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Talking Preps

Star Tribune prep reporters David La Vaque and James Paulsen are bringing all you Minnesota high school sports enthusiasts another way to stay connected to the action.

High Schools
September 11
Listen: Lots of good 6A talent but is it already a two-horse race?

Listen: Lots of good 6A talent but is it already a two-horse race?

Wayzata, Champlin Park, Cretin-Derham Hall and others are off to impressive starts, according to Talking Preps podcasters Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque. But can they keep up with Lakeville North and Eden Prairie? Plus lots of intrigue in Class 4A, insights on the MSHSL budget deficit, a volleyball surprise and a girls' tennis update.
High Schools
September 4
Listen: Lakeville North's culture of winning touches a nerve

Listen: Lakeville North's culture of winning touches a nerve

Just one game into the season, Talking Preps podcast hosts David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen explore the strong online reaction to the Panthers' "no apologies'' approach, take on unruly parents and call out two trends in the state's ever-improving volleyball scene.
High Schools
August 28
Listen: Road to the Prep Bowl starts Thursday at high school near you

Listen: Road to the Prep Bowl starts Thursday at high school near you

In the first Talking Preps podcast of the fall, staff writers Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque offer their informed looks at the teams to beat and players to watch as week one kicks off Thursday and Friday night.
High Schools
June 19
Listen: The last Talking Preps podcast of the school year concludes with ... hockey?

Listen: The last Talking Preps podcast of the school year concludes with ... hockey?

But first, championship golf, lacrosse and a baseball tournament set to wrap up Thursday at Target Field get their due from the Star Tribune's Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque..
High Schools
June 12
Listen: Champions abound as spring sports race to the finish line

Listen: Champions abound as spring sports race to the finish line

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen recap top state tournament performances in track and field and softball as lacrosse and baseball championships loom in the days ahead.
High Schools
June 5
Listen: Newsy high school league meeting offers plenty to debate

Listen: Newsy high school league meeting offers plenty to debate

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen don't come close to exhausting the debate about shot clocks, seeding state basketball, and adding more classes to some sports. Oh, and it's state tourney time for softball, tennis and track.
High Schools
May 29
Listen: Decisions loom for expanding state tournaments, altering prep basketball

Listen: Decisions loom for expanding state tournaments, altering prep basketball

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen foreshadow Monday's high school league meeting where added classes in four sports, implementing a shot clock and seeding big-school basketball are on the agenda.
High Schools
May 27
Listen: Spring sports dodge raindrops as the playoff season kicks in

Listen: Spring sports dodge raindrops as the playoff season kicks in

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen talk coach ouster transparency, a boys' volleyball first, girls' and boys' lacrosse and golf to admire, the first boys' tennis teams reaching state, and a former football metro player of the year set to coach basketball.
High Schools
May 15
Listen: Coaching moves and how to catch moves like this one at a track meet

Listen: Coaching moves and how to catch moves like this one at a track meet

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen recount a rite of spring -- mentors on the move -- along with an eligibility issue, a squeeze on officials, state records, and camaraderie on display at the True Team track state meet.
High Schools
May 9
Listen: Tracktown, Minnesota's lead burner gets it going

Listen: Tracktown, Minnesota's lead burner gets it going

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen highlight Hopkins speedster Joe Fahnbulleh's excellent spring, note a lack of top girls' basketball recruits picking Minnesota and catch up on two high-profile coaching changes.
High Schools
May 5
Listen: Spring sports hit the backstretch and the records are falling

Listen: Spring sports hit the backstretch and the records are falling

A new 4x100 state mark, a new career leader in softball hits. In the latest Talking Preps podcast, David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen highlight other top performers and talk club softball in Minneapolis, college hockey recruiting at young ages, and a football signing ceremony for eighth-graders.
High Schools
April 25
Listen: How much attention on high school recruiting is too much?

Listen: How much attention on high school recruiting is too much?

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, the Star Tribune's Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque share their views, set up a premier track meet on Friday and wade into baseball, softball, boys' volleyball and adapted bowling.
High Schools
April 19
Listen: Friday's the day to learn national recruit Matthew Hurt's college basketball future

Listen: Friday's the day to learn national recruit Matthew Hurt's college basketball future

The Rochester John Marshall star plans to announce his school choice on Friday but in the latest Talking Preps podcast, staff writers Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque read signs pointing to which one that will be. And talk a little spring sports, too.
High Schools
April 10
Listen: Track and softball lead the spring pack, Lacrosse Day Minnesota tries again

Listen: Track and softball lead the spring pack, Lacrosse Day Minnesota tries again

In the Talking Preps podcast of spring, David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen brush off the snow to catch up with track and softball seasons in progress and discuss plans for a lacrosse celebration that had to be scrapped last year because of weather.
High Schools
April 4
Listen: Is UConn-bound Paige Bueckers best ever? Has recruiting become too overheated?

