Author Archives: Alexis

Brandyn Discovers Jay-Z

Mass Communication major, Brandyn Clair snuck out with his father’s Jay-Z album when he was a child. He wanted to listen to, who Brandyn claims, is the king of rap. Clair fell in love with his music, and ever since then, he wanted to make his own music.

“The whole reason I am into rap, is because of Jay-Z,” said Clair. “When I was a child, I found my connection to the black community through this little iPod I would steal from my dad. I would watch the Chapelle Show, and when I was a little older I would steal his Jay-Z tapes in the middle of the night and listen to them in his truck.

Clair’s father received that Jay-Z album as a gift. He was more into old school funk and soul music, but he did not want his son listening to the album, because of the vulgur language. Despite his father’s efforts, Clair found an even bigger love for music through the “American Gangster” album.

When he was 13, he found another spark at the barber shop. The barber cutting Brandyn’s hair was also a DJ. When the barber had no appointments, he would spin tracks in the shop. While Clair’s dad was getting his hair cut, he asked if he could give it a shot spinning some of the records. After that, every time Clair needed a haircut, he would also spin the records.

His junior year of high school, he made his first song called “Blue Love”. It was a country song mixed with blues.

“The song was really bad,” said Clair. “It was just an open snare and a baseline, and it didn’t have anything else except me singing on a cheap iPhone mic.”

Clair likes to speak on important issues of the world in his music. A few things he has talked about in his music are racism, homophobia, and wealth. He likes to focus on working class issues he believes needs to be addresses.

His first foundation he used to produce his music was Soundcloud. He went under the name of B Clair, inspired by J Cole. But, he changed his name to something different and unique: Burrito Brandyno. However, he is thinking of shortening the name to be Dyno. Today, Clair’s music is available on all platforms.

“My little brother is a terrible artist,” Clair stated. “When he was twelve, he drew a picture of a dinosaur, and I use that as my logo for my merchandise.”

Clair is yet to find someone to make music with. He is looking for someone with specific content and the right kind of message to collaborate with. After asking Clair what message he wants his audience to take away from his music, he answered with one word: Freedom.

“People should be able to do what they want,” Clair said. “People should not have to be limited by monetary reasons or external forces.”

He just finished making beats for a new project he has. He is in an Indi band with some of his college friends. One friend is a guitarist and the other is a beat boxer. They make soul music. He also is apart of a metal band, and another band that performs in bars around Sioux City.

Clair will be at the Marquee bar down town on April 1st at 7pm.

I Survived

You might be familiar with the name McKenna Sims, if you attend Morningside University. She is the point guard for the women’s basketball team. She was also diagnosed with cancer when she was four years old.

Lymphocytic Leukemia is a type of cancer where the bone marrow makes too many white blood cells. Sims became very sick when she was four, and her mother took her to the doctor. She was told she had an ear infection, so she went home with medication. A few days later, she was still running a fever, so she went back to the doctor. This time, the doctor told her she had strep throat, so she went home with more medication.

After a couple more days, her temperature was 104 degrees, and she broke out in bruises all over her body. This time they went to the doctor and demanded a full check up. They did not find what was wrong with Sims, so they recommended she get some labs at the children’s hospital. Immediately when she arrived at the hospital, her blood was checked. In the sample, they found cancer cells in her blood cells.

The doctors admitted her to a room, and she stayed overnight. the next morning, she was prepped for a spinal tap, or a Lumbar puncture. The results showed Sims had a high white blood cell count, and not enough red blood cells. The white blood cells were taking over her body.

“I was very young, but I still recall all the emotions I had,” said Sims. “I would cry and throw fits all the time, because of the pain I was enduring. They had me on steroids to ease the pain, but they made me so hungry. I would cry all over again from being so starved.”

At the same time, Sims’ mother was pregnant with her brother. Her emotions were much like her daughter’s. Mindy Sims would drive her daughter to chemotherapy once a week for a whole month. The next month, Sims would go once every two weeks. After that, for the rest of the year, Sims would receive chemotherapy every three months.

“I was pregnant with Kenna’s bother at the time,” said Mindy Sims, “so I was always crying.”

After her first year of chemotherapy, she was officially diagnosed with Leukemia. The doctors placed a port on the left side of her chest. Coming up in a couple months, Sims will be thirteen years cancer free.

