April 11, 2021

APSU Former Head Coach Gary McClure Recalls 2013 Indiana Regionals vs. Florida

Gary McClure

Gary McClure has never been one to back down from a challenge. So when his team, the Austin Peay State University Governors, was selected to open the 2013 NCAA Tournament against Florida, the veteran baseball coach didn’t back down. In the following interview, Gary McClure recalls the events leading up to that monumental game.

Interviewing Experts: Good evening and thank you for taking time out to speak with us today.

Gary McClure: It’s my pleasure.

Interviewing Experts: Where did Austin Peay rank prior to facing off with Florida?

Gary McClure: We were #21 in Baseball America and ranked #25 by the NCBWA, and our RPI was in the top 25 in the country as well.

Interviewing Experts: How did you feel knowing you were going up against such a decorated team?

Gary McClure: It was nerve-racking, I mean everyone is very good when you get to the NCAA tournament, but we knew they had a pitcher who was projected to go in the first round of the upcoming draft and that we would be facing him. You also worry a little about the reputation a program like Florida has, but truthfully we didn’t think that would be much of a factor because we had been battle tested in big games over the past three seasons. To be honest, when it really came down to it we felt like we were the better team overall. We were the second seed and deserved that while the Gators were third, but the bottom line is that it’s all decided on the field and you only get one shot at it.

Interviewing Experts: Where was the game hosted?

Gary McClure: At the University of Indiana’s Bart Kaufman field.

Interviewing Experts: Why was APSU’s second-seeding significant?

Gary McClure: It was the highest for any OVC team in history.

Interviewing Experts: That’s a pretty impressive accomplishment.

Gary McClure: Thank you, our players deserved it.

Interviewing Experts: The Governors had faced other SEC teams in 2013, right?

Gary McClure: We had, which made it even more interesting. We lost matchups against the University of Kentucky and Mississippi State during the regular season.Both were tight games and also in the one stretch of the season we were not playing very well.

Interviewing Experts: How did Austin Peay wind up in the tournament?

Gary McClure: We had won the OVC Tournament and earned the automatic bid. However, with our RPI and record we would have got an at large bid had we lost in the tournament.

Interviewing Experts: That was not your first OVC Tournament victory, was it?

Gary McClure: No, 2013 was our third straight Championship win.

Interviewing Experts: That’s very remarkable.

Gary McClure: I won’t deny that. It was actually only the second time in history an OVC team earned an appearance in three consecutive NCAA tournaments.

Interviewing Experts: Who were your notable players for this competition?

Gary McClure: I’ll be honest, that’s a tough question because we had so many great ones on that particular team. Seven players went on to professional baseball, and we had both the OVC Pitcher of the Year and OVC Player of the year on that team in Tyler Rogers and Craig Massoni.

Interviewing Experts: This was pretty close to the time you were about to break a record yourself, wasn’t it?

Gary McClure: Yes, I didn’t realize it then, but we were just two wins away from breaking the OVC All-Time Wins record held by Western Kentucky University since 1980.

Interviewing Experts: We understand this game was a reunion of sorts for one of your players. Can you tell us about it?

Gary McClure: Florida Gator Jonathan Crawford was a team mate of the Governors’ Jordan Hankins on the 2012 USA College National Team.

Interviewing Experts: That had to have been awkward…

Gary McClure: Not really. Both players are true professionals and have a great respect for one another. When you start playing on the national level as we were, the more that happens.

Interviewing Experts:  That’s how it should be.

Gary McClure: I agree completely and I’m glad their paths were able to cross once again. Thats one of the neat things about athletics. Sometimes you compete with someone as teammates and sometimes you compete against them.

Gary McClure is the former head coach of the Austin Peay Governors baseball team. McClure retired in 2015 as the winningest coach ever in the OVC.

Edmond Dentist Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS Explains the Link between Oral Health and Overall Health

Edmond DentistGum infections can lead to heart disease, diabetes, and other health conditions, according to Dr. Damon R. Johnson. Here, the Edmond dentist opens up about why cavities aren’t the only issue that can arise from poor oral hygiene.

Interviewing Experts: Before we begin we wanted to thank you, Dr. Johnson, for taking your valuable time to chat with us today.

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: It’s not a problem at all. I’m glad to have the opportunity.

Interviewing Experts: We would like to start a series on health. We understand that the mouth is regarded among dental professionals as the portal to the rest of the body. Is that true?

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: It is. Germs that build up in the mouth can enter the body…

Interviewing Experts: Is there a link between infections of the mouth and diseases of the body?

