Ernest Hooper - Assistant Sports Editor

Assistant Sports Editor

When I look in the mirror every morning, I realize I like the guy looking back at me. Don't get me wrong. The man in the mirror comes with flaws. He needs to eat less, exercise more and try not to get so caught up in his own thoughts. But I still like him. I like having a wife willing to put up with all my flaws after nearly three decades of marriage. I like that God has blessed me with three children -- two sons and a daughter -- who have grown to become great young adults. I like that every morning I awaken excited about journalism, the awesome opportunity to connect with readers in ways both big and small. I love coffee, but serving Times readers represent my true caffeine. Most of all, I like that guy looking back at me -- all of his loves, all of his memories and all of his weird personality traits -- because he's still pushing to do more, be more and learn more. Nothing matters more than looking in that mirror and appreciating the man who looks back at me because that drives me to be better.

  1. USF and Brandon High alumnus Scott Glaser is the new Gasparilla Bowl executive director. [GABRIEL BURGOS  |  ESPN Events]
  2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Vernon III Hargreaves kneels in the end zone after a Nov. 13 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. He was cut by the Bucs and picked up by the Texans. [JOHN FROSCHAUER  |  AP]
  3. Nearly 40 high school teams, including Durant and Sickles, and more than 1,000 girls participated in the Bucs inaugural flag football tournament earlier this year. Now the team has created an academic scholarship fund for girls who play. []
  4. Linebacker Whitney Mercilus (59) and the Houston Texans will play the Bucs at Raymond James Stadium on Saturday, Dec. 21. [ERIC CHRISTIAN SMITH  |  AP]
  5. Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) celebrates his touchdown during the second half of the team's 49-13 win over the Bengals. [FRANK VICTORES  |  AP]
  6. Bucs running back Peyton Barber (25) rushes past Arizona Cardinals linebacker Joe Walker (59) for a one-yard touchdown, the lead, and eventually the win, 30-27, during the fourth quarter of the game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday at Raymond James Stadium. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Tampa Bay Times]
  7. Nov. 9, 2019• Bucs
    Fans celebrate a touchdown in the third quarter by the Bucs in their season opener against the 49ers at Raymond James Stadium. [MARTHA ASENCIO-RHINE  |  Times]
  8. Look for an aerial show when Arizona's Kyler Murray and Tampa Bay's Jameis Winston meet up Sunday at Raymond James Stadium. [Associated Press]
  9. Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) scrambles away from Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul (90) during overtime of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 3, 2019, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer) [JOHN FROSCHAUER  |  AP]
  10. Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) runs with the ball against the New England Patriots during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 3, 2019, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Gail Burton) [GAIL BURTON  |  AP]
  11. The Lightning gather during practice at Hovet Arena after arriving in Stockholm, Sweden Sunday. [DIANA C. NEARHOS  |  Diana C. Nearhos | Tampa Bay Times]
  12. Bucs linebacker Lavonte David (54) walks off the field after a 27-24 overtime loss to the Seahawks on Nov. 3, 2013. Tampa Bay again plays in Seattle six years to the date of that last loss. [Tampa Bay Times]
  13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Ronald Jones (27) warms up before the Tampa Bay Buccaneers game against the New York Giants at Raymond James Stadium on September 22, 2019 in Tampa, Florida.  [MONICA HERNDON  |  Times]
  14. What does Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew's performances have to do with the future of the Bucs? Maybe nothing. Maybe everything. [STEPHEN B. MORTON  |  AP]
  15. Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) will look to be more physical when he takes on the Tennessee Titans Sunday. [BUTCH DILL  |  AP]
  16. Packers' Aaron Rodgers throws a touchdown pass in front of the Raiders' Johnathan Hankins Sunday. Rodgers threw for five touchdowns and rushed for a sixth for Green Bay. [JEFFREY PHELPS  |  AP]
  17. These are unquestionable the three greatest Bucs of all time. But who's the greatest? [Tampa Bay Times]
  18. What would separate Trent Dilfer from Vinny Testaverde and Jameis Winston? How about a visit to the postseason and a Pro Bowl invitation. [Tampa Bay Times]
  19. Steve Young was a supplemental draft pick of the Bucs in 1984 and started 19 games for Tampa Bay in 1985 and 1986 before he was traded to the 49ers for a pair of draft picks in 1987. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS [Tampa Bay Times]
  20. Bucs quarterback Josh Freeman turned in some quality seasons, but never reached the playoffs. [CLIFF MCBRIDE]
  21. Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) celebrates his touchdown against the Chiefs during the second half of the game in Kansas City. [ED ZURGA  |  AP]
  22. Carolina Panthers cornerback Javien Elliott (23) celebrates with teammates, including former Buc Gerald McCoy, after intercepting a Jameis Winston pass in London. [TIM IRELAND  |  AP]
  23. Bucs cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting and the Tampa Bay secondary will be tested again in London. Will they be ready for the challenge? [BUTCH DILL  |  AP]