The prep football season is here and that gives me an opportunity to listen to all the hype, or in some cases non-hype, for our area teams.
Here is my totally unofficial crystal ball with won-loss records of Washington County football teams this season.
1) North Hagerstown (8-2)
2) South Hagerstown (8-2)
3) Williamsport (4-6)
4) Hancock (4-6)
5) Saint James (4-4)
6) Boonsboro (3-7)
7) Smithsburg (3-7)
8) Clear Spring (3-7)
As you know, this is only a guessing game from what looks good, and bad, on paper.
We’ll see how it shakes out in November.
The second season starts this week in prep football. Here is a brief look at the games involving area teams. Official dates and times will be announced Monday.
MARYLAND — North Hagerstown at Seneca Valley; Brunswick at Boonsboro
Second matchup of these two teams — Boonsboro won 47-0 on Oct 19 but I don’t see that type of score again
PA — Chambersburg at Central York (in the watered down PA playoffs)
WV — Woodrow Wilson at Martinsburg; Musselman at Capital
The note on this matchup–If Martinsburg and Musselman each win they would play each other in the next game. In the regular season Martinsburg beat Musselman 73-0.
South Hagerstown’s football team has reached a new level as a testament to its 8-0 record.
For the first time in school history the Rebels were ranked in the Top 25 of the Maryland football poll. Receiving 41 points, the Rebels stood in 22nd.
Quite an achievement by South, but you know there are bigger and better things the Rebels would like to notch on their belt.
Hopefully, for South fans including the long-suffering alums, coach Toby Peer and his staff can keep things under control in camp over the next few weeks. There are two big games left for South with Boonsboro and North Hagerstown looming as big threats as the regular season winds down.
South is a virtual lock on a playoff position; North Hagerstown has entered the picture this week in the fourth position.
Along with Boonsboro in the 1A West, could be an interesting postseason.
Little heading into week 5 of the high school football season did anyone think South Hagerstown would start the season with a 4-0 record. After all, it’s only been since 1990 when the Rebels started off similarly.
Following Friday’s 21-14 victory over Thomas Johnson, the Rebels are now 4-0. It looks to me like South could very well be 9-0 when it locks horns with rival North Hagerstown to end the regular season.
I mentioned regular season — in Class 3A the win over Thomas Johnson is going to have a favorable impact for the Rebels in first level points and they’ll likely get hlp from TJdown the road with points from TJ wins.
Isiaha Smith has been a rushing workhorse and Brandon Jackson appears like he’s becoming more comfortable at quarterback. There are others such as Michael Hill and Jakerian Jones helping shape the offense.
But the defense has been superb, coming up with five interceptions against TJ.
Hopefully the players continue to work hard this week and in each of the upcoming weeks. Maybe School Stadium can begin to rock again.
The 10th and final week of the prep football season is about to roll in and we’ve got one assured playoff spot in Washington County and two others that would like to make the grade.
Of course, we have 8-1 Boonsboro going to Smithsburg on Friday. The Warriors are second in the Maryland A West Region behind Fort Hill (9-0) and will get a home game with a win Friday. It would probably come against Mountain Ridge (8-1), who is third.
Things are interesting for North Hagerstown in 3A after the victory over Boonsboro last Friday.
The Hubs (7-2) are in sixth place, two spots out of getting a playoff spot. Seneca Valley and Damascus are definitely in. Urbana is third and Linganore is fourth and both those 6-3 teams play one another Saturday. The loser might be out of luck. Thomas Johnson, at 6-3 and with a 7.00 computer average, plays Frederick on Saturday. They should win. But North must hope Boonsboro beats Smithsburg to pick up bonus points there and of course, the Hubs must beat rival South Hagerstown on Saturday to have any chance.
And then in 2A, believe it or not, the 4-5 Williamsport Wildcats are clawing. They play at Clear Spring, also 4-5, on Friday and could be in a good position with a win. They are currently tied for fourth with Winters Mill, who is 5-4. But Winters Mill won’t generate much in its expected win over hopeless Francis Scott Key. If Williamsport wins, it’s likely to get a thank you gift of a first round game at Walkersville.
Through week 5 games, Boonsboro is still in second place in the 1A West computer rankings. The 5-0 Warriors have a 7.80 average, just behind first-place Fort Hill’s 8.44. Mountain Ridge, also 5-0, is third with a 7.00 average. Fourth is Brunswick and fifth is Clear Spring.
Middletown and Walkersville are running 1-2 in the 2A West and Catoctin is 4th.
Thursday night, Boonsboro and Catoctin meet, so there will be plenty of competer points on the line.
In 3A North Hagerstown stands in 5th place with a 5.20 average, well behind fourth-place Linganore’s 6.60.
The top 4 teams in each region throughout the state reach the playoffs.
To view all the rankings visit www.mpssaa.org
About 10 weeks ago, those of us known as the Herald-Mail Insiders made our won-loss prognostications on Inside Sports for the local football teams.
Looking at the predictions, you can draw your own conclusions on ‘good, bad or indifferent.’
Mark Keller, Bob Parasiliti and myself were the three delving into a crystal ball and here were the outcomes:
NORTH HAGERSTOWN (finished 6-4); Predictions: Mark 6-4, Bob 6-4, Tim 6-4.
SOUTH HAGERSTOWN (4-6 on the field); Mark 5-5, Bob 6-4, Tim 5-5. (South ends 5-5 including the forfeit win)
SMITHSBURG (6-4); Mark 4-6, Bob 3-7, Tim 3-7.
CLEAR SPRING (6-4); Mark 5-5, Bob 5-5, Tim 5-5.
SAINT JAMES (6-3); Mark 4-5, Bob 7-2, Tim 5-4.
WILLIAMSPORT (4-6); Mark 6-4, Bob 6-4, Tim 5-5.
HANCOCK (4-6); Mark 4-6, Bob 4-6, Tim 4-6.
BOONSBORO (2-8); Mark 5-5, Bob 6-4, Tim 5-5.
It had been a couple years since I covered the North-South football game, but with both teams coming into the game with winning records – not to mention my daughter’s final field show performance in the Rebel Band – I felt like I needed to be there Friday night.
I certainly was not disappointed in my decision.
North won the game 35-26 – their eighth straight win over South – thanks to an unbelievable performance by Hubs senior RB Anthony Winter. Winter ran 41 times for 362 yards and three touchdowns, accounting for about 80 percent of North’s offense.
As I was driving into work this evening, it hit me motoring past South Hagerstown High that Thursday, for many prep gridders, was the last time they’ll be on the practice field.
And after the games this weekend, the majority of players will put the pads on for the very last time. Many will never do it again. Their time will be spent rooting for their alma mater.
For some, careers will continue on in college.
Then it hit me!
I can’t believe it has been over 40 years since I was in the same situation of never putting the pads on again.
Here’s where the area schools stand in the computer playoff point system through Week 8:
In 1A Mountain Ridge is first, Allegany is second, Smithsburg has moved up to third and Fort Hill is fourth.
Mountain Ridge seemingly has a lock on first with a 7.78 average. Alco is next at 5.38, Smithsburg is at 5.00 and Fort Hill is 4.50.
Clear Spring, after losing to Smithsburg, is fifth with a .438 average.
If the playoffs ended today, Smithsburg would be playing at Allegany.
But there are still some scenarios that could change the positioning.