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Cherokee Trail lineman Travis Gray follows in dad’s footsteps to CU Buffs: “I’m moved almost to tears”

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Cherokee Trail lineman Travis Gray follows in dad’s footsteps to CU Buffs: “I’m moved almost to tears”

AURORA — Travis Gray will play football at the University of Colorado to embrace his family legacy.

On Wednesday morning, the Cherokee Trail offensive lineman gathered with dozens of supporters in the high school gym to make it official. Gray signed his letter of intent to join the program where his father, Lamarr Gray, played.

“I’m moved almost to tears,” Lamarr Gray said.

Like father, like son.

“I always wanted to be at CU,” Travis Gray said.

The Buffaloes signed 19 players to their early 2022 recruiting class. Gray — a 6-foot-7, 295-pound offensive tackle — will enroll in January and was described as “the ring leader of this class” by head coach Karl Dorrell. Gray picked CU over scholarship offers from Arizona and Maryland.

“He is a natural-born left tackle and a very good athlete,” Dorrell said. “A legacy player. He loves this school.”

Gray grew up hearing stories all about his dad’s playing days. Lamarr Gray was a reserve outside linebacker for the Buffs (1986-91) behind future NFL draft picks Alfred Williams and Kanavis McGhee on the team that won the 1990 national championship. He passed a love of football down to his sons.

Travis Gray started playing football in the fifth grade. But it wasn’t until his junior season at Cherokee Trail that he made it a realistic goal of following in his dad’s footsteps.

“A light switch went off, understanding his size and ability was going to offer some avenues a lot of other kids weren’t going to get,” Cherokee Trail head coach Justin Jajczyk said. “He made a commitment.”

Gray recalls a conversation with his dad: “Enough messing around. I want to go to CU.”

So, Gray enrolled in the strength-and-training program at Six Zero Academy in Parker under Matt McChesney, a former CU offensive lineman (2000-04). Gray said he lost more than 20 pounds while transforming his mind and body into a nationally coveted three-star recruit.

“He’s done a great job of focusing on fundamentals and his flexibility,” Jajczyk said. “He’s become a master of his craft on a daily basis. He’s really committed himself to the weight room and getting outside work. He’s a tremendous student as well.”

However, with less than six months left until the 2022 early signing period, Gray did not have a scholarship offer from CU. It accelerated the narrative of CU missing out on the state’s top prospects and, quite frankly, didn’t make sense to family members.

“We honestly considered a glitch in the matrix that he was not on CU’s radar early,” Lamarr Gray said.

That all changed when Travis Gray visited Folsom Field back in June for an individual workout with Dorrell and prominent staff members present. Gray left such a strong impression that Dorrell offered him a scholarship on the spot.

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Howie Carr: Maura Healey’s misses as Massachusetts attorney general

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Howie Carr: Maura Healey’s misses as Massachusetts attorney general

Maura Healey enters the governor’s fight as the automatic front-runner, but the larger question lingers: What exactly are the highlights of her seven-plus years as state attorney general?

As her No. 1 accomplishment, I’d list Healey’s measured response to the orgy of looting and violence by armed left-wing mobs that engulfed Boston on May 31 and June 1, 2020. Among other things, a career thug fired 12 shots at Boston Police officers on Tremont Street, some of which penetrated apartments across from the Common.

“Yes, Boston is burning,” the state’s chief law-enforcement officer said the next day as businesses and property owners tried to clean up millions of dollars of damage in the Third World-style mob violence, “But that’s how forests grow.”

At No. 2, I’m going to cite a lesser-known moment that speaks to her stewardship of the AG’s office.

Do you remember Sonja Farak, the drug-addicted hack chemist at the Department of Public Health. For more than a decade, Farak falsified thousands of criminal drug tests because she was ingesting all the contraband?

She was finally busted in 2013, smoking crack in her car outside the Springfield courthouse when Maura was a mere assistant attorney general.

But the cover-up by the AG’s office that began under Martha Coakley (Marsha, as Patches Kennedy called her) continued when she became attorney general.

Everything I’m about to tell you comes directly from a 2017 ruling by Superior Court Judge Richard Carey. When a report was filed showing how multiple assistant AG’s had tried to cover up Farak’s crimes, which resulted in the railroading of hundreds of accused drug dealers (most of them not white), Maura’s office tried to suppress the report.

Judge Carey reported that Healey’s office filed a “Motion to Impound Grand Jury Materials and Report” on the scandal her office had tried to sweep under the rug.

Then Healey filed a second motion — to “impound its request for its Motion for Order of Non-Dissemination of Information.”

In other words, not only did Healey try to bury the shocking evidence, she also tried to make sure her attempt to suppress the evidence of the criminal conduct by her assistant AG’s involving non-white defendants never saw the light of day.

Judge Carey found that Healey’s office had sunk to “a depth of deceptiveness that constitute a fraud upon the court.”

