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Pro Football - APRIL 1st 2014

 

NO BROTH(A)LY LOVE

DESEAN JACKSON

 

CITYBALLER COLUMNIST JOEY GIBS

PHILADELPHIA, PA - Not every day does a star player find himself unemployed after putting together his finest year to date. Yet, former Philadelphia Eagles star receiver, DeSean Jackson, find himself in that very predicament. Reports indicate that his release came due to his alleged association with gang members.


A number of things don't add up. The most disgusting of them being that Jackson, 27, has no criminal background. The "association" seems to be directed toward the relationships he's developed from growing up in Long Beach, California. Jackson is close friends with Theron Shakir. Shakir and Marques Binns, the two suspects in the murder of a 14 year old boy, are members of the Crips. Shakir also recorded music for Jackson's Jaccpot Records label. Shakir was acquitted, and Binns was sentenced to 15 years to life. Jackson was interviewed, however, was not arrested, nor was he a witness. He was nowhere near the crime scene whatsoever.


Authorities reached out to the Eagles organization about their plans to speak to Jackson, but never heard back from them. They then proceeded to sign Jackson to a five-year, $48.5 million dollar contract a year later.


Another egregious aspect of the situation, is the lack of professionalism of the Eagles brass. The public should not have heard of any claims of any "alleged" gang affiliation, unless it was concrete. Being associated with, and knowing someone who is associated with gangs, are two different things. Jackson released a statement refuting all claims of his association with the gangs. These accusations could tarnish Jackson's reputation. They also have the capability to hinder any contract he may be seeking, which could put a damper on his lifestyle. This was highly irresponsible.


To make matters worse, reports also indicate that the Eagles didn't want Jackson around the younger players, due to poor character. Yet, they signed Riley Cooper to a five-year $25 million dollar contract this off-season. Cooper, a white man, made headlines last year after video footage of his presence at a Kenny Chesney concert went viral. Cooper, who was clearly inebriated, was caught using racial slurs toward a security team of black men. Cooper was not suspended, released, nor punished in any fashion. He was asked to take 2 days off from camp so that things could cool down. That was it. Are we more comfortable with someone who has the history of racist activity around the youth, than someone who's never been in any real trouble?

Philly, where's the broth(a)ly love?

 

 

 

 

High School Football - MARCH 16, 2014

WHITEHAVEN TIGERS

WHITEHAVEN HIGH SCHOOL - MEMPHIS, TN

 

CITYBALLER COLUMNIST JOEY GIBS

MEMPHIS, TN - If you ask Rodney Saulsberry, coach of the Whitehaven Tigers (Memphis, TN), how he feels about the talent level of his team going into his 11th year, you'll feel his enthusiasm. Your sense his excitement. Your sense that he's expecting big things.


"We're excited about the group we have. We're pretty deep. We're still young, but our senior class has a lot of talent, and the young guys have a lot of talent as well. So, we're really excited about the depth that we have."


Saulsberry, who's initially a defensive-minded coach, exudes the toughness and character necessary to be a successful man and coach. He's also adamant about instilling these, amongst other great qualities, into his players.


"Having good character is very important. We give them a certain level of support. We want self motivated and driven kids. That's the best thing. I always tell them, 'If we have to make you do it, we're not going to get what we want.' We don't want to be babysitters. We want them to have the freedom to be responsible."


When asked about the key contributors, it was surprising to hear of so many. It was reminiscent of the 2007 New England Patriots. He raved about key players on offense, defense, and special teams.


"We run a 5-2 defense, and the most valuable recruit I have is Joshua McMillan, who is a top 5 linebacker in the country. So, hed be the 'big fish', I'd say. Along with him, I have Elex Harris. He's short, so that may be the only thing that hurts him in recruiting, but, he's a true mike linebacker. We also have Myles Chalmers at defensive tackle. He's a big, stop gap guy, a big, wide body. He's only about 6 feet, so, he's like a little fire hydrant. Another guy, who's underrated, is my defensive back Fydale Williams. He has really good potential. On offense, I have my quarterback, Jordan Williams. He, like most of these guys, has the chance to go to Division 1. We have the running back, Darrin Davis. We have two receivers. There is Braylen Rochelle, who is a true wide receiver. Then there's LaDerriel Esther, who's about 6'4". He's more of a flex receiver, so, he plays a little tight end too. On special teams, we have a kicker, who was kicked a lot of 40+ yard field goals for us, and is still getting better. His name is Mamadou Agne. We also have stalwarts Cameron Rogers, Durrell Mackey, and JayCameron Boyd. We play a lot of players. All of these guys will be contributors next year."


