Monday, 23 April 2018

Mock NFL Draft 2018: More Predictions

by Jake Austin



The NFL Draft happens every year in April, and it is where the teams pick in order of worst to best for the best college players in America. This event is crucial in building a championship roster and so every year analysts give their views of how the draft will go. With this, I tried to give my own prediction of how the draft will go.


  1. Cleveland Browns
Sam Darnold, QB, USC
The Browns find their superstar future QB who can sit behind Tyrod Taylor to develop

2.            Buffalo Bills (Trade)
Josh Allen, QB
The Bills trade up to assure they get a franchise QB and can address their O-line problems in the following rounds of this strong lineman draft, allowing the Giants an opportunity to fix their depleted O-line

3.            New York Jets
Baker Mayfield, QB
The Jets get their franchise QB in Mayfield to push the Jets to the next level

4.            Cleveland Browns
Maurice Hurst, DT
The Browns replace Danny Shelton and match Hurst with Myles Garrett to create a dominant D-line

5.            Denver Broncos
Bradley Chubb, DE
Chubb gives the Broncos a dominant pass rush with Von Miller on the opposite side, keeping this defense elite

6.            Indianapolis Colts
Josh Jackson, CB
The Colts need defensive help and their secondary is strengthened with Jackson

7.            Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Saquon Barkley, RB
Tampa resurrect their running game and replace Doug Martin with Saquon

8.            Chicago Bears
Quenton Nelson, OG
The Bears provide invaluable protection for Trubisky to help him take the next step with his new receiving core

9.            San Francisco 49ers
Tremaine Edwards, LB
The 49ers add a player with huge upside to a young defense, who can accommodate for the possible loss of Reuben Foster

10.          Oakland Raiders
Harold Landry, EDGE
The Raiders get a player with elite talent to create an awesome pass rush pair with Khalil Mack

11.          Miami Dolphins
Lamar Jackson, QB
The dolphins find a franchise QB to reignite their passing and running game

12.          NY Giants (Trade)
Josh Rosen, QB
The Giants trade down 10 spots and still get their future QB to eventually replace Manning

13.          Washington Redskins
Minkah Fitzpatrick, DB
The ‘skins get a stellar slot corner and elite safety to pair with Josh Norman

14.          Green Bay Packers
Michael Gallup, WR
Green Bay replaces Jordy Nelson with arguably the best receiver in the draft

15.          Arizona Cardinals
Calvin Ridley, WR
Ridley is brought in to replace Larry Legend but doesn’t have to be the #1 receiver right away

16.          Baltimore Ravens
James Washington , WR
The Ravens receiving core is still shallow and weak but Washington solves it

17.          Los Angeles Chargers
Vita Vea, DT
The Chargers create an elite D Line with Vea’s inside pressure complementing Melvin Ingram and Joey Bosa’s pass rush

18.          Seattle Seahawks
Denzel Ward, CB
Ward replaces Richard Sherman and can match with Shaquill Griffin to try and maintain the Legion of Boom

19.          Dallas Cowboys
Derwin James, S
The Cowboys don’t draft a receiver as they can rely on their elite running game so they invest in a defensive piece in James who will improve this poor secondary

20.          Detroit Lions
Josh Jackson, CB
Detroit gets a playmaker opposite Darius slay for Matt Patricia to upgrade their pass defense


21.          Cincinnati Bengals
Frank Ragnow
The Bengals add to the addition of Cordy Glenn with Ragnow, who can play either Guard or Centre, to solidify their O-line

22.          NY Giants (Trade)
Isaiah Wynn, G
The Giants start to help the worst component of their team with Wynn, a talented Guard

23.          New England Pats
Roquan Smith, LB
Smith, the best coverage linebacker in the draft, goes to New England to help revamp the Linebacking core

24.          Carolina Panthers
Marcus Davenport, EDGE
Davenport becomes the long term replacement for Julius Peppers, and can develop and strengthens the Panther’s pass rush

