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Academy Sports + Outdoors and the Tennessee Titans donate bikes, promote fitness at Inglewood Elementary


At Inglewood Elementary, Academy Sports + Outdoors and Tennessee Titans’ players, cheerleaders, and mascot donated bikes and helmets to 70 deserving students on Dec. 13 as part of Academy’s annual bike donation program.


“This is our fifteenth year holding bike donation events,” said Rick Burleson, regional marketing specialist for Academy Sports + Outdoors. Burleson said the company increased its giving and wanted to give back to the community this year by more than doubling the number of bikes usually given.

“You think about the joy it brings to the kids,” said Alison McArthur, Metro Schools Community Achieves coordinator, about the bike donations.

A school assembly featured a Fuel Up to Play 60 presentation with Titans’ mascot T-RAC that promoted the importance of eating right and getting regular exercise.

Tennessee Titans players Ben Jones, Dennis Kelly and Harry Douglas spoke to students about focusing in school, having respect for yourself and others, and not being afraid to ask for help when you need it.

First and second grade students also participated in special fitness activity stations with Tennessee Titans players Kevin Byard, Brian Orakpo, and David Bass, who also joined in on the fun.

See highlights from the event below:

North Sports Report – Friday Night Lights Week 1

by Mark North, president of The Fans, Inc

Don’t Miss It
How do you follow a banner year for MNPS sports? In 2014-15, every sports season featured a team state champion from MNPS: Fall – Hume-Fogg Boys Cross-Country; Winter – MLK Girls Basketball; and Spring – Pearl-Cohn Boys Track. Not to mention long playoff runs in football, soccer and volleyball for several teams including Hillsboro’s trip to the football state championship game in Cookeville.

Last year’s top college recruits are now MNPS alumni and Freshmen at UT, Oregon, Illinois, UT Martin, TSU, MTSU, Belmont, and other schools across the country. Don’t you love saying “I saw him/her play in high school” when talking about a local talent playing in college or in the pros. Well, MNPS is loaded with talent again this year. Don’t miss your chance to go to the games, support the schools and students, and see tremendous athletic performances.

The Fall season has started for Cross-Country, Volleyball, Golf, Girls Soccer, and Football. Go to the games. Seriously, go to the games and not just football. You will love it!

Titan Up Bobcat
Overton graduate Dezmond Johnson earned his degree from prestigious Duke University and was named to the Academic All-ACC team for his success in the classroom and on the field for the Blue Devils football team. Now, he has come home as a member of the Tennessee Titans.

Wait. Go back and read that again. Overton High School…Duke graduate…academic All-Conference…NFL player. Wow! Congratulations Dezmond Johnson!


Football: Can’t Miss Showdowns Highlight Week 1
Week 1 features two nights of high school football this week for MNPS. Go to a game each night.

Saturday, August 22:

The place to be Saturday night is Vanderbilt University for the showdown between the Hillsboro Burros and the Pearl-Cohn Firebirds. Both teams have reloaded with talent and expect great seasons. The Associated Press ranks Hillsboro 3rd in the state for Division 5A and ranks Pearl-Cohn 4th in the state in 4A. They will be talking about this one for a long time – two of the best teams in the state playing on a Saturday night at the comfortable confines of Vanderbilt Stadium. Be there! I bet the place will be crawling with college coaches and recruiters.


Friday, August 21, games include great season openers and rivalries:

  • The Antioch Bears host nearby rival Cane Ridge Ravens in the battle for southeast supremacy.
  • You can throw out the records when rivals Stratford Spartans and Maplewood Panthers meet. Since it’s the first game of the season, I guess it’s safe to disregard the records in all the games. Nevertheless, this is a hot rivalry hosted by Maplewood this year.

