The Trojan Torch

Dyersburg High School's online newspaper

2018 SEC Championship

Emmalynn VanDyke – Section Editor

The Alabama Crimson Tide and the Georgia Bulldogs competed in the annual SEC Championship game on Saturday, December 1. The game was held in Atlanta at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

  The first score of the game was a 20-yard touchdown by Georgia tight end Isaac Nauta. The kick made by Rodrigo Blankenship was good, putting Georgia in the lead 7-0.

  Alabama running back Josh Jacobs was the next score of the game. He ran a touchdown at the beginning of the 2nd quarter, putting Bama on the scoreboard. The score then became tied 7-7 when Joseph Bulovas was successful with his kick.

  Georgia then scored twice more in the second quarter, leaving Alabama trailing behind 21-14 at the half.

  After the half, Jake Fromm, Georgia starting quarterback, threw a 23 yard pass to Riley Ridley who scored another touchdown for the team. With 12:39 left in the 3rd quarter, Jaylen Waddle caught a 51-yard pass from Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, resulting in a touchdown for Alabama.

  The fourth quarter was a comeback for the Alabama Crimson Tide. Jerry Jeudy caught a pass from Jalen Hurts, ran a touchdown and tied the game 28-28. With 1:04 left in the game, Hurts ran a 15-yard touchdown putting Bama in the lead 35-28.

  “They just made more plays than us. Tough catches, tough throws, they were making them,” Georgia cornerback Deandre Baker said.

  As the clock ran out, the University of Alabama became the 2018 SEC Championships.

  After the game, Hurts tweeted: “You can’t stop what’s destined. THANK YOU LORD! #allglory2God #neverlosefaith #blessed #wow,” along with a picture of him and a few teammates under the celebratory confetti.



Maintenance crew named staff members of the month

Lexie George – Reporter 

Principal Kim Worley recently announced that a new tradition is beginning at Dyersburg High School. Starting this November, an individual will be picked to be that month’s staff member of the month.

The staff member of the month is chosen based on recommendations made by fellow faculty members. The staff member of the month for November is the entire maintenance crew.

Worley received numerous emails and comments nominating various members of the maintenance crew. There were comments made about their positive attitudes and great work ethic. Some teachers expressed their gratitude to the maintenance workers that kept a watchful eye over them while they worked late at night. Other teachers sent emails containing photos of their sparkling clean classrooms.

“I think it is a privilege to work in a building where our maintenance people take ownership in the building but also where others recognize their hard work,” Worley said.

“Our janitors work so hard to keep the place clean. They work late nights, and I admire how they treat everyone like good friends or even family. I think that they really deserved to be chosen as the first staff members of the month,” senior Hannah McDaniel said.

“We felt good when we were chosen. It’s always good to get a good report. It raises your self esteem and makes you feel good,” Leonard Glover said.

The maintenance crew are the unsung heroes of our school. It is very appropriate that they were the first people to be chosen and recognized as the staff members of the month. They are the ones who keep our school running safely and efficiently.


The last week in November

Sydney BevisOnline Editor

Here we are the last week in November, two weeks after the final football game of the Dyersburg Trojans historic undefeated regular season. The pads have been hung, the helmets put in their cubbies and the jerseys washed one last time.

  I have had the pleasure of dancing on the sidelines of JC Sawyers Stadium for the last four years, and I can assure you my high school experience would not have been the same without it.

  From my perspective, I got to experience every aspect of high school football. I got to yell and dance for my team. At away games I got to sit and experience the student section. I got to hear the “secret” coaches and player conversations. I got to do everything that I ever wanted to do by being down there on the sidelines.

  But the one thing that I did not get to do was be down there forever. I got 40 Friday nights, plus a few, and I took them all for granted. I took hearing Coach Bona yelling “keep on fighting” when we came back and beat Milan in the fourth quarter my sophomore year, for granted. I took the huddles with the mumbling of the Lord’s Prayer for granted. I took the freezing cold nights and the torrential downpours for granted, because if I could, I would go watch those boys play in Antarctica if it meant I got to do it all one more time.

  But the people are really what make it so special. Getting to watch your best friend make a tackle, or to look down the row of girls and realize that they are your sisters, and that some of them are yelling for something that they know nothing about.