25.          Tennessee Titans
Arden Key, EDGE
The Titans rejuvenate their aging pass rush of Derrick Morgan and Brian Orakpo with Key

26.          Atlanta Falcons
Da’Ron Payne, DT
The Falcons get interior pass rush and run defence with this pick and replace Dontari Poe

27.          New Orleans Saints
Leighton Vander Esch, LB
The Saints solidify their defense with Vander Esch, a playmaker who provides blue chip talent

28.          Pittsburgh Steelers
Mike Hughes, CB
Hughes compliments Joe Haden and adds strength to the secondary

29.          Jacksonville Jaguars
Dallas Goedert, TE
Jacksonville add a more athletic tight end to help Blake Bortles in the passing attack

30.          Minnesota Vikings
Jamarco Jones, T
Jones protects Cousin’s blindside and can move inside if needed

31.          New England Patriots
Sam Hubbard, DE
The Pats get a technically sound pass rusher to help heal the loss of James Harrison and help the New England pass rush

32.          Philadelphia Eagles
Mark Andrews, TE
Andrews replaces Brent Celek and Trey Burton as the Eagles tight end alongside Zach Ertz

Sunday, 22 April 2018

Poem: The Entire World is a Book

by Emily Holroyd-Smith



A modern reworking of Jacques' Seven Ages of Man speech from Shakespeare's 'As You Like It'.



All the world is a book.

Seven chapters. Men and women merely words. They have their pages. One sentence can change the story. So the story begins.

The story starts with chapter one. An infant. Crying and screaming in the night. Waking their mother and father, without a care in the world.

Chapter two. The school kid. Whining at even the thought of school. Protesting at everything. Their shining rucksack reflecting the sun.

The third chapter is the teenager. Sneaking out when ever they have the chance. Disobeying their parents at every opportunity. Making us turn a page in our book.

The fourth chapter is the university student. Parties all night. Lectures all day. Choosing their careers. Making choices. Taking a turn in the story.

This chapter has definite surprises. Chapter 5. You’re all settled down. Could be married? Maybe even kids. You might have a good career. You have your whole life on the right tracks. But maybe you could have nothing. No one knows.

The sixth chapter, you’re at the retiring stage. You have grand-children. You’re a grand-parent. But maybe you are deteriorating. You are not what you used to be, especially your eyes and your ears. However, the fun is not over yet. You are still trying to make the most of your life.

The seventh stage, the final chapter. You are still clinging onto the last sentence of the story. The last words. But then…Slam! The book is shut. You are gone. Gone forever.




Photography: Breeding Season

by Tony Hicks





Friday, 20 April 2018

Poem: The Glacier

by Rafe Crane-Robinson







Aged roller,
Starting its lengthy journey at a ‘cirque’,
High up in a mountain, a bowl of snow.

Turquoise power,
Don’t be fooled by the enticing blue,
An intense force can pluck huge boulders.

Fluffy carver,
A light dusting of snow, so light, you think,
Will compact to hard ice and push mountains aside.

Gentle beast,
A icy river, not fast, just cold,
Slip to your death, an accumulating monster.

Purring lion,
Soft and friendly, but moving stealthily,
And cats have claws perfect for striations.

Smooth hider,
Vast oceans of flat, silky clouds,
But hidden are crevasses deep as can be.

  Magnificent abrasion,
A mass of beautiful grandeur so splendid,
Abrasion takes place, scratching below.

Extended traveller,
Ends up after its tiring journey,
At a grand and superb ‘piedmont’,

Why Staples are Underrated

by Katie O'Flaherty




The humble staple. Not given a second look in day to day life, we all too often overlook the small triumphs of engineering that make our lives so much easier, and our paper so much more organised. After my surprisingly passionate (to the extent if surprised me), exclamation to the defense of staples after a classmate stabbed themself on the tiny piece of steel that ‘staples are awesome’, the confusion and amusement of my classmates led my thoughts to wander to those of what does make staples so ‘awesome’. The obvious answers, that they can come in many sizes, with larger staples being used with a hammer, and smaller from a small, simple mechanical stapler, or from a ‘staple gun’ (arguably the coolest way of dispensing staples), and thus the many uses that come from that could be enough to qualify them as ‘great’ or ‘useful’, but certainly not ‘awesome’. The use of staples in medicine to close incisions and wounds, thus healing and potentially saving lives, could be seen as ‘amazing’ from a certain perspective, but still not mainstream ‘awesome’.