Of all of the teams the Tigers are slated to face this season, they're extremely eager to face the (MS) Olive Branch Conquistadors, whom they haven't been able to get a game with.


"It never seems to work out. I'd really love to play them. Let it be known, we're willing to play. Hopefully next year, will get a game with them."


The Tigers are scheduled to attend a few camps in the near future. They're invited to the Rivals camp in Hattiesburg, MS this week. They are also invited to the Nike camp in Birmingham AL.

 

 

 

 

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    LOS ANGELES,CA - KANYA BELL HIGHLIGHTS




     


     

     

     


     

     

     

     

     

    High School Football - FEBRUARY 22, 2014

    Meet Kanya Bell

    WR/DB/KR - KANYA BELL

     

    CITYBALLER COLUMNIST JOSEPH GIBSON

    LOS ANGELES, CA - Exuding confidence, and swagger, Kanya Bell appears to be a lion in the presence of kittens. A WR/DB/KR for the Diamond Bar Brahmas, Bell, 16, is in possession of all of the physical tools needed to be successful at his position(s). Standing at 6'0", he has a height advantage over most of his competition. Running a 4.5 in the 40-yard dash, his blazing speed defecates on that of his opponents. He's the full package.


    As a product of Compton, CA, Bell was set up for failure. He grew up in an environment surrounded by drugs, gang banging, and massive levels of crime. "That's everyday, all day," he expressed. "I just keep my focus on what I need to do to not follow that road."


    That sentiment escaped the mind of Bell's father, who was in and out of jail ever since he was 15 years old. He is currently serving a 35 to life sentence.


    "I understand the situation. I'm not mad at him. That's still my dad, at the end of the day. However, I can look at him and know what not to do," Bell explained.


    Kanya follow through with that thought process at a young age when he joined the Snoop Youth Football League, where he met current teammate, Cordell Broadus.


    "He's a cool guy," he noted. "I've known him since the 6th grade. We've basically grown into young men together."
    Bell also went on to explain the impact that the SYFL has had on his game. "The SYFL helped me to become more serious about the game. It's helped me to become more of a team player too. Coach Snoop has been like a father to me. There was a time where things were out of order at home. Coach Snoop took me in until things were stable enough for me to go back home."


    After his trials, here we have a dynamic player, who models his game after no one. Here's a guy who strives to put his own fingerprints on the game. Yes, he's also able to be objective about his game." The greatest part of my game, is that I'm always going to give you a show. The main thing I want to work on, is my maturity as a man overall."

    Ladies and gentlemen, this is Kanya Bell.

     

     

    High School Football - FEBRUARY 17, 2014

    Everday Struggles

    QB - JAYRU CAMPBELL

     

    CITYBALLER COLUMNIST JOSEPH GIBSON

    DETROIT, MI - Quarterback assaults security officer. Quarterback loses scholarship for assaulting a security officer. These are just a couple of the headlines flooding the press, in regards to a once highly recruited Cass Tech quarterback.

    In a perfect depiction of how one bad decision can change your life, 17-year old JayRu Campbell finds himself with his feet to the fire. Reports indicate that the star quarterback violently body slammed a security officer after a refusal to remove his hood. Campbell is being charged as an adult.

    The alleged assault is the second incident in recent memory involving Campbell, who was suspended from school and for the first game of the 2014 season for punching an opponent after Cass Tech’s state semi-final loss to Novi Detroit Catholic Central last November .

    At some point, Campbell has to realize that it's about more than football. As an African-American athlete, he will be viewed differently than his counterparts. His failures will be magnified, while his accomplishment may not charter the recognition that they deserve. When you're a black athlete, the simplest mishap will be the public's definition of you.

    When Michael Vick was convicted of dogfighting charges, he was portrayed as the most hateful person in sports. Two years after being reinstated by the NFL, no one cared that he put together an MVP caliber season.

    While this young man has to learn these things, and act accordingly, we have to be careful that we don't completely condemn and dismiss him. He is, however, still a kid. He's not a finished product. While he's being charged as an adult, he's still not finished growing up. He's going to make mistakes, just as we all do. This, is not to absolve him of his involvement in the situation, but it goes without saying that he deserves the opportunity to redeem himself. Let's be sure to give him that.

     

     

    SP

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