Prep Notebook: Shannon hosts Vanderbilt for walk-throughs

Nov. 2—Last Friday night, the Shannon Red Raiders played their last regular-season home game against the Amory Panthers. The next morning, they served as hosts to a new tenant.

Before their game against the Ole Miss Rebels, the Vanderbilt Commodores used Shannon High School's facility for their pregame walk through.

Sarah McCloud, Vanderbilt's operations coordinator, reached out to Shannon coach Ken Topps about using the facility ahead of Saturday night's game. It was an opportunity he couldn't say no to.

"I think they were just looking for a place to have their pregame walk through," Topps said. "We were blessed enough to be able to host them."

For Topps, who's in his first year as the head coach at Shannon, the Commodores' walk through was a "sight to see". From how the players first entered to the preparation that went in to welcome them before it started, there was a tidiness to their process that impressed Topps.

"Just seeing their game day operations as far as the walk through goes and preparations. It was like clockwork," he said. "You see them so on task as far as 'This time at this time, I need to be doing this.' and they're so goal oriented."

Topps was also impressed with how the players went about the whole process, even when it was so early in the morning.

"They were all high-energy guts and just ready to go," he said. "There wasn't any wasted time. It was a blessing to see it."

Cross-country state championships

The top cross-country runners in the state will be heading to the Choctaw Trails in Jackson today and Saturday for this year's state championships. Classes 1A, 2A and 3A will race today starting at 11 a.m., while Classes 4A-7A will start at the same time on Saturday.

West Union (1A), East Union (2A), Corinth (4A) and Saltillo (5A) are all area schools that captured a state title last year, though Saltillo has moved up to Class 6A this year. Saltillo, East Union and Corinth had both the boys and girls teams take home a title, while only West Union's boys team finished first.