Maybe the design and engineering of the staple will shed light on their ‘awesomeness’. The ‘crown’ (the top of the staple) provides a larger surface area for the pressure exerted on the stapled object, thus reducing the likelihood of tears, which is especially useful in thinner materials such as paper. The legs can also be used to wrap around an object without puncturing it, the crown being used to pin the object, a quality used in situations such as when fastening electrical cables to wood frames.

For me, however, the real beauty lies in the Chemistry, and the simplicity behind it. Modern staples are usually made from zinc-plated steel wires, with more expensive staples available in copper and stainless steel. Copper’s malleability allows the staples to bent into position relatively easily, a basic chemical property from the uniform rows of copper atoms being able to slide over each other. Zinc-plating on the steel prevents oxidation (rust) by forming a barrier, and can act as a sacrificial anode is this barrier is damaged. The zinc oxide formed does not damage the steel’s surface or structural integrity, thus if undisturbed, the zinc oxide can act as a barrier to further oxidation, thus protecting the hidden inner steel staple, and safely keeping the paper together.

Review: The Simple Science of Flight

by Jamie Bradshaw




The Simple Science of Flight offers a beginners introduction to the world of aerodynamics. Defying the conventional logic of avoiding equations in published books, the author includes around 35 in order to help explain his reasoning. Through the use of these simple equations and physics reasoning, the book explains the mechanics of flight in a way that is easily understood, using various biological and machine examples.

The author unifies the flight concepts so that they can be applied to anything from a jackdaw to a Boeing 747, one of his favourite aircraft. The concepts are explained in a simple way that can be understood by anyone with a basic grasp of physics and algebra. The author correlates all the flight data from both mechanical and biological sources to create a graph he calls the great flight diagram, which shows that all flying things bow to overarching laws dictating things like wingspan, takeoff weight, and speed. This helps the reader to get an overview of the concepts involved and is a very useful diagram to have to hand as the book progresses. The author then begins to explain flight power and efficiency, along with fuel costs and economy of flight versus other modes of transport. The pages are dotted with various graphical representations of birds and aircraft, and included with each are some key aerodynamic properties such as the wingspan and mass of the flying object in question.

The author then goes on to briefly cover the theory of aerodynamic control, and more advanced concepts such as induced drag due to wingtip vortices, which is caused by pressures above and below the wing interacting and creating a vortex at the end of the wing. The pair of wingtip vortices interacts and force each other down, creating a downward stream of air known as a downwash both in front of and behind the wing. This downwash in front of the wing means that more power is required, in the same way that climbing a hill needs more power than walking on flat ground. This extra power is called induced power and is the rate that the wingtip vortices are supplied with kinetic energy. Since power is equal to drag times speed, the induced power divided by airspeed gives the induced drag, which is essentially a loss of energy to the wingtip vortices.

Thursday, 19 April 2018

Review: 'Mary Stuart'

by Daniel Hill


Mary Stuart is a play that was originally written by Friedrich Schiller and has since been adapted by dramaturg Rob Icke who also directed this performance. With design and costume by Hildegard Bechtler it really is an admirable piece of theatre that has tension flowing from the moment that the actors walk on stage. It stars Juliet Stevenson and Lia Williams who take part in a coin toss at the beginning of each performance to determine whether they will play the title role or Elizabeth I. This tension created at this moment leaves the audience in silence as they are eager to know the result. I am lucky enough to have seen it both ways round, although I will be focusing on Juliet Stevenson as Elizabeth and Lia Williams as Mary Stuart as this is the performance I most recently saw at the Duke of York’s Theatre.

