family.

Dodd also led the students as they recited the University Honor Code in unison.

Each student also received a Freshman Convocation coin to commemorate the special occasion.

Keenum, who holds three degrees from the state’s flagship research university, promised the newest class of Bulldogs that their college years are going to change their lives.

“You will hone your leadership and teamwork skills, deepen your understanding of people who come from places and cultures different from your own, and gain a greater appreciation for helping others,” he said. 

“Our goal is to ensure that you are prepared to lead a good life that includes contributions not only to your profession, but to your community, to our state, to our nation and more importantly, to the vast majority of people who are less fortunate than you are,” Keenum emphasized.

Keenum also encouraged students to develop lofty visions for themselves. Earning a degree from Mississippi State, he said, will prepare them to do anything, go anywhere and live their dreams.

“Do not underestimate yourself,” Keenum advised. “You have strengths, skills and smarts that you don’t even realize that you have. We have talented, dedicated, world-class faculty, administrators and fellow students who are here to assist you in your journey here at Mississippi State. But of course, this process starts with you.”

Gilbert echoed those sentiments and encouraged students to pursue learning activities both inside and outside of the classroom. Study abroad, undergraduate research, service learning, student leadership, internships and co-oping all are ways for students to augment the classroom learning experience and enhance their overall education, he said.

“We are excited to be here to commemorate the beginning of your academic career at MSU,” Gilbert told the largest class in university history. “Your journey to completing college will not include just going to class. You will be growing intellectually and gaining life skills that will aid you in becoming a leader in your chosen profession.”

“I hope that you will leave this ceremony inspired with an attitude that you will be successful here at Mississippi State and in life.”

At the ceremony’s conclusion, MSU’s State Singers—under the direction of Associate Professor of Music and Choral Activities Director Gary Packwood—led the Class of 2019 in the singing of the alma mater, “Maroon and White.”

MSU is Mississippi’s flagship research university, available online at www.msstate.edu.

Graves inching toward another title

Twisted Rodeo - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 11:24am

DUNCAN, Okla. – For a man who competes part-time, Stockton Graves is making a pretty good living on the ProRodeo trail.

Graves, a seven-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier in steer wrestling from Alva, Okla., has earned nearly $40,000 this season. He’s moved to No. 20 in this week’s world standings and needs to advance just five more spots on the money list by the end of the regular season to secure his eighth trip to the finale.

Stockton Graves

Stockton Graves

“The NFR is definitely on the back of our minds,” he said, referring to his traveling partner, J.D. Struxness of Appleton, Minn., who is 25th. “We’re not going to chase it to the point we’re going to break ourselves doing it. I’ve got it planned out to where we can go and make enough money to make it.”

A good portion of Graves’ earning came in the first couple weeks of August, where he pocketed just shy of $15,000. That was not only beneficial for his place in the world standings, but it cemented the Oklahoma cowboy’s spot at this year’s Chisholm Trail Ram Prairie Circuit Finals Rodeo, set for 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 15-Saturday, Oct. 17, at the Stephens County Arena in Duncan.

In fact, Graves has pocketed $14,909 in the Prairie Circuit, a series of rodeos in the Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska region. That includes a big victory at the Dodge City (Kan.) Roundup Rodeo, the largest event in the circuit in terms of overall purse. He also collected cash in Lawton, Okla., Phillipsburg, Kan., and Coffeyville, Kan.; he also won the title Sidney, Iowa, but that $4,003 didn’t count toward the circuit standings.

“It’s definitely been good for a circuit rodeo cowboy,” said Graves, who also serves as the rodeo coach at his alma mater, Northwestern Oklahoma State University. “I’ve had a really good run the last few weeks. Hopefully we can keep it going.”

The biggest payday was in Dodge City the first weekend in August. Graves won the championship round and the three-run aggregate to pocket $5,704.

“I’ve always wanted to win Dodge since I started rodeoing,” said Graves, who has now earned titles at all the major events in the Prairie Circuit; he has won four year-end circuit titles, including the last two. “It just took me 20 years, but I got it won.

“It’s always been a goal of mine to win all the major rodeos in our circuit. This will dang sure boost me up there to contend for another circuit title.”

It’s provided an incredible streak of momentum. Graves holds a $4,735 over the No. 2 cowboy in the regional standings, Riley Duvall of Checotah, Okla. In addition to finishing among the top 12 in the region in order to qualify for the regional finale, moving on to the Ram National Circuit Finals Rodeo is a major part of being in the circuit system; only the year-end champs and the winners of each circuit finals rodeo in each event advance to the RNCFR, which takes place in Kissimmee, Fla.

