Mitchell McDonald

Recent Articles

Prep football is back!

The prep football season got off to a fast start last week with the defending St. Paul City and Minneapolis City Conference champions earning opening season victories.  

Gardner scores three times for the Minutemen

GARRETT GARDNER rushed for three touchdowns, quarterback SAM GUBBRUD hit DEVIN STAUNING for another score, and JAMAL GALATO also hit paydirt as St. Paul Central, the defending

conference champions, defeated Minneapolis Southwest 33-22. Quarterback DESHAUN BROWN  ran for two touchdowns and connected with NICK DAUNHEIMER for another score for the Lakers, who lead 22-15 at the half. Continue Reading →

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Local standout highlights




This week’s column features five outstanding individuals who have made their communities proud. They include a prep football star that won’t have to deal with recruiting this fall, three former prep stars who are giving back to youth, and a former pro player with Minnesota ties who continues to provide leadership opportunities for youth through athletics.  

Not only did Cretin Derham Hall defensive end JASHON CORNELL recently announce that he would attend Ohio State University on a football scholarship, but the senior also plans to graduate in December and enroll in January. Cornell was the top-ranked junior nationally last season and is currently among the top 20 prospects in the country.  


KHALID EL-AMIN, the point guard who helped Minneapolis North capture three state boys’ basketball championships and later led the University of Connecticut to a national title in 1999, recently held his annual camp for youth grades 3-8 at his alma mater. Continue Reading →

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A little African American history for you prep sports fans!








Since 1975, 42 individuals in 40 years have been recognized as the state’s best players by being named Mr. Basketball (the honor was shared in 1979 and 1998). Of the 42 winners, 15 (36 percent) are African Americans. Here they are with a brief synopsis of their high school accomplishments. GREG DOWNING (Duluth Central, 1979): The 6’-3” guard led the Trojans to the Class AA state crown his senior year. He shared the award with Randy Bruer of Lake City. Continue Reading →

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I remember when the community supported us








First in a series


By Lovell Oates

Contributing Writer

On February 7 and 8 there was an African American history celebration held at the Minnesota Correctional Facility in Lino Lakes. During the two days there were several prolific and amazing speakers and performers, such as Pastor Arthur Agnew; Portia McClain, professor of African language at the U of M; Tracey Williams-Dillard of the Spokesman Recorder; Barbara Epps, Bush Fellowship ACES; Angela Stewart, gospel singer; Michelle Horovitz of Appetite for Change; and storytellers Mr. and Mrs. Zulu. These speakers and singers delivered a message of knowledge of self and redemption to the lost and misguided men. Also, these very same messages were words of inspiration and affirmation for men that already had knowledge of self and understand their purpose in life. As I sat in the front row being inspired and affirmed, I began to think it has been a very long time since I’ve felt this good while incarcerated, if ever. Continue Reading →

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Big week in Twin Cities boys’ basketball








This past week was one to remember in prep boys’ basketball. First I had to choose between two of the top games in the state on Tuesday. That Saturday I ended up attending a Twin City title matchup between upstart Minneapolis North, a dominant program that had recently fell on hard times, and St. Paul Johnson, a perennial power who had made eight state tournament appearances (including the Class 3A state championship in 2010) since 2004. To put everything into perspective, let’s go back to the beginning of the week. Continue Reading →

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Exciting weekend hoops action







There was plenty of boys’ and girls’ basketball action last week as two boys’ basketball games were blowouts that turned into competitive contests, one contest was an upset, and the girls’ game between two metro area teams went into overtime.  

Columbia Heights at 

Spring Lake Park: February 6

Spring Lake Park, behind the outstanding play of DEVOTE SKREBES, TC ROBINSON and ERIC CURRAN, raced out to a 42-22 halftime, but COLTON WILLIAMS and sophomore JARRETT BATISE led a

strong COLUMBIA HEIGHTS comeback before losing the North Suburban Conference contest 67-60. Skrebes led Spring Lake Park, and all scorers, with 20 points. Robinson, one of the metro area’s top point guards, added 16 and Curran chipped in 10. Williams and Batise scored 15 and 12 respectively for Columbia Heights. Continue Reading →

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Johnson defeats Central in St. Paul battle

JALEN MOBLEY scored 25 points to lead St. Paul Johnson, the No. 1 boys’ basketball team in Class 3A boys’ basketball, to a 75-67 hard-fought victory over archrival St. Paul Central last Friday evening (January 31). The victory gave the Governors a one-game lead for first-place honors in the City Conference. Continue Reading →

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My top photos of 2013































































Photos by Mitchell Palmer McDonald 

Mitchell Palmer McDonald welcomes reader responses






  Continue Reading →

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Hometown hip hop group captures national spotlight

3DC becomes YouTube holiday sensation

By Mitchell Palmer McDonald

Contributing Writer

This holiday season, members of the hip-hop group 3DC — Dameon “Dame Jones” Jones (14), Devon “D.J.” Johnson (13), D’antanie “D.T.” Johnson (11), and Chris “Chrisss” Baraja (11) — wanted to create a song that would express gratitude to their family and friends during the holiday season. Mission accomplished. With their kid-friendly remix of the Christmas classic “12 Days of Christmas,” Jones, Baraja and the Johnson brothers have created

quite the buzz in the Twin Cities and the Internet. “We wanted to create a song that our family and friends could relate to,” said Jones, an eighth-grader at Nellie Stone Johnson School in Minneapolis, who added that it took three-to-four hours to record the song. The song’s message of gratitude to family and friends is clearly presented in the music video. Continue Reading →

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City Conference race heating up

In recent years the Minneapolis City Conference has not received the attention it used to get in the 1980s, ‘90s, and the early part of the 2000s. This year could prove to be a very competitive season for the conference, which has plenty of talented players who can hoop. So far, three conference games have been played, and if those games are any indication of the future, the City Conference might not be decided until the final game. Here is a quick rundown of the conference race so far:

North (3-0) is a young team led by sophomore point guard TYLER JOHNSON, who’s averaging 18 points per game. JAMIL JACKSON and ISAAC JOHNSON are playing well, giving the Polars a well-balanced attack. Continue Reading →

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