Chick-fil-A Sports Update: Rome’s quick bid to host NCAA Division II football championship ends; Texas gets it. Earlier: More changes in the Atlanta Braves’ farm system following the firing of Rocket Wheeler, Randy Ingle as the big club opens the playoffs tonight. Shorter football game theme: ‘Tackle cancer.’

Chick-fil-A Sports Update: Rome’s quick bid to host NCAA Division II football championship ends; Texas gets it. Earlier: More changes in the Atlanta Braves’ farm system following the firing of Rocket Wheeler, Randy Ingle as the big club opens the playoffs tonight. Shorter football game theme: ‘Tackle cancer.’

Chick-fil-A Sports Report
Mount Berry Mall, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Riverside Parkway, 6 a.m.-10 p.m.

Community’s bid to host NCAA Division II football championship ends as game goes to Texas: Rome’s quickly assembled bid to host the displaced NCAA Division II Football Championship in December is over as the planning committee has selected the city of McKinney, Texas, and The Lone Star Conference as the host of 2018 Division II football national championship game. Click here to see our previous story.

The media release continues:

“The committee’s recommendation for the game at McKinney Independent School District Stadium and Community Event Center on Dec. 15, was approved by the NCAA Division II Championships Committee on Thursday. The new location for the Division II national championship game opened earlier this year and is a 12,000-seat facility built specifically for football.
“As a committee, we had in-depth discussions regarding the expectations that we have for the venue that would serve as host for this premier Division II Championship,” said NCAA Division II Football Committee chair Reid Amos. “Where we landed was a preference for a neutral site venue in an accessible location with 10-15,000 seats and outstanding amenities to provide our student-athletes with a truly unique championship experience. We are confident that McKinney ISD Stadium, partnered with The Lone Star Conference as host, will allow us to deliver that experience and we look forward to another memorable playoff season and championship game.”
“McKinney was one of several bids that the committee received to host the 2018 championship game after it learned that playing surface renovations would prevent the game from being played in Kansas City.
“The NCAA Division II football playoffs begin Saturday, Nov. 17.”


More changes under way in the Atlanta Braves’ farm system: A look at tonight’s starting lineup as the Atlanta Braves face the Los Angeles Dodgers in the opening round of the playoffs should bring a smile to Rome Braves’ fans. Name after name is familiar to them as the starters played here in very recent seasons. Despite their quick success, area baseball fans are still reeling from the news that founding and 2018 Rome Braves Manager Rocket Wheeler and longtime manager Randy Ingle were fired from their posts last month.

Both men led the team to South Atlantic League championship titles (Wheeler in 2003; Ingle in 2016) and Wheeler had them back in the post season last month. Now comes word of more changes.

From The Gwinnett Daily Post: The newspaper reports Gwinnett Stripers vice president and general manager North Johnson and assistant general manager Shari Massengill have both resigned.  Gwinnett is the Braves AAA-level club. According to the article: “Reached by phone Monday evening, Johnson, who just completed his ninth season as the club’s GM, declined comment… (An email) sent out to Stripers season ticket holders Monday containing a statement from Atlanta executive vice president for minor league affiliates and strategic planning Chip Moore. The statement reads in part, “As a valued member of our fan base, I wanted to share with you that after a review of the Gwinnett Stripers business, it was mutually agreed that the organization needed a new voice and vision, and both North Johnson and Shari Massengill have submitted their resignations. We are committed to our strategy to ensure the Stripers are a destination for a fun, value-driven entertainment option for all.” (Expanded report)

And the changes go deeper than that as cited by Talking Chop in a story posted Wednesday: Also gone are Florida Fire Frogs Luis Salazar. Updates

Atlanta Braves: The Braves open their playoff run tonight vs. the Dodgers in Los Angeles. Best of five. Atlanta  / MLB playoffs
Tonight: Braves at L.A., 8:30 p.m.
Friday: Braves at L.A., 9:30 p.m.
Saturday: Off
Sunday: Dodgers at Braves, 8 p.m.
Monday: Dodgers at Braves (if necessary).
Tuesday: Off
Wednesday: Braves at Dodgers (if necessary)
 Rome Braves 2019 schedule: Rome opens on the road April 4 in Kannapolis. Schedule / Mills Fitzner’s photo gallery