“We had two goals when we set out: To make the All American Finals and to win our circuits and go to Kissimmee,” Graves said. “Last year it was phenomenal down there and something you want to go back to every year.”

It all starts with doing well through the season, and he has that part already covered.

Categories: Twisted Rodeo

MSU’s Keenum, local and state law officials plan safe gamedays

MSU News - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 11:14am
Craig Carter of the Mississippi Department of Transportation; Chief Frank Nichols of the Starkville Police Department; Oktibbeha County Sheriff Steve Gladney; Mississippi Highway Patrol Director Col. Donnell Berry; Mississippi Public Safety Commissioner Albert E. Santa Cruz; MSU President Mark E. Keenum; MSU Executive Associate Athletic Director Duncan McKenzie, MSU Police Chief Vance Rice; MSUPD Lt. Brad Massey; Mississippi  Department of Public Safety Deputy Administrator Ken Magee; and MSU Vice President

Contact: Allison Matthews

Craig Carter of the Mississippi Department of Transportation; Chief Frank Nichols of the Starkville Police Department; Oktibbeha County Sheriff Steve Gladney; Mississippi Highway Patrol Director Col. Donnell Berry; Mississippi Public Safety Commissioner Albert E. Santa Cruz; MSU President Mark E. Keenum; MSU Executive Associate Athletic Director Duncan McKenzie, MSU Police Chief Vance Rice; MSUPD Lt. Brad Massey; Mississippi  Department of Public Safety Deputy Administrator Ken Magee; and MSU Vice President for Campus Operations Amy Tuck.

STARKVILLE, Miss.—Mississippi State University leaders and local and state law enforcement officials met Tuesday [Aug. 18] to discuss plans to make MSU gamedays this fall as safe and smooth as possible on campus and city and state roadways.

MSU President Mark E. Keenum and other university leaders met with Department of Public Safety Commissioner Albert E. Santa Cruz and Deputy Administrator Ken Magee, Oktibbeha County Sheriff Steve Gladney, Starkville Police Chief Frank Nichols, Mississippi Highway Patrol Director Col. Donnell Berry, MSU Police Chief Vance Rice and Lt. Brad Massey, and Craig Carter representing the Mississippi Department of Transportation, among others.

“We are very thankful for the cooperation of so many local and state agencies as we work to create an enjoyable gameday experience for everyone who visits MSU,” Keenum said. “We face challenging traffic and parking issues on football Saturdays, but sharing the resources of the city, county, the Mississippi Department of Transportation and the Department of Public Safety enhances our ability to address these issues.”

Keenum said MSU coordinates operations with gameday partners to make traffic flow and parking as efficient as possible for the thousands of visitors who will come to campus this fall.

Santa Cruz said, “The visibility of all the agencies involved will play a huge role in traffic safety on gamedays. Drivers are more inclined to focus and pay attention to other drivers when those in uniform are managing traffic.”

Gladney said the Sheriff’s Department works with the university on a wide range of law enforcement and public safety issues.

“All of us have worked well together for a very long time, so we’re all on the same page. With the campus construction and number of people we now have attending games, fans will have to be patient with us, and we will all do our best to make everything run smoothly,” Gladney added.

Nichols concurred, “We’ll all work as one big unit to get people in and out of town as safely and quickly as possible. All agencies involved will be using their social media platforms and cross-posting with each other to keep fans informed.”

Rice said that current construction projects and necessary road closures on campus are creating expanded challenges this season.

“We ask for patience from all of our MSU friends and fans as we work together to ensure maximum efficiency, a positive gameday experience, and—first and foremost—safety for everyone involved,” Rice said.

MSU is Mississippi’s flagship research university, available online at www.msstate.edu.

Waste and Recycling Jobs: Opportunities Are Plentiful

Lifestyles - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 8:55am
Five words or less

(NewsUSA) - Trade and technical positions are the bright, shining stars of the economy these days. They don't require a college degree, do provide the opportunity for a meaningful career, and they often pay very well.

One industry, in particular, shines brightest among those hiring these positions: America's waste and recycling business.

"These are great careers," says Sharon H. Kneiss, president and CEO of the National Waste & Recycling Association. "We do a real service for residents and business owners alike. And business is growing!"

