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Editorial Results (free)

1. Last Word: 2018 Head Start, Tax Reform Bill Votes and Tigers Basketball in Decline -

Can you smell the paper? Friday is the first day that candidates in the 2018 elections can start picking up qualifying petitions for their place on the ballot – in this case the May county primary elections in Shelby County. Here is the scene setter.

2. Memphis Basketball: A Program in Decline -

They’ve only played two games. The early signing period for the class of 2018 has just passed. And yet it feels like the University of Memphis basketball program’s ceiling for this season and the foreseeable future is dropping.

3. Making Best Better -

More than a decade ago, Carolyn Hardy was a vice president with the Coors Brewing Co. in Memphis when she attended the Leadership Development Intensive (LDI), a personal leadership training ground stretched across 3 1/2 days.

4. Folk’s Folly’s Kauker Named Tenn. Restaurant Manager of Year -

Folk’s Folly Prime Steak House general manager Diane Kauker has won the Tennessee Hospitality & Tourism Association’s 2017 Restaurant Manager of the Year Award, which honors a manager who has demonstrated exceptional leadership, service, and community and civic involvement. The judges noted Kauker’s outstanding performance beyond her normal job duties, including providing excellent service to Folk’s Folly guests and the greater community.

5. City’s Maxson Plant Upgrade Offers Cutting Edge Water Treatment -

“Everything has a life,” city Public Works Division director Robert Knecht said last week as he stood at the western edge of the wastewater treatment plant that processes 70 million gallons of wastewater a day from the southern part of the city.

6. Jones’ Teams Have Never Regressed, Until Now -

Looks like Butch Jones has survived another week to coach Tennessee’s football team.

What happens if UT loses to Southern Miss at homecoming Saturday night (7:30 ET, SEC Network) at Neyland Stadium? Good question.

7. Block Party Slated At MBCC Oct. 28 -

Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church (MBCC) will host a free community block party in conjunction with Crump Police Station at University Place Apartments from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 28.

8. Making the List -

With black-and-white images from Memphis in conflict circa 1968 projected larger than life on a video screen behind him, Kirk Whalum stood in the sanctuary of Clayborn Temple earlier this week talking about growing up in Memphis in that era.

9. Memphis College of Art Closing Doors -

Memphis College of Art, the 81-year-old Overton Park institution, will close by May of 2020 after years of financial struggles.

The college’s board described the pending process as an “orderly dissolution of MCA’s real estate and other assets to fund the College’s debt obligations and other liabilities, including providing sufficient funding to serve existing students who remain at MCA.”

10. Memphis College of Art Closing Its Doors -

The Memphis College of Art will close by May of 2020 in what the board of the 81-year old Overton Park institution is describing as an "orderly dissolution of MCA’s real estate and other assets to fund the College’s debt obligations and other liabilities, including providing sufficient funding to serve existing students who remain at MCA."

11. County Commission Votes on Big Pay Raises -

The pay of 19 Shelby County government elected officials would go up in September 2018 for those elected in the August 2018 county general elections under proposals the county commission considers Monday, Oct. 16, on the first of three readings.

12. Reeling Vols Are 0-5 Against Carolina’s Muschamp -

Fans are fuming. Players are fighting. Butch Jones is coaching for his job.

The Tennessee football coach is in dire need of a good showing when the Vols (3-2, 0-2 SEC) play host to South Carolina (4-2, 2-2) on Saturday at Neyland Stadium (noon, ESPN).

13. SCS Sees Summer Academy Success, Mixed Results on Blended Learning -

With 90 days to put it all together, Shelby County Schools leaders came up with a set of summer learning academies to battle the summer slide – student retention and academic growth taking a few steps back between school years.

14. Shaky Start Exposes Raw Nerves as Dawgs Roll In -

Tennessee football coach Butch Jones had more than Georgia on his mind this week. Rumors on message boards and reports on sports talk radio flamed the fires around Jones and the Vols after last Saturday’s 17-13 victory over Massachusetts at Neyland Stadium.

