The Trojan Torch

Dyersburg High School's online newspaper


August 2017

Trojans are out of this world

Sara White – Reporter

On Friday, August 25, the Trojan football team played against the Brighton Cardinals. The final score was 35-27 in the Trojan’s favor.

Bippity Boppity Bye Bye: Disney to end relationship with Netflix

Disney is working on ending its relationship with Netflix. By 2019, Disney plans to have its own streaming service.

Emmalynn VanDyke – Reporter

If you Netflix to reminisce on your childhood by watching Disney movies, you better finish quickly. Disney has announced plans to remove its movies from the Netflix lineup and launch its own streaming service in 2019.

  This announcement comes on the heels of Disney’s investment in BAMTech, a streaming and marketing company.  Disney will first launch an ESPN content based streaming platform in 2018  then follow up with a Disney themed service in 2019.

  Disney and Netflix have been partners since 2012. The current contract between Disney and Netflix ends in 2019 and grants Netflix permission to show old Disney movies and shows and any new Disney movie released through 2018.  

  Upcoming releases such as “Black Panther” and “The Incredibles 2” will still be shown on Netflix until that contract expires.  However, films such as “Toy Story 4” and the sequel to “Frozen”, which are scheduled for a 2019 release, will be streamed for the first time on Disney’s new platform.

  The new streaming service will feature all Disney and Pixar content, including television shows and movies.  These shows will include those currently found on the Disney Channel, Disney XD and Disney Junior.  

  Plans for Marvel and Star Wars content are not yet clear.  Currently, plans state that Disney distributed Marvel movies will remain on Netflix.  Announcements have not been made regarding Star Wars movies, which now fall under Disney’s ownership umbrella.

  This change is likely to pull some business from Netflix, specifically from families with younger children who enjoy Disney’s shows and movies.  However, because Netflix now develops its own content in addition to streaming other companies’ shows, major problems are not expected.

  Customers have a little over a year to make a decision as to whether they will stick with Netflix alone, if they will join the mouse in his new house or if they will take advantage of the opportunities for even more content with both services.

First pep rally out of this world

Mariah Webb – Section Editor

Friday, August 25 was the first pep rally of the 2017-2018 school year. The theme was “the Trojans are out of this world.” It was a space theme, and many students participated. At the pep rally, students wore Star Wars costumes, alien garb and layers of glitter. The cheer and dance teams performed. The students also participated in two games: hungry hungry aliens and the astronaut food challenge.

Look what you made me do Taylor Swift

Abbey Alley – Editor

This is Swift’s new album cover for Reputation. Its newspaper black-and-white theme reveals the message of the single and possibly the album: that her name is overly criticized by the media.

On August 18, singer-songwriter Taylor Swift’s Twitter page sat blank on my computer screen as I kept refreshing the page, worried that she had been hacked (or even worse, that she was leaving the public eye forever). It turned out that Swift’s Instagram account was also wiped clean.

  Immediately, I went and checked all of her other social media; already, Swift’s fans were performing detective work that could rival Sherlock Holmes in order to figure out what the artist was up to.

  At 10 a.m. Central Daylight Time on the same day as the Great American Eclipse, August 21, Swift tweeted a video of a reptilian creature slithering across a dark floor while the screen glitched; it was cryptic, but fans believed that it was a reference to numerous recent events that had revealed Swift as a “snake,” such as her feud with Kim Kardashian-West and the fact that her former group of friends did not attend a Fourth of July party this year at her Rhode Island home as they usually do.

  In the following days, at roughly the same time each morning, Swift tweeted, continuing the same video of a reptile in smaller clips. On August 23, she completed the series, revealing the creature in the video to be a snake snapping at the screen; Swift then announced that the first single from her next album, Reputation, was to come out the following day, August 24.

  At 10:32 p.m. on August 24, she tweeted that her single was out. Being the freak that I am, I had turned on her tweet notifications so that I would be alerted the instant that the single was released. I made it to the Apple Music app to search for “Look What You Made Me Do” before the single was even listed on her page.

  After refreshing the app about three times, I finally clicked on the single.

  As soon as I heard the first notes of the song, I was rigid in anticipation. I was already panicking about whether or not I liked it.

  “Oh no. This does not sound like a Taylor Swift song. Did I just hear strings that were not attached to a guitar? A minor tonality without pedal steel as well? Is there a BEAT for this song? Well, I’ll give it a try,” I thought to myself within the first minute of the song.

