Kaepernick and Nike Team Up, Take a Stand

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Staff Writer

The United States of America is considered the land of the free and the home of the brave. 

Filled with individuals that have the right to freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and the freedom to protest. Freedom of protest, as long as you don’t take a knee during the National Anthem at a football game, that is. This sounds ridiculous to most, but considered extremely disrespectful by some. That part of this story is old news at this point, what I’m here to explain to you is the uproar of Sir Colin Kaepernick signing a deal with Nike to promote the “freedoms” of America. 

Kaepernick is against the excessive gun violence and police brutality that has taken place throughout the United States. He made headlines when he decided that during the National Anthem at an NFL football game, he would not stand and he took a knee in support of those who do not have a voice or platform to do so. Many have died senselessly due to police brutality and gun violence. He chose to take a knee when most would be afraid to. 

“Willing to risk what you love for a cause that is important to you is nothing short of heroic to me.”

Many have shown support for his cause. Throughout his fight, he has lost his football contract and sponsorships, but believes in himself and change, above all. Ryne Jones, a Vineland native and an avid sports fan, shared that his initial reaction to the campaign was respect. “Willing to risk what you love for a cause that is important to you is nothing short of heroic to me.” 

Although some believe that what Kaepernick is doing is heroic, some believe that him kneeling during the national anthem is disrespectful to troops and veterans. Kaepernick actually acquired the idea from a veteran himself. “He spoke with former NFL player and veteran, Nate Boyer, who suggested he kneel instead of sitting. Our right to protest is in the First Amendment to the Constitution the same rights those soldiers are fighting to protect,” Jones explained.

In September, Nike announced that they signed Kaepernick for their next advertising campaign. This created media uproar. Individuals that disagreed with this campaign went to extremes to protest against Nike. 

On various media outlets, videos showed people going as far as burning the Nike merchandise they already owned. The commercial depicts people trying to achieve different goals. It begins with a man trying to succeed at a skateboarding trick and goes into a young man who has no legs competing in a wrestling match. 

Though the two examples are on different levels of the spectrum, the overall consensus of the commercial is that no matter how small or large your dream may be, don’t give up. This connects with Nike’s slogan “Just Do It”. 

Nike taking a stand and partnering with Kaepernick was extremely brave considering how strongly people feel about what he “kneels” for whether one agrees or disagrees. “I was truly inspired by the Nike ad. Kaepernick truly sacrificed EVERYTHING. I firmly believe that he will be remembered as a civil rights hero. I think it is quite commendable Nike was willing to take this stance and support him and those who stand with him. 

“While other companies chose to operate in silence, Nike used their actions to show that they were willing to ‘Just Do It,’” Jones explains on his podcast @GoodTakesNBAPod. 

The Nike commercial aired on September 6, 2018 during the NFL opening game between the 2017 Super Bowl Champions, the Philadelphia Eagles, and the Atlanta Falcons. Whether you view Kaepernick as a hero or a villain, one trait these characters always have in common is that they don’t give up their fight. 

Whatever your fight, Just Do It.


To Cheer or Not To Cheer?

Cheerleading. One of the most popular sports for high school to college aged females. It is a fun combination of chants, jumps, stunts, and tumbling. Cheerleading can be found on college campuses around the nation and around the world. But it can not be found on the campus of Cumberland County College. There are many sports on campus, but cheerleading is certainly not one of the them. We have a step team. But step team is not cheer. They are two very different sports. Despite all of that, CCC is trying to rectify the issue they are working on combining step team with a cheer team.
The first step has already been taken. The ladies of the Divine Dukes, the college’s step team, have already received cheer uniforms. They received the whole nine yards: the top, the skirt, the undershirt, the socks, and the sneakers. To top it all off, the ladies even received pom poms. The Divine Dukes are proud of what they do and appreciate the idea of a cheer team. They just want people to know what step team is and how it differs from cheerleading.
When interviewing the Divine Dukes, the ladies defined step team is a type of dance in which they use their entire body as an instrument to create complex sounds with steps, claps, and words. Step differs from cheer in a few ways. Step is overall sharper in movement than cheer. While you need to be quite athletic for both sports, one would need slightly more muscle strength in their calves and arms for step. Also the ladies of the step team define themselves as more “down to earth and relaxed” than an average cheerleader.
The step team has a few opinions about the incorporation of the teams. Change is hard to deal with but not for the Divine Dukes. They are actually quite comfortable with the change, but do have one condition. They are fine with having the two teams put together, but they would like the combined team to “be considered a college sport with a budget from the athletic department”. However, they are aware that they may not receive that condition. Staying a club would mean that the Divine Dukes will not receive athletic recognition nor will they get a budget from the athletic department.
So Cumberland County College, you are commended on your efforts in bringing in a cheer team. Combining the step team with a cheer team is the first step in the right direction. If the school continues to build on this idea, a larger draw for the team will come in the future. It will continue to grow and become an entity that the college can be proud of. But for now, let’s support the current ladies of the Divine Dukes and help the change settle in.