15. Last Word: Grit & Grind As A Mindset, Sewer Retaliation and MUS & Hutchison -

More than a few bread crumbs on the direction the Fairgrounds redevelopment proposal is … well, developing after the second of three very important public forums last week by City Hall. The signs indicate a water park or surf park is highly unlikely, the gym at Maxine Smith STEAM Academy would go to open up Central Avenue frontage and a new gym built behind Kroc Center, a hotel by the Children’s Museum and the high school football field and track oval move from Central to where Libertyland used to be. And the city says none of this is set in stone even if it does show up on a tentative site plan among the exhibits last week.

16. Inside Voice -

The advertisement moves fast, even for 30 seconds. It’s got hip-hop artist Marco Pave with Grammy Award-winning producer Carlos Broady. And the message is to the point as the camera comes in close on the face of a man who says emphatically, “Don’t lose your head, use your head.”

17. Last Word: Juvenile Court Return, Berlin Boyd's Week and Tony Allen Thoughts -

Two weeks ago Juvenile Court Judge Dan Michael was on Behind The Headlines in a half-hour conversation about the court and federal oversight that drew quite a bit of reaction to Michael’s strong opinions about the need to end that oversight. Even before that reaction we had planned to do a second part of the conversation with those who favor continued federal oversight of the court.

18. Promoters Exporting Authenticity Of Memphis Music in Another Way -

A new 5,000- to 6,000-seat concert venue at Graceland by early 2019 is competition. But it probably brings more customers to the overall market for concerts in the city, says the founder of Music Export Memphis, the city’s export office for the music business.

19. Last Word: Southern Heritage Recap, Funky Week Ahead and the Amazon Contest -

The 28th annual Southern Heritage Classic is in the books with a close game at the Liberty Bowl Saturday and the kind of attendance that if sustained through our civic football season – Southern Heritage, Tigers home schedule and AutoZone Liberty Bowl – promises continued growth and changes in our development. Whether there is that growth or not, 47,407 came, tailgated and saw Tennessee State beat Jackson State 17-15.

20. Intriguing Story Playing Out Off The Football Field -

Anybody got an extra billion dollars lying around? If so, you can own one-third share of an NFL franchise plus a handful of other assorted business ventures.

That’s the situation involving the Tennessee Titans as they head into what could be a very eventful season. Susie Adams Smith, one of three children of the late franchise founder Bud Adams, is attempting to divest herself of one-third interest in KSA Industries, the business conglomerate built by her father.

21. Breather for Vols Before Traveling to Florida -

Get ready for another thrill ride, Tennessee fans. Your football team is at it again, just like last year.

Tennessee needed a comeback and overtime to beat Appalachian State in its 2016 season opener. The Vols needed comebacks to beat Virginia Tech and Florida and got a Hail Mary touchdown pass as time ran out to beat Georgia.

22. Raising The Ceiling -

Here’s the thing about expectations: You either embrace them, turning them into some divine combination of daily bread and rocket fuel, or they crush you.

There is no middle ground. Not when the statistical mid-point – a .500 season – would be an undisputed failure.

23. Last Word: After The Eclipse, A Very Large Magnet and Cyber Insurance -

Back from the eclipse it would seem. Although I’m pretty sure some part of the moon is still obscuring me. Alas, I will just have to walk around with a crescent missing here or there. Just don’t look at me directly and we will both be okay. Although you might see me wearing the Seer Sucker this week seeing as how the same laws that govern looking at the sun during an eclipse apparently apply to wearing Seer Sucker after Labor Day. It's just not done. Famous last words.

24. Computer Attacks Underscore Need for Cyber Insurance -

The cyberattack that hit FedEx subsidiary TNT Express in June, temporarily disrupting the company’s worldwide information systems, was a reminder about the fragility of digital systems that Herb Davis didn’t need.

25. Wolf, Offense Look To Prove Predictions Wrong -

It’s championship or bust for Tennessee senior tight end Ethan Wolf.

Bowl victories are nice. So are nine-win seasons. But Wolf wants a lot more in his final season with the Vols.

“Our goal here at Tennessee every single year is to win a championship, and that’s going to remain the goal,” Wolf says. “Yeah, there may have been a little bit of excitement the first year, maybe the second year winning the bowl game. It’s always exciting, but that’s the bare minimum right now.”

26. Getting Started -

Every journey of a thousand miles begins with that first single step. Every song, that first note; every long-lasting relationship can trace back to that first hello.

