Wednesday, November 29, 2006

KLTV 7 College Football Schedule For Saturday, December 2

We have a big day of football on KLTV 7 Saturday. Here is the schedule:

Dr. Pepper ACC Championship Game
Wake Forest vs. Georgia Tech
Alltel Stadium in Jacksonville, FL

“College Football Presented By Best Buy”
3:30 – 7:00pm

Dr. Pepper Big 12 Championship Game
Nebraska @ Oklahoma
Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City MO.
7:00 – aprx. 10:30pm

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Investment In Football Paying Huge Dividends For Whitehouse

It's nothing personal against the Wildcats, but Whitehouse just doesn't win when it comes to football. Since 1947, the Wildcats have produced just 12 winning seasons entering 2006. They had made the playoffs four times, winning just two playoff games. In 1978, the Wildcats won the district championship and finished 9-2. Since then, they have had just three winning seasons, and one playoff berth.

In 2004, Whitehouse decided they were tired of watching everyone else in the district achieve postseason success on the gridiron and decided to do something about it. That's when they hired Randy McFarlin away from Daingerfield. In six seasons at Daingerfield, McFarlin's Tigers made six straight playoff appearances, winning nine playoff games, advancing to the state quarterfinals three times, the state semifinals twice, and the state finals once, losing to Newton in 1998.

"When I talked to the (Whitehouse ISD football coach search) committee and accepted this job," said McFarlin, "I felt like the committee there, and the administration were committed to a winning program, and that's very important coming into a community. You have to have the support, both financially, and just the support in general to make this thing work. We had to make a lot of changes in Whitehouse, Texas to get this program's foot on the ground, and the third year, here we are still playing, I'm very pleased with the progress."

But that progress was in jeopardy early this year. After giving up 70 points in the first two games of the season, including a 42-36 loss to Sulphur Springs in week two, McFarlin and his coaching staff shook up the program. They brought in several sophomores from the junior varsity, including a new quarterback. They also committed several of their top athletes primarily to defense.

"At that point after week two, we looked where we were at, and knew, at the level we wanted to play as a coaching staff, we had to make some changes," McFarlin said, "and there again, I don't know if it's luck or what, but it worked out for us. "

Boy did it work. After giving up 42 points in week two, the Wildcats defense allowed just 41 points over the next six games, setting up a district title showdown with Marshall. Whitehouse won a thriller at Wildcat stadium, 35-34. In ten games since the change, the Wildcats have outscored their opponents by 144 points and have posted a 9-1 record. Overall they are 10-2, the best record in school history, and are in the third round of the playoffs for the first time in school history.

"We're very thrilled that it did work," McFarlin said. "It makes you look pretty good when it works, and pretty bad the other way if it hadn't worked, but we're just very fortunate it worked for us and we're still playing."

How long will they continue to play? That remains to be seen. Waco is their next challenge Saturday afternoon.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

800th Win For Avinger Coach

A big congratulations to Avinger basketball coach Ken Loyd who got his 800th career win last night. His 5th-ranked Indians beat North Hopkins 67-56 in overtime.

Coach Loyd has been in the business for 41 years, winning three state titles. He has also coached at Texas High, White Oak, Huntington and Venus.

500 is an incredible accomplishment, but 800 is almost beyond belief! That's an average of around 20 wins a season.

Gander Mountain Hunting Tip: Feather Light

Gander Mountain has been nice enough to share with us some hunting and fishing tips to help you get the most out of your outdoor experience. As the largest retail network of stores in the nation, they have an extensive team of experts at their disposal.

This weeks tip comes from Jeff French, a store manager in Kenosha, Wisconsin, who talks about hiding your scent while hunting.

When hunting from a treestand, it is essential to be aware of where your scent is traveling. Wind checkers are great for the immediate area around your treestand, but another great choice is as close as your local fly shop!
A small piece of marabou of feather can show you where your scent is being carried well beyond your stand. By ripping off a small piece and letting it float away, you can identify changing wind currents for several yards! Try it and you may be surprised!
Jeff French
Store Manager, Kenosha, WI

Monday, November 13, 2006

Playoff Predictions

It's always fun to look at the wide open brackets to try to figure out how everything plays out. The beauty is, there's always upsets, but the cream usually rises to the top. We've looked at all of the brackets and offer what we think could happen:

5A Divsion I: This is by far the toughest classification this year. Seven of the top ten ranked teams in the state reside here. This is going to be brutal. Let's take Lufkin for instance. If they are to win a state championship this year, they will probably have to face five ranked teams in their six games. The game that everyone will have their eye on, though, will be #1 Southlake Carroll versus #3 Euless Trinity in the second round! The winner of that game will be odds on favorite to win the championship. With their history, along with what they've accomplished this season so far, we think Southlake Carroll wins that game, and goes on to play Lufkin in the semifinals. The winner of that game will probably face fifth-ranked Galena Park North Shore for the title. Sorry Panthers, but we think it's going to be the South Lake Carroll Dragons winning it all.

5A Division II: There are no ranked teams in Region two right now, which bodes well for the 12-5A teams. John Tyler will have their hands full with Dallas Carter in the first round. Longview faces a road block in round two against Garland. History says Carter and Garland meet for the Regional championship with Garland pulling it out. They should fall to 6th-ranked Cedar Hill in the semi's, who will in turn lose to Katy in the state title game. It won't be easy for Katy, though. They'll probably have to get by 9th-ranked Smithson Valley in the semi's. But Katy is the pick.

4A Divison I: This is an easy pick, yet a hard pick, because the state championship game is going to be played in the second round. Texas High will get a rematch against Highland Park, who beat them in the first round of the playoffs last year on their way to the state title. We think the Texas High Tigers get their revenge and win the Division I championship.