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of waste and recycling collectors is expected to grow significantly over the next seven years. Between 2012 and 2022, more than 21,000 jobs are expected to be created -- a 16-percent growth rate.

In 2012, the median annual pay for truck drivers was about $38,000. With overtime, experienced waste and recycling drivers can earn much, much more. Some workers in various cities make upwards of $100,000 when you factor in overtime. And, most jobs in the field offer generous benefits and possibilities for upwards mobility.

Driving a refuse truck generally requires a commercial driver's license; however, companies are happy to train new recruits.

"The advantages of driving a waste or recycling vehicle are significant: the hours are regular and predictable, the job is local, and it pays well," Kneiss said. "Plus there's job security: We're always going to need good drivers."

But the opportunities in the waste and recycling industry don't end there. Mechanics and welders who work on the industry's fleet are also in significant demand.

For example, the BLS reports that the 2012 median pay for a diesel mechanic was more than $42,000 per year and that the total number of jobs across all industries was expected to grow by 9 percent from 2012 to 2022 -- more than 21,000 additional positions.

There are both formal and informal diesel mechanic training programs. In some cases, the company will train you. But there are also a number of programs offered by vocational schools, community colleges and adult education programs.

In addition, mechanics qualified to work on compressed natural gas engines would do well to investigate the waste and recycling industry: It has one of the largest CNG truck fleets in the U.S.

To learn more about opportunities in the waste and recycling industry, go to http://beginwiththebin.org/jobs.

Landfills: An Unexpected Source of Renewable Energy

Lifestyles - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 8:52am
Five words or less

(NewsUSA) - Did you know that the garbage you throw out every day is a source of green energy? The gas naturally generated by landfills fuels vehicles and powers the electric grid, easing our dependence on fossil fuels and foreign oil.

"Landfill gas is a resource the waste and recycling industry is proud to reliably provide 24 hours a day, seven days a week," said Sharon H. Kneiss, president and CEO of the National Waste & Recycling Association. "It's renewable energy produced in America."

How does it work?

Today's modern landfills are highly engineered facilities run under strict federal and state regulations to ensure protection of human health and the environment.

When trash like grass clippings, banana peels and coffee grinds gets buried beneath a layer of soil in a landfill, it eventually breaks down and produces gas. Landfill operators safely collect this gas by applying a vacuum to collection wells throughout a landfill. The gas is then piped to a compression and filtering unit, where it's prepared for use by power plants and others.

How much energy is generated?

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, waste-based energy is the source of over 5 percent of America's renewable energy -- and there's plenty of room to grow. In March 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reported that 645 sites had landfill-gas-to-energy programs (in every state except Hawaii and Wyoming). The EPA has identified an additional 440 landfills as expansion candidates.

Landfill operators are also starting to generate energy beyond gas by placing solar panels and windmills on landfills. The power produced can be fed into local electric grids for local homes and businesses.

Stewards of the land

Today, a landfill is designed from the start to protect the environment and public health. Later, it provides benefits even when it closes. Once a landfill has reached its permitted capacity, it is closed and engineered to keep water out by installing a cap made of clay or a synthetic material. A drainage layer, a protective soil cover and topsoil are then added to support plant growth.

These spaces are transformed into parks, golf courses, wildlife refuges and other places that can be enjoyed by the entire community.

Learn more about the many benefits of landfills by visiting http://beginwiththebin.org/innovation/landfill-gas-renewable-energy.

The Best Accessories are Easy, Convenient and Portable

Lifestyles - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 8:49am
Five words or less

(NewsUSA) - When you think of your favorite accessories, the items you reach for again and again, what words come to mind? Easy, convenient and portable, to name a few. When shopping for accessories for day to day use, special events, or business travel, several key factors stand out. Keep some of these points in mind to help you identify accessories that will make your life easier.

* Easy: Ease of use is a top trait in everyone's favorite, go-to accessories. Whether it is a wallet with just the right number of slots, a purse with pockets in just the right places, or a smartphone case that doubles as an ID holder, the right accessories make your life easier. If you are a smokeless tobacco user, a portable spittoon that can be open and shut with one hand makes it easy to enjoy smokeless tobacco on the go. The portable spittoon from Atlanta-based FLASR features a one-hand operational design for ease of use.