John McClellan’s high school picks: Region 7-AA showdown between Pepperell, Rockmart this Friday — Yellow Jackets by 19. Easy night ahead for Rome, Cartersville, Calhoun. McCellan
This weekend’s games:
  • East Paulding (2-3, 2-1) at Class 5A No. 1 Rome (6-0, 4-0)
  • Class AA No. 3 Rockmart (6-0, 3-0) at Pepperell (4-2, 3-0)
  • Model (2-4, 2-1) at Chattooga (4-2, 2-1)
  • Gordon Central (1-4, 0-3) at Armuchee (1-5, 0-3)
  • Coosa (1-5, 1-2) at Dade County (1-5, 1-2)
  • Class 3A No. 1 Calhoun (5-0, 2-0) at Adairsville (3-3, 2-2)
  • LaGrange (1-4, 0-2) at Class 4A no. 4 Cartersville (6-0, 2-0)
  • Central of Carrollton (2-4, 1-1) at Cedartown (3-3, 1-1)
  • Class 4A No.  5 Carrollton (5-1, 3-1) at Woodland (4-2, 2-2)
  • Christian Heritage (4-1, 1-1) at Trion (4-2, 1-2)
  • Sonoraville (2-3, 1-2) at Haralson County (4-1, 2-1)
  • Cass (1-5, 0-4) at Hiram (2-3, 2-1)
  • Georgia School for the Deaf (1-3) at Tennessee School for the Deaf (1-1) (Saturday)
  • Off: Darlington and Unity Christian School

2018 high school football season. High School 2018.


Berry Football:  Berry will host Sewanee, 6 p.m., Saturday. Schedule

Shorter Football:  At home vs.West Alabama, 1 p.m., Saturday. Season schedule

  • Gates Open: 11:30 a.m.
  • Theme: Tackle cancer. Breast cancer awareness (“wear pink.”
  • Tickets: Students, one free ticket; faculty and staff, two free tickets. General admission: $10; 6-18, $5; 5 and under, free.

Georgia Bulldogs: At home vs. Vanderbilt, Saturday, 7:30 p.m., SEC. Schedule / SEC Schedule

Georgia Tech: Tech at Louisville, Friday at 7 p.m. Schedule  / ACC Schedule



Atlanta Falcons (1-3).  Next: At Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. Sunday, Fox  Schedule



Harbin Clinic Turkey Trot 5K and Health Wobble benefiting United Way of Bartow County is Saturday, Nov. 17. The long-running event adds Harbin Clinic as the title sponsor this year but keeps the same great course encircling Sam Smith Park and also serves as a qualifier for the Peachtree Road Race. Along with the 5K race, which starts at 9 a.m., the event will have a pre-race costume contest and a two-mile health wobble. The wobble is a two-mile, non-timed walk. “Harbin Clinic is excited to become a part of this Cartersville tradition and be able to help put a focus on health and wellness in Bartow County while also supporting the many great things the Bartow County United Way does in the community,” Harbin Clinic CEO Kenna Stock says. Wire2Wire Running will provide timing and results. Registration for the 5K is $25 and $20 for the health wobble, and people can sign up at To guarantee T-shirt size, participants need to be registered by Sunday, Nov. 11. Race-day registration for the 5K is $35 and $25 for the wobble. Packet pick up will be on Friday, Nov. 16, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the lobby of the United Way, 320 W. Cherokee Ave. Register for the Race

Dec. 8: Registration is under way for the annual #JamieStrong Rome Half Marathon to be held at State Mutual Stadium. In addition to the 13.1-mile Half Marathon, the event that is presented by GoGo Running includes a Half Marathon Relay and a 5- kilometer race. The Rome Half will once again benefit area middle and high school running programs with some of the proceeds benefiting the family of Rome teen runner Jamie Hughes (JamieStrong). All of the races start and end at State Mutual Stadium, with the 5k starting at 8 a.m. and the Half Marathon and Relay starting at 8:05. Half Marathon, Relay, and 5k Finishers receive long sleeve tech T’s, and will enjoy a post-race pancake breakfast provided by the Rome Braves. The area’s high school teams and athletes will be honored the night before at the 2018 GoGo Running All-Area Cross Country Banquet that will be held Friday, Dec. 7. For more: or contact GoGo Running at The Shoe Box at 706-291-0752.



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