Winning with Whitt- DeKalb versus New Boston

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By Whitt Sparks
Tribune Sports Columnist

High school and college football just finished the first week of the season this past weekend, and for me at least, I didn’t see many surprises.  Yes, some teams that were picked to win lost, like Miami, Washington, Texas, and Michigan, but what do we really know about these teams after one game?  Not much.

Here’s what I did learn.  First, the schools in the Power 5 conferences will almost always beat schools that are not.  There are divisions in college football based on several factors like attendance, stadium seating, school enrollment, etc… but there is also an unofficial division at the top level of college football, the Division 1.  The schools that are in the top five conferences, PAC, BIG12, BIG10, SEC, and ACC are the only schools that will ever make the playoffs and be realistically considered for the college football playoffs.  That leaves out half of the schools in the Division 1 that are playing at the D1 level, but will never see the playoffs.  I’m not suggesting that schools like Central Florida are on the same level as Alabama or Ohio State, but the way the system is set up, Central Florida and many other schools are forced to play in the same system, which isn’t right.  

Here’s my solution.  The NCAA needs to make changes that state the college playoff system is for schools that are in the Power5 conferences.  Then create a separate college playoff system for all Div.1 schools that are not in the Power5.  For me, it’s pretty simple, and makes sense on the field, in the board room, and for the fans of those schools.  

Second, I learned that it’s too early to tell who’s good and who’s not.  Here’s an example:  Auburn beat Washington this weekend, but how good is either team?  We don’t know.  Washington could have been over-hyped as a great team, or Auburn was undervalued going into the season.  My guess, Washington IS a great team that got beat by a GREAT team.  I think both Washington and Auburn will be contending for their conference championships in November.

Third, I learned that the schools at the top are still far and away the best of the best.  Names like Ohio State, Alabama, and Oklahoma are still dominating the college game, and we will be talking about them all season.  I also learned that Notre Dame is still the team people love to hate.

I could say the same thing about high school football in our area as well.  Linden Kildare did beat Hooks, a school twice the size of LK, but I think Linden is an outstanding team that will compete in every game they play this year, and I also think Hooks in recent years has been a slow starting team.   They will improve as the season goes on.

This week is a big week in our area, New Boston and DeKalb will continue their rivalry playing in DK this Friday.  This game rarely disappoints, and I think this game is one all eyes will be on in West Bowie County.  Also, Hooks is playing Paul Pewitt, a game that will show the fans of both schools what to expect going into the rest of the season. Pewitt looked great last Friday against New Boston and are still licking their wounds from last season’s loss to the Hornets.  I expect this to be a very physical game.

There will be some great football this Friday, so find a game and go and support the student athletes from our schools.  

Last Week’s Trivia Question: TCU coach Gary Patterson is the longest tenured coach in in the Big12.  Who was the coach at TCU before Patterson? Answer:  Dennis Franchione coached TCU from 1998-2000 and then went to coach Alabama.
This Week’s Trivia Question:  The New Boston vs. DeKalb game is the longest continuous rivalry in Texas.  What’s the longest high school rivalry in the USA?

 

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