Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

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Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Horsefeather on Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:28 am

So, we're coming off of an offseason of madness with 100+ coaches turned over. So, at this point, lets hear some thoughts on programs that are showing signs of life... and others that may be flatlining.

Two of particular interest to me are Ottawa and Hampshire. Ottawa Coach Chad Gross cut his teeth with me here at Morris as a student teacher. One of the biggest changes he installed was the canning of the Ottawa double wing offense that they have run for decades. He's trying to open up the playbook from what I've heard. His biggest challenge sounds like getting kids out and getting them to buy in to what they want to do offensively. I've always thought Ottawa could be a sleeping giant, but it's going to take some time to change the culture there. Their move to the Interstate 8 next year should help.

Hampshire, my alma mater, has a much more difficult road. Playing in the Fox Valley is not conducive to building a program when you run into Cary-Grove, Prairie Ridge, and Huntley every year. With 160 kids in the program, the numbers are there, but it's a huge mountain to climb. I'm confident Coach Brosman can continue to build.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by ging on Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:57 am

Horsefeather wrote: Their move to the Interstate 8 next year should help.

one would assume being the only 6a school in a conference of 5a and 4a schools will help the pirates build their football program back up.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Head Idiot on Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:57 am

Clinton is 4-0, but that may be more of a function of having played teams that are a combined 4-12 at this point. They will receive a test this week with Tuscola coming to town. Coach Ridgeway has done a very good job with a pretty weird situation.

Tremont has been playing some really good teams very tough. I imagine Coach Zehr will have them playing at the top of their conference soon enough.

HASAAP- Hoopeston Area/Schlarman Academy/Armstrong Potomac has been playing better and isn't necessarily they debacle they've been for about the past decade.

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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Head Idiot on Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:57 am

ging wrote:
Horsefeather wrote: Their move to the Interstate 8 next year should help.

one would assume being the only 6a school in a conference of 5a and 4a schools will help the pirates build their football program back up.  
You could assume that, but it hasn't necessarily helped Clinton historically.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by ging on Tue Sep 18, 2018 11:01 am

Head Idiot wrote:
ging wrote:
Horsefeather wrote: Their move to the Interstate 8 next year should help.

one would assume being the only 6a school in a conference of 5a and 4a schools will help the pirates build their football program back up.  
You could assume that, but it hasn't necessarily helped Clinton historically.

i