Sports and Transgenders

Former male swimmer for University of Pennsylvania is now competing on the women’s team. While she was competing for the men’s team, she began transitioning to a woman by taking testosterone blockers and estrogen. During the Ivy League Swimming week, she won the Ohio race. The race against Ohio went viral and raised some concerns.

The organizations that oversee the rules of swimming made it a rule for transitioning men to have three years of estrogen and testosterone blockers under their belt. This would have excluded Thomas from competing. But the NCAA said it would be unfair to make this rule in the middle of the season, so Thomas is free to compete on the women’s team.

Grace Holzerland, a swimmer on the Morningside Women’s team, shared her thoughts on the topic.

“I think she should not be able to compete with the other females in her league,” Holzerland said. “It’s unfair to other female athletes, because of her biological advantage as a transgender woman.”

Taking into consideration another big question on the topic: Should Thomas go back to swimming on the men’s team, if it is unfair to swim with the women?

“She can take all the hormones she wants, but she should still compete with the men,” Holzerland added.

Morningside woman swimmer Sydney Lueth had some opinions on the political side of the topic. Instead of deciding if it is unfair for her to swim with women, Lueth thinks it has everything to do with the organization’s appearance.

“I think the NCAA is allowing her to swim to bring publicity to their organization,” Lueth said. “They are trying to be politically correct, and she is bringing so much attention to swimming whether it is good or bad”

We live in a generation where we try to reach equality for each individual person. We also live in a world where people can identify as whatever they want. If transgender women are beating fellow competitors by a significant amount, could the NCAA create a competition team specifically for transgender women?

Leading Three Point Scorer in College Basketball

Fifth year senior, Sierra Mitchell, has shown her incredible ability of shooting a basketball. Last year in the 2020-21 season, she made the most three pointers out of any male or female college player. She shot 307 three pointers and made 125. Mitchell ended her senior year with a spectacular season, but she could not close the yearbook yet. The National title is still untouched by Mitchell.

Heading into the 2022 National Tournament, Mitchell has made a total of 516 three pointers, passing the previous record for college basketball. Fletcher Magee of Wofford College held the record with 509 three pointers made in his four year career. She now holds the record for the most threes made in a career by any college level athlete.

Mitchell has spent a good chunk of her life shooting a basketball. All the extra work and extra shots and she makes it look easy. What helped her reach all this success?

“I don’t need to be biblical about it, but I will,” said Mitchell. “God gave me this amazing gift of shooting a basketball. He gave me the tools; I just had to make something out of it.”

While being a dedicated to basketball, Mitchell has always stayed dedicated to her studies. Throughout her senior year, she was working eight hour days as a student teacher. After teaching, she would go straight to practice. However, Mitchell had her priorities straight, She would dominate in the classroom and on the court.

“I always find time to get extra shots up,” Mitchell said, “even when I really don’t want to.”

Mitchell will be playing her final games at Morningside University this weekend. If the team wins both games, they continue in the tournament. No matter how the Mitchell’s season ends, she can be proud of the legacy she left behind.

The Merge

In 1992, the NAIA basketball world split into Division I and Division II. In 2018, the NAIA National Convention was held, and The Council of Presidents approved the motion to merge. After the 2020 basketball season abruptly ended, NAIA merged back to one division.

In 2019, NAIA made the Tyson Events Center, Sioux City, and the Auditorium in Kansas City, Montana the official locations for tournament play. Following this change, instead of 32 teams making it to the National Tournament, 16 teams will make it. Prior to the merge, often teams would have to win five games in six or seven days to win the national title. Now, that is nothing to worry about.

Previously, NAIA Division I allowed 11 scholarships to be given out, and Division II was allowed six. After the merge, the limit was changed to eight scholarships per NAIA basketball team.

Ranked first in the nation for NAIA women’s basketball is Thomas Moore, KY. Last year, Thomas Moore lost to Westmont, Calif in the championship game. This year, Westmont is ranked fifth in the nation.

In the GPAC Conference, Morningside is the only team ranked in the top 10. Morningside sits at number 8 heading into the Conference Tournament. The only other teams in the GPAC found in the top 25 poll are Northwestern and Concordia. Northwestern sits at 14th, while Concordia sits at 19th.

