Ice Cube (1990-1994) – Spotify Playlist

The four albums that unleashed the solo career of Ice Cube into the world are a treasure in the history of hip hop.

Whereas stereotypes have largely perpetrated rap in certain ways over the past couple decades, the initial era of the former backbone of N.W.A. is worthy of revisiting as he’s helped legitimize social concerns for an entire group of people.

Once you get past the menacing attitude of the production and equally intimidating delivery of the emcee, there’s lots of depth to peel back within each album. Ice Cube in the early 1990s comes complete with commentary matching the times, which can be tough to digest upon first sitting if hesitant to soak it all in.

There’s scathing tracks about corruption of law enforcement and the prison system, and government degradation and racial tension, and tales of street life and sexual relations. It’s all packaged with punk rock bravado from a ghetto-American point of view.

(more…)

Apopka knocks off nation’s No. 1 high school baseball team

WINTER GARDEN, Fla. – The No. 1 high school baseball team in the nation fell from the ranks of the unbeaten Friday as Orlando Olympia was crushed 8-4 by Apopka in the Class 8A, District 3 title game.

The loss means the Titans (25-1-1) go on the road in the opening round of the region playoffs. Apopka, which lost two games to Olympia each by 2-0 margins, starts the postseason at home with a potential rematch looming in the second round.

Olympia went 29-0 in 2012 before losing in the region championship game.

On Friday Apopka right-hander Nick Barber pieced together an impressive game on the mound until Olympia began rallying in the final inning while down 8-1. A double by Kirk Sidwell, single by Drenis Ozuna and 2-RBI triple by Juan Hillman was not enough though as Barber finished with eight strikeouts against six hits.

(Read more about Apopka’s 8-4 win over Olympia at Orlando Sentinel)

Barber yielded three singles in the fourth inning after working three up and three down over the first three innings. He also finished 2-for-4 at the plate with a double and RBI.

(more…)

National No. 1 Olympia High School turns in unbeaten regular season

ORLANDO, Fla. – A come-from-behind win on the final day of the regular season kept Orlando’s Olympia High School atop the MaxPreps national high school baseball rankings this week.

The No. 1 Titans became just the second team in Central Florida history to make it through the regular season without a blemish on its record. But it’s an elusive trip to the state final four that would be most satisfying as playoff qualifiers get underway this week.

The Titans face Ocoee on Wednesday in their Class 8A, District 3 opener, just four days after local rival Dr. Phillips had their backs against the wall late in the season finale.

Olympia scored seven runs in the final three innings to win 9-5 (in eight innings) and improve to 100-12-1 since 2012, which happens to be the last time Olympia went unbeaten before losing in the region title game to finish 29-1.

(Read more about Olympia’s win over Dr. Phillips at Orlando Sentinel)

“They just believe they’re going to win,” Olympia coach Chuck Schall said. “Even at the end there when we’re down, there’s not a guy on that bench that doesn’t think we’re going to come back.”

(more…)

Let’s be honest, Lawrence Phillips never stood a chance

Lawrence Phillips with the St. Louis Rams and University of Nebraska Cornhuskers

Lawrence Phillips with the St. Louis Rams and University of Nebraska Cornhuskers

Take a quick glance back at the life of Lawrence Phillips and it’s not hard to imagine how he ended up residing in a California prison.

If it was uncontrollable rage that drove Phillips to succeed on the football field, it was fueled by an unsettling mixture of abuse, neglect and a lack of trust in others during his formative years.

When news broke this week accusing the former University of Nebraska, National Football League, NFL Europe, and Canadian Football League running back of murdering a cellmate, you’d have been hard-pressed to find anyone surprised at such allegations.

His rap sheet speaks for itself.

(more…)

Roots Manuva – “Stolen Youth”

I’ve always been attracted to the imagery of the music video. Too bad they don’t get much play anymore on television.

But the beautiful thing about the technology of the world today is that the music video fan has taken over where the big-budget directors have left off. So take that, MTV.

The “Stolen Youth” track by Roots Manuva has gotten the DIY treatment by Karina Tolmacheva and Balazs Kajcsa, each of whom captured its essence in different ways while adding to how powerful the song already is on its own.

(more…)

Adrian Gonzalez off to monster MLB start with Los Angeles Dodgers

There’s one player that stands head and shoulders above the rest less than a week into the Major League Baseball season. On Wednesday, first baseman Adrian Gonzalez blasted three home runs in his first three at-bats to help the host Los Angeles Dodgers take two of three from the San Diego Padres.

Perhaps even more impressive is that Gonzalez has opened the season batting 10-for-13 with 5 homers, 7 RBI, 7 runs scored and 27 total bases. In just three games.

Gonzalez finished 4-for-4 Wednesday after going 3-for-4 on Tuesday and 3-for-5 on Monday.

Six different players have recorded six hits so far this week while five others have each connected on two home runs.

It’s to be noted that announcer Vin Scully mentions in the video above that the last player to start a Dodgers season with homers in his first three games was Jimmy Wynn, who played in L.A. from 1974-75.

Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders talks Alonzo Mourning and health of Chris Bosh & Larry Nance Jr.

Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders joined me Saturday to talk about recent stories he’s written about Alonzo Mourning’s thoughts on the game today, Chris Bosh recovering from blood clots, and Larry Nance Jr. hoping to play in NBA despite battling Crohn’s disease.