* Convenient: Everyone wants accessories that are convenient. Smokeless tobacco users seeking a convenient spittoon for on-the-go use will appreciate the latest product from FLASR. The 4-ounce portable spittoon is designed to stay securely shut to minimize the risk of spills and leaks when not in use, and the one-hand open/close feature is engineered to help maximize convenience and discreet use on-the-go.

* Portable: The right accessories should enhance your social life, not hinder it. Nothing gets in the way on a date, or at a party or other event like a poorly designed purse that falls open, a wallet that won't close or a smartphone case that's bulky. For smokeless tobacco users, portability is paramount if they want to have a subtle spittoon on hand in order to enjoy dip, chew or snuff at an event away from home. FLASR's single-hand design and 4-ounce size is designed to fit in a pocket for easy, subtle storage that doesn't attract attention.

* Personal: Of course, the best accessories are the ones that let you show some personal style, such as that unique handcrafted handbag or customized smartphone case. Smokeless tobacco users seeking a portable spittoon have a choice of several designs in the FLASR collection. For more information about the FLASR line of products, visit www.flasr.com.

Seminar to address Uniform Guidance's impact on research funding

MSU News - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 1:00am

New guidelines are affecting major research universities like Mississippi State. The Office of Management and Budget has streamlined the federal government’s guidance on administrative requirements, cost principles and audit requirements for federal awards through the Uniform Guidance streamlining initiative.

The release of Uniform Guidance and agency implementations impacts existing institutional policies, federal sponsor guidelines, and the terms and conditions expressed in federal awards.

The Office of Research and Economic Development at Mississippi State is hosting a one-and-a-half day seminar on Uniform Guidance on Monday [Aug. 24] and Tuesday [Aug. 25].

These sessions are designed to provide attendees important information about the changes incorporated in Uniform Guidance, and how these changes impact research administration policies and procedures, and will familiarize them with Uniform Guidance and agency implementations.

Visit www.research.msstate.edu/workshops for additional information or to register for this free seminar.

MSU Volleyball Set To Host Maroon And White Scrimmage Wednesday

Bulldog Beat - Tue, 08/18/2015 - 9:00pm
STARKVILLE, Miss. – With the 2015 season nearly a week away, Mississippi State volleyball coach David McFatrich has announced the first of three Maroon and White scrimmages, which will take place Wednesday, Aug. 19, at Newell-Grissom at 6 p.m. CT.

#HailStateHoops Releases 2015-16 Non-Conference Slate

Bulldog Beat - Tue, 08/18/2015 - 5:47pm
STARKVILLE, Miss. – Six games against postseason teams, including four that advanced to the NCAA Tournament, highlight Mississippi State's 2015-16 women's basketball non-conference schedule.

Volunteers needed to work on Maroon Edition Habitat for Humanity home

MSU News - Tue, 08/18/2015 - 4:52pm

Volunteers are needed to help build a home for a local family in need by participating in the Maroon Edition Habitat for Humanity project.

Mississippi State students, faculty and staff interested in volunteering can view and sign up for an available shift at https://orgsync.com/56759/events or on the Maroon Volunteer Center website at www.mvc.msstate.edu. Shifts are available on Thursday, Friday and Saturday until November.

Campus groups interested in signing up to work as a team can contact Shayla Jefferson, AmeriCorps VISTA with the MVC, at scj68@saffairs.msstate.edu or 662-325-2150.

MSU Greeks raise $75,000 for Starkville Area Habitat for Humanity home

MSU News - Tue, 08/18/2015 - 2:48pm
MSU’s Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life recently donated $75,000 for a new Starkville Area Habitat for Humanity home. Presenting a check to the committee recently were (l-r) Stevany Jackson; John Michael VanHorn, fraternity and sorority life assistant director; Jacqueline M. “Jacqui” Posley; Grace Wegener; Haley Watters; Grace Mangrum; Yeager Bass; Emily Ann Kirkland; Ja’Syon Charles; Jeremy Knott; Jackie Mullen, director of student activities; and ShirDonna Lawrence, fraternity and sorority life coord

Contact: Sasha Steinberg

MSU’s Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life recently donated $75,000 for a new Starkville Area Habitat for Humanity home. Presenting a check to the committee recently were (l-r) Stevany Jackson; John Michael VanHorn, fraternity and sorority life assistant director; Jacqueline M. “Jacqui” Posley; Grace Wegener; Haley Watters; Grace Mangrum; Yeager Bass; Emily Ann Kirkland; Ja’Syon Charles; Jeremy Knott; Jackie Mullen, director of student activities; and ShirDonna Lawrence, fraternity and sorority life coordinator.

