MaxPreps.com Staff Report
Wednesday, Oct. 31
- Bring on the Patriots: Smith Center, Kan., was already having a remarkable season prior to Tuesday night. What happened in the first quarter of a state playoff game against Plainville brought the small-school program into the national headlines. The Redmen, now 9-0 this season and riding a 50-game win streak, rang up 72 points in the first quarter against Plainville, a total believed to be a national record. Smith Center went on to win 86-0. While that is incredible, it really only tells a small portion of the story. Head coach Roger Barta's team has outscored its opponents 643-0 this fall, winning every game by 60 or more points. For a little more on the Redmen and the town of Smith Center, check out this piece that MaxPreps' correspondent Scott Hansen contributed in September. Dean Backes also touched on the team's 2007 campaign yesterday.
- End of an Era: Rush Propst's tenure as head football coach at Hoover High School in Alabama is over at the conclusion of this season. It is well-documented that Propst made some missteps in recent years, but he remains a revered figure among his players and fellow coaches, as evidenced by Peter Steinbauer's story Wednesday in The Birmingham News. With Propst remaining on as head coach through the end of the year, the story now becomes can Hoover overcome a season filled with distractions and three forfeited victories to send the embattled coach out with a sixth 6A state title in eight years?
- Jerry Rice, Part Deux: Jerry Rice, Jr., doesn't seem to be too concerned about playing in the shadows of his famous father, or living up to the name on the back of his jersey. He's too busy making plays. Just a junior at Menlo High in the California Bay Area, Rice has over 1,000 all-purpose yards and eight touchdowns on the season. Will McCulloch profiled the second-generation star in Wednesday's San Francisco Chronicle.
- Proof of Perseverance: Minnesota's Apple Valley High School and Hunter of Utah got off to horrible starts on the football field in 2007. Disastrous. Despite starting a combined 0-12 this fall, both are finding late-season success and salvaging what appeared to be lost years. Apple Valley began 0-7, getting shutout twice and struggling to keep its opponents out of the end zone. But the Eagles snuck into the postseason and delivered upsets of Bloomington Kennedy and Rosemount to get within two victories of a state championship game appearance. Hunter lost its first five games, and six of its first seven, only to rally late and sneak into the state's 5A state playoffs. Then things got really crazy when the Wolverines knocked off Jordan in the opening round to set up a quarterfinal game with 8-3 American Fork. Andrew Aragon of The Salt Lake Tribune elaborated on Hunter's late-season U-turn Wednesday.
- Herbstreit Event Gets an MBA: Lots of rumors and speculation about the lineup for next year's Burger King Kirk Herbstreit Ohio vs. USA Challenge, so here's more. According to The Tennessean, Volunteer State perennial power Montgomery Bell Academy (MBA) has agreed to join the 2008 lineup. The Big Red will join a national cast that already includes Prattville, Ala., Rockhurst, Mo., St. Thomas Aquinas, Fla., and Warren Central, Ind. Some others to consider to round out the cast of 11 out-of-state invaders; Eden Prairie (Minn.), Euless Trinity (Texas), Cretin-Derham Hall (Minn.), Mater Dei (Calif.), South Panola (Miss.), Miami's Booker T. Washington (Fla.), or West Monroe (La.).