It’s Setphen Curry’s Game Now

It’s Stephen Curry’s Game Now

Stephen Curry’s has once again been named MVP of the NBA for the second straight season. This is amazing how Curry keeps on dominating the NBA. It seems like every game Curry plays he scores 30 to 40 points. Defenses don’t like to play against Curry, because of his abilities to divide the defenses and, get to any spot on the basketball court and score.

If you have somehow missed watching the Golden State Warriors this season, you might have a quaint notion of how basketball is played. It may be hard to believe, for instance, that 3-point shots are difficult, or that the players should generally avoid hoisting jumpers 35 feet from the basket. None of these things are true anymore, thanks to one player and his name is Stephen Curry. Stephen Curry is a butterfly with a jump shot that is changing how the game is being played.

“In recent days, Curry has broken the league record for 3-pointers in a season, which he did for the first time three seasons ago and the Warriors (53-5). Curry has made 288 3-pointers this season, eclipsing the 286 he made last season” (nytimes.com).

“Basketball has had other captivating stars like Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, and LeBron James, who all streaked to lasting fame. But the Curry phenomenon is different because of his size. Curry is a sinewy 6 feet 3 inches, 190 pounds, and because of the way in which he dominates games by scoring far from the basket, somehow stretching the court beyond it’s conceivable limits” (nytimes.com).

It seems like Curry will go down as one of the greatest shooters, and greatest players in NBA history. I expect Curry to keep on keeping on. If the scouts don’t figure out how to stop Curry on the court, Curry will set and break records.



Remembering CCC’s Devin McCann, a baseball star gone too soon.

By Kylee Bagley

Staff Writer

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Early in the morning on January 24, 2016, CCC lost valued alumni, Devin McCann, in a car wreck on I-55 near Brookhaven, Mississippi. McCann was just a few weeks shy of his 22nd birthday, but even in death, he remains an inspiration and motivation for many members of both Cumberland County and Belhaven University, where McCann was in his senior year at the time of his passing.
Kellie W. Slade, CCC’s executive director of the Center for Academic and Student Success, was Devin’s “mom away from home.” She met Devin at the new student orientation he attended before his first semester at CCC in 2012. During his time here as a student, McCann was a star baseball player who Slade truly believes could have played professionally. “Devin had a magnetic personality. He loved teaching kids how to play baseball. He was a good natured, sensitive kid whose dream was to be drafterd and play in MLB.
McCann was popular both on and off campus, no doubt due to his continual positivity and ambitious drive. “He would do anything for you without question. He would always volunteer to help out with student life events I arranged. He really matured as a person during his time here.” Slade said.
As for athletics, Coach Keith Gorman looks back on McCann’s time as the Duke’s catcher nostalgically. McCann caught for CCC’s baseball team from 2012 to 2014, thereafter transferring to Belhaven University where he continued his baseball career and unknowingly affected even more lives.
“McCann was a model player. His work ethic was unmatched, both in the weight room and on the field. He was a leader who worked hard and expected the same from the rest of his team,” Gorman says. Not only did McCann encourage his team through his determination and positive attitude, but also by being a diehard Duke. “Devin was our best promoter. He loved the team and was always recruiting promising baseball players to come to CCC and join our team.”
Gorman shared that a month before his death, McCann attended a Duke’s basketball game while home on break to reconnect with old friends on campus. “Despite McCann’s toughness on the field, he was the friendliest kid off. He will always be a Duke.”
Christopher Salvey, currently a student at CCC, was McCann’s best friend and fellow team member. “Devin taught me a lot on and off the field. He taught me to work to the best of my ability no matter what and to live without limitations. He never doubted himself.  I’ve never even seen him get really down about anything. Devin was always positive.” Salvey said, trying to put into words his near indescribable relationship with McCann. “I remember one time I had a game; Devin got up at 6:30 AM and came to the field with me to warm up. He threw me ball after ball to help me get in the zone. That’s just what kind of guy he was.” As Salvey continues his studies and begins a new baseball season, he has a simple message for his friend: “I love and miss you every day! Keep watching over me.”
On April 16, the Duke’s held a celebration of McCann’s life at their home game against Northampton Community College. Together, McCann’s parents threw the first pitch in honor of their son. Duke’s baseball team donned stickers sporting McCann’s jersey number, 27, in memory of his infectious attitude and skill. In fact, “27” stickers can even be found on the gear of opposing teams, proving that McCann’s impact will not soon be forgotten.