Listen: Is UConn-bound Paige Bueckers best ever? Has recruiting become too overheated?

With spring sports still thawing out, Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque resume their Talking Preps podcast with give-and-take on the Hopkins star's standing in Minnesota girls' prep history and the state of Twitter-fueled recruiting buzz.
High Schools
March 20
Listen: Boys' basketball seeds of (mild) discontent and a little too much 'nobody respects us'

Listen: Boys' basketball seeds of (mild) discontent and a little too much 'nobody respects us'

In the last Talking Preps podcast of the winter season, Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque look ahead to the boys' basketball tournament field and offer a recap of the girls' championships.
High Schools
March 12
Listen: Life after hockey means girls' basketball rules; can anyone stop Hopkins?

Listen: Life after hockey means girls' basketball rules; can anyone stop Hopkins?

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque put the boys' hockey tournament to bed and take up the next one, including who's best positioned to keep top recruit Paige Bueckers and the Royals from being the ones holding the 4A trophy on Saturday night.
High Schools
March 6
Listen: Fear, danger and surprise in prep boys' hockey when the puck drops at the X

Listen: Fear, danger and surprise in prep boys' hockey when the puck drops at the X

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, staff writer David La Vaque and veteran hockey raconteur Ted Cheesebrough share insights from those who will be behind the bench at this week's 75th boys' hockey state tournament.
High Schools
February 27
Listen: State meet perfection, girls' hockey objection and plenty of speculation

Listen: State meet perfection, girls' hockey objection and plenty of speculation

In the latest Talking Preps, Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque re-live what one official called "the most electrifying moment'' he's seen in high school sports, post-game heat after two championship games, and previews of the wrestling state meet and boys' hockey section finals.
High Schools
February 19
Listen: Edina goes for three, two undefeated teams in 1A, and can anyone get the puck past White Bear Lake's goalie?

Listen: Edina goes for three, two undefeated teams in 1A, and can anyone get the puck past White Bear Lake's goalie?

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen scrutinize this week's girls' hockey state tournament, including All-Metro goalie Calla Frank's run of shutouts, and the upcoming gymnastics state meet.
High Schools
February 15
Listen: Girls' hockey finds the net as boys' volleyball tries to find its way

Listen: Girls' hockey finds the net as boys' volleyball tries to find its way

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, staff writer David La Vaque and editor Paul Klauda navigate fast-moving section play leading to the 25th girls' hockey state tournament next week and catch up boys' volleyball's bid for high school league sanction.
High Schools
February 6
High School Girls Hockey
Brainerd/Little Falls vs North Wright County Braemar Arena December 26, 2018. Photo by Jeff Lawler, SportsEngine

Listen: As girls' hockey shifts into section playoffs, an idea for getting outstate boys' teams to the X more often

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen preview girls' teams to watch and debate the merits of ridding three boys' hockey sections of metro teams.
High Schools
January 23
Listen: How cold is too cold for prep sports, and a missed opportunity in these divided times

Listen: How cold is too cold for prep sports, and a missed opportunity in these divided times

In the latest Talking Preps podcast, Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque discuss big Gopher interest in Hopkins girls' basketball, the wisdom of sub-zero Hockey Day and how to move forward after the Trump flag fallout from a basketball game.
High Schools
January 17
Listen: Basketball ref shortage requires new thinking to ease the crunch

Listen: Basketball ref shortage requires new thinking to ease the crunch

Too many games on Tuesday? Fewer officials per game? More games on other nights? In the latest Talking Preps podcast, prep writers Jim Paulsen and David La Vaque add their notions to the issue that flared anew this week in the metro area. Plus a chilly Hockey Day in Minnesota preview.
High Schools
January 9
Listen: Shot clock or not? Six-minute stall creates time for debate

Listen: Shot clock or not? Six-minute stall creates time for debate

It wasn't Hopkins-Shakopee in the state tournament this time but it got the Star Tribune's David La Vaque and Jim Paulsen to join the always-lively topic in this week's all-hoops Talking Preps podcast.