John's Journal
Arizona, Minnesota Celebrate McDaniel's Hall Of Fame Induction7/2/2011
Twelve people were inducted into the National High School Hall of Fame on Saturday night at the Marriott Hotel in downtown Philadelphia. Among them was Randall McDaniel, who was a high school star in Arizona and has called Minnesota home since 1988, when he was drafted in the first round by the Vikings.

As McDaniel was introduced as a new Hall of Famer during a formal ceremony in a ballroom Saturday, contingents from both the MSHSL and the Arizona Interscholastic Association stood and applauded. Before the Hall of Fame dinner, the MSHSL group was invited to a private reception for McDaniel hosted by the AIA.

Each new Hall of Famer was featured in a video montage about their high school careers. McDaniel’s video began with footage of him lining up as a blocking back with the Vikings and obliterating a would-be tackler. He was a two-time all-state selection in football and basketball before graduating from Agua Fria High School in Avondale, Arizona, in 1983. He still holds the Agua Fria school record in the 100-meter dash. He also never missed a day of school.

He played tight end and linebacker in high school, and there were only 22 players on the Agua Fria football team when he was a senior. “But everybody knew they were in a game when they played us,” he said in the video that was displayed on two giant video screens in the ballroom.

He also said, “Learning how to be a good sportsman, you learn that in high school.”

During his 2009 Pro Football Hall of Fame induction speech, McDaniel talked about the start he got as a young man in high school, thanking all the people who helped him along the way. He touched on that theme again Saturday night, saying, “Everything I learned (in high school) was about working hard, being a good citizen and giving back.”

--Saturday’s other inductees included Arkansas high school baseball star and major leaguer Kevin McReynolds; Olympic wrestling champion Kenny Monday, who never lost a high school match in Oklahoma; Pennsylvania basketball legend Billy Owens, who played 10 years in the NBA; and Michigan high school football/basketball/baseball star Brad Van Pelt, who played 14 years in the NFL.
Randall McDaniel Becomes A Hall Of Famer … Again6/30/2011
Randall McDaniel had a sterling 14-year career with the Minnesota Vikings and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, playing in 12 consecutive Pro Bowls. The offensive lineman, who spent his first 12 seasons with the Vikings, was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2009. He is joining another Hall of Fame this week with his induction into the National High School Hall of Fame.

He is one of 12 individuals who will be inducted in the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) National High School Hall of Fame on Saturday, July 2 at the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown in Philadelphia. The 29th Hall of Fame induction ceremony is the closing event of the 92nd annual NFHS Summer Meeting.

McDaniel was a three-year varsity starter and two-time all-state selection in football and basketball at Agua Fria High School in Avondale, Arizona. He also played baseball and participated in track and field, setting the school record in the 100-meter dash as a senior. He was an All-American at Arizona State University before his NFL career.He also is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame.

The National High School Hall of Fame was started in 1982 by the NFHS to honor high school athletes, coaches, contest officials, administrators, fine arts coaches/directors and others for their extraordinary achievements and accomplishments in high school sports and activity programs. This year’s class increases the number in the Hall of Fame to 386.

The 12 individuals were chosen after a two-level selection process involving a screening committee composed of active high school state association administrators, coaches and officials, and a final selection committee composed of coaches, former athletes, state association officials, media representatives and educational leaders. Nominations were made through NFHS member associations.
A Fantastic June Evening For All-Star Football6/26/2011
The 38th annual Minnesota High School All-Star Football Game was held Saturday night at TCF Bank Stadium on the campus of the University of Minnesota, and it was a great show on a beautiful evening in a beautiful setting.

The game showcases outstanding senior players from the 2010 high school football season, with players and coaches representing 79 schools and 33 conferences, all selected by members of the Minnesota Football Coaches Association.

The game had been played at St. Cloud State since 2005. Another change this year was that instead of having Metro and Outstate teams (as has been done since 1980), the players were split into North and South squads.

The North won Saturday’s game 17-7, scoring touchdowns on a 3-yard run by Brainerd’s Jordan Hayes and a 34-yard interception return by Eric Riley of Morris. The South’s touchdown came on a short pass from Hopkins’ Billy Gregg to Ryan Woodard of Winona.

--To see a photo gallery from the game, go to the MSHSL Facebook page.

*Schools/teams John has visited: 821
*Miles John has driven: 11,029
Today's The Day: Play Ball!6/22/2011
After a one-day weather delay, the state championship baseball games will be played today at Target Field. Here’s the schedule:

Class 1A at noon: Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial (25-3) vs. Eden Valley-Watkins (22-2).

Class 2A at 3 p.m.: St. Cloud Cathedral (23-3) vs. LaCrescent (25-3).

Class 3A at 6 p.m.: Burnsville (23-3) vs. Maple Grove (26-1).

Tickets are a bargain. They cost only $10 for adults and $7 for students. Fans will be allowed to leave the ballpark and re-enter.

See you at the game!

Radio And Internet Coverage Of Today’s Baseball Games6/22/2011
All of today’s three state championship games at Target Field will be available on the internet as well as on many local radio stations around Minnesota. Here’s where to find the action…

On the Internet/ GrandStadium’s webcast can be found at Minnesota Sports Broadcast Network will carry internet audio at

And here’s the radio lineup…

Class 1A/ KBEX in Mora, KDUZ/KARP in Hutchinson, KLFD in Litchfield, KYSM in Mankato and KNUJ in New Ulm.

Class 2A/ KXSS in St. Cloud, WBHR in Sauk Centre, KNSI in St. Cloud.

Class 3A/ No radio.