Smooth – Easy Ways to Stay Healthy

Staff Writer

The warm weather is kick-starting cravings for cool beverages and healthy eating. Smoothies are a practical way to get refreshed and healthy. Many smoothie recipes call for milk or yogurt, but non-dairy products can be beneficial to the taste of a smoothie and to one’s health. According to Aglaee Jacob from Demand Media Co., coconut, almond, soy and rice milk each have unique benefits.

Coconut milk adds a creamy texture to smoothies and has a great taste when combined with tropical fruits. However, it contains more calories and fat than regular milk. You can dilute the milk with water to reduce the amount of calories. Almond milk adds a lot of protein to your recipe. Choose an unflavored, unsweetened almond milk for sugar-free smoothies. Soymilk is lactose-free, casein-free and rich in protein. Try unsweetened soymilk if you want to reduce your sugar intake. Although rice milk is low in fat, it has more carbohydrates than coconut milk, almond milk and soymilk.

Ryan Carmody, from healthysmoothiehq.com, posted a Mango Avocado Green Tea Smoothie recipe. It contains one cup of green tea, one cup of mango chunks, half of a medium avocado, one cup of spinach, half a tablespoon of coconut oil and a dash of sea salt. This smoothie is rich in Vitamin C, Calcium and Iron.

Coconut oil is a potent ingredient in weight loss smoothies because the fats in coconut oil are used as energy and not stored as fat. Cinnamon, popular in banana-based smoothies, helps regulate blood sugar by improving the metabolism of glucose. Other substances such as avocados, chia seeds and cayenne pepper can keep you from feeling hungry before your next meal.

Cayenne pepper is also an anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and anti-allergen. For a delicious smoothie that will promote good health, blend one cup of water, half an avocado or a banana, half a cup of frozen strawberries, one tablespoon of flax seed, ¼ teaspoon of cayenne pepper and one tablespoon of honey. You can always add other fruits, but raspberries and mangos are recommended for this recipe.

Green tea promotes weight loss, protects the body against some cancers, lowers blood pressure, protects the liver, and improves the functions of the cardiovascular system. A green tea smoothie by Carmody contains one cup of cool, brewed green tea, one medium banana, one cup of baby spinach, one teaspoon of coconut oil and one teaspoon of honey.

Jadah and Jen from simplegreensmoothies.com shared an energy-boosting recipe. Blend two cups of spinach with two cups of unsweetened almond milk and then mix in one large, cored apple, one banana, 1/3 cup of rolled oats, one tablespoon of coconut oil and half a teaspoon of ground cinnamon. This recipe serves two so you can either share it or save some for later.

For a tart, refreshing smoothie containing Vitamin C, blend two cups of spinach with two cups of coconut milk. Add two cups of sliced peaches and one, peeled orange. This recipe also contains two servings.

Smoothies can help you obtain the necessary vitamins which can boost your metabolism, help you lose weight, give you more energy, support your cardiovascular system, fight various diseases and boost your immune system. Smoothies are also convenient, cheap, delicious and healthy on-the-go meals and snacks.

Stretch Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself

Staff Writer

Stretch 1 Stretch 2 Stretch 3 Stretch 4

If exercising or physical activity is a part of your daily activities, then stretching should also be at the top of your list. Engaging in physical activity without properly warming up and stretching your muscles exposes you to a higher risk of injury. Try these simple exercises to keep your muscles loose and your workouts damage-free.