The countless business startups in Memphis, many maturing thanks to the city’s myriad accelerators and entrepreneurship programs, likewise all unfold the same way. They all start, no pun intended, with that first idea that leads to the creation of an enterprise – hopefully a successful, money-making one.

27. Vandiver Growing Customer Relationships at Agritech Firm The Seam -

The Seam, a technology firm founded by agribusiness companies that specializes in commodity trading and management systems, has added Rex Vandiver in a customer development role. Vandiver helps with customer support and project management, and he’s also taking a greater role in involvement with the peanut industry to help The Seam better serve its customers’ needs.

28. Strong: Democrats Must Reconnect With Voters -

The new chairman of the Shelby County Democratic Party says the local party has lost its voters and getting them back is the path to victory in the 2018 county elections and beyond.

Corey Strong, an attorney and special projects director for Shelby County Schools, was elected chairman of the reorganized local party Saturday, Aug. 5, following its dissolution by the Tennessee Democratic Party a year ago.

29. New Academic Year Brings Changes, Familiar Issues -

The school year for most students in Shelby County begins Monday, Aug. 7. But teachers and school administrators mentally remain at least a few weeks ahead, if not more – a permanent condition for educators.

30. Rough Start at Kansas for Dedric Lawson -

Admit it: If you first saw news of a Lawson suspended at the University of Kansas, you assumed it would be K.J. It was K.J, after all, who exited the University of Memphis giving coach Tubby Smith double-bird via social media, saying inappropriate things, and let’s not forget this: playing with a selfishness on the court that could make you wince.

31. Last Word: More Intermodals, 20 Years After the Oilers In Memphis and New Path -

The "skinny" repeal of Obamacare comes up short in the U.S. Senate in an after midnight Friday vote in D.C. And it appears U.S. Senators Bob Corker and Lamar Alexander of Tennessee voted for the repeal measure that came up short. Here are the basics early Friday morning from The New York Times.

32. Resolution, Dollar-Figure Miscues Raise Sanitation Workers’ Grants by $20,000 -

After all of these years, maybe what happened Tuesday, July 25, to the city’s plan to pay the 14 surviving sanitation workers from 1968 a grant of $50,000 each was part of the larger narrative of the enduring turmoil of that historic time.

33. Last Word: Alexander and Corker Differ, Instant Runoff React and Kroger On Hold -

Tennessee’s two U.S. Senators split their votes Tuesday in Washington on the vote that followed the vote to open debate on a repeal and replacement of Obamacare. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker both voted yes on the debate motion. But then Corker was one of the nine Republican Senate votes that killed the Obamacare replacement plan known as BCRA, while Alexander voted for it.

34. New Shelby County Democratic Party Still Faces Challenges -

The Shelby County Democratic Party is almost back as a reconstituted organization and it has a lot of new blood as well as new rules.

But the final verdict on the party’s effectiveness in a county where Democrats are the majority is still out even after the Saturday, July 22, party convention.

35. Grizzlies’ Selden Chosen To All-NBA Summer Team -

Memphis Grizzlies guard/forward Wayne Selden Jr. was named to the MGM Resorts All-NBA Summer League Second Team.

Selden averaged 22.7 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.70 steals in 30.5 minutes, guiding the Grizzlies to a 5-1 record and a trip to the semifinals.

36. Last Word: Freeze Warning, Corker on Obamacare Repeal and The Disney Example -

What do you call it when you expect a lot of trouble coming from a specific direction – with a detailed roadmap -- and a completely different controversy comes in from a different direction, hits and leaves a crater. Whatever you call it, that is what happened to Ole Miss football coach Hugh Freeze Thursday evening. Or did it?

37. Vols Roster Gets Little Respect from SEC Media -

It was no surprise last week when Tennessee’s football team was picked to finish third by the media in the East Division at 2017 SEC Media Days.

Almost every national publication is picking the Vols third in the East behind Georgia and Florida, although not necessarily in that order.

38. Bobby Meeks Innovates With a Sense of Purpose -

“When you’re looking for a new outcome, you’ve got to change some things up,” says Bobby Meeks as he walks a loop of the GroundFloor @ ServiceMaster, an innovation hub opened last month in the former Peabody Place mall.

