Stuff I know and questions I ponder
August 28, 2012 11:34PM
Griffith head coach Jim Pickett tries to get a player's attention on the sideline in the second quarter at Griffith High School Friday evening. | Jeffrey D. Nicholls~Sun-Times Media
Updated: September 30, 2012 6:26AM
Griffith coach Jim Pickett looked like he wanted to forget the whole New Prairie-Griffith experience as soon as possible. It’s not that it wasn’t a great game — it was absolutely one of the best high school football games I’ve covered in a long time. It was just uncomfortable and plain weird that the two teams would have to meet just two games after Radtke left to coach the Cougars. It’s the reason that fathers don’t like to match up against sons or brothers against brothers.
Could be another media circus (Pickett’s words, not mine) if the two teams win their sectionals and have to play in regionals.
That is a real possibility. Hope the Panthers are ready.
Griffith beat New Prairie 49-7 last year. The Cougars, with Radtke as coach and with essentially the same nucleus of players, beat the Panthers 14-7 in 2012. Do you think coaching makes a difference?
Valparaiso High School is the best 0-2 football team in the state. The Vikings have lost to the No. 1 and No. 3 teams by a total of eight points.
Switching seamlessly to basketball, Bowman plays Andrean in what should be an epic game on Dec. 1. The 59ers open against Roosevelt, Lew Wallace and the Eagles consecutively. The 59ers are bringing it this year with a take-on-all-comers schedule. Look for Andrean to add Crown Point when the Duneland Athletic Conference drops its round robin requirement.
I’ll pre-emptively respond for Notre Dame running back Cierre Wood and backup defensive end Justin Utopo on their return to the team after they finish their two-game suspensions for breaking a team rule: They have learned their lesson and they’re ready to move on. Have you ever known an athlete who wasn’t contrite and “ready to move on” after being punished?
Prediction: Notre Dame quarterback Tommy Rees will soon be forgotten as Everett Golson develops into his role as Irish quarterback. The larger looming question is what will happen with Gunner Kiel if Golson is Tony Rice good?
Kiel would only get a year if both players stick around and he redshirts this season. It’s a ridiculous thought since the Irish just need to get through the season without a quarterback controversy but hey, that’s what I do sometimes: Ponder the ridiculous.
It will take a dynamic leader with charisma, super organizational skills and a real sense of purpose to create a new conference that is made up of schools from Gary, East Chicago and perhaps Hammond. My crystal ball said the picture of just who that person could be is pretty cloudy.
According to several sources, schools such as Bowman and Roosevelt are interested but skeptical that the various competing interests could be shaped into a viable conference. For instance, 21st Century and Gary Lighthouse don’t have football programs and why would Morton want to play in a conference with Gary since none of its football teams could hang with the Governors anyway? The same could be said for East Chicago.
My suggestion is to simplify the problem, which seems impossible on its face. Create a basketball-only conference with the schools from Gary and anybody else (Hammond and EC) that wants to join. Then go about the business of adding sports one-by-one when the schools are ready.
Just wondering: Does Gary still need a city athletic director now that it’s down to just two high schools? Seems like the corporation could save some poorly spent money by eliminating the position and allowing the ADs at West Side and Wallace to work longer during the day. They currently get an hour for athletic director chores.