According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, “Shoulder injuries are frequently caused by athletic activities that involve excessive, repetitive, overhead motion, such as swimming, tennis, pitching, and weightlifting.” Shoulder injuries tend to take a considerable amount of time to fully heal and can be extremely painful, which is why it is important to take the proper precautions before engaging in physical activity.

The first picture is an example of a simple shoulder exercise to do before exercising without causing any strain to the area. Standing with your feet shoulder width apart, stretch your right arm across your chest. Use the opposite hand to grasp your elbow and slightly push it towards your body. Hold the position for at least 30 seconds and then switch arms.

The next area to target during your pre-workout warm up is stretching your back to avoid muscle strains and sprained ligaments. “While there are many types of lower-back pain…the most common reason for sports-related back pain is simply improper stretching,” according to the Centre for Orthopaedics and Sports Injuries. Back injuries can cause chronic complications and sometimes requires corrective surgery.

The second picture is an example of a back stretch you can do to reduce the risk of back injury during physical activity. Start by standing with your feet shoulder width apart. Interlace your fingers, and turn your hands so that your palms are facing upwards and extend your arms above your head. Slightly bend to one side and stretch your back and abdomen as well as your arms. Hold for at least 20 seconds before slightly bending to the opposite side. Repeat as necessary.

Groin strains, or groin pulls, are also a very common sports related injury. Sports or exercises that require sudden bursts of sprinting have an increased risk of groin injury. Fortunately, these injuries can be avoided with the proper warm up routine and stretches.

The third picture is a common example of a groin stretching exercise. Start by sitting on the floor with the bottoms of your feet together and pulled towards your body as is depicted in the picture. Gently apply pressure to your knees by slightly pushing them towards the floor without causing pain. Hold this position for at least 30 seconds. This stretch helps when performed post-work out as well.

Finally, stretching your legs, calves, and knees should be included when warming up for working outs, especially for runners and bikers. To reduce the risk of leg muscle injuries, incorporate stretches such as the one in the fourth picture. To begin, sit on the floor with your legs together and extended straight out in front of you. Bend forward stretching your leg muscles and hold for at least 30 seconds, repeating as necessary. While stretching, try alternating between pointing and flexing your toes to stretch out your ankles as well.

Physical exercise applies a great deal of stress onto your body. Implementing a daily stretching routine that include the highlighted areas above will help reduce the risk of injury caused by muscle strains, which can be very painful and will force you to stay off your feet for recovery. You’ll achieve your best workout when your muscles are loose and prepared for your exercises.

Harry Kalas


Harry Kalas

Harry Kalas

By Saul Rosa

Staff Writer

When baseball fans recall the names of legends, they usually say Babe Ruth or Jackie Robinson, but to a Phillies’ fan the name Harry Kalas is sure to pop up.

At the age of 73, with almost 40 years of experience as the Phillies’ play-by-play announcer, Harry Kalas died in a press box at Nationals Park in Washington D.C. before the Phillies’ game against the Nationals April 13.

Kalas began his career calling in the minor league games for Hawaii Islanders while stationed in Hawaii for the United States Army.

In 1963, Kalas first appeared in the Major Leagues replacing Al Helfer, for the Houston Astros, where he worked Gene Elston and Loel Passe.

He first made his appearance with the Phillies in 1971 when he succeeded Bill Campbell, and was the master of ceremonies for the opening of the Veterans Stadium.

Kalas began narrating for the NFL Films in 1975, and became the primary voice in 1984 with the death of John Facenda.

Kalas was awarded the Ford C. Frick Award, an award for broadcasters for major contributions to baseball, from the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2002. 

Nicknamed “Harry the K” by Phillies fans, Kalas also announced the ceremonial closing of Veterans Stadium in 2003 and was the master of ceremonies at the ceremonial opening of Citizens Bank Park in 2004.

Five days before Kalas would be the victim of cardiovascular disease, the Phillies honored Kalas by having him throw the first pitch before the game against the Braves on April 9, 2009. 

Many fans and players would put Kalas amongst the greats of Philadelphia.

“Harry Kalas, if you can look past Ben Franklin and William Penn, may have been the greatest person to grace Philadelphia in the history of the city,” stated Hall of Fame third baseman Mike Schmidt to Rob Maaddi, AP Sports Writer.