39. Grizzlies’ Selden Chosen To All-NBA Summer Team -

Memphis Grizzlies guard/forward Wayne Selden Jr. was named to the MGM Resorts All-NBA Summer League Second Team.

Selden averaged 22.7 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.70 steals in 30.5 minutes, guiding the Grizzlies to a 5-1 record and a trip to the semifinals.

40. The Week Ahead: July 17-23 -

Hello, Memphis! Young, local artists are in the spotlight this week with a couple of art shows where you can meet these talented youths and someday say, “I knew them before they were famous.” Check out details on those, plus more cool events and hot happenings in The Week Ahead…

41. Butch Pierre Joins U of M Men’s Basketball Staff -

Longtime college assistant coach Butch Pierre has been hired as director of player personnel at the University of Memphis.

“He is someone that I have known of for many years, having coached against him at almost every one of his stops,” said Tigers head coach Tubby Smith. “He has a deep knowledge of how major basketball programs are run, and will be able to add a lot to our program.”

42. Saturday Night Scenes on Beale Street -

Some observations from three consecutive Saturday nights on Beale Street at and after 10 p.m.

Beale Street just before 10 p.m. is about bubbles. Street vendors selling bubble guns – toy guns that shoot bubbles – do a brisk business before 10. A girl in a stroller watches with wide eyes as her finger is locked on the trigger and bubbles spew forth. By the time she reaches the middle of the block between B.B. King Boulevard and Second Street, the stream of bubbles begins to slow.

43. Another Tiger, Avery, Makes Preseason Watch List -

University of Memphis senior linebacker Genard Avery has been named to the Bronko Nagurski Trophy preseason watch list. The Nagurski Trophy is awarded annually to the football player voted by members of the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) to be the best defensively in the NCAA.

44. Another Tiger, Genard Avery, Makes Preseason Watch List -

University of Memphis senior linebacker Genard Avery has been named to the Bronko Nagurski Trophy preseason watch list. The Nagurski Trophy is awarded annually to the football player voted by members of the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) to be the best defensively in the NCAA.

45. ‘Cheeseburger Buddies’ Make Nice for TV -

Tennessee coach Butch Jones passed his first test of the 2017 football season Monday. He made it through SEC Media Days.

There were no new catch phrases, although Jones did allude to the team’s “D.A.T.” (Details, Accountability, Toughness) motto. But nothing close to “champions of life” or “five-star hearts.”

46. Last Word: Overton Gateway Talks, Norris of the Governor's Race and Coach O -

Shelby County Commissioners have quite the disagreement going in several ways as they try to put another budget season in the books and let the ink dry. As we’ve reported, the commission approved a $1.2 billion county government budget Monday and there is no taking that back – at least as a budget. That now becomes an important detail because in committee sessions Wednesday in advance of next week’s meeting of the full commission, there were five votes to change the proposed county property tax rate from $4.10 to $4.13.

47. Butch Pierre Joins U of M Men’s Basketball Staff -

Longtime college assistant coach Butch Pierre has been hired as director of player personnel at the University of Memphis.

“He is someone that I have known of for many years, having coached against him at almost every one of his stops,” said Tigers head coach Tubby Smith. “He has a deep knowledge of how major basketball programs are run, and will be able to add a lot to our program.”

48. How to Avoid Digging With Spoons -

Legend has it that well-known 20th-century economist Milton Friedman once visited a canal-building site in China where thousands of people were digging with shovels to complete the project. Friedman asked the foreman why they didn’t bring in heavy equipment to get the job done better and faster. The foreman told him that would put a lot of people out of work. “In that case, why not have them dig with spoons?” Friedman said.

49. Last Word: Vince Carter Leaves, Fairgrounds and Pulling the Plug on Green Tech -

Vince Carter joins Zach Randolph with the Sacramento Kings next NBA season with an $8 million one-year pact for Carter. Still no word on Tony Allen’s free agency status as we put this up. The Grizz plan to retire Randolph’s jersey.

