All posts by tbradenbishop

Review, Preview, and Blankets of the Week (October 27)

FOOTBALL: After a tough loss to South Panola two weeks ago. No. 8 Tupelo (8-1, 4-1) bounced back to defeat DeSoto Central, 38-21. The win solidified at least a 3 seed in the 2013 playoffs. The Golden Wave now prepare to travel to Horn Lake (3-6, 1-4). A win against the Eagles will lock up a 2 seed in playoffs. More importantly, it would guarantee THS a 1st round home game Friday, November 15th. Here’s David Wheeler’s recap from Friday.

XC: THS teams swept their annual invitational at Ballard Park yesterday. The boys finished with 21 points and were followed by Saltillo with 51 and Oxford with 52. Darnell Collier was Tupelo’s top finisher. In the girls, THS scored 20 points with Saltillo next with 73 and Oxford with 87. Christina Daniels took first while Savannah Hudgins finished third. Here’s David Wheeler’s recap. Tupelo will be off this week before competing in the MSHAA final in Clinton Saturday, November 9th.

SWIM: Tupelo boys and girls defended their crowns Saturday at Delta State as they both captured the 2013 MSHAA state championship. Here’s Gene Phelps’ recap from yesterday. Both squads finished the season winning every meeting they competed in in 2013.

BAND: Varsity received all 1’s, all Superior, and Grand Champions at yesterday’s PC Bobcat Classic Marching Competition in Phil Campbell, AL.

-Tupelo will host Meet the Wave for winter sports Tuesday at 6 p.m. Basketball, bowling, and will be introduced in the Performing Arts Center. Admission is $2 per person or $5 per family.

-Check out Friday’s football runout compliments of broadcast journalism and WTHS:


  • Senior Connor Anderson had four first place finishes in the 2013 swim state championship. Junior Cris Roberts set two state records and had three first place finishes at yesterday.


As always, follow @tbradenbishop or @TupeloHigh for Tupelo High sports updates and pertinent information regarding all Tupelo Golden Wave athletics. is also on Facebook. Be sure to Like us.


Meet the Wave evening announced for winter sports

Tupelo High Athletic Director Andy Schoggin has announced Meet the Wave 2013 information for all winter sports.

Basketball (9th, JV, and varsity boys/girls), soccer (boys/girls), and bowling (boys/girls) will be introduced in the Performing Arts Center at Tuesday, October 29th at 6 p.m. Admission is $2 per person or $5 for each family. Coaches, players, and team rosters will be presented in an emcee format.


Review, Preview, and Blankets of the Week (October 20)

VOLLEYBALL: Lady Wave volleyball concluded the 2013 season with losses to Lewisburg and Hernando last week. Laurie Bishop’s squad finished the season 12-16 and 2-5 in division.

S-P SOFTBALL: Lady Wave softball finished the 2013 season in the first round to Columbus last week. Tupelo took Game 1, 2-1, but lost Game 2, 13-4, and Game 3, 15-1. Josh Hegwood’s team finished the season 15-8-1, and 5-1 as division champs. Here’s Gene’s recap from last week.

FOOTBALL: Tupelo left everything on the field Friday night. In an instant classic, South Panola narrowly defeated the Golden Wave, 14-8. THS will now regroup to host DeSoto Central Friday at 7 p.m. Here are THS-SP articles from last week from us, Brandon Speck, and David Wheeler: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. Be sure to watch THS (7-1, 3-1) take on the Jaguars LIVE at

XC: Boys and girls teams both placed first in competition (JV, V) yesterday at Choctaw Trails in Clinton. Via @TupeloXC, boys placed 10 in the Top 13, and go 1-5 to score perfect 15 points. The girls placed 10 in the Top 12. THS will host the Ballard Invitational Saturday.

SWIM: Boys and girls swim captured North Half crowns yesterday in Jackson. Both teams will complete at Delta State University for state titles Saturday. The boys are looking for their seventh-straight title while the girls are looking for three-straight.

BAND: Out of nineteen of the finest high school marching bands in two states that made up the field of Northeast Mississippi Community College’s annual Dixie Marching Band Championship, Tupelo High School claimed the title, Grand Champion yesterday evening. Here’s the official press release.