In other action:

  • Glencliff Colts travel to Whites Creek Cobras
  • Hunters Lane Warriors open at home against Clarksville Northwest
  • East Nashville Eagles travel to Rossview
  • McGavock Raiders head to Hendersonville
  • Overton Bobcats play at Stewarts Creek
  • Hillwood Hilltoppers visit Father Ryan


The MNPS home games are at Antioch; at Hunters Lane; at Maplewood; and at Whites Creek on Friday; and at Vanderbilt on Saturday.

Go to a game each night!

MNPS: The First Choice for Year after Year Success

North Sports Report – State champions all over the place

by Mark North, president of The Fans, Inc

A Victory Lap… or Four

With only two events remaining and a 42 point lead, the Pearl-Cohn Boys track team gathered behind the stands with Principal Sonia Stewart, Assistant Principal Brian Mells, several teachers, coaches and supporters. The penultimate event, the 3200m run, included no Firebird, so the only thing between the Firebirds and the state championship was the 4 x 400m Relay, basically a victory lap for the team state champion… well, more like four victory laps – four very fast victory laps.

To pass the time during the 3200m races, Mr. Mells began introducing the North Sports Report to members of the team: Darryl Harris, Jr. is the Valedictorian of the Class of 2015; Ke’Shawn Vaughn and Cameron Watkins donned their Fighting Illini hats; and Rontavius Groves will be one of the state’s top football players this fall. A member of Pearl-Cohn’s track team told me a few weeks ago that the Regional Meet is the time to set personal records, but the State Meet is all about the team. Visiting with these young gentlemen on the verge of a state championship, I understood. They were all about the team.

We took our place in the stands for the final race. It had been a year since the team had fallen a point and a half short of a state championship, and for a full year, everything pointed to this race. The Relay team did not disappoint, pulling away for the icing on the state championship cake and 96 total points, 44 more than second place.

It was thrilling!

That Championship Feeling

Earlier this month, the North Sports Report made its bold Spring Fling prediction for Metro schools – one team championship and six individual or relay championships. Did you snicker when you read that, knowing how much I underestimated the MNPS springability and flingability?

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Actual results:

One team champion; one team runner-up; and six top-ten teams.

Four state champions; three runners-up; and one third place.

Nine state championships (that’s right, nine individual state championships); nine runners-up; and four third place finishers.

Pearl-Cohn’s Boys Track team was phenomenal in winning the state title. Stratford’s Boys Track team finished 7th and Maplewood’s Boys Track team finished 8th.

East Nashville’s Girls Track team finished 2nd in the state, while Hume-Fogg and MLK’s Girls teams tied for 9th.

East Nashville’s Girls won the 4 x 400m Relay, and Hume-Fogg’s Girls finished 2nd in the 4 x 200m and the 4 x 400m relays. Pearl-Cohn’s Boys swept the sprint relays, winning state championships in the 4 x 100m, 4 x 200m, and 4 x400m relays. Stratford’s Boys finished 2nd in the 4 x 400m relay.

Hillsboro’s Janel Pate won the 100m and 400m and finished 2nd in the Long Jump. Cane Ridge’s Maya Perry-Grimes won the state championship in the Triple Jump. East Nashville’s Grenetria Shell won the 100m Hurdles, 300m Hurdles and Pentathlon. McGavock’s Mikayla Thompson finished 2nd in the Discus. Hume-Fogg’s Stephanie Brown and MLK’s Denia Hill-Tate tied for 2nd in the High Jump. Stratford’s Jermesia Haynes finished 3rd in the 100m and 200m.

Pearl-Cohn’s Darryl Harris Jr. won state championships in the 400m and Long Jump and finished 2nd in the Decathlon. Pearl-Cohn’s Rontavius Groves won the 200m Dash. Pearl-Cohn’s Cameron Watkins finished 2nd in the 100m and Long Jump. Maplewood’s Ross Bagley finished 2nd in the 110m Hurdles. Maplewood’s T.J. Turner finished 2nd in the Triple Jump. Stratford’s Corey Simmons finished 3rd in the 100m and 200m.

Great performances!