50. Sports Notebook: Grizzlies Sign Selden, Set Summer League Roster -

The Memphis Grizzlies and their notable free agents – JaMychal Green, Zach Randolph, Tony Allen and Vince Carter – have been fairly quiet. That could change at any moment, of course, and Randolph in particular is the subject of speculation that the Cleveland Cavaliers are in pursuit of one of the best sixth men in the NBA last season.

51. Bowl Names Tim McCarver Distinguished Citizen -

The AutoZone Liberty Bowl honored former St. Louis Cardinals catcher and Hall of Fame broadcaster Tim McCarver on Sunday, June 26, with its Distinguished Citizen Award at a dinner that benefitted St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

52. Last Word: A Second Juvenile Court Letter, Fred Smith's Tax Plan and Memphis Hops -

A group of 19 organizations including the Memphis Branch NAACP and 28 citizens sent a letter Tuesday to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions urging him to keep in place Justice Department oversight of Juvenile Court. The 12-page letter is a point-by-point detailed response to the June 9 letter from County Mayor Mark Luttrell, Juvenile Court Judge Dan Michael and Sheriff Bill Oldham asking Sessions to end the memorandum of agreement between county government and the Justice Department.

53. Tim McCarver Receives Distinguished Citizen Award -

The AutoZone Liberty Bowl honored former St. Louis Cardinals catcher and Hall of Fame broadcaster Tim McCarver on Sunday, June 26, with its Distinguished Citizen Award in a dinner at the Hilton Memphis hotel. All proceeds from the dinner benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

54. Budget Amendments, Tax Rate and Juvenile Court Top County Commission Agenda -

Shelby County Commissioners will have lots of amendments to the county’s proposed operating budget Monday, June 26, and at least one bid to change the proposed county property tax rate of $4.10 approved on first reading earlier this month.

55. Last Word: Health Care Plan React, Treasury Footprint and Tom Bowen - Take Two -

It’s like they aren’t even looking at the same legislation. That’s one explanation of the very different reviews the Senate health care bill got Thursday as it was unveiled in Washington. Illustrating the contrast, the reactions of Republican U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee and Democratic U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen of Memphis.

56. For Memphis AD Bowen, Knowledge is Also Worry -

Among the items on Tom Bowen’s desk are a miniature University of Memphis football helmet and a Tubby Smith bobblehead that, I swear, gives off a “don’t worry, be happy” vibe.

57. Bowen Relishes Passion of Tigers’ Fan Base, Supports Tubby -

Today we delve into Part 2 of our interview with University of Memphis athletic director Tom Bowen. If you missed Part 1, which covered his background, facilities upgrades, the upcoming football season, and scheduling and ticketing, go to https://bitly.im/JsafZ.

58. Tigers’ Jimario Rivers Has Head Start On Doing the Dirty Work -

When Josh Pastner recruited Jimario Rivers from Southwest Tennessee Community College, the University of Memphis coach envisioned him as a small forward who could play some at the four.

After Pastner left for Georgia Tech and Tubby Smith became the basketball coach, Rivers initially thought that would still be his role. He provided some spark off the bench, but then 6-11 Chad Rykhoek got hurt and Rivers was starting and basically playing the role of a 4/5 player – at 6-8 and 195 pounds.

59. City Council Pushes Back at Administration -

Sometimes there are seven votes. Other times there aren’t. But Memphis City Council debates increasingly point to different thoughts about the city’s course as outlined by the administration of Mayor Jim Strickland.

60. Boyd Talks Gaps In Higher Ed During Whitehaven Stop -

Republican contender for governor Randy Boyd says there is a gap in the state’s Tennessee Promise plan and its reality.

61. Century Mark -

During a visit to Memphis in April, Andrew Young was talking with reporters about his lengthy public history – being part of Dr. Martin Luther King’s inner circle, a congressman, mayor of Atlanta, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. It was as he talked about King’s death in Memphis that Young, without any prompting, talked about a trio of Memphis attorneys – Benjamin Hooks, Russell Sugarmon and A. W. Willis – that were the key to his and King’s efforts to get things done in Memphis and the surrounding region.

62. The Case for Ground Floor Innovation -

ServiceMaster wanted to open an innovation center partly for “self-serving” reasons, the company’s chief information officer said during a panel discussion Thursday, June 15, that marked the inaugural event in ServiceMaster’s new innovation space the “Ground Floor.”

