Dave sits down each Tuesday with the head coach of the Pickens Dragons, Chris Parker. Together they discuss the game from the week before and the upcoming game.
Coach Chris Parker sat down with Team FYN Sports to talk about Dragons youth Program and the upcoming 2018 season. Parker, being the Athletic Director for all Pickens County is really involved and excited to see these young athletes grow and be a part of the high school programs in years ahead.
One young man that Parker has seen grow and mature is Zach Goss. Goss was a 7th grader when Coach Parker started working with the youth program. Parker said the he saw a small skinny kid that had potential and look where he is now, a Senior that has had an excellent high school career and has verbally committed to play for Tennessee Tech.
The 2018 season holds expectations just as previous seasons and Coach Parker is ready to lead his team into battle. The Dragons start the season at home against a bigger and stronger Stone Mountain team. The ultimate goal for Parker and his Dragons is to play their best, execute their game plan and win games. Most importantly, put out young men who are ready to face the world after high school.
On Monday, Tuesday and Thursday of last week the Dragons held their annual youth camps for football and cheer. Coach Chris Parker and his staff along with high school players took to the practice field to teach kindergarten through 7th grade athletes.
The camp attendees moved across 10 skill stations to learn both new skills and also to enhance those skills already in their repertoire. Several of the stations focused on safety of the skills learned. Proper technique of tackling and blocking is vital for the safety of both the offensive and defensive players. Other stations consisted of passing, receiving and different types of set ups and schemes to be used in games. A large amount of success in the camp goes to the high school players for their dedication and of course patience with over 180 energetic youth.
Part of the camp gets the young ladies out to work with the high school cheerleaders and their coaches to teach new cheers, work on and learn additional skills and techniques to prepare the new and current little Dragons to get the crowds fired up and cheer on the guys on the field. The cheer side of the camp brought out around 130 working their way through several stations that taught them toe touches, tumbling and and as stated previously new cheer routines. The high school cheerleaders also were vital in the camps success with their time being volunteered and their heart for these young ladies to have fun and learn at the same time.
With almost 400 youth showing their interest in Dragons youth football and cheer, the high school program should be set for years to come. As Athletic Director for all of Pickens County, Chris Parker has to be excited as they move forward over the next several years.
Earlier this evening, the PHS football team held it’s anual end of year banquet at Chattahoochee Technical College in Jasper. A huge turnout crowd got to reflect and honor the players, coaches, cheerleaders, and everyone involved in what was another great season for PHS football.
Head coach Chris Parker welcomed everyone, said a few words, and then invited the cheerleading coaches up to honor both JV and Varsity squads. The coaches said a few words, then all the cheerleaders, from freshman to senior, were recognized and presented with their letter. The senior cheerleaders then presented their coaches with gifts and said a few words expressing gratitude for all they have done for them.
Then, it was the managers and underclassmen football players turn to be recognized as coach Parker called them up to the stage starting with the freshman and ending with the juniors. As each class stood before the audience, coach Parker talked to the crowd about them and how they’ve done this season and what he expects in the season to come. For the seniors, coach Parker wanted to try something different.
Coach Parker asked the seniors to come up and say something about a coach of their choice. The coaches then had their chance to say something about the senior players. There were also several awards handed out this evening. Here are the winners:
Golden Helmet Award (MVP) Sr. Andrew Ortiz
Academic Award: Sr. Austin Massey
Ironman Award: Sr. Walker Lawrence
Jim Locke Award: Sr. Caleb Brooks
Team Captains: Zach Betts, Walker Lawrence, Jacob Pair, & Kyle West
The final award was the PHS Touchdown Club Scholarship. This is given to a senior player who has played all four years, had no major school incidents, & write an essay detailing how much football means to them. The players awarded this scholarship were:
Kyle West, Tucker Green, Billy Reed, Austin Massey, Jacob Pair, Zach Henley, Bradley Ragano, Jake Campbell, Marcus Byrd, Dillon Eilers, Zach Betts, Zach Hermann, Caleb Brooks, & Dillin Gasaway.
Congrats to everyone involved that made this a great season for PHS football.
The week 7 Player of the Week goes to Dillon Gasaway. The Dragons Senior ran 147 yards on 12 carries and 3 touchdowns. Gasaway averaged 12.3 yards per carry.