A Bobcat among the Titans

Overton alumnus Dezmond Johnson earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Cultural Anthropology and a Masters Degree in Christian Ministries from Duke University. He was named Academic All ACC three times during his college career. Now, he is a member of the Tennessee Titans. Visit Overton’s online student newspaper to read an interview with the new Titan. Congratulations, and go Titans!

MNPS: The First Choice for Champions of Education

FREE dental care at LP Field – No, really.

Team Smike

All trips to the dentist should be this fun…

Team Smile and the Tennessee Titans are giving Nashville families the chance to see the dentist and Tennessee Titans players at the same time. Kids will learn about the importance of good dental care and get a free cleaning from a hygienist. Dentists will also be on hand for a full oral health assessment and more dental care, if needed.

Afterward, kids get more than a free toothbrush and floss sample. They get to meet the Titans and T-Rac!

TeamSmile is a nonprofit organization that was created with the mission of organizing ever-lasting partnerships between local dentists, professional sports teams and dental organizations. The goal of these partnerships is to provide life-changing dental care and instruction to children in their communities who would not have otherwise been given this opportunity. The end result is to make children aware of how important dental care is to their health both now and into their future.

The event is open to the public and 100% free to all.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

9am – 3pm

LP Field


A Tennessee Titan teaches healthy living, eating

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Glencliff High School hosted NFL Tennessee Titans Moise Fukou’s Root 53 Workshop in conjunction with Nashville Athletic Club last Thursday.  One hundred culinary arts students participated an three-hour workshop creating healthy choice menus for the Tennessee Titans, participating in quick and easy exercise workouts and understanding the connection between healthy food and exercise.

Moise previously presented at Bailey STEM Magnet Middle School last September.

Vote for Wright Middle in a Titans-Colts school showdown

The Titans and the Colts aren’t the only ones competing this Thursday. Wright Middle School is pitted against a magnet school in Indiana for a $1,000 grant.

The NFL PLAY 60 Showdown happens every week for Thursday Night Football. Voting for the Week 11 showdown between the Colts and the Titans is underway now and goes through 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 14. The proposal with the most votes will receive full funding up to $1,000 from NFL PLAY 60, and the proposal that finishes second will receive half funding up to $500.

Jennifer Dillingham, now in her fifth year as a math teacher and sixth overall at Wright, submitted a wish list of jump ropes, footballs, soccer balls and basketballs.

“I was involved in athletics through my church and also did cheerleading and color guard at Kirby High School in Memphis,” said Dillingham.  “A lot of our students here at Wright are very high energy and our P.E. department’s equipment isn’t up to par for what we’d like. PE is a great outlet for the students to burn off a lot of that extra energy so that when they come to my class, they are more focused on their core subject.”

When the competition came to Nashville last season, Kirkpatrick Elementary School defeated a school from Pittsburgh.

“It’s great for our students to be the focus of this program,” added Dillingham.  “I know about the NFL’s PLAY 60 program  and this seems to fall in line with that initiative!  Our PE teachers had no idea I was submitting this and they will be thrilled to know about it.  One of our PE teachers (Judy Philpot) sent out an email informing us of the program but she didn’t know I was submitting one in hopes of getting her better PE equipment!”

“Being physically healthy and active empowers the students to be academically in tuned and learn what they need to in order to have the energy to sustain them for the entire day,” said Larry Baskin, Assistant Principal.  “The ability to be active is a big part of their day and makes them better students.”

“I had the opportunity to visit Ms. Dillingham’s classroom and also met Larry Baskin and learned about their student body, and know that Wright Middle will be a great Titans representative in this NFL Showdown,” said Bob Hyde, Titans VP-Community Relations. “Wright Middle features a wide range of international students who speak 27 different languages.  We want to encourage everyone to cast their vote often as rules of the ‘Showdown’ allow votes to be cast hourly, giving us the chance to show our support for the Wright program many times over between Saturday and next Thursday’s deadline!”

To cast your vote, please log on to Please remember to vote often!

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