GPAC Conference tournament begins Wednesday, February 23rd. Morningside (#1) will play Hastings (#8). The first round of GPAC tournament has been posted.

Should NFL Overtime Rules Change?

Alexis Spier

The rules of overtime are simple. Both teams have the chance to possess the ball unless the team that gets the ball first scores a touchdown. If the team that has the ball first scores a field goal, the other team still has a chance to match it or score a touchdown to win the game.

Looking at the overtime rules, it seems unfair. If the team with the ball first scores, the opposing team does not even get a chance with the ball. The game is over. Many players and coaches disagree, but Rick Gosselin, of Dallas Morning News, who’s covered the NFL for years, brings up an amazing point.

“There are three elements of football: offense, defense and special teams,” said Gosselin in an article from The Guardian. “Build a defense that can force a punt in overtime. Giving both teams a possession favors the offenses. If you want to go all in on offense, keep winning those coin tosses. If you want to win a championship, build a defense that can be as effective as your offense for 60 minutes and beyond.”

I agree with Gosselin. Football and any other sport is not defined by offense. Defense is just as important. If you want to win, of course you have to score, but you have to get the ball first.

Is the coin flip the biggest play of the game? Many Chiefs fans raged about what happened in overtime against the Bills. The Chiefs scored on the first possession, sending Josh Allen and his Bills home without even touching the ball.

“We Should never let a football game be determined from a coin,” Bills left tackle Dion Dawkins said. “Like, I think that’s the most craziest rule in sports. Like, you can fight your entire fight the whole game, and then the game comes down to a 50-50 chance of a coin toss. Like, this ain’t Vegas. Like, we’re not at the casino table. Like, this ain’t no 50-50 bet and there ain’t even no 50-50 bet. And it’s just crazy that that was the outcome.”

“Josh Allen didn’t even get a chance,” former quarterback Danny Kanell said, “and that’s why the NFL overtime is the worst overtime of any sport in the world.”

“NFL overtime rules are so trash,” wrote NBC Philadelphia sports reporter Taryn Hatcher. “Which is honestly an insult to trash.”

People have been posting all over the media new OT rules that would make it fair. One suggestion was to play another quarter, but only ten minutes. This is a good suggestion, because each team would possess the ball. However, the players would play an entire 70 minutes and they might not give their best performance due to exhaustion. It would also increase the likelihood of injuries.

The Baltimore Ravens proposed a rule as well. If Team A wins the coin flip, they choose where the ball is placed. Team B chooses to play offense or defense. First team to score, wins. I’ve read through a lot of proposals, and this one is the most fair and most exciting.

A lot of teams went home feeling sick they did not have a chance with the ball in overtime. They want the rules to change, but people like Rick Gosselin believe an offense is only as strong as its defense. Should the rules stay the same, or should we consider the Baltimore Raven’s proposal.

Article 4 Rough Draft

16 and pregnant

Olivia Stillman found out she was pregnant her junior year of high school. She contemplated having the baby or not, and made the choice to have it. Her plan was to give it up for adoption.

She dropped out of school and did online classes while she was pregnant. Her boyfriend, Jackson was very supportive. Her father is very well known in Gretna, Nebraska. He has a lot of money, so luckily that was not an issue for Olivia.

After she gave birth, she realized she could not give her baby to another family. She kept her and named her Blakely. Olivia, Jackson, and Blakely are a happy family and Blakely is now 3 years old.

I have pictures

Did you like the family you were planning to give your baby to?

How did you feel about dropping out Junior year? Was it difficult? Did you think you weren’t gonna graduate?

Where do you live now? What was the living situation with Blakely when she was born?

Was it hard to see Jackson take her to his house?

What was childbirth like?

What was the scariest part about finding out you’re pregnant?

How did having a baby so young change you?

News Comment (Dec 2. 2021)

Alexis Spier,

A new Covid variant finds its way into the United States. The first case of Omicron was found in a man who very recently came back from South Africa; he was fully vaccinated. Doctors and disease professionals encourage adults to get Booster shots. As well as these experts, President Biden has been pushing for adults to get “Boosters.”

Author, Apoorva Mandavilli, is writing to an adult audience in this news story. It is important for these people to know about the new variant, and how they can take the steps, if they want, to protect themselves from the virus. Adults can now choose to get a Booster shot, because professionals have assured them its a good idea.