  “So much blood, sweat, and tears put into this game. Everything we got we earned, and no one can take that away from us. This brotherhood is special and unforgettable. [I am] thankful for the game and all of these people,” senior football captain Sam Andrews said.

  I love sports, but there is just something special about being under those Friday night lights. So cherish it, whether you are a player, a dancer, a cheerleader, a band member, a coach or a fan. Because one day no matter what your role is, you will have a final season, a final game. An when you do I hope that you will have given it everything that you could, and that you will not take one moment for granted.


College Tuition Continues to Rise

Erin Bailey Reporter   

  In the United States, the cost of college tuition is steadily increasing.

  According to statistics from the College Board, the average price for tuition at a four-year private university has steadily risen to $34,740. These costs have surpassed the rate of inflation by more than 3 percentage points.

  “…(increasing college tuition) makes it harder for students to afford college, and then they take out student loans, which they have to pay off for the rest of their lives.” chemistry teacher Molly Escue said.

  In 1979 a college student who worked a 40-hour week at minimum wage ($2.90/hr) for one summer could pay for two semesters of school. Now, however, it would take 2,229 hours for someone working minimum wage in 2018 ($7.25/hr) to pay for two semesters.

  Although these prices may seem unaffordable, predicts over 19.9 million people will attend college in 2018; that number is expected rise to 20.5 million by 2027. More people are going to college than ever before. A 2016 Georgetown University study found that 99 percent of jobs created since the Great Recession have gone to workers with at least some college education.


Weight of the World

Ben Gregson  Reporter 

It is a thought that crosses most people’s mind on a daily basis: backpacks are heavy. While certainly an annoyance, does this delima have any long term repercussions to a student’s health?

  According to a study in Italy published in The Spine Journal, 60 percent of the 5,318 students interviewed experienced what they believe to be backpack-related pain. Research from the study shows that teenagers reported higher levels of pain than younger children, despite the fact that the children’s backpacks typically weighed more. This study suggests that it may not be the weight of the backpacks, but rather the time over years of schooling that kids spend carrying backpacks.

  Carrying a backpack in a specific way may be able to alleviate some of this pain. Doctor Scott Bautch suggests carrying the backpack evenly on both shoulders is most effective in avoiding back pain.

  “Studies have also shown that carrying loads unequally, such as when a child carries a backpack on one shoulder, can cause the more frequently loaded shoulder to be lower and may cause lateral spinal curves,” Bautch said.

  So next time you’re leaving a class late or making a fast-break for lunch, don’t sling your backpack; put it on correctly. Your back and future self will thank you.


Smart Mouth Pizza makes school lunch fresh

Kamil Yousuf Reporter

The Dyersburg High School cafeteria introduced a new brand of pizza and calzone known as Smart Mouth Pizza on November 8 in order to improve students’ experiences with school lunch food. Many students believe that this pizza significantly improves upon the previous school food.

  “Smart Mouth has the best [school] pizza I’ve eaten in a while,” sophomore Landon Fortner said.

  “I do like the new pizzas. Also, I like how there are more selections of different pizzas. And so far they all taste better than what the previous pizzas tasted like,” sophomore Nikolas Rockstead said.

  The school decided to switch to Smart Mouth Pizza because the cafeteria staff considered it to be a better alternative to the regular school pizza, which is frozen before arriving to the school.

 “[Unlike school pizza], this is fresh made everyday. I mean, the dough has to rise just like in a pizza shop,” cafeteria supervisor Cindy Sawyers said.    

  Smart Mouth Pizza has become one of the most popular vendors for school food across the state.  

  “Of all of the many vendors at the convention [for school nutrition], this pizza runs out every time,” Sawyers said.

  Smart Mouth sells pizza and calzones in several flavors, including Cheesy Bread, Pepperoni, Cheese Pizza, Italian Sausage, Barbeque Chicken, Cheeseburger Pizza, Balls of Fire, Veggie Pizza, Texas Special and Hawaiian. The school has already started selling Pepperoni, Cheese and Sausage Pizza, but is also considering selling the other flavors that Smart Mouth provides.

  “We might pick a flavor of the month after the pizza begins to sell well,” Sawyers said.

  Above all else, the primary reason Dyersburg High School switched to Smart Mouth Pizza was to give students food that they would enjoy.