63. Finals Run Gives Predators Look at Young Talent -

As if the Nashville Predators’ march to the Stanley Cup Final wasn’t riveting enough on its own, the journey has also provided fans with some unexpected glimpses into the team’s future.

64. Facilities, Football Fever Growing At the University of Memphis -

Somewhere, in a long-ago Division I sports galaxy far away, an athletic director could catch his breath after his college baseball team made its last out and before his football team started practice. Not so much now.

65. For St. Jude and Golf Fans, FedEx St. Jude Classic is Thriving -

Perspective can be too easy of a word. It can get thrown around casually, especially in big-time sports settings. But at the FedEx St. Jude Classic, “perspective” isn’t just a clichéd line for a moment in time.

66. The Week Ahead: June 12-18 -

Get ready to groove, Memphis, because this week we're welcoming the inimitable Ruthie Foster to town, along with the return of both the Juneteenth Urban Music Festival and the Soulsville Record Swap. Plus, we've got details on the state House District 95 election, free MATA rides and what else you need to know in The Week Ahead...

67. Lee Campaigns in Collierville After Nashville Fundraiser -

The night after he raised $1.3 million in Nashville at the first major fundraiser in his bid for Tennessee governor, Bill Lee was in Collierville for a local Republican Party gathering, along with a few hopefuls in countywide races on the ballot earlier in 2018.

68. Last Word: Grade Tampering, The Tom Lee Storm and Fred's Strategy -

There are indications that allegations of grade-tampering at Shelby County Schools are not going to recede as rapidly as they did late last year when the allegations first came up. The first indication was word late last week that the state department of education will audit the grade transcripts of all SCS high schools. But there are still some fuzzy points in that about whether that is a new move or whether it is something that has been underway since last year.

69. Tubby Smith, Barrett Jones, Former MLB All-Stars Joined FESJC Pro-Am June 5 -

The 60th FedEx St. Jude Classic teed off on Monday, June 5, with the Danny Thomas Pro-Am at TPC Southwind.

It is the continuation of a tradition. Back in 1960, the Memphis Open Golf Tournament presented Thomas with a check for $600. It was seed money that went toward the opening of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. 

70. Workers Joining 8-Week County Summer Jobs Blight Effort Learn Rules of the Road -

There was a point on Monday, June 5, when county public works officials trying to prepare a group of 100 young adults for an eight-week summer jobs program thought they might have done their job too well.

71. Tubby Smith Basketball Camps Start This Month -

University of Memphis head basketball coach Tubby Smith has announced a series of basketball camps, including one four-day camp for the summer of 2017 and a team camp.

The first day camp will run from June 12-15.

72. 4 Tigers Players Named To Athlon’s AAC First Team -

Four University of Memphis football players were named to Athlon Magazine’s American Athletic Conference preseason first team.

In total, 13 Tigers earned preseason all-conference honors on one of the four teams; the only team in the league with more honors was the University of South Florida.

73. 4 Tigers Players Named To Athlon’s AAC First Team -

Four University of Memphis football players were named to Athlon Magazine’s American Athletic Conference preseason first team.

In total, 13 Tigers earned preseason all-conference honors on one of the four teams; the only team in the league with more honors was the University of South Florida.

74. Tubby Smith Basketball Camps Start in June -

University of Memphis head basketball coach Tubby Smith has announced a series of basketball camps, including one four-day camp for the summer of 2017 and a team camp.

The first day camp will run from June 12-15.

75. Wide Receiver U? That’s So 20 Years Ago -

At the 2015 SEC Media Days, Tennessee coach Butch Jones referred to his school as “the original Wide Receiver U.”

The reference goes back to the days when the Vols were loaded with fast, talented pass receivers on the perimeter. In a heady stretch from 1982-91, UT had six wide receivers selected in the first round of the NFL draft – Anthony Hancock, Willie Gault, Clyde Duncan, Tim McGee, Anthony Miller and Alvin Harper.

76. Dream a Baseball Dream -

Memphis is Hoops City, a hotbed of premier basketball talent. That’s why University of Memphis basketball coach Tubby Smith is under pressure. The best of those hometown players on his team, Dedric Lawson, has transferred to the University of Kansas and everyone’s worried Smith won’t get the elite local talent going forward.