By the way, Farak was represented in court by a female lawyer from Northampton. One of Maura’s minions referred to the Northampton woman in emails as “the gym teacher.”

When the Board of Bar Overseers finally got around to investigating the actions of the attorney general’s office, their report said that Maura’s assistant who called the Northampton lawyer “the gym teacher” had “demonstrated a disturbing attitude toward defense counsel.”

So why have the media given the Farak scandal such a good leaving-alone? Netflix has done more coverage of Sonja Farak than the amen chorus that is the Boston media.

Imagine how differently a Republican politician would have been treated if he’d tried to suppress a report on prosecutors looking the other way as defendants of color were framed with fake evidence. What would happen to a GOP pol who had an underling who referred to “gym teachers.”

It would be treated like Jan. 6, speaking of which, what would have happened if any Republican, let alone an elected prosecutor, had brushed off the much less violent trespassing that day at the Capitol because “that’s how forests grow”?

When you’re in a state like Massachusetts, though, you don’t have to worry about media scrutiny of any kind.

Seldom is heard a discouraging word, at least if you’re a Democrat. Whatever she did, Maura could keep her current job for life, at least as long as she kept filing an endless stream of frivolous anti-Trump lawsuits, while continuing to underperform her real duties in the fashion of the Texas sheriff in Jim Thompson’s novel “Pop. 1380.”

“I had it made, and it looked like I could go on having it made … as long as I minded my own business and didn’t arrest no one unless I just couldn’t get out of it and they didn’t amount to nothin’.”

That’s exactly how MA attorneys general have always operated, which may explain why they practically never win higher office. Since 1953, one AG has died in office, seven have been defeated in primaries, and one (Marsha Coakley) was twice defeated in runs for higher office.

Ed Brooke is the single exception to the rule. While serving as AG, he was elected to the US Senate — 56 years ago.

Maura’s got $3,670,000 cash on hand, but she’ll need more. That’s why she’s putting the touch on such good-government types as Arthur Winn. Remember that greed head developer?

He admitted in federal court to funneling tens of thousands in illegal campaign contributions to such Democrat titans as Eddie Markey, Steve Lynch and Mike Capuano. He also took care of ex-state Sen. Dianne Wilkerson, last seen on an FBI surveillance video stuffing $100 bills into her bra.

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32,909 new coronavirus cases reported in Massachusetts schools in past week

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Boston Public Schools students walk out, saying their schools are unsafe

Coronavirus cases remain at a high level in Bay State schools, but did take a plunge from last week’s whopping count as a total of 32,909 staff and students tested positive in the past week.

The report published on Thursday by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education reports 28,151 students and 4,758 staff tested positive for the coronavirus from Jan. 13 to Wednesday. More than 3% of students and staff across the state tested positive.

The total of 32,909 staff and students testing positive is a 32% drop from 48,414 positive K-12 tests in the previous week.

Many school districts have been dealing with major staff shortages following the holiday break, as thousands of educators call out sick with COVID-19.

Coronavirus pool testing is being used in more than 2,200 public and private schools, about double last year’s count, according to DESE. The test positivity rate in school in this report was 13.60%, down from 20.10% in the last report.

Districts with the most cases in the past week includes: 1,273 cases in Boston; 1,204 in Worcester; 875 in Springfield; 575 in Lowell; 527 in New Bedford; 446 in Natick; 435 in Lynn; 399 in Framingham; 363 in Newton; 350 in Chicopee; 333 in Plymouth; 327 in Lawrence; 312 in Quincy; 310 in Shrewsbury; and 300 in Hingham.

Boston Public Schools reported 984 student cases and 289 staff cases in the past week.

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Enbridge says it has stopped groundwater leak caused by punctured aquifer during Line 3 construction

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Enbridge says it has stopped groundwater leak caused by punctured aquifer during Line 3 construction

Enbridge Energy said it has stopped the flow of spilled artesian groundwater that began a year ago when workers installing the Line 3 oil pipeline in northwestern Minnesota punctured an aquifer.

The spill near Enbridge’s terminal in Clearbrook was one of the worst environmental accidents during construction of the 340-mile pipeline in Minnesota. Workers dug too deeply into the ground and the rupture resulted in a 24 million gallon groundwater leak.

The company told the state Department of Natural Resources that it stopped the uncontrolled leak on Tuesday. The DNR said it will monitor the repair and the investigation remains ongoing. The agency is looking at further restoration, mitigation and penalties.

The White Earth Band of Ojibwe and other pipeline opponents have been doing their own investigation, including drone footage, to check for further water impacts. They are calling for more accountability and details about the incident.

State regulators ordered Enbridge to pay $3.3 million and fix the damage. The company missed a deadline in October and paid an additional $40,000.

Line 3 starts in Alberta, Canada, and clips a corner of North Dakota before crossing Minnesota en route to Enbridge’s terminal in Superior, Wisconsin. The project was pronounced complete in September.

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