This story is news, because it has been a popular topic of discussion for awhile. Everyone has been talking and knows about Covid, so a story about a new variant is definitely news. It also affects a large population of people. It affects me right now. I’m worried I won’t be able to go to Puerto Rico now, because countries are closing borders again and people are going to start freaking out soon.

The author does a good job telling the audience their decisions and spreading the word about a new threat.

Classmate Story: Generous (Nov. 23, 2021)

Somewhere around 1 am at a friend’s house on Halloween night, Zach Norton heard someone yelling upstairs. Someone was saying “Coop is bleeding a lot!” and Norton and his friend found Coop sitting on the floor bleeding from his head. Generously, Norton walked his friend back to his dorm room, and gave him Ibuprofen for the pain.

We figured out the next day he was going outside to go to the bathroom and on his way in he slipped on the cement and fell on his head. When Coop woke up the next morning, blood was everywhere on his face and pillow. Right away, Norton took Coop to the Emergency Room. It was not anything too serious; Coop got only four stitches.

“There was so much blood everywhere on his pillow the next morning. I was like, yeah, this man needs stitches,” said Norton. “Then I waited a whole hour for this man to get stitches.”

When I asked Norton why he decided to help Coop, he quickly replied, “He was standing there with blood dripping from his face asking somebody to help him. I looked around and saw no one around to do anything so I helped him home.”

Finally, I asked him what this act says about his character. Norton laughed and said, “I’m the guy that folds the quickest.”

3 Minute Broadcast Script

The sun is our energy, warmth, our morning. We wouldn’t exist without it. Recent discoveries from a team of astronomers proves it is possible for a planet to survive without its star.

Dr.Blackman and his team of astronomers discovered the first planet to orbit a white dwarf. A white dwarf is a star that burns up all its energy and explodes. A planet has never survived the explosion of its star, until now.

Astronomers are hoping to catch a glimpse of life on this unfamiliar planet. Using the light that the white dwarf projects, it is possible to actually see if life exists. This brings into play a phenomenon researched by Dr. Lisa Kaltenegger called Second Genesis. It suggests that life may not have survived, instead it started over.

Dr. Kaltenegger, a member of the team that found the planet said… “I find the study exciting because it adds to the growing evidence that planets can survive the death of their star, which leads to intriguing questions about the future of the cosmos, If planets can survive the death of their stars, can life as well?”

Distance is the deal breaker. Planets orbiting at a close distance from their star have no chance of surviving its death. Exactly how far does a planet need to be from its star to survive the explosion?

Joshua Blackman, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Tasmania and lead author of the study had this to say…“If humanity is somehow still around in five billion years, we would probably have a better chance of surviving the sun’s red giant phase on a moon of Jupiter than on Earth.”

I would be packing my bags and heading to Jupiter now, but that is not possible.

However, it is possible for a young man to escape prison for life. The story that holds so much attention right now is the case of Kyle Rittenhouse. The 18 year old was at a police brutality protest in Kenosha, Wisconsin last year. He killed two people and injured a third with an AR-15. Rittenhouse pled not guilty. He said he was using the weapon as self defense.

Rittenhouse was charged with two counts of first-degree recklessly endangering safety and three counts of first-degree intentional homicide. His verdict was not guilty on all five counts.

But what’s really surprising is the prosecutor’s attempt to use the video game “Call of Duty” to incarcerate Rittenhouse.

I asked “so and so” how he feels about a prosecutor trying to use COD against him to incriminate him…

This leaves us with the question “If prosecutors can use violent video games against someone to potentially incriminate them, should these games be illegal?”

Popstar, Travis Scott’s Astroworld concert in Dallas, resulted in 300 people injured. The lethal crowd also killed 10 people from ages 30 all the way down to a 10 year old boy. Scott is facing billions of dollars for the damages and death. People were saying he did not stop the concert when he should have.

I asked 21 year old Sadie Roth, a fan of Travis Scott’s music, who she thinks is responsible for this tragedy, the crowd or scott himself… Do you think there should be an age limit for these types of concerts?

Scott released an apology video for his fans and for his fans who passed away at the Astroworld concert.

*Scott Apology*

I’m Alexis Spier. Thank you for listening to KMSC news broadcast at 7.