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Thinking about the things I should have said

By Staff
Fri., Jan. 26, 2001
Thoughts whizzing about as I ponder what's gone wrong with Rick Stansbury's Mississippi State Bulldogs…
Ever have one of those moments where someone unexpectedly asks you to speak a few words to a group of people, then afterward, you realize there were plenty of other things you wished you had said?
Sure, we all have.
And for me, Tuesday night was no exception. After I consumed the delicious meal at the Mississippi High School Activities Association annual District 5 meeting at Jones County Junior College, the emcee asked any visitors to introduce themselves and say a little something to the nearly 200 or so on hand.
Well, after I was asked to stand and do just that I stammered through something about being glad to work with all of our area coaches I sat down and later had the Oh-why-didn't-I-say-that feeling come over me.
What I wanted to say to the Meridian Star-area coaches, and there were plenty of them, was that we at the Star sports staff are committed to getting news about each and every one of their schools in the paper.
I also wanted to commend those coaches who continue to do a great job of calling in their games, and tell those who we haven't yet covered to continue to remain patient because we are getting there, slowly but surely. I saw a letter recently from a reader that made me laugh. In a nutshell, this lady said we needed to cover high schools more than we were.
Well, to that lady and to those coaches, I want to stress that nothing is more of a priority than that. The Star has always put the preps number one and now with our new sports editor on board, you can rest assured it will continue to remain THE top priority.
Oh, and one more thing I wished I had said was that for any coaches that haven't submitted their all-area football nominations, PLEASE do so ASAP. We want to try and get the 42-school area as fully represented as we can.
One man that didn't have a problem expressing himself was outgoing District 5 President Mac Barnes. In addition to thanking the MHSAA officials in his farewell address, Barnes urged the coaching and officials fraternity and other educators to continue on the good work and to not forget the real reason for meetings such as this one.
The above statement is a microcosm of Barnes' character, but Barnes will be the first to tell you that the all of the attention that has come his way in the past few weeks, could have just as soon gone unreported. Barnes is a private person and he would have just as soon gone out without any fanfare or hype as we in media tend to do.
But having said that, I can only say while I appreciate the modesty, the attention has been warranted.
Richard Dark is a sports writer for the Meridian Star. Email him at rdark@themeridianstar.com.

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