TeamFYNSports Congratulates Dillon on his performance, earning him this weeks Super Star Swag POTW.
The Pickens High School football team has released the annual Iron Man competition results have been released. There are 18 new 2015 PHS Iron Men.
Click here, to hear PHS head football coach, Chris Parker, discuss the Iron Man testing in full.
2015 PHS Iron Man winners were:
Full Iron Man Testing Results Here
Pickens High School head football coach, Chris Parker, recently sat down with Team FYN Sports to discuss the summer work being put in by the Dragons as well as the outlook for the 2015 season, with out star running back, Shannon Brooks.
Parker spoke about the work that his team has been putting in during the off season as well as the Iron Man testing currently taking place. He also discussed Region 7-AAAA, its competitiveness and some of the best players he expects to play against.
See below to view the full interview.
Hill has become an oustanding success story, after starting out his career as the Pickens point man for Team FYN Sports. Recently Team FYN Sports caught up with Hill and asked him about his career and budding responsibilties with the Red and Black.
What year are you going into at school?
I’m starting my senior year in the fall. I have three semesters left of school and will graduate in December 2016.
Why attend North Ga before attending UGA?
Coming from Pickens High School, which had around 1,000 students, I thought a small school would be a good way to start off. It helped ease the transition to college, and I loved my two years in Dahlonega. It definitely helped set me up for success at UGA.
When did you decide journalism was for you?
I’ve known since the eighth grade that I wanted to be a sports writer. People try to point you in a direction in middle school which can be a bit ridiculous, but I credit Keith Petty with leading me to journalism. He was my eighth grade English teacher, and I loved that class and the writing in it so much. He wrote occasionally for the paper, so it occurred to me that maybe writing about sports, something I’ve always loved and studied, was the way to go. I let him know my idea and pretty much followed it from there.
What was your favorite memory of the Dragons during your matriculation through Pickens County schools?
Probably watching the boys’ basketball team was our senior year. I think a lot of people counted them out because Jordan Shaw graduated the year before, but they played really well and went to state. Some of my best friends since I was a kid were on that team: Wesley Easterwood, Austin Murphy, Aries Johnson, Spencer Jones, Jake Ledbetter, Sam Crawford, etc. I’m sure I’ll be in trouble for leaving some names out, but it was fun just to be there and see them have success.
What was your favorite memory covering the Dragons?
Without a doubt, it’s the turnaround the football team had. In my four years as a student, the team won eight games. I have to give kudos to Kyle Rasco, the athletic director. He went out and hired Chris Parker from Chapel Hill. I was expecting to constantly re-write the sentence “The Dragons played tough but lost” each week, but that wasn’t the case. Coach Parker has built a consistent winner with Pickens, something that hasn’t happened since I was nine or 10.
What has been your favorite/most interesting moment covering UGA sports?
It’s still really early on in my covering Georgia sports. I’d say more than anything, it’s just been learning from the other writers at The Red & Black, the school’s student newspaper. You’d be amazed at how the paper is a collective group of students yet at the same time functions as professional workplace. Some of the best writing I’ve seen in the last year has come from students my age or even younger. I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to get on staff there and learn from others.
How is covering a major school like UGA different than covering high school sports?
Access to players and statistics is incredibly easy compared to high school sports. If I really wanted to challenge a young writer, I’d send them to a school that they’ve never been to two hours from home and make them cover the game. To write up a Friday night game correctly, you better do your homework on Tuesday or Wednesday. Email and call coaches or athletic directors for information. Can you send me the roster? Could I talk to players after the game? Is there room in the booth or do I need to sit in the stands? It’s easier at the collegiate level because those SIDs and athletic directors are used to working with media. It’s not the case at a school like Heritage or Cass, and it puts a young writer to the test. You can easily get spoiled with the avenues available at the college level.
Who is your favorite sports journalist and y?
A few stand out to me. Wright Thompson and Tommy Tomlinson can craft stories so well I would probably stay glued to the screen if they talked about a trip to the grocery store. They are excellent writers who could move from sports writing to whatever topic they needed.