TUPELO TIDAL TECH: Tupelo Tidal Tech received 3rd for the BEST Robotics Overall award in Starkville yesterday. The award was a combination score of a presentation speech, display booth design, research notebook, and a robotics course competition. Not bad for a first-time appearance in Tupelo High’s history.

REMINDER – Monday starts a new season for high school teams. Basketball, soccer, bowling, and powerlifting may begin after-school practices tomorrow.



  • Senior Crystal Coleman had a total of three aces, six digs, and 13 kills against Lewisburg and Hernando. Coach Bishop also says this season was special and memorable because of seniors Crystal Coleman, Kerrigan Buck, Morgan Hereford, and Nichole Davis.
  • Sophomore Ali Watts led off the bottom of the 7th with a double that later led to the game-winning run over Columbus in Game 1. Junior Paige Cox batted-in both runs in the 2-1 win. Coach Hegwood and Coach Roberson would also like to say “THANK YOU!” to seniors Reagan Aldridge, Abby Stafford, and Abby Cox.
  • Senior LB Ashton Wedel had 18 total tackles (nine solos, nine assisted) and a fumble recovery in No. 9 Tupelo’s 14-8 loss at No. 2 South Panola.
  • XC JV girls traveled to Clinton only to compete… themselves. Jesse Davis also won her first race of the season. Boys Darnell Collier won the guys race with a time of 16:34. According to Coach Begnaud, that’s the fastest time on that course by any THS runner since Max Holman in 2009.


As always, follow @tbradenbishop or @TupeloHigh for Tupelo High sports updates and pertinent information regarding all Tupelo Golden Wave athletics. is also on Facebook. Be sure to Like us.


Tupelo claims Dixie Marching Band Grand Championship at Northeast

Here’s today’s official press release from Blake Long, Sports Information Director at Northeast Mississippi Community College:


BOONEVILLE, Miss. – Out of nineteen of the finest high school marching bands in two states that made up the field of Northeast Mississippi Community College’s annual Dixie Marching Band Championship, Tupelo High School claimed the title, Grand Champion.


Under the direction of Tim Matlock, Jeremy Greenwood, Darius Fant, Lesley Shields, Deanna Kieffer and Taylor Sparks, Tupelo not only claimed the overall title, but was also selected the Sweepstakes Winner for classes 4A, 5A and 6A.Booneville High School was the Sweepstakes Winner for classes 2A and 3A.


First, second and third place winners were named in each of the five classes of competition. Mantachie High School took home first place honors in class 2A while Baldwyn High School placed second. Booneville High School won first place in class 3A while South Pontotoc High School came in second and Mooreville High School, third.


Kosciusko High School claimed first place honors in class 4A with Ripley coming in second place and Pontotoc High School finishing in third place.


First place honors in class 5A went to Athens (Ala.) High School. Saltillo High School claimed the second place trophy.


In class 6A South Panola High School placed third and Starkville High School finished runner-up to first place Tupelo.


Other awards are listed below by category.


Best Drum Major

2A  Mantachie

3A  Booneville

4A  Ripley

5A  Athens, Ala.

6A  Tupelo


Best Guard

2A  Mantachie

3A  Booneville

4A  Ripley

5A  Athens, Ala.

6A  Tupelo


Best Percussion

2A  Mantachie

3A  Booneville

4A  Ripley

5A  Athens, Ala.

6A  Tupelo


Best Majorettes

4A – New Albany

5A – Athens, Ala.


Overall Outstanding Soloist

Also Sax from Starkville

Overall Best Drum Major


Overall Best Guard


Overall Best Percussion


Overall Best Majorettes

New Albany



Tupelo High School marching band from Tupelo, Miss., performs at the Dixie Marching Band Championships on Saturday, October 19 at Tiger Stadium on the campus of Northeast Mississippi Community College. Tupelo captured the overall championship and the Classes 4A/5A/6A Sweepstakes trophy for the one-day competition.


