I would like to express my thanks to Pipkins Motors. The event they had Thursday night was wonderful. The food was plentiful, and I have never met such a kindhearted crew in the car business. Thanks.

Now that we are having hotter weather here in South Georgia, people need to be careful about leaving their animals and children in vehicles. It is ridiculous to leave an animal in a vehicle when it is so hot. Leave your animals home, please.

To the individual whose son is on drugs and needs rehab, contact Teen Challenge, it is an excellent program and is known for its success. You can find their information on the Internet.

In response to the ranter who suggested forgetting about the historic district: As a high school student and long-time resident of Valdosta, there is a great likelihood that I will be in this town for quite a while. I am appalled at your ignorance. Stalin-era-esque high-rises don't quite fit in with this city's stunning Southern charm.

Thank you to Ms. Broomberg and her second grade class at Dewar Elementary for the talent show. I enjoyed my grandchild as well as his classmates. Good job, class.

I am sure the Vatican is now worried about their reputation since the mighty The Valdosta Daily Times gave them a thumbs down. I bet the Vatican will now make sure the Times approves its choice of the next pope before the white smoke appears.

Instead of advocating carpool lanes downtown that will do nothing, why not question where the mass transit system is we were led to believe we would get when we got to Metro Status. That would benefit the area much more.

Rave for VSU's Students In Free Enterprise Team winning its 10th consecutive regional championship in Atlanta. They received a standing ovation from the judges. As a parent of one member, I am proud of their accomplishments and the many volunteered hours they gave to the businesses and schools of our community. Way to go.

Another way to save on fuel costs is to go 55 mph instead of the normal 70-80 mph. It has been proven to save fuel and money.

I say fill the town with suburban franchises. Most local shops are way over priced for the quality of their goods. Where's my Olive Garden and Macy's?

Of 66 jobs listed on April 18, 11 are for truck drivers. This is a town with a university -- where are all the professional jobs that will keep the graduates here?

By Anthony Gagliano


VALDOSTA -- Jim Yarbrough and Jacksonville University seemed like a good fit. The Blazers coach had worked in the area as a high school assistant and knew the school's incoming athletic director. Yet, after a cool interview with school president Kerry Romesburg on Monday, Yarbrough said the Dolphins will choose Georgia Tech assistant Cliff Warren, 37, to become their next head coach.

Yarbrough learned the news on Tuesday and Jacksonville has a news conference scheduled for 2 p.m. today to announce the hiring.

"I was excited about the opportunity and it seemed to fit, but at the same time you have to be real careful not to get too attached," said Yarbrough, 41, who will return to VSU for a sixth season with a 97-42 record and two NCAA appearances.

"You just don't know how these things will turn out going in."

Going into his second interview on Monday, Yarbrough appeared a good bet, considering JU AD Alan Verlander played under Yarbrough in high school at Jacksonville's The Bolles School.

But, Yarbrough said he couldn't read his interview with the president.

"I kind of had no feeling," Yarbrough said. "The meeting was a bit brief."

Warren was the only other finalist and will become the Dolphins' first African-American coach. It will also be his first head coaching experience after serving under Paul Hewitt for five years with the Yellow Jackets and three more years before that at Siena.

Yarbrough, who previously worked six seasons under John Kresse at the College of Charleston, also interviewed as one of three finalists at VMI, which selected Tusculum's Duggar Baucom on April 12.

VSU Director of Athletics Herb Reinhard maintained throughout Yarbrough would stay and proved to be correct.

"VSU is an extremely good situation and it's going to continue to get better," Reinhard said. "He's done an extremely good job to build the men's program to the point where we are. And I have to say right now, we are a very well respected Division II basketball program."

The series of interviews taught Yarbrough how much value the VSU program attained during his tenure.

"The great thing I've gotten out of this is it makes you review how you run your program," Yarbrough said. "It makes you defend your ideas and concepts, like defending a thesis.

"It's a very good model what we do here and at any level of college basketball situation, it could work well like it has worked well at VSU."

The Blazers lost four seniors from this year's team that failed to advance past the first round of the conference tournament after starting the year ranked No. 11.

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