On the other side, SB Nation has some of the best personalities around right now. Ryan Nanni, Dan Rubenstein and Spencer Hall are some of the funniest people in the sports world right now. They produce hilarious articles on a regular basis. If you want to laugh a lot, follow all three on Twitter. Not only are they funny, but they also know their stuff so well that it makes it even better.
Who is your least favorite sports journalists and why?
Honestly, I don’t really have one. There are things I don’t like, which mainly boil down to writers being lazy with their work. Check your spelling, know the difference between “then” and “than” and make sure you’re not jumping around all over the place. If you do that, it works for me.
Are you more nervous or excited in anticipation of SEC media day?
Absolutely excited. I’ve gotten past the point of nerves when reporting. When I was younger, I got nervous talking to high school coaches because that’s a big deal as a high school kid in a county where athletics are everything. Now that I’ve been with The Red & Black for a while, I’ve had a chance to interview and be around some pretty interesting people. It just became part of my job. That’s not to say I don’t still enjoy getting to talk to people I grew up watching like D.J. Shockley; it’s just that at this point in my life I expected to be doing one-on-ones like that.
What advice, if any would you give to a young person interested in pursuing journalism?
Work your butt off once you know what you want out of life. That goes for everyone, not just journalists, but I’ll focus on journalism here. If you polled 100 people at UGA and asked where Pickens County is, I’d say you may get five that know. I’m from a little town where it’s not a given that you go to college at all, but I’ve worked hard to write on a near-daily basis and to pursue opportunities when they came my way. I heard about Fetch when I was a junior, so I went and wrote there. I enrolled at UNG and heard about the school newspaper, so I went and wrote there. I transferred to UGA and figured the Athens Banner-Herald needed high school football writers, so I went and wrote there. That’s not to say I didn’t have a whole lot of help from my family and was blessed with being in the right place at the right time a lot. It’s just about putting yourself in a place to try and advance further. One of my favorite quotes is from Henry Ford, who said, “Whether you think you can, or think you can’t … you’re right.” If you believe it’s impossible, it won’t happen.
That’s not to say I’ve got everything figured out. I’m still not where I want to be; my goals aren’t accomplished but they are within reach. It’s a matter of getting better every day and finding a good position somewhere.
Will you be watching more Minnesota Gophers games than you ever imagined over the next 3-5 years?
I’m going to try. I’m glad that Shannon Brooks made the best out of a bad situation and earned his scholarship with the Golden Gophers. I’m also glad he and Melissa Weeks were open with me and helped me write one of my favorite pieces I’ve ever done for a class this past spring. Hopefully, I’ll be covering games at the same time Brooks and Minnesota are playing. I’ll certainly be checking the box scores on Sunday morning to see what the running back from my hometown did this week.
Today, the PHS Dragons football team held their 4th day of spring practice to get ready for the upcoming 2015 season. (more…)
Last Night, the PHS football team held the end of season banquet at Chattahoochee Technical College’s Appalachian campus. The evening consisted of celebration and looking back on what was one of the most successful football seasons in PHS history. From finishing at 8-3, to making the playoffs for the first time since 2005, and hosting a playoff game for the first time since 2004, and of course beating Gilmer for the first time in five years. (more…)
The FetchYourNews.com sports team is proud of the newest edition to the North Georgia sports coverage, the Dragon Talk: The Pickens Power Half-Hour, a live coach’s show featuring Chris Parker, the Pickens High School, head football coach, and different assistant coaches and players every week. The show airs weekly Tuesdays at 7:00 pm. Last night, was the inaugural show, but do not be alarmed if you missed the entire show can be viewed by clicking here. (more…)
It’s time for another exciting season of Dragon football as the 2014 season is fast approaching. The Dragons was a “surprise” team last season finishing with a winning record for the first time since the 2007 season, falling just short of reaching the playoffs. The city of Jasper is buzzing about this team and I recently sat down with head coach Chris Parker and asked him what the expectations should be this season for his Dragon squad. (more…)
Pickens High School running back Shannon Brooks visited Georgia Tech on Friday and received a scholarship offer from the Yellow Jackets coaching staff. Brooks recently spoke with FYN and said that the only caveat to signing with Tech left for him to oversee is passing the ACT. (more…)