The play is based on Mary Queen of Scots life and is set within 24 hours. It includes scenes within her jail cell and run up to the moment at which we see her death. The play includes a fictional moment as well when she meets with Elizabeth I who is currently on the English throne which is where Mary wishes to end up. It weaves through many exciting moments and although a fair amount of dramatic licence is used, the plot stays alongside the true events.

The stage at the Duke of York’s Theatre matches that of the Almeida stage; a large concreate wall has been built as the backdrop. This helps to conserve the original rawness of the production and makes sure that the intimacy is not lost during this transfer to a proscenium arch stage. The bareness of the production puts a certain pressure on the quality of acting, but this pays off with passion from every actor on stage. The costumes also provide a crucial part of the play, with the immediate differentiation between the two queens who enter identical being one leaves without shoes, a jacket and a ring. This moment of violence that Lia Williams went through is seen to make her feel weaker as Mary, Queen of Scots. The distinction created through the use of costumes for other actors make some characters’ traits seem clearer. This is particularly visible through Mortimer, who is wearing a purple suit which both matches his Catholic faith and loyalty to Mary, who he believes is the rightful queen. Many Lords are seen in darker clothing to reflect their alliance to Queen Elizabeth, yet one is dressed in a lighter colour which stands out to the audience. This suggests a support towards jailed Mary Stuart.

Poetry: The Changing Tides


by Miranda Gent


The gentle breathing of the sleeping dragon
creates a continuous flow of slowly rolling peaks
and valleys that swash, eventually falling flat,
out of breath, to the shore.

Hopeful bubbles bob along
as the rims of different currents meet in careful collision,
churning up small fingers of foam
that create vein-like patterns in the ever-moving mass of verdant.

Delicate ruffles of ivory, flitting horses,
race lazily across the dull resolution
of the disturbed reflective surface,
winking flecks of ochre and gold 
stained by the sun into the air.

Gentle ripples wondering aimlessly
across the awakening looking glass,
gather an unseen power
as a low rumble of danger begins
and something far out of reach begins to stir.




Photography: Chichester Peregrines

by Tony Hicks





Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Fake News: How Do You Find a Source You Can Trust?

by Alex Hicks



RT, Al Jazeera and BBC are three very different news companies but they all have one thing in common. They are all funded by their respective governments however the reputations of all three vary. RT has been accused of being the mouthpiece of Putins government since its inception. Al Jazeera’s time on the air waves has been mired in controversy for several different reasons. BBC is one of the most trusted networks on the planet. Yet all stem from essentially the same concept so how do we know which one to trust especially when the reports contradict so much.

RT, also known as Russia today, was set up in 2005 to try and promote the image of Russia abroad. The point was to try and and dispel the opinion that “Russia is associated with three words: communism, snow and poverty” as said by one of the founders. However ever since the beginning its struggled to maintain a good reputation. In the UK the Alex Salmond show has been hit with accusations of being too lenient when it comes to accuracy and they have been threatened with the stripping of their UK licence to publish due to the coverage of Syria and Ukraine. All in all RT has been hit with 15 breaches of the UK’s broad casting code. All of these have been in a attempt to portray the “Russian point of view”. However this had led to the publication of blatant lies including claims that the Ukrainian government was carrying out a genocide against its own people in 2014 which was immediately debunked.

Al Jazeera on the other hand has been unpopular within the Middle East. Founded in 1996 it is funded by the Qatari government, a small oil rich nation in the Middle East that attempted too give the Middle East a more focused view than western channels. However while its been funded by the government it has taken steps to ensure that it is not under its control. Al Jazeera gained notoriety during the war in Afghanistan as it was the only channel to cover the war live. However within the Middle East it has been unpopular with demands for it to be taken down by Bahrain, the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt supposedly for spouting “Zionist propaganda”. This doesn’t seem to be the full story however as the Atlantic defended it and the general consensus seems to be that because Al Jazeera tries to stay separate from the politics of the reason it is simply giving a balanced view that includes news from Israel. Therefore perhaps not all the arguments against the legitimacy of the broad casters are true.