  After the first chorus, I found myself dancing and embracing the strange bass line and beat that sounded similar to the one from “Partition” by Beyonce.

  This is a dance song with emotional depth, and that is exactly what I love about Swift’s music. She retains an emotional sense of intimacy with the listener, no matter what the actual music sounds like. I could cry angry tears in the club to this song while furiously dancing to the beat. Maybe Swift has invented a new genre: dance music to cry tears of rage to.

  This is as much a song of revenge as much as it is an angry, diary-style rant. This version of Swift is not the nice girl from Nashville who wrote about love that she showed the world with her first album, Taylor Swift; strangely enough, this is also not the animal licking her wounds that we heard in her single “Bad Blood,” either.

  “I’m sorry, the old Taylor can’t come to the phone right now. Why? Oh, ’cause she’s dead!” Swift speaks in the middle of the bridge.

  Swift is much more confident in herself in this single; instead of tearing down her opponent or playing the victim, she talks herself up, which is refreshing for her. There is a serious message of self empowerment to be found in this song.

  “But I got smarter, I got harder in the nick of time. Honey, I rose up from the dead, I do it all the time,” Swift sings in the section before the catchy refrain.

  This is the part of the song that you would listen to after a bad day to remind yourself that growth and self-betterment usually come after a rough patch. This is an inspiring quote that moms would repost on social media without knowing that it goes along with a beat that she would tell her kids to turn down in the car.

  While I am not particularly in love with the vocal melody of this song, I must admit that it is extremely catchy. Swift’s vocals do not really shine on this song, but that is not the goal of this song. “Look What You Made Me Do” is no “Dear John.” This song serves as a mission statement for the rest of Swift’s new album. Swift is now a woman in love with herself on a mission to defend herself from the world.

  Overall, this song is weird. There are speaking parts, one phrase is repeated way too many times and there is a funky beat along with a thundering bass line. However, all of these elements are only weird when you consider them in the context of Swift’s earlier works. For any other pop artist, these elements are their formula. However, by using her competitors’ formula and making it full of heart and soul, Swift somehow communicates the song’s message even more effectively.

  These past few days spent constantly wondering about what Swift was going to do next or what the new single was going to sound like were well spent, and they show why Swift is truly a marketing genius. She created the hype herself by going off of the radar, a move that would have flopped for anyone else. She got the whole world to listen by being completely silent, and that is very special.

  I cannot wait to hear this album, and I cannot wait for “Look What You Made Me Do” to become the soundtrack for this period of my life.

  Look what she made me do.

Fantasy football abuzz at DHS

Seniors Miller Edgin, Austin Russell, Chance Stepp, Logan Lutrell, Connor Greer, Cameron Buss and Jayvin Brasfield study the draft picks for their fantasy football teams. Photo courtesy Donna Buss


Dakota Turnbo – Reporter

The NFL season is in the very near future, and it has fantasy players scrambling to see who they should draft for their fantasy teams.

  Most fantasy football fans know the obvious beginning picks such as David Johnson, the 100 all-purpose yards machine, or the patient do-it-all back in Le’Veon Bell. There are some questionable draft picks to take, whether it be because of a suspension like Ezekiel Elliott’s or a questionable move to a system that does not fit the player such as Adrian Peterson’s move to the New Orleans Saints, a team that heavily caters to Drew Brees.

  Later picks in a fantasy draft are just as important as the early picks because injuries can occur and players do not play every single week. There are such things as bye weeks where teams get to rest for a week so players don’t accrue any stats.

   There are some trendy picks such as Carson Wentz since he has recently been loaded with offensive weapons, or Dalvin Cook who, as a rookie, will be the main back and drastically help the Minnesota Viking’s rushing offense. These sleeper picks probably should not be near top picks because they are a risk in some capacity, but a pick for them could pay off drastically.

  Many people at DHS play fantasy football and some even had their own opinion on sleepers and busts of this fantasy season.

  Jay Ajayi could be a bust “because he lost his quarterback, so everything will be on him” senior Logan Lutrell said.

   This is a fair point due to Ryan Tannehill’s recent injury and the questionable hiring of Jay Cutler.

   Senior Jayvin Brasfield believes that Marshawn Lynch is “too old”.

   The age that most running backs start declining in production is 30 and Marshawn is 31, so his decline could come true.

  All this preseason action has people already picking who could or should do well this fantasy season.

