Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Games of the Week, Week 2

The opening week of the high school football season saw its share of surprises:

® Waynesburg, winless a year ago, won at Wash High.
® McGuffey shut out Mt. Pleasant, which won a Class AAA conference in 2007.
® Monessen suffered from turnoveritis.

What will happen during the second weekend of high school football? We won't know until after the games are played. Here's the ones the Varsity Letters wants to see:

1. Canon-McMillan vs. Pittsburgh Central Catholic at Carnegie Mellon University (4 1/2 stars)
This Quad-A non-conference contest kicks off Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. PCC won PIAA and WPIAL titles a year ago but lost several top players to graduation. A few of this year's starters – including starting quarterback Nolan Krivijanski – are injured. This game is more important for C-M. Beating a tradition Quad-A power could establish the Big Macs as a championship contender.

2. Clairton at Monessen (4 stars)

Last week, Monessen was shut out at home by Rochester in a game many believe will be a WPIAL Class A championship preview. This week, it does not get any easier for the Greyhounds as Clairton comes to town. Monessen must cut down on turnovers to have a chance.

3. McGuffey at Greensburg Central Catholic (3 1/2 stars)
McGuffey rolled Mt. Pleasant, 28-0, to open its season. Greensburg Central Catholic easily won at Charleroi. As usual, the Centurions are loaded with talent. They were last year too but that did not stop the Highlanders from pulling the Class AA upset of the year. If McGuffey wins again, it won't be as much of a surprise.


mike the commish said...

Mike you keep insisting on saying that beating a "Quad-A Power" could establish the Big Macs as a title contender, but I do not think this game is all that meaningful. Yes, CC is a traditional power, but as we all know the nature of high school football is cyclical and as anyone will tell you this is not the "same old" Central Catholic. Sure they are good, but are certainly far from great and not even close to last year's team.

The Quad-A powers that would establish the Big Macs happen to be teams they will play later in the season: Upper St. Clair and Bethel Park. If CM fails to win these games they will either be a three or four seed out of their conference for the playoffs. That means that they will have to play the Gateway's of the world (on the opponent's home field no less) before the Final Round, almost assuring them of a season without a title. Now obviously if they beat USC and/or BP then we will all know that CM is FOR REAL.

I do enjoy the hype, but it is only week two and soooo much can happen between now and week 9. Let's let the Big Macs get into conference play before we scrutinize them mercilessly. Ultimately, Saturday is little more than an exhibition as the Big Macs prep for USC, BP, MTL, Baldwin, and Peters. Those are the games that matter the most and because of what they mean for playoff seeding, the season will be made or broke with those 5 games.

merril said...

"That means that they will have to play the Gateway's of the world"

-there is only one gateway this year, thank god.

Anonymous said...

Here is a curious question....while not undermining the "power trio of backs" from Waynesburg, and the way they have learned to work together, Why is there no mention of the player who rushed for more than 1/3 of the offensive yards? Seems to me that a player that rushes for 164 yards on 18 carries offensively, and defensively helps to hold Wash High to a total of 153 yards, deserves some mention. Do your homework!

mike_kovak said...

Mike the Commish,

You must be forgetting about playoff seeding. True, games against Bethel Park and Upper St. Clair will dictate the conference championship picture, but beating strong non-conference teams is huge for seeding.

Just ask a member of the WPIAL football committee.

Say the Big Macs lose the next two, but finish in a tie for the conference championship with a 6-3 record going into the playoffs. Then, let's say Penn Hills finishes third in its conference. Chances are C-M gets a lower seed and a much tougher first round opponent. Plus, the Great Southern is viewed as one of the weaker conferences FOR THIS YEAR in Quad-A. Beating Central can only enhance C-M's and the overall conference respect.

Whether PCC is not the "same old" PCC doesn't really matter. Their program brings respect. Losing to PCC if they end up not being a playoff team will not look good at the end of the year.

But, MTC, you are correct that the conference title means much more than one non-conference game. Still, I view this as a big game for C-M and that is not going to change.

Anonymous said...

Hey dude from Waynesburg just be happy that your team won a game these season dont worry about stats

Anonymous said...

Hey anonymous talking to the guy from Waynesburg, learn how to proofread your comments. PS I agree with the Waynesburg comment. While they should be glad their team won a game, I don't think it was a fluke. Let's remember that some of these conferences are a little skewed... such as Waynesburg playing Jeannette, that has never made sense to me. Anyways, I think stats are important, important to these kids that work for it and are trying to get somewhere with it. These stats get over looked because someone on a team with a winning record is doing work just as hard as a kid on a losing team and both have significant plays but the kid on the winning team gets a mention. These kids are trying to get somewhere with the talent they have, and its nice to recognize some kids that do well and rarely get the spotlight. Just a mention of a name would be nice. When I was in high school I saw people overlooked all the time, lets remember they are children, they work hard, and deserve a little recognition and not just to be lumped together, especially when they do something significant, such as contributing that strongly to a once winless teams win.

Anonymous said...

hey anonymous talking about the anonymous talking about the dude from waynesburg, learn to proofread your comments. you forgot an apostrophe on "team's"

Anonymous said...

actually you too are incorrect, is should be "teams'".

Mike the Commish said...

MK good points. I didn't really think of things like that as far as playoff seeding goes. I expect the macs to win on saturday and am anxious to see how the season unfolds.

Brant said...

Actually, "team's" would have been correct. And there were a lot of other mistakes in there, too. But a blog is not a grammar, spelling and punctuation test. Most of us are not professional typists. In my opinion, content counts for a lot more.