Enjoy the playoff ride
Week 10 of the high school football season is here.
After this weekend in Ohio, 491 football teams out of 715 will have played their last game.
That is more than four times the amount of high school football teams in West Virginia.
Wrap your mind around that.
There are 116 high school football teams in West Virginia.
And, after Saturday, there will be 224 high school playoff football teams in Ohio.
Simple non-Common Core math says that 31.33 percent of high school football teams in Ohio get to put the pads on for another week.
In Week 12 on both sides of the river, there will be 48 playoff teams in West Virginia and 112 in Ohio.
So, more simple math.
Heading into Week 12 in Ohio, 15.67 percent high school football teams will still be playing.
Yet, some people still complain about their high school football coach – including fan bases of teams that are heading into the playoffs.
For those of you in the Cadiz area who complain about Justin Kropka, shut up.
Just simply shut up.
The man is a really, really good high school football coach who is a great role model for his kids.
He works his tail off and just wants the kids to find a new level of excellence.
Kropka is the winningest coach in Harrison Central football history and how many other high schools in the state can say they have that guy – the one at the top of the list – still coaching their teams?
A win Friday night over Buckeye Local will give Kropka a 61-48 regular season mark with the Huskies going to the playoffs on 2009, 2011 and, with a win, 2015.
What more do you people want?
Just back the kids, the program and the coaching staff.
No one wants your negativity.
No one – at all.
People are chirping in Wintersville, too, about Andrew Connor.
If the Redskins win at Cartwright Field over rival Edison Friday evening, they will own a 50-20 mark during the regular season during the past seven years.
That is a .714 winning percentage.
The entrie free world had the Redskins counted out of the playoffs (I raise my hand) and they went into Cadiz and beat the Huskies.
Did anyone see that coming, but for those inside the Indian Creek locker room?
A win over the Wildcats does not guarantee the Redskins a slot in the playoffs.
But, their chances are good.
Remember, secondary points are the main reason teams get to their spot at the end of the year in their respective regions.
Along with a win, the Redskins will also need help from the teams they defeated – and four of those teams are playing each other, Oak Glen at Beaver Local and Harrison Central at Buckeye Local.
Be thankful when your team makes the playoffs. By numbers alone, it is a rare occurrence.
Enjoy the experienece.
Enjoy the home game or the road trip.
Embrace the challenge with the kids that lies ahead.
Cameron High School football coach Scott Holt received a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty at Van.
He apparently stared at the official.
Let me help parents here.
The following is a complaint protocol.
Athlete talks to the coach.
Athlete talks to the parent(s).
Athlete and parent(s) talk to the coach.
Athlete and parent(s) talk to the coach and athletic director.
Athlete and parent(s) talk to the coach, athletic director and administrator.
In my opinion, if there is still a problem, it has nothing to do with sports.
Please notice, nowhere on that list is, call the superintendent, call the principal or call WVSSAC or OHSAA.
The playing time of the athletes is not the playing time of the adult.
We don’t play.
We watch and support.
Talking to a friend the other day from back home he told me about something he called a new phenomena – quitting by text.
I had never thought of that.
But, considering this generation, I get it.
Yet, if you are an athlete and you quit by texting the coach, you should be ashamed.
If you want to quit, walk up to the coach, look at him/her in the eyes and tell them.
It’s that simple.
Learn a level of responsibility and accountability.
Brooke needs a win Friday night at John Marshall and some help in order to spend Week 12 at home.
The Bruins have a bye Week 11.
A win over the Monarchs will give the Bruins a 7-3 mark and their first playoff appearance since the state championship title game run of 2010.
I talked to head coach Mac McLean after their 14-7 Week 6 win over Indian Creek.
“I think the difference right now with us is we have a group of seniors who want to win,” he said. “They haven’t won in their career here and they just want to win. They’ll do anything for me and for this program. I couldn’t ask for a better group of kids playing for us right now and it starts with the seniors.”
Of Brooke’s 10 opponents, only one – University – won’t be in or have contended for a playoff berth.
How’s that for a season?
There is a chance for a Week 12 game – the first round of the playoffs – in Huntington.
But, all that matters is John Marshall Friday night in Moundsville.
Brooke and Weir, like Indian Creek and Harrison Central, put on quite a show in their rivalry game.
Kids were smacking each other all night.
Sportsmanship was evident.
The Red Riders, with a Friday night win over East Liverpool, will make the playoffs for the second year in a row and will be on the road.
No clue where that will be yet.
The Red Riders also have a Week 11 bye, a chance to heal and scout.
College football administration has no problem making changes now in mid-season as it happened again Sunday when Al Golden was relieved of his duties in Miami after the worst loss in program history, 58-0 at home to Clemson.
Also on Sunday, George O’Leary quit as the head coach at the University of Central Flordia.
Oops, he resigned.
He followed Steve Spurrier’s act.
Those two did something they preached over and over to their kids not to do – quit.
It’s that simple.
Christy Nockels, “Waiting Here For You,” a powerful song. Highly recommend it.
(Mathison, a Weirton resident, is the sports editor of the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org, followed on Twitter at @MathisonMike or heard weekday mornings from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. with Joey Klepack and from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Saturdays on WEIR-AM).