Home Grown

Written by Craig Outhier Category: Valley News Issue: October 2014
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It was a bullish NFL draft for former Valley prepsters last May, with three local alum snapped up in the first four rounds: Brophy Prep linebacker Trent Murphy (Washington Redskins), Chaparral offensive tackle Taylor Lewan (Tennessee Titans) and Canyon del Oro running back Ka’Deem Carey (Chicago Bears). The downside, if you want to call it that: Only one of the players, University of Arizona product Carey, kept his talents in the state when it came to picking a college football program.

Does Arizona have a talent-retention problem? Maybe. Though Arizona high schools produced eight of the nation’s top 250 players in 2014, only two remained in state, placing both ASU and the U of A in the bottom 10 nationally for in-state retention among Division I programs (see chart). Not that you can blame Murphy – the guy had a full ride to Stanford. And now he’s creaming running backs in the NFC East. Smart guy.

Bottom 10 Programs for In-State Retention

School | Total In-State Top 250 Players | Signed | Percentage

Florida | 31 | 4 | 12.9%
Univ. Arizona | 8 | 1 | 12.5%
Arizona State | 8 | 1 | 12.5%
Rutgers | 8 | 1 | 12.5%
NC State | 10 | 1 | 10%
California | 22 | 4 | 4.5%
Illinois | 8 | 0 | 0%
Penn State | 5 | 0 | 0%
Clemson | 5| 0| 0%
Virginia Tech | 7 | 0 | 0%

Source: 247 Sports





{Don't Need No Sex-u-cation?}
Arizona's teen pregnancy rate is sixth-highest in the nation at 82 pregnancies per 1,000 teens. But not everyone agrees about the best way to address the problem. Sex-education curricula offered by select Valley school districts:
Gilbert: Abstinence-based education for 8th graders.
Chandler: Abstinence-based for 6th, 8th and 10th graders.
Deer Valley: No sex education for grades 6-8.
Kyrene: Shifted gears in 2010; from contraception-based to abstinence-only.
Tempe Union: Two-week district-developed curriculum based on contraception currently under review.



Card-Carrying Locavore
Want to give the gift of locally-inspired cuisine this holiday season? Local First Arizona honcho Kimber Lanning offers the Devour Gift Card. Inspired by LFA's annual Devour food festival, and available in increments ranging from $10 to $100, the card is redeemable at any of 25 member  restaurants in the Valley. So: Having trouble getting Uncle Ted to try the Tuck Shop? Force the issue.


“Arizonans strongly support innovative companies and will welcome Algenol Biofuels as well as thousands of jobs and an $800 million investment.”
– Congressman Paul Gosar, in September, after writing an Arizona Delegation letter urging Algenol Biofuels CEO Paul Woods to select Arizona as the site of a new facility. Later that month, Arizona lost its bid for Tesla Motor’s new $5 billion battery plant.