Northeast Mississippi Community College executive vice president Ricky Ford (left) presents the Classes 4A/5A/6A Sweepstakes trophy to Tupelo High School of Tupelo, Miss. during the awards ceremony of the Dixie Marching Band Championships held on the campus of Northeast Mississippi Community College Saturday, October 19.


Northeast Mississippi Community College executive vice president Ricky Ford (back row, second from left) along with members of the Northeast dance line present Tupelo High School of Tupelo, Miss., with the 6-feet tall Grand Champion trophy during the awards ceremony of the Dixie Marching Band Championships held on the campus of Northeast Mississippi Community College Saturday, October 19.


Via @blongsports.

QUICK FACTS: No. 6 Tupelo (7-0, 3-0) at No. 2 South Panola (7-1, 3-0)

Tonight is easily the game of the season for the Golden Wave. Let’s take a look at some quick facts:

  • Tupelo has lost 11-straight meetings with the Tigers.
  • Tupelo’s last win versus South Panola was at Batesville in 2001 under Coach Phil Ferguson.
  • Since their playing history started in 1988, Tupelo is 7-19 overall against South Panola.
  • South Panola has outscored THS 769-384 over those 26 years.
  • South Panola finished 2001 with a losing season. Since then, they’ve won eight state titles while THS has won eight Clarion-Ledger All-Sports titles.
  • THS has had five coaches (Ferguson, Eric Collins, Lamar Aldridge [interim for three games in 2009], David Bradberry, Trent Hammond) since 2001. South Panola has had three (Ed Stanley, Ricky Woods, Lance Pogue) since ’01.
  • South Panola has won 20-straight games against Mississippi opponents. THS has won seven-straight.
  • Tupelo hasn’t scored more than 17 points on South Panola since 1999. South Panola has outscored THS 480-157 since time.

Lots of factors are different tonight. This is going to be one to remember, folks.

Be sure to watch the game LIVE at at 6:50.


Former Golden Wave coaches talk Tupelo football

Golden Wave football has always been tradition-rich. Many remember the coaches from the last 25+ years and how they impacted student athletes from year to year.

Here are quotes from a few former Tupelo football coaches about this season and this week’s upcoming opponent, South Panola.


Ricky Black (1980-1992): Black, who notched his 300th career win at Jackson Prep last season, recalled his 1990 team. That team started the year 8-0 and went to a state championship for the first time in Tupelo’s history. “We didn’t have a lot of senior talent. That sophomore class is what carried us for three years,” said Black. “It was a very good team that played with a lot of chemistry as the season stretched on.”

Black said this week at South Panola is big but a lot of football remains. “Establish yourself and prepare all week for the contest. When Friday comes, just play relaxed.”


James “Booty” Sloan (1992-1996): Sloan is the only football coach to win a state title at THS, but he remembers having a lot of talent around him during his tenure. “We just liked to practice. It says a lot that we won a championship but it really helps when you have athletic young men who wanted it every week.”

Sloan, who only lost to South Panola twice, said a lot of hype is put on the Tigers because they play with so much intensity. “People are going to wonder if Tupelo is ready for South Panola. Maybe folks should be wondering if South Panola is ready for Tupelo?”


Johnny Hill (1996-2000): Hill (pictured above with quarterback/son Stan), who’s currently coaching a top 10, undefeated Oxford team, says some games are won over weeks at a time. “You can’t prepare for a team overnight… you dance with the girl you carry to the dance. I’ve seen THS play on film. What Tupelo’s doing is effective… they’re tough and physical… they play like their pants are on fire. This isn’t powderpuff football. If you are passing, you better protect. If you are blocking, you better stay with your block.” He says Trent better prepare them for “a slugfest” in Batesville.

Hill loved the kids that played at Tupelo when he was coaching. “I never worried about kids not coming to practice. Players took coaching well and most knew they had a chance every time we snapped the football. A lot of teams were more athletic than us but our kids always fought… losing pride or quitting never happened on our watches.”


Phil Ferguson (2000-2004): The last time Tupelo defeated the Tigers was in 2001. Phil Ferguson remembers that 17-14 game at Batesville very well. “South Panola struggled a little bit that year but I can remember they ran it on us every play. We crowded the box on defense and we punted very well throughout the game.” Ferguson said former wide receiver and baseball standout Kevin Caldwell played an extremely good game. “He’s the one who put us in the position to win it at the end” said Ferguson.