Bee population decreasing in America

Jackson Millner  – Reporter

The bee population has been decreasing for the past few years, and people are starting to take notice. Beekeepers from around the area have noticed the sudden decrease when studying their farms. The honey decline is a major reason why beekeepers are noticing this decrease. Why the sudden decrease?

A possible contributing factor to the changes are pesticides surrounding the bees. Environmental groups have expressed deep concern about the 90 percent decline during the past two decades in the population of pollinators, including wild bees and monarch butterflies. Pesticide manufacturers argue that their products contribute in a minor way to the population trend. Even though pesticide is said to have little effect, the population is decreasing because of some unknown factor and pesticides could be a major reason.

To save the bee population, people have begun new practices in their daily lives such as planting bee-friendly plants, not using chemicals on plants and not removing all weeds. The reason people are trying to save bees is because they are a major pollinator. They help grow speciality crops like almonds, berries, fruits and vegetables all of which are important foods in the daily lives of humans.

Annual football jamboree draws large crowd to JC Sawyers Stadium

Sara Clifft – Reporter

unnamed-3.jpgThe DHS cheerleaders encouraged a Trojan win.
The DHS student section showed their support for the Trojans.
The DHS Trojans storm the field to kickoff the season with the annual football jamboree.
Photos by Sarah McLaughlin


August 11 marked the beginning of the 2017 DHS football season. The night kicked off with Crockett County beating Munford 14-0. In the second game of the night, Brighton squeezed in a win against Obion County Central with a score of 7-6. Game three was a close one with Haywood winning against Union City 15-14. The final and most anticipated game of the night, the Trojans versus the Covington Chargers, ended with the Trojans defeating Covington 14-7, with Junior running back Daniel Gates scoring the winning touchdown in the last two seconds.

  “It was fun and it worked out the way we planned – everybody got to play,” Dyersburg head coach Bart Stowe said in an interview with the State Gazette.

  “I was really proud of the boys and it’s been a long time since we’ve won a jamboree game here. I believe we’re on track.” Stowe said. With the jamboree over, the Trojans now turn to the new season.

  “We know we’ve got to keep getting better and we’re a young team,” Stowe said.

  The official DHS football season begins on August 18 with the Trojans taking on MLK-Prep in J.C. Sawyers Stadium.

Small ones solve big problems

Alveena Nadeem – Reporter


Every Tuesday at 3:15 in Dyersburg High School, students participate in Model UN and take the role of delegates, acting to resolve global problems. This club is led by English teacher TJ VanDyke and AP Government teacher Mark Stenberg, who help the students gain skills in public speaking, researching and being creative.

  Model United Nations Club is an international opportunity for high school, middle school, and college students to address global issues. Students select a country they want to improve and propose a solution directed at the core of its problems.

  After the students have formed a strong resolution to benefit their assigned country, they participate in a convention with realistic conferences. There, they debate, negotiate and discuss their resolutions with other students from a variety of places.

  These conferences are not limited to imitations of Model UN meetings, but are also simulations of the General Assembly and Security Council. Model UN Club helps students gain knowledge about many countries and explore the social and political events taking place globally.

  Although only students participate in this activity, the skills they gain remain with them throughout the rest of their lives. They learn how to delegate effectively, support a claim with facts and develop many other skills which can help them through their future careers or goals.

  VanDyke said, “I think that students are able to work more independently as well as in a group to academically accomplish things that benefit them without those things being tied to grades.”

Homework affects students

Studies show that homework causes stress in students. 

Trey Johnson – Reporter

Homework is a big part of any student’s life. Homework is assigned everyday to students across the nation. The intention is to help students with what they are studying and to help them practice study skills in general. But what does homework actually do for students?

  The largest and most conclusive study of homework and academic achievement to date is a 2006 study by psychology professor Harris Cooper. The study analyzed data collected from 1987 to 2003. Cooper correlated academic success to doing homework in middle school and high school but found no strong correlation in elementary school.

  Cooper’s study also found that homework can cause negative effects on both mental and physical health. These include emotional fatigue and  negative attitudes towards school. In addition, a survey conducted by the Stanford Graduate School of Education found 56% of students identified homework as the primary or secondary source of their stress. The study also found that students may develop health problems and lose time on social interaction.

  These results are not concrete. Cooper and many other scientists have recommended that more research be conducted to gain more solid information on this subject.

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