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: There is. A long-term mouth infection may increase a person’s risk to contract a number of illnesses. Diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and pregnancy complications included.

Interviewing Experts: How much more likely are people with gum disease to suffer with heart problems?

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: Studies have found that coronary heart disease occurs twice as often in people with periodontitis.

Interviewing Experts: Does bone loss of the mouth increase the risk of stroke?

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: Yes, it can. Gum disease can trigger atherosclerotic plaques, a risk factor in stroke and heart attack.

Interviewing Experts: How is periodontal disease related to diabetes?

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: It’s unclear how, but researchers have found evidence that gum disease has a negative effect on metabolism which can lead to pre-diabetes.

Interviewing Experts: And if it’s treated…?

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: Type II diabetics that seek dental treatment for periodontal disease have fewer instances of a condition known as oxidative stress.

Interviewing Experts: What is that?

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: Oxidative stress is when the body has a lower than normal level of antioxidants – molecules that inhibit the oxidation of damage to the body’s other cells.

Interviewing Experts: Aside from the telltale swollen, bleeding gums… I understand that periodontal disease is no joke…

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: Not at all. Some studies have even linked gum disease to depression, stress, and a host of other mental health concerns.

Interviewing Experts: I get the feeling that’s not the worst of it.

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: I wish it was. Untreated early-onset periodontal disease may quadruple a person’s chances of Alzheimer’s disease. Scientists are still working to find the conclusive link, but the research is promising enough that gum disease might just be a preventable risk factor for this debilitating brain disease.

Interviewing Experts: You mentioned pregnancy complications…?

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: One of the most concerning things I can tell my expecting patients is that their babies may be at-risk of low birth weight and even prematurity if they have gum disease. That’s why it’s so important for pregnant women to maintain a relationship with their dentist.

Interviewing Experts: What other major organs can poor oral health affect?

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: If you want the short answer: all of them.

Interviewing Experts: Even the kidneys?

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: Yes, unfortunately. Failure to care for teeth properly may actually lead to kidney disease and even worse, if left unchecked, renal failure.

Interviewing Experts: All of this sounds like we need to go brush our teeth right now!

Edmond Dentist, Dr. Damon R. Johnson: I’d say that’s not such a bad idea.

Fred Wehba | God’s Presence a Gift

Fred WehbaDoes God change lives? This question and more is answered here by Fred Wehba, who believes that God’s gifts should never be hidden but shared with all.

Q: Thank you for taking time out to chat with us today.

Fred Wehba: It’s always a pleasure.

Q: It seems as though you are one of the most outspoken Christians in the business world today. Would you mind talking with us about your faith and how it’s affected your life?

Fred Wehba: I would be honored and am always willing to speak to anyone interested in hearing about my faith.

Q: Were you always a devout Christian?

Fred Wehba: I believe that, like most, my faith has grown with age and experience. I was raised to love God but I don’t think you truly understand how important that love is until you are older.

Q: How does your faith affect your daily decisions?

Fred Wehba: In business?

Q: In every aspect of your life…

Fred Wehba: The fact that God exists is a gift to be celebrated with every breath.  I try to go about every day keeping in mind that all I do is because of Him.

Q: Everything…?

Fred Wehba: Absolutely! When you have a strong faith, you know that all you have is because of His gifts…His sacrifices… His love. Even the way that you interact with people is different once your faith becomes your foundation.

Q: How’s that?

Fred Wehba: You understand that we are all made in God’s image and thus everyone deserves our love the same way they deserve God’s.

Q: That’s really an amazing way to look at life.

Fred Wehba: Every aspect of my life is touched by the grace of God.

Q: Do you feel that this belief has impacted your professional successes?

Fred Wehba: I have never considered myself successful in the traditional sense. Money isn’t what makes one prosperous. It’s what you do with the assets you are given that determine your true wealth.

Q: What do you mean by “the assets you are given?” Hasn’t hard work played a role in your business?

Fred Wehba: Of course it has. You cannot expect to thrive in any endeavor without hard work. But, without God’s gifts of talents, drive, and determination, there would be no successes.

Q: It’s amazing how each person has a different combination of these attributes.

Fred Wehba: It is, indeed. God knows what He is doing and had a plan for each one of us before we were ever conceived. And it’s such a blessing when you are able to receive and share His gifts.

Q: So God changes lives?