STARKVILLE, Miss.—Within a year, a Starkville family should be moving into a Habitat for Humanity-built home made possible with support provided by Mississippi State’s fraternities and sororities.

University fraternity and sorority members recently completed a fundraising campaign that raised $75,000 in donations.

John Michael VanHorn, MSU fraternity and sorority life assistant director, said he anticipates the construction project becoming a yearly partnership with the Starkville Area Habitat for Humanity program.

Work on the building is expected to begin in September, with dedication of the residence taking place mid-spring, he added.

VanHorn emphasized that service is a cornerstone of Greek organizations. Fund-raising and home construction projects such as this provides fraternity and sorority members with special opportunities to leave a lasting impact on the community, he added.

“Our fraternities and sororities pride themselves on their various philanthropy and community service efforts, and this is a great way for our students to interact with each other while giving back to the community with one specific project,” said VanHorn, an MSU alumnus.

Joel Downey, Starkville Area Habitat for Humanity executive director, said home ownership is key both to personal financial stability and community development.

“What the university’s fraternities and sororities are doing is absolutely fantastic because they have stepped up and offered to raise funds and build a whole house,” Downey said. “The family who benefits from this new home is going to be able to look and say ‘This is what Mississippi State did for me,’ and that’s amazing.”

In addition to assistance from numerous campus and community volunteers, Downey said his organization is grateful for the annual support of covenant partners like MSU’s Kappa Sigma fraternity. As part of their Charity Classic football game, Kappa Sigma members have donated $20,000 each of the past five years to the Starkville Area Habitat for Humanity program, he noted.

To donate to this Starkville Area Habitat for Humanity project, visit www.habitat.greeks.msstate.edu or mail a check in care of Fraternity and Sorority Life, P.O. Box 5368, Mississippi State, MS 39762.

For more information on MSU fraternities and sororities or the new Starkville Area Habitat for Humanity project, visit www.greeks.msstate.edu. To contact the fraternity and sorority life office, telephone 662-325-3917. VanHorn also may be reached at jvanhorn@saffairs.msstate.edu.

Learn more about Starkville Area Habitat for Humanity by visiting www.starkvillehabitat.com, telephoning 662-324-7008 or emailing hhumanity@bellsouth.net.

MSU, Mississippi’s flagship research institution, is online at www.msstate.edu.

Injuries sideline NFR hopes

Twisted Rodeo - Tue, 08/18/2015 - 1:28pm

The last week of rodeos was tough on a couple of bareback riders who were battling for qualifications to the 2015 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.

Canadian Luke Creasy suffered a broken left forearm that required surgery Tuesday, while Texan Matt Bright had a rib injury. It’s not the first bout with injuries this season for the two cowboys.

Luke Creasy

Luke Creasy

A few weeks ago, the right-handed riding Creasy broke the fifth metecarpal bone in his right hand and had surgery to repair the ailment. Sitting inside the top 20 all season, the cowboy – now living in Lovington, N.M. – knew he needed to keep riding if he wanted to earn his first trip to the NFR.

So he went back to work and tried to make a living riding bareback horses with his left hand. His plan was to do so until his injured finger was heeled enough so that he could begin riding with his primary hand wedged into the rigging. His return lasted just one event on the ProRodeo trail. Creasy broke his left arm in Douglas, Wyo., but not before earning an $85 check for finishing in a tie for sixth.

As of this week, he is 19th in the world standings. He still plans to make a run for the finals once his hand injury is ready.

Matt Bright

Matt Bright

Bright, of Fort Worth, Texas, had spent a considerable amount of time on the sidelines this season because of groin injuries. He returned with a vengeance in July and had rapidly moved up the money list. He finished second in Cheyenne, Wyo., and won the average championship in Dodge City, Kan. He suffered either a separated or cracked rib this past weekend in Hermiston, Ore.

With a little more than a month left in the regular season, Bright has realized that his chances at the NFR are minimal. He has returned home to heal. If things go better than expected, he may make a late-season run at this year’s NFR.

For now, though, he sits 26th in the world standings and knows he can start the 2016 campaign in good standings while also allowing himself the time it takes to heal completely.

As with any athlete, cowboys rely on their bodies. With no guaranteed income, dealing with injuries comes down to making important business decisions.

Categories: Twisted Rodeo
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