Kennedy got Mourning’s take on the state of the big man in the National Basketball Association and talked about how his own issues with blood clots and Crohn’s disease played a part in stories he wrote on both Bosh and Nance Jr.

( – Click here to listen to Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders on Carnahan Chronicles – )

Adam Markowitz of ArenaFan talks Orlando Predators & bright future of Arena Football League

Adam Markowitz of ArenaFan joined me Saturday to talk about the resurgence of the Orlando Predators and Arena Football League, which recently opened its 28th season of operation with teams in 12 different cities.

Markowitz talked about the AFL record the Preds set on Friday on the road at Jacksonville and how former starting quarterback Bernard Morris played a key part. He also talked about how owner David Siegel has helped to revive the franchise in Orlando and how the AFL has plans in place to help the league continue to grow in the coming years.

( – Click here to listen to Adam Markowitz of ArenaFan on Carnahan Chronicles – )

Devon Jeffreys of Football Insiders talks Cowboys, Bills, Eagles, Buccaneers & Jaguars offseason

Devon Jeffreys of Football Insiders joined me Saturday to talk about recent stories he’s written about Dallas Cowboys linebacker Rolando McClain, Rex Ryan taking over the Buffalo Bills, and Chip Kelly’s offseason gambles with the Philadelphia Eagles.

Jeffreys also talked about what’s stood out to him as of late in regard to how close National Football League teams from the state of Florida are to making a return to the postseason.

( – Click here to listen to Devon Jeffreys of Football Insiders on Carnahan Chronicles – )

Orlando Sentinel prep editor talks rise of Montverde Academy basketball & No. 1 Olympia baseball

Buddy Collings of the Orlando Sentinel joined me Saturday to talk about the emergence of Montverde Academy as a national high school basketball powerhouse and the odds of Orlando’s Olympia High School, the No. 1 baseball team in the nation, at winning the state title this year.

Montverde Academy, led by LSU commit Ben Simmons, won its third national title in a row on Saturday. Collings also talked about how Simmons, named national player of the year by numerous organizations, lost out on the Mr. Basketball award in Florida to fellow LSU commit Antonio Blakeney of Orlando’s Oak Ridge High School.

( – Click here to listen to Buddy Collings of Orlando Sentinel on Carnahan Chronicles – )

UCF Sports publisher talks Breshad Perriman, UCF football, baseball & UCF Athletics Hall of Fame

Brandon Helwig of UCF Sports joined me Saturday to talk about the rising draft stock of former UCF wide receiver Breshad Perriman, the holes UCF is looking to fill this spring in the secondary and at wide receiver, and the current state of the No. 6 UCF baseball program.

Helwig rounded up the segment by talking about the upcoming UCF Athletics Hall of Fame induction of former football player Asante Samuel, football and baseball player Dee Brown, softball player Stephanie Best and the 1978 UCF volleyball team.

( – Click here to listen to Brandon Helwig of UCF Sports on Carnahan Chronicles – )

Top high school baseball team in nation remains unbeaten

ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. – When you’re the No. 1 high school baseball team in the nation, in both the USA Today and MaxPreps rankings, each game feels like so much is on the line.

Olympia baseball

Olympia won the Florida League High School Invitational on Saturday to improve to 17-0-1.

Orlando’s Olympia High School improved to 17-0-1 on the season Saturday while defending its Florida League High School Invitational title with a 2-0 win over Pembroke Pines Charter at Lake Brantley High School.

The national attention will continue to follow the Titans as they near postseason play.

“We try not to focus on that,” Olympia coach Chuck Schall said. “The rankings and all that, it’s always there, but we try not to let those expectations dictate how we play.

“Every time we win these close ballgames it just makes us tougher.”

Olympia is winning close games thanks to a stable of quality pitchers and equally impressive efforts defensively.

(Read more about Olympia’s recent win at Orlando Sentinel and 740 The Game)

(more…)

Run Them Jewels Fast

El-P and Killer Mike have been delivering the goods as Run The Jewels for more than two years.

On “Close Your Eyes (And Count to Fuck)” they employ former Rage Against The Machine frontman Zack de la Rocha for additional social commentary on one of the most outstanding tracks from their new album Run The Jewels 2. They then took things to an entirely new level with the release of the music video this week.

Described as “an artistic, playful, yet painful look at the modern day struggle between our everyday citizens and law enforcement,” the visuals brought to life by AG Rojas are powerful.

At its conclusion it’s as if each side has decided it’s far too much hassle to be hassling each other in the first place. Decide for yourself…

Carnahan Chronicles Radio: Sam Gardner of FOX Sports talks 1985 Villanova championship team

Three of the four NCAA Tournament games played in Jacksonville in the Round of 64 were decided by three points or less, highlighted by a memorable upset of No. 3 Baylor by No. 14 Georgia State.

Arkansas, North Carolina and Xavier also advanced and Sam Gardner of FOX Sports was there to see it all play out.

Gardner joined the show Saturday to talk about the start of the tourney. He also shared details about recent interviews he conducted with players and coaches from the 1985 Villanova men’s basketball championship team for an anniversary story that was published earlier this week.

Read about the improbable journey for that Villanova squad at FOXSports.com and keep up with Gardner on Twitter for more out of Jacksonville.