Ferguson said this week is a big game but “the Tigers play 11 guys like everyone else.” “Coach Hammond is doing things really well. Yes, it’s South Panola but it boils down to blocking, tackling, and good special teams. Lamar (Aldridge) is someone I would want on my team every Friday. The Blue and Gold are underdogs but that will add some motivation.”


Really appreciate these great men taking time out of their week to help give feedback on this season’s team.


Review, Preview, and Blankets of the Week (October 13)

VOLLEYBALL: Last week, THS lost 3-0 to DeSoto Central, and cancelled their match with Lake Cormorant Thursday. Coach Bishop’s teams will finish their seasons this week… Senior Night will be Tuesday as they host Lewisburg, and Thursday at Hernando.

S-P SOFTBALL: The new season begins Tuesday. Coach Hegwood’s girls will host Columbus Tuesday in a best-of-3 series at 4 p.m. All first round games will be played at THS. Tuesday’s contest will broadcast LIVE at

FOOTBALL: No. 9 THS improved to 7-0 for the first time since 1990 last Friday with a big 26-13 division win over Southaven. The Golden Wave will now look ahead to No. 2 South Panola. Tupelo’s lost 12-straight games to the Tigers. As usual, Friday’s contest in Batesville will broadcast LIVE at

XC: Here’s the XC recap from yesterday’s meet at South Pontotoc. Both squads will travel to Clinton Saturday.

SWIM: Both teams were off last week. Coach Smith’s squads will participate in North Half finals Saturday in Jackson.

CHEERLEADING: Kama Alford’s coed cheerleaders placed 1st in their division at today’s State Fair competition in Jackson.

BAND: Varsity band received all Superiors in band, percussion, guard, and drum major at yesterday’s Tupelo Band Festival. This now qualifies them for state competition November 2nd.



  • Senior middle blocker Kerrigan Buck notched seven aces and five kills against DeSoto Central.
  • Junior Rachel Rooney had two hits and two runs against Myrtle. The defense also had five putouts, seven assists, and zero errors in the 5-1 win last week.
  • Senior DB Antonio Clifton had two INTs (one for a pick-6), six tackles, and two pass breakups in Tupelo’s (7-0, 3-0) 26-13 win over Southaven last Friday.
  • The middle school crew, who only had the minimum of five boy runners on the starting line, managed to win their race by 13 points Saturday. Those guys were Sam Sliman, Landon Long, Nick Whitenton, Kyle Wigginton, and Morgan Beasley. For the girls, 7th grader Leanna Long won the junior high race by 25 seconds with a two-mile time of 14:04.


As always, follow @tbradenbishop or @TupeloHigh for Tupelo High sports updates and pertinent information regarding all Tupelo Golden Wave athletics. is also on Facebook. Be sure to Like us.



Tupelo football moves to 7-0, best start since 1990

Trent Hammond told his players after Friday night’s 26-13 win over Southaven, “7-0 means nothing if you don’t finish.”

Tupelo will need to finish every play this upcoming week when they travel to Batesville to face more-than-likely Mississippi’s new No. 1 team in the AP poll, South Panola. THS hasn’t beaten the Tigers since Coach Phil Ferguson’s first season in 2001. The Golden Wave defeated the Tigers in Batesville, 17-14, that year. Since then, Tupelo has lost the last 12 contests.

But speaking of Tupelo’s best start since 1990, let’s take a quick look at that memorable football season.