4A Divison II: This should be a wide open division this year. Whitehouse has the chance to go pretty far. Unfortunately, their lack of depth may haunt them in round three when they play 9th-ranked Waco. Waco should play Stephenville in the semi's. We give the nod to Stephenville. But in the end, Brenham should emerge as the champion.

3A Division I: Gilmer coach Jeff Traylor knew before the season even started that his Buckeyes would probably have to face Liberty-Eylau in the first round. If they get by that game, it should be clear sailing all the way to the title game. Their opponent will more than likely be the winner of the second round matchup between Hutto and Diboll. Our nod goes to Diboll. In an All-East Texas final, Gilmer wins their second state championship in three years.

3A Division II: There are several good teams happy Gilmer is Division I. Key games include Celina versus Dallas Madison, Brownsboro versus Atlanta, and West Orange Stark versus Gidding, all in the second round. We think Madison emerges over Atlanta for the Region two title. Cuero should stop West Orange Stark in the semi's. That sets up a classic between Cuero and Madison. Our pick is Cuero as champion.

2A Division I: The simple truth here is Region three is the state championship bracket. Whoever emerges from this region will have their toughest competition behind them. 5th-ranked Tatum will most likely play 6th-ranked Jefferson in the second round. The winner of that game will have to face the winner of 4th-ranked Newton against 7th-ranked Marlin. Our pick, and I know it's the safe pick, but who cares... Tatum wins their second straight title.

2A Division II: Again, Region three probably holds the state champion. 2005 state finalists Paul Pewitt (2A-DII) and Big Sandy (1A) match up in the first round and it takes off from there. #2 Crawford will have a say in the outcome of that side of the Region three bracket, with #1 Mart probably coming out of the other side, if they can get by Troup. The Region champion should face #3 Lexington in the semifinals, then face #9 Blanco in the finals. our pick is Mart.

1A Division I: 1A moves to two divisions this year for the first time. There are only two ranked teams in Division I, and they will have to play each other in the third round. #2 Alto beats #6 Wolfe City and goes on to win the state title.

1A Division II: This is anyone's guess. A lot of good teams will have a shot at it. Expect #2 New Deal to win out in Region 1, but fall to #1 Windthorst in the semifinals. We think #10 Grapeland can make it to the semifinals, but will have their hands full with #5 Chilton. Regardless of who wins that game, we think Windthorst wins the state title.

Final High School Football Poll

East Texas schools made a strong showing in every classification ranking in the final AP high school football poll, which means once again, East Texas should make a strong showing in the playoffs. Lufkin finishes as the second ranked team in 5A. Texas High is the topped ranked team in 4A. Gilmer slips by Cuero in the final week to take over the top spot in 3A. 2A is packed with East Texas talent. Former number ones Tatum and Jefferson finish fifth and sixth respectively. Troup finishes tenth. And, in 1A, Alto finishes second with Grapeland 10th.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Hunting Tip: Coffee and Venison?

Gander Mountain has been kind enough to periodically send us some hunting and fishing tips. Here's one on cooking venision from Elite Pro Staff member Keith Warren:

Recently, I learned of a new way to cook back strap. Although it may sound very unusual, it is out of this world. Here is how to do it. Cut back straps a full 2” thick and place them in your favorite marinade, I use Cajun Injector Garlic Creole. Usually it takes hours to marinate thick cuts of meat, but in a marinade canister by Tilia (manufacturer of the Foodsaver,, it only takes 20 minutes.

Remove the marinated meat and drain excess liquid from the meat. Wrap cut of meat with bacon. Then sprinkle the upper side with garlic salt. Next, take pulverized freeze-dried instant coffee crystals and lightly dust the salted side. Allow to sit for 20 minutes or until the coffee resembles chocolate syrup. Then turn the meat over and do the same on the other side.Cook over a medium fire for six minutes per side for medium rare, longer for medium or well-done. I know this sounds odd, but it will be an unbelievable piece of meat. The garlic salt draws out the blood, and the coffee causes it to form a coating that will help the meat retain its moisture.With this recipe we have come up with a new family favorite -- just another way to enjoy a successful hunt. By the way, I am far from being considered a good cook. Just ask my wife. But with this recipe, it is hard to do a bad job.

Keith Warren
Gander Mountain Elite Pro Staff Member and
TV Host of Keith Warren's Outdoor Adventures

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Gander Mountain Hunting Tip: Deer Hunting

Gander Mountain has been nice enough to periodically pass along some hunting and fishing tips. With deer season set to begin, here is a good set of tips from Elite Pro Staff Member Ray Howell:

Quick Tips for Deer Hunting
· Always keep the wind in your favor (work into or quarter into it). If at all possible, use scent-blocking clothing and scent killer odor sprays. They will eliminated human odors or keep them very low.
· Your bow or firearms should be covered with a camo cloth tape or have a dull finish to prevent any f reflection from the sun. When using your bow, sound-dampening equipment should be incorporated into your hunting system so that when you make the shot, the animal will not hear it coming.
· Use a scentless face camo to help keep the shine of your face concealed.
· While stalking your prey, do not be in a hurry. Wait for your prey to make the mistakes, and then capitalize on them. A lot of times, you can get too anxious to get the shot and actually "blow" an opportunity very easily.
· Use the landscape to your benefit and never silhouette yourself.
· Use a powder device to constantly check the wind direction.
· And always remember that one set of eyes is a lot easier to stalk up on than several sets.

Ray Howell
Gander Mountain Elite Pro Staff Member and
Founder of Kicking Bear Youth Program