Tuesday, September 18, 2018


Bob Putnam, Times staff writer

Bob Putnam, Times staff writer

Bob Putnam has covered high school sports for the Tampa Bay Times as a staff writer since 1996. He is a fourth-generation Floridian who graduated from Dixie Hollins High School and wrote for the student newspapers at St. Petersburg College and USF. He has covered the high school careers of football stars Riley Cooper (CCC/Florida/Philadelphia Eagles), Dante Fowler (Lakewood/Florida/Jacksonville Jaguars), Leonard Johnson (Largo/Iowa State/Tampa Bay Buccaneers) and Dexter McCluster (Largo, Mississippi/Tennessee Titans), among others.

Defensive tackle Percy Speights (50)  gets ready before the football game between Admiral Farragut and Victory Christian. (EVE EDELHEIT | Times)

Marreese Speights’ nephew inherits his height, but puts it to use on the gridiron

ST. PETERSBURG – Percy Speights is ready to battle. With knees slightly bent and elbows instinctively deployed, the 6-foot-4 sophomore stakes out his spot, pushing and pressing until his opponent is no longer a factor.It is hard...
Updated: 5 hours ago
HomeTeam Hot Shot winners: Rent Montie and Camryn Vogler

HomeTeam Hot Shot winners: Rent Montie and Camryn Vogler

Our players of the week for the period spanning Sept. 8-14.Rent Montie, ClearwaterMontie is a football junkie. The Clearwater quarterback even has a whiteboard in his room that he uses to diagram plays in his spare...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Tampa Bay Tech's Treshaun Ward breaks through the defense for a touchdown against Armwood in the season opener. (TAILYR IRVINE | Times)

HomeTeam 15: Football power rankings, Week 5

There were some tight games that included last-minute comebacks, but the results were largely expected this past week. That was a break from the upsets during the first three weeks that caused plenty of shifting in the rankings.Elite...
Published: 09/17/18
Pinellas Park's Brandon Coppola (10) runs the ball during the first quarter against East Lake. (TAILYR IRVINE | Times)

Sunday Morning Quarterback: It’s like Butter

Some of the highlights from Week 4:Team of the WeekPinellas Park: The Patriots were not tested in their first three games. They outscored opponents 150-0 and all three games were essentially over by halftime.
Published: 09/16/18

Football: Armwood 20, Chamberlain 14

TAMPA — As pleased as Armwood was to beat Plant last week on the road, Hawks coach Evan Davis reminded his players that there was another away game that loomed even larger.On Friday, Armwood traveled to play Chamberlain in a game...
Published: 09/14/18

Admiral Farragut wears down in loss to Victory Christian

ST. PETERSBURG —Admiral Farragut got off to an impressive start this season, beating Delray Beach Village Academy and Auburndale Kingdom Prep by a combined 75-6.But the Blue Jackets knew the real test came Thursday with a home...
Published: 09/14/18
Chamberlain senior Brian Casazza stands out for his lustrous locks and play at linebacker. (Special to the Times)

Grab Bag: Lots of locks to love at Chamberlain

Brian Casazza is covered in protective gear, just like everyone else. But the Chamberlain senior linebacker still is able to stand out thanks to his helmet-defying hair.Casazza's long, blond locks flow down his back, hiding most of his...
Published: 09/13/18
The Springstead football team takes the field prior to the start of last week's game vs. rival Nature Coast. (MARTHA ASENCIO RHINE | Times)

HomeTeam 15: Football predictions (w/ video)

Our staffers’ predictions for our spotlight games of the week:East Lake at Pinellas Park, 7:30 Rodney Page: Pinellas Park 17-16Bob Putnam: Pinellas Park 28-20
Published: 09/13/18
Agiye Hall has made an instant impact this season as a sophomore receiver for Armwood. (SCOTT PURKS | Special to the Times)

HomeTeam Hot Shot winners: Agiye Hall and Audrey Koenig

Our athletes of the week, with performances spanning Sept. 1-7:Agiye Hall, ArmwoodLast week's clash between rivals Armwood and Plant was peppered with big hits, coaching creativity and success or failure in the red...
Published: 09/10/18
Jesuit quarterback Kiael Kelly threw for 185 yards and three touchdowns in a 35-10 win over Steinbrenner on Friday. (Courtesy of Jesuit)

Sunday Morning QB: Week 3 highlights and a war of words

Rivalry matchups always lead to entertaining results (read to the end):Player of the WeekKiael Kelly, Jesuit: Since transferring from Tampa Catholic this summer, Kelly had been battling to become the starting...
Published: 09/09/18