  “We’re still trying to find stuff that [the students] will like to eat,” Sawyers said. “Food that tastes good.”


Thank You, Next Review

Emmalynn VanDyke Section Editor

Ariana Grande released her new song, “Thank You, Next” on November 3, 2018. The song is a timeline and breakdown of her love life.

  In the first verse, Grande lists her previous ex-boyfriends and comments on their relationships. She says, “Thought I’d end up with Sean, but he wasn’t a match,” referring to Big Sean, her partner from 2014 to mid 2015. The two were said to have broken up because of conflicting tour dates, but other situation have been rumored.

  Ricky Alvarez was her next ex mentioned in the verse. “Wrote some songs about Ricky, now I listen and laugh,” Ricky was her backup dancer and they dated from 2015 until July of 2016. Ariana’s songs “Moonlight” and “True Love” were written about him, and other songs were said to be about him as well.

  “Even almost got married, and for Pete I’m so thankful,” Pete Davidson was Ariana Grande’s latest relationship. The couple recently broke up, after being engaged for a few months.

  Mac Miller is Grande’s last ex mentioned in the first verse of the song. “Wish I could say ‘Thank You’ to Malcolm, ‘Cause he was an angel,” This lyric gives reference to Miller, who recently died from an accidental overdose earlier this year. Grande has openly spoken about how the passing of Miller affected her deeply.

  Later in the song, Grande speaks of how thankful she is for all of her exes because they all taught her something. She says how one taught her love, one taught her patience, and one taught her pain. This song is an allusion to all of the men who have affected her in some way or another during their relationships.

  Ariana Grande has been singing since 2013 and continues to empower those around her with her deep lyrics, always encouraging people to move on and do better.


James Charles Sister Collection

Sara Clifft – Section Editor

James Charles, a popular Youtube creator with over 9.4 million subscribers, is releasing his first makeup collection on November 13.

  The palette is in collaboration with Morphe, a long time supporter and partner with James Charles.

  Charles, who began his career as Covergirl’s first male ambassador in 2016, announced the release of his Sister Collection on his Youtube channel November 2. The collection includes a 39-shade eyeshadow palette which retails for $39 and a set of 34 brushes and a blending sponge for $149.

  The rainbow colored palette is comprised of a mixture of pressed pigments and eyeshadows.

  “Pressed pigments allow you to create the most vibrant product ever and I’m so incredibly proud of these,” James Charles said in his Youtube video.

  However some took issue with the palette, “It literally looks identical to almost every single Morphe palette,” junior Mary Grace Conner said.

  “I was super disappointed by his palette, I was expecting a lot more from James,” sophomore Bethany Pruitt said.

  Despite criticism, many are eagerly awaiting the launch of the Sister Collection.

  “I honestly can’t wait for his new palette. I can’t wait to play around with all those colors,” sophomore Sydney Peckenpaugh said.

  The collection is set to launch on November 13 at 8 am PST on and at all Ulta locations on November 16.  

unnamedThe palette features an array of rainbow-colored shades.

New Exam Exemption Policy

Sydney Bevis Online Editor

As of the 2018-2019 school year, Dyersburg High School has added a new requirement to their exam exemption policy.

  In previous years the requirements to be exempt from the end of trimester exams were as follows: students must maintain perfect attendance for the trimester and have a class grade of 75 or higher or students could miss two days and have a class grade of 90 or higher. These were the only requirements in order to be exempt in the past.

  “At first I was sad that I would have to do something on my days off, that I worked hard for, but it honestly made me remember that those are good days for me to take college tours,” senior Byron Cupples said.

  The issue with the previous policy is that everyone who met these requirements and who chose to not come to school was counted as absent. This absence will not count against students when it comes to their attendance, but it will count toward the school’s absentee rate when they turn it into the state.

  To solve this problem DHS amended their exam exemption policy. The new policy is exactly the same as the prior policy except now, for students who are exempt from their exams they must complete some sort of community service, job shadowing, college tour or work. Students must fill out a form and get it signed by someone that witnessed them doing one of those four things. By making students who are exempt fill these forms out, the school can count them as present when turning in their attendance to the state.

  With this new attendance policy, both DHS and exempt students have positive outcomes and experiences.


Create a free website or blog at

Up ↑