Fred Wehba: It’s not really fair to say that God changes lives in the sense that our lives could have been different if not for our acceptance of Him; God knew all along when we would learn to follow our faith. Our lives are laid out in a perfect path before us but it’s when He allows us to receive Him that our sight is clear.

Q: That’s something to ponder on. We thank you again, Fred Wehba, for taking the time to speak with us today.

Fred Wehba: Please feel free to contact me any time.

Characteristics of a Productive Working Environment

Productive-OfficeThink about this, if two managers are equally good with their skills but only one is a team player, who will the boss hire or promote? The answer is obvious. Employers do not only want professional expertise and experience in their employees, they are also looking for other qualities: character traits for building rapports with customer and co-workers, interpersonal skills and communication skills.

Here are tips to using professional expertise and great leadership qualities to create a productive working environment.

Offer challenging, interesting work

Give your employees work that will challenge them and keep them busy. It will raise their self-esteem because they understand that you have faith in them. When employees stay involved in challenging and interesting work, they become more passionate and enjoy their work more. [Read more…]

Maternity Leave Serves as Major Topic of Discussion Among U.S. Workers

According to the International Labor Organization of the United Nations, the United States is currently the only country in the developed world without paid maternity leave as mandated by the government. In most cases, paid maternity leave is included as part of Social Security programs so that companies are not forced to bear the cost.

Maternity Leave a Rare Commodity in U.S. Companies

The Labor Department has reported that state and corporate benefits only cover approximately 12 percent of all private employees. Few U.S. states – Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Hawaii and California – currently have paid-maternity-leave laws on the books. The ILO has performed numerous studies that demonstrate how difficult the transition can be for mothers who have insufficient maternity leave. Forced to return to the office or face serious consequences, mothers often compromise their health and the health of their newborn babies. The major issues cited in these studies include higher rates of hospitalization and infant illness, challenges with breast-feeding, and bouts with postpartum depression. [Read more…]

Study: iPhone Remains Number-One Among U.S. Smartphone Consumers

iphone_4sAmong the four major smartphone carriers in the United States, iPhone receives the most kudos from customers, according to a new survey by J.D. Power.

The survey examined the perspectives of customers of AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon on their overall satisfaction with these providers’ most popular inventory items. Research was performed over a five-month period ending in February 2014. On a scale of 1000 points, Apple devices received high scores among all participants (849 – Verizon; 853 – T-Mobile; 857 – Sprint; 850 – AT&T).

Over 20 percent of all smartphone owners noted that “price” was the leading factor in their purchasing decision, followed by customer satisfaction and future loyalty. Some smartphone owners cited “features” as the most important aspect, but that rate now lies at 35 percent, compared with 57 percent just three years ago. [Read more…]

Give Me a Break: U.S. Employees Say Skipping Rest Times Leads to Stress and Exhaustion

StressBy encouraging employees to take a break now and then, businesses can improve productivity and output, according to a new study.

Staples conducted a study of U.S. employees and found that over 85 percent of employees believe occasional breaks would make them much more productive. Over one-quarter of these employees currently count lunch as their only time of rest during the workday.

Guilt was cited as the most common reason (19 percent) that employees failed to step away from their desks. Meanwhile, 55 percent of respondents said they don’t have the time necessary for taking a break. [Read more…]

Great Careers for Every Industry

Most people believe that a good job these days means a degree in information technology. While it’s true that IT professionals are today’s most in-demand white collar worker, there are still hundreds of vocations that don’t require eye (and brain) strain.

Business Jobs

Market Research Analyst is a nifty job title and a great career for those who want to be “in the know” all the time. These are the people that watch what other people are buying and make sure their clients have the best and most innovative products for their customers. Starting Salary: $43,000

An Accountant is a financial expert who maintains the flow of a company’s (or individual’s) money. Essentially, an accountant accounts for where money is spent, where it’s going to be spent, and when more is coming in. Starting Salary:  $49,000 [Read more…]

Study: Millennials Less Likely to Brush Up on Employee Benefits

The 2014 Employee Benefits Communications survey by GuideSpark has given some interesting insight as to how employees – especially those born in the late 20th century – are accessing information about their benefits.

The traditional methods of benefits have fallen by the wayside due to the way people are finding information today. Meanwhile, the emergence of new Web-based communication channels – like mobile and video – are making handbooks and brochures ineffective.

Less than 25 percent of Millennials said the employee handbook was “very helpful,” while 11 percent said they didn’t read it at all. Employees of all ages say that benefits make a significant impact in their decision to choose (87 percent) or stay with an employer. [Read more…]