77. Last Word: BSMF, Budget Books and Milli Vanilli -

Three days of sun and mild temperatures for the Beale Street Music Festival. Not to be all “Dawn Lazarus” about the weather. Of course, it wasn’t just that way over Tom Lee Park. And many of us continue to find there is life outside after you have determined your festival days may be behind you. We were all over the place this weekend including Tom Lee Park and Shelby Farms Park and backyards and trails and on a rising river. Can you still claim you were at BSMF if you were within earshot of it?

78. Another Juco Player Signs with Memphis Tigers -

University of Memphis head men's basketball coach Tubby Smith has announced the signing of Mike Parks Jr., a 6-9, 270-pound center from Southwest Mississippi Community College.

Parks joins the top-rated recruiting class in the American Athletic Conference, per 247sports.com.

79. Editorial: Memphis Coaches Prove How We View Ourselves Matters -

Sports is the all-too-easy analogy for the life of any city – let alone Memphis. Some of us immediately and reflexively respond that basketball, the city’s most popular spectator sport, is where Memphians put their differences aside and come together.

80. Last Word: RiverPlay, New City Property Tax Rate and House Republican Rift -

The Memphis In May International Festival arrives Friday with the Beale Street Music Festival and hopefully with warmer temperatures than the Thursday chill. Meanwhile, RiverPlay, the conversion of Riverside Drive between Jefferson and Court to a pop-up park linking up Memphis and Mississippi River Parks, makes its debut Friday afternoon.

81. Another Junior College Player Signs with Memphis Tigers -

University of Memphis head men's basketball coach Tubby Smith has announced the signing of Mike Parks Jr., a 6-9, 270-pound center from Southwest Mississippi Community College. He joins the top-rated recruiting class in the American Athletic Conference, per 247sports.com.

82. Titans Draft About More Than Physical Skills -

It’s easy to look at the Tennessee Titans’ 2017 draft and conclude general manager Jon Robinson drafted for need.

After all, he took two wide receivers, a tight end and a cornerback among his first four picks. And all of those players will have better-than-average opportunities to earn early playing time.

83. Last Word: End of The Season, Honoring Forrest and MATA's Coming Campaign -

It’s over. No Game 7 for the Grizz and the off-season begins. Spurs advance after beating the Grizz at the Forum Thursday 103 – 96. But in the process, the Grizz created a chapter in Memphis basketball lore where it is about more than winning on the court.

84. With Tigers Basketball, Anything is Possible -

Everything’s fine. It’s all good. Don’t worry, Tiger fans. That was Tubby Smith’s bottom line during his 36-minute press conference with local media on Wednesday, April 26. It was also the basic message from University of Memphis president M. David Rudd, who hired Smith, in a recent radio interview on Sports 56 WHBQ.

85. Spring Lessons: Here’s Who Vols Will Start -

Tennessee football coach Butch Jones isn’t big on naming starters and divulging depth charts. Not until he has to. So it comes as no surprise the Vols enter summer workouts and fall camp with junior Quinten Dormady and redshirt freshman Jarrett Guarantano still competing for the starting quarterback’s job.

86. Last Word: The Day After, $21.9M More for SCS and First Tennessee Overdrafts -

Take That For Data, Indeed. The Grizz crack the century mark over the Spurs 105-94 in a motivated Game 3 of the playoff series before a loud and proud Forum. Game 4 is Saturday on Beale. Meanwhile, Markel Crawford chooses. He will be leaving the Tigers basketball program for Ole Miss.

87. Tennessee's 6-6 Freshman Has a Message: ‘I Will Not Eat You’ -

Tennessee football coach Butch Jones knew he got a special player when he signed five-star offensive lineman Trey Smith of University School of Jackson.

Jones says he got a special person in Smith, too.

88. NFL Experts Can’t Agree On QBs in Upcoming Draft -

The NFL Draft starts on Thursday, April 27, and it seems more than likely that Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett will go first overall to the hapless Cleveland Browns. 

At nfl.com, three of four draft insiders have the Browns taking Garrett and the other, naturally, has the Browns returning to the quarterback well to pick North Carolina’s Mitchell Trubisky; Garrett then goes No. 2 to San Francisco.

