Category: Alumni

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Patriots News · Ray Sets Record for Starts!


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

wku2017 (r-Sr.) Ray made his 53rd career – and consecutive – start at FIU, setting the all-time WKU program record for starts by an offensive or defensive player. The Madison, Ala., native helped lead the Hilltoppers to the best passing offense in C-USA (334 yards per game) and the No. 9 passing offense in the country.

2016 (r-Jr.) | 14/14: WKU’s mauler on the inside, Ray built on his reputation as one of the nation’s top offensive guards with another stellar season at left guard where he started 14 consecutive games, continuing a streak which has seen him start every game of his career, 41-straight by the end of 2016. Ray helped pave the way for Anthony Wales’ FBS-best 13.4 points per game and 29 touchdowns, including a school record 27 on the ground. He also helped anchor the nation’s top scoring offense and keep quarterback Mike White upright as he led C-USA in Passing Efficiency. Adjusting sacks allowed for pass attempts, the Hilltoppers ranked No. 27 nationally in pass blocking efficiency, allowing a sack just four percent of the time (22 sacks on 471 attempts).

2015 (r-So.) | 14/14: Ray continued to perform as a sophomore and became one of WKU’s top offensive linemen during the 2015 campaign. Ray started all 14 games for the Hilltoppers at left guard on a line that finished the year No. 19 nationally in Sacks Allowed, with just 16 despite 554 dropbacks, the seventh-best percentage nationally and second among teams with 500 or more passing attempts. The line also paved the way for a sixth-consecutive 1,000-yard rusher and broke the school Total Offense record for the third consecutive season, the second two with Ray at left guard.

2014 (r-Fr.) | 13/13: In his first season on The Hill, Ray started every game at left guard as he became the school’s second Football Writer’s Association of America Freshman All-American since 2011. Ray was also named to the C-USA All-Freshman team and graded out as WKU’s second-best lineman during the regular season. His athleticism and pulling ability generated big run plays down the stretch to help RB Leon Allen rush for 750 yards in a five-game win streak, including two performances of 230 yards or more, to end the season. He was a vital piece of Allen’s Conference USA-record 345 yards versus Army, consistently pulling on sweeps to pile up chunk yardage.

2013 (Fr.): Ray redshirted his first season on The Hill.

HS/Misc.: Ray enjoyed a successful playing career at Bob Jones High School in Alabama. Ray was part of a 2012 team that went 9-4, advancing to the second round of the Alabama state playoffs. Ray anchored a Patriot front line that helped Bob Jones average close to 30 points per game in his senior season and over 35 points per game during his junior campaign of 2011. In his final two years of high school, Ray led Bob Jones to a 19-6 record, including a perfect 11-0 mark at home. The offensive lineman was named a Class 6A All-State Honorable Mention performer in the state of Alabama in 2012 while also being named to the Huntsville Times Elite First Team after putting together 65 pancake blocks in 13 games. Ray was also named to the Huntsville Times Elite Second Team following his junior season in 2011.

 

 

 

 

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Patriots News · Braves claim Dayton



ATLANTA — Alex Anthopoulos’ first two transactions as the Braves’ general manager were influenced by the familiarity he gained with the Dodgers’ bullpen as he spent the past two years serving as Los Angeles’ vice president of baseball operations.

The Braves claimed left-handed reliever Grant Dayton off waivers from the Dodgers on Monday night and later announced right-handed reliever Josh Ravin had been acquired from Los Angeles for cash considerations. These two hurlers joined left-handed pitchers Adam McCreery and Ricardo Sanchez as the latest additions to the Braves’ 40-man roster. McCreery and Sanchez were added ahead of Monday’s deadline for all MLB teams to announce which eligible prospects would be protected from the Rule 5 Draft.

Dayton underwent Tommy John surgery in August and thus will likely miss most if not all of the 2018 season. The 29-year-old Alabama native posted a 2.05 ERA as he made the first 25 appearances of his career last year. He opened this season with eight consecutive scoreless appearances and then began to struggle just before being placed on the disabled list in May. He pitched effectively throughout June, but he was sidelined again in July and never returned to Los Angeles’ bullpen.

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Patriots News · Dustin Haraway – All Mid-South Conference


Tiger-head-GC-white-member-page-logo01Bob Jones High School alum, and Georgetown College senior linebacker, Dustin Haraway, was selected to the 2017 All-Mid-South Conference Bluegrass Division team announced by conference officials on Thursday. Dustin is listed as a 6 foot and 205 pound outside linebacker on the 8-1 Tigers. Saturday will mark the 21st time in 30 years that Georgetown College football will lace it up in postseason action. This past Sunday, following the completion of an 8-1 season, the No. 12 Tigers learned its fate in the 2017 NAIA Football Championship Series Playoffs. Georgetown College was paired against Baker University, another school steeped in postseason tradition – 16th appearance since 1980. Kickoff is set for 2:07 pm ET and will be televised live on ESPN3.

Dustin, and his brother Dylan Haraway, were standout players for the Patriots during their high school years. Dylan is also a senior football player for the Tigers listed at 6 foot and 200 pounds lined up on the defense side of the ball as a defensive back. Dustin & Dylan are sons of Steve and Donna Haraway of Madison, Alabama. Both young men received Mid-South Conference football student-athlete Academic All MSC honors. In order to be nominated by an institution, a student-athlete must maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.25 on a 4.0 scale and must have achieved at least sophomore academic status.

Haraways

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Patriots News · Haley Hop All-GSC Honors


UAHBIRMINGHAM, Ala. | The Gulf South Conference announced its yearly volleyball awards, and The University of Alabama in Huntsville was represented by Haley Hop as a First Team All-GSC honoree.

Hop’s All-GSC award is the first of her career.

A native of Madison, Alabama and Bob Jones High School alum, Hop notched three GSC Defensive Player of the Week honors throughout the 2017 regular season while leading conference in digs per set nearly the entire campaign. Hop enters the GSC tournament Friday with a league-high 5.30 digs per set in addition to rating third in the conference with 567 digs.

As the squad’s libero, Hop registered 20 or more digs on nine occasions including recording a career-high 31 scoops in a win at Christian Brothers on Nov. 4. The Chargers look ahead to the first round of the GSC tournament on Friday at 4 p.m. with a matchup against fifth-seeded Shorter on the West Florida campus in Pensacola, Florida.

Prep: AL.com A-List No. 1 Volleyball Player in Alabama … 2014 AHSAA North All Star Team, 7A State All-Tournament, AL.com All-State Team, and BJHS Player of the Year … Area Tournament MVP in 2012, 2013 and 2014 … Earned JCHS Player of the Year in 2012 and 2013.

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Patriots News · Bob Jones Hall of Fame inductees honored



MADISON – Six people were honored as 2017 inductees into the Hall of Fame at Bob Jones High School.

Dick Clem, Steven Fisher, Eric Ordonez, Sheila Roberts, Doyle Thornton and Steve Woolwine were inducted this year.

The inductees participated as Grand Marshals in the Bob Jones homecoming parade on Oct. 19 and attended a reception immediately following in Patriot Hall on the Bob Jones campus. They were introduced to the audience at the Patriots homecoming football game on Oct. 20.

Bob Jones Hall of Fame recognizes outstanding alumni of the school who have maintained a high standard of excellence and made a significant contribution in their fields of endeavor.

In addition, persons who are not alumni can be Hall of Fame members if they have made a significant contribution to Bob Jones in the form of leadership and service. These individuals serve as role models for current and future Bob Jones students. (bjhs.madisoncity.k12.al.us)

To qualify, alumni candidates must have been a Bob Jones graduate for a period of at least 10 years and have had significant accomplishments and made contributions while a student at Bob Jones through scholarship, service, leadership and/or athletics.

To qualify, service candidates must have made a significant contribution to the school and must not be employed currently or affiliated with Bob Jones. Former employees must have worked for the school for 10 or more years; the former employee can be retired from Bob Jones, deceased or not employed for at least 10 years.

All candidates must meet the following selection criteria:

* Significant accomplishments and contributions while at post-secondary educational institutions, including degrees attained and fields of study or professional background and work experiences.

* Significant accomplishments and contributions to civic and community involvement

* Other significant accomplishments including awards, honors or offices held.

By Gregg Parker

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Patriots News · MTSU has something in freshman Brad Anderson


Anderson had 16 carries for 107 yards and six catches for 98 yards and a touchdown against Bowling Green on Saturday. Erik Bacharach/DNJ

Brad is a freshman at MTSU this year after lettering in football and track at Bob Jones High School last year. Brad earned all-state, all-region and all-Huntsville his senior year and set a state record with two 99-yard touchdowns in the same game. As a junior, he caught 33 passes for 651 yards and four touchdowns, and ran for 360 yards and five scores. Brad was the Homecoming King and maintained a 4.0 GPA and played for current BJHS Coach Kevin Rose.

dnjAnderson, who started at running back, was all over the place as MTSU’s sparkplug. The 5-foot-8, 170-pound back had 16 carries for 104 yards and six catches for 98 yards and a touchdown.

“Anytime we can have a young guy step up and play the way that Brad did is big,” Urzua said. “He had a hell of a game.”

Anderson had five carries last week against Minnesota, and MTSU coach Rick Stockstill said a goal of MTSU’s was to get the freshman more involved against Bowling Green.

“It’s a great feeling to finally have this opportunity,” Anderson said. “I was waiting on my chance and coach told me I would have an opportunity this week to play more and I just was looking forward to it. And being behind the O-line, I mean they made it easy.

“This was definitely a momentum swing for our team because we felt like we had to get back to the basics of our running game because we couldn’t get stuff established and get going. So for us tonight to be able to have a running game like (we did), it means a lot for us.”

Erik Bacharach, USA TODAY NETWORK – Tennessee

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Patriots News · Grant Dayton Has Season-Ending Tommy John Surgery


Goodyear, Arizona – The off-season for Grant Dayton will be one of both apprehension and excitement. The left-handed pitcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers and his wife, Cori, are awaiting the birth of their first child as the exciting time is set for early December. Meanwhile, the 29-year old Dayton is also very uneasy regarding his return to baseball after undergoing the very invasive and complex “Tommy John Surgery” to repair the damage to the elbow of his throwing arm.

“Actually, I’m not scared at all about the recovery from the surgery as my surgeon knows what he’s doing and I want to come back healthy and strong,” said Dayton, from his home in Goodyear, AZ., which is near the site of the Dodgers’ training camp complex in Glendale. “It’s hard to grasp what’s really going on.”

The former Bob Jones and Auburn University pitcher had 29 appearances for the Major League Baseball’s Dodgers where he posted a 1-1 record with 20 strikeouts in 23 innings of action. That followed 25 appearances with 39 strikeouts in 2016. He would have more playing time this season, if not for three different stints of the team’s disabled list. Two of those DL spots were for a neck strain and stiffness with the third for an intercostal strain located in his ribs.

Dayton was preparing for a scheduled one inning pitching rotation before a minor league outing in Tulsa. In his last bullpen pitch prior to stepping to the pitcher’s mound, he felt something pop in his pitching elbow. He wasn’t sure what it was and made his way to the mound for the National Anthem.

“Upon my first official warm-up pitch I couldn’t throw the ball,” said Dayton. “When I felt my elbow pop there was very little pain, but my arm felt warm. The MRI of my elbow showed the ulnar collateral ligament had trauma long ago and overtime could not hold up to the wear I’ve put it through.”

Within two weeks of the injury Dayton underwent surgery from the team surgeon Dr. Neal ElAttrache. Dayton added, “I didn’t feel any elbow pain until that pitch in the game prep, but the UCL was in bad shape. I had to rehab my arm during one of the DL spots and may have rushed my return. The results of this test were bad as I could not perform at the level I need for ‘the show’.”

The surgery lasted for three and a half hours and included ligament repair, removal of bone chips and the surgically filing down the bone of the elbow. It was also determined the ligament was shorter than normal. Dayton will now undergo 12-16 months of rehabilitation and will miss the remainder of this season and all of 2018.

“Clearing out my locker at Dodger Stadium was very emotional, but is part of the process of professional baseball,” said Dayton, son of Clay Dayton and Janis Tangeeman both of Madison.

He was an All-State pitcher in his senior year at Bob Jones in 2006. At Auburn, he was the staff ace and was drafted in the 11th round of the 2010 Major League Baseball Draft by the Florida Marlins. In 2013 he underwent surgery for a stress fracture in his pitching elbow, which was a precursor of what was to come for the 6-foot-2, 215-pound professional athlete. His contract was picked up by the Dodgers and was called up to the big league team on July 21, 2016.

Dayton will receive his full pay through his rehabilitation as Cori has stopped her work as a veterinarian in advance of their child’s December birth. The Players Union has made sure athletes in the position of Dayton are taken care of until its determined if he can play again. The layoff will be long and could be difficult to handle mentally as the desire of any professional athlete is to play and to play hard. Anytime away from the game is hurtful and aggravating.

“My season is over and is hard to swallow as we are in first place in the standings of the National League West Division and the playoffs are just around the corner,” said Dayton. “I’ll have to watch my team play on TV like other Dodgers’ fans.”

Dayton is quick to thank all of the people who reached out to support him during this very difficult time. He added, “Even those people I didn’t know. Dodgers’ fans have been very supportive and I thank them.”

Now, he and his wife will sit and watch the Dodgers from different seats than what they are accustomed to with the knowledge Dayton will make his way back to the baseball diamond after the excitement of having a new addition to the family.

By Bob Labbe, Published 5:19 am Monday, September 11, 2017

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Patriots News · Ray excels at Western Kentucky


 

Brandon Ray has started every game of his career, 41-straight by the end of 2016. He was recently named to the 2017 Conference USA Preseason Team.

2017 Conference USA Preseason Team
2016 Preseason All-C-USA Second Team (Athlon)
2014 FWAA Freshman All-American
2014 Conference USA All-Freshman Team

wku2016 (r-Jr.) | 14/14: WKU’s mauler on the inside, Ray built on his reputation as one of the nation’s top offensive guards with another stellar season at left guard where he started 14 consecutive games, continuing a streak which has seen him start every game of his career, 41-straight by the end of 2016. Ray helped pave the way for Anthony Wales’ FBS-best 13.4 points per game and 29 touchdowns, including a school record 27 on the ground. He also helped anchor the nation’s top scoring offense and keep quarterback Mike White upright as he led C-USA in Passing Efficiency. Adjusting sacks allowed for pass attempts, the Hilltoppers ranked No. 27 nationally in pass blocking efficiency, allowing a sack just four percent of the time (22 sacks on 471 attempts).

2015 (r-So.) | 14/14: Ray continued to perform as a sophomore and became one of WKU’s top offensive linemen during the 2015 campaign. Ray started all 14 games for the Hilltoppers at left guard on a line that finished the year No. 19 nationally in Sacks Allowed, with just 16 despite 554 dropbacks, the seventh-best percentage nationally and second among teams with 500 or more passing attempts. The line also paved the way for a sixth-consecutive 1,000-yard rusher and broke the school Total Offense record for the third consecutive season, the second two with Ray at left guard.

2014 (r-Fr.) | 13/13: In his first season on The Hill, Ray started every game at left guard as he became the school’s second Football Writer’s Association of America Freshman All-American since 2011. Ray was also named to the C-USA All-Freshman team and graded out as WKU’s second-best lineman during the regular season. His athleticism and pulling ability generated big run plays down the stretch to help RB Leon Allen rush for 750 yards in a five-game win streak, including two performances of 230 yards or more, to end the season. He was a vital piece of Allen’s Conference USA-record 345 yards versus Army, consistently pulling on sweeps to pile up chunk yardage.

2013 (Fr.): Ray redshirted his first season on The Hill.

HS/Misc.: Ray enjoyed a successful playing career at Bob Jones High School in Alabama. Ray was part of a 2012 team that went 9-4, advancing to the second round of the Alabama state playoffs. Ray anchored a Patriot front line that helped Bob Jones average close to 30 points per game in his senior season and over 35 points per game during his junior campaign of 2011. In his final two years of high school, Ray led Bob Jones to a 19-6 record, including a perfect 11-0 mark at home. The offensive lineman was named a Class 6A All-State Honorable Mention performer in the state of Alabama in 2012 while also being named to the Huntsville Times Elite First Team after putting together 65 pancake blocks in 13 games. Ray was also named to the Huntsville Times Elite Second Team following his junior season in 2011.

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Patriots News · Beavers glad he chose West Point


MADISON – Nicholas T. Beavers graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point on May 27.

“Going to West Point was the best decision I’ve ever made. It has given me various opportunities from jumping out of airplanes to traveling as an ambassador,” Beavers said.

Beavers experienced doubt but had a tremendous support system. “They had my back; I wouldn’t dare let them down. I’ll tell anyone trust your struggle … you’ll find out who you truly are and capable of. This discovery is where you’ll grow the most,” he said.

Beavers at West PointHe graduated from Bob Jones High School in 2012 and first applied to West Point early as a senior. “I was reluctant so I applied late,” Beavers said. The Madkins family, with his friend Darian and parents Michael (a 1994 West Point graduate) and Tammie, encouraged Beavers to apply.

In 2014, he enrolled at West Point and had to adjust to cadet lifestyle without a military background or JROTC experience. “It was a huge learning curve. I felt like I was drinking water from a fire hose,” Beavers said.

Ironically, the major problems were minor annoyances – sleep, clothing/uniforms, early mornings. “The physical aspect came easier. I’ve always been somewhat athletic and developed resilience from playing physically demanding sports (track and football),” he said.

Beavers earned a bachelor’s degree in engineering psychology with a focus in civil engineering.

He moved from Pell City to Madison in 2001 when his mother received a new job with HealthSouth. Living here gave him “exposure to bigger and better things.”

“My mother is Detricia Beavers Pride. My father is Wendell Gover,” Nicholas said. “I have seven siblings — Kevin, Andrea, Patrice, Thaddeus, Diamon, Reighan, Bridgette. Reighan goes to University of Alabama at Birmingham. Bridgette will attend Troy University.”

Now an Officer in U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Nicholas works at West Point as a Junior Tactical Officer. He will report to Fort Leonardwood, Mo. for Basic Officer Leaders Course for Engineers and enter either Ranger school in Benning or Sapper School at Leonardwood.

His first duty station will be Fort Hood, Texas with 36th EN Brigade.

Nicholas will miss his West Point friends. “We created special bonds that will last a lifetime. I won’t miss mess hall food or plebes (freshman) calling minutes.”

He was on the track team, Habitat for Humanity crew, president of Fellowship of Christian Athletes and event Coordinator for Cultural Affairs Seminar. Nicholas coordinated West Point’s first dance marathon.

“I’ll put my best foot forward in the Army, hoping to obtain my professional engineering license,” he said.

His hobbies are travelling, singing, dancing, cooking and outdoor adventures like hiking, camping and biking. “I’m not married but, if the right girl comes along, I will be,” Nicholas said.

Original Story Link

By Gregg ParkerPublished 9:51 am Thursday, July 20, 2017