  • THS went 12-2 under Ricky Black, now head coach at Jackson Prep, in 1990. Meridian defeated THS, 36-22, in the school’s first state championship football appearance.
  • 1990 was Black’s final season at THS before taking a job with first-year MSU coach Jackie Sherrill at Mississippi State University.
  • Coach Black was assisted that season by Bob Monroe (DB coach), Chris Coleman (OLB), Fred Davis (WR), Larry Harmon (RB), Pete McMurrary (OL), and Jimmy Mitchell (ILB).
  • Coach Black was recognized in September 2012 for winning his 300th career football game. He won 93 at Tupelo.
  • Kirk Presley, former 1st round MLB draft pick for the Mets, was the punter. Senior Adam Paxton, son of Mississippi Senator and THS alum Nancy Collins, was the quarterback. Mayor Jason Shelton was a freshman.
  • Tupelo had three D1 signees: WR Chris Jones (Mississippi State), LB Marcus Gary (Memphis State), and Mond Wilson (Clemson).
  • Tupelo won nine-straight in 1990 before losing to Starkville, 19-16, at Robbins Field in the final game of the regular season.
  • THS defeated Greenwood twice; 17-0, in Week 7 and in the 2nd round playoffs, 18-3. Greenwood was coached by David Bradberry, who coached the Golden Wave from 2009-2012.

Big thanks to former THS assistant coach Bob Monroe for the detailed information.


Review, Preview, and Blankets of the Week (October 6)

VOLLEYBALL: Lady Wave volleyball (12-13, 2-3) lost two matches last week (Olive Branch and Southaven). The losses will put Coach Bishop’s team on the outside looking in when 2013 playoffs begin October 22nd. Tupelo hosts DeSoto Central Tuesday and travels to Lake Cormorant Thursday.

S-P SOFTBALL: Coach Hegwood’s team (12-5-1, 5-1) defeated Mooreville at THS Tuesday, 7-4, and Kossuth at KHS Thursday, 22-7, in four innings. The Lady Wave has won six of the last seven games. THS will host Kossuth Tuesday and Myrtle Thursday.

FOOTBALL: 6-0. When was the last time THS football started undefeated? Not sure, but we will do our homework. Trent Hammond and his team are making “Waves” this season. Last Friday, No. 10 THS (6-0, 2-0) defeated 1-6A rival Grenada (5-1, 1-1), 34-7. Tupelo will host the Southaven Chargers (5-2, 1-1) for Homecoming Friday at 7 p.m. The game will broadcast LIVE at

XC: Coach Sloan and Coach B’s teams competed at the Fayetteville, Arkansas Chili Pepper Festival race yesterday. They take this week off and travel to Clinton next week to run in the annual Choctaw Invitational.

SWIM: Lucas Smith and his teams competed at Rob Leake Park last Tuesday. Both teams are done until the North Half meet on October 19th.



  • Seniors Reagan Aldridge and Abby Stafford went 10 for 13 with 7 RBIs and 8 for 15 with 10 RBIs against Mooreville and Kossuth last week.
  • Sophomore quarterback Daniel Bristow went 13 of 15 passing for 258 yards and three TDs in Friday’s 34-7 win over 1-6A Grenada. Through six games, Bristow is 58 of 86 for 790 yards (.674 completion % and 131.7 YPG) with five TDs and one interception. He’s also rushed 32 times for 149 yards.


As always, follow @tbradenbishop or @TupeloHigh for Tupelo High sports updates and pertinent information regarding all Tupelo Golden Wave athletics. is also on Facebook. Be sure to Like us.


Buckley chooses the University of Missouri for golf

Senior Hayden Buckley had a tough decision in front of him Tuesday.

University of Missouri or Rice University? Tigers or Owls? SEC or C-USA?

“Honestly, Missouri’s facilities were what got me ,” said Buckley. “I felt a lot more at home at Columbia, and I just went with my heart. I had a few other interests… LA Tech, Middle Tennessee, and Southern Miss, but I just couldn’t get away from the SEC.”

Buckley’s head coach, Mark Enis, was positive of Hayden’s constant habits on the course. “He’s one of the hardest workers we’ve ever had,” said Enis. “He has passion for the game and that makes his teammates better players.” Under Enis, Tupelo boys golf has won six-straight Class II titles.

Tupelo High will begin golf practice February 3rd, and the first match will be in March. “Our team’s goals haven’t changed since the day I got here,” said Buckley. “Obviously, we want to win a state championship this season, but we’d also like to win every match, too. It’s difficult, but I know we have the team to do it.”

FUN FACT: Hayden won a car… yes, a CAR, after being randomly chosen to compete in a punt, pass, and kick contest during halftime of a THS football game last season. Very cool.