89. Memphis Tigers to Play in 2017 Veterans Classic -

The University of Memphis will join Alabama, Pittsburgh and host Navy in the 2017 Veterans Classic on CBS Sports Network, an annual college basketball showcase that brings together teams from across the country in celebration of Veterans Day.

90. The Press Box: For Tigers Basketball, No Easy Way Forward -

Questions – and to the extent possible – answers about the reeling University of Memphis basketball program.

Q: Is this as simple as athletic director Tom Bowen and President M. David Rudd making a more than $15 million five-year mistake in hiring Tubby Smith?

91. Last Word: Restless Off Season, Memphis Open Closes and Single-Family Rentals -

This is proving to be a restless off-season for Tigers basketball and it is not even summer yet. Add freshman guard Keon Clergeot to the Tigers players exiting the program with word still to come from Markel Crawford. Meanwhile, the Tigers have signed their second junior college recruit – Kyvon Davenport -- at forward.

92. Lawson Brothers Leaving University of Memphis -

Brothers Dedric and K.J. Lawson announced Wednesday, April 5, their intention to transfer from the University of Memphis basketball program.

In a prepared statement released to local media, the Lawsons said they were requesting their release from the U of M. They thanked coach Tubby Smith, who just completed his first season here, and the university for the opportunity to play in their hometown; they were recruited by former coach Josh Pastner. Their father, Keelon Lawson, got a job on staff at that time and remained on staff under Smith.

93. Last Word: Spring Votes, Those Tax Bills and Tim McCarver on Baseball Changes -

Look for more details on the specifics of the “Gateway” project to start to emerge now that a crucial if overlooked piece of the geographic puzzle in the north Downtown area has come into public view. The city’s largest hotel, also the city’s original convention center hotel, is about to change hands and go back to flying the Marriott flag.

94. As Memphis Tiger Fans Fret, Can Tubby Smith Fix This Mess? -

A few weeks ago, Tubby Smith stood in front of assembled media and admitted that the University of Memphis basketball job was a bit more than he had calculated.

“You’ve got a flavor here of expectations,” he said, the surprise evident in his voice and on his face.

95. Last Word: Lawsons Exit, LaRose Lessons and No Medicaid Expansion This Year -

The Lawson Brothers exit Tigers basketball seeking a release from the University of Memphis. The statement from Dedric and K.J. Lawson was all sweetness and light and apparently about as sincere as one of those interviews where players and coaches declare that if they will just play hard and put more points on the board than the other team then they should win.

96. IMPROVE Act Moves Closer to Passage -

With hardly a peep of discontent from lawmakers, the governor’s IMPROVE Act containing fuel-tax increases and a host of tax cuts moved out of the House Local Government Committee today.

It heads next to a House Finance committee, where the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Barry Doss, predicts it won’t face a fight.

97. Sit-In Protests Get First Historical Marker -

Nobody kept count until Jet magazine came to Memphis in 1965 to feature a group of seven sisters the influential magazine billed as “the most arrested family” in the country.

With a picture of the seven Lee sisters, the magazine said Lee family members have “been arrested 17 times for civil rights activities.”

98. Reflecting on 2017 Class, Looking Ahead to 2018 -

Recruiting is the lifeblood of a college football program, and the cycle never ends.

As UT’s recruiting grind continues and spring practices opened this week, I caught up with Ryan Callahan of 247Sports to talk about the 2017 class. Callahan covers UT recruiting, and here’s what he has to say about the 2017 class, which consists of 22 three-star recruits, four four-stars and one five-star (offensive lineman Trey Smith of University School of Jackson), according to 247Sports’ composite rankings.

99. Two Memphis Democrats Help Move Amended Fuel-Tax Bill Along -

NASHVILLE – Two Memphis legislators helped move the governor’s IMPROVE Act and fuel-tax increases out of the House Transportation Committee Tuesday, March 21, saying they support a section allowing local governments to raise funds separately for mass transit.

100. Commission Debates Interim Appointment to State House -

Shelby County commissioners have to decide Monday, March 20, whether or not to appoint someone to the vacant state House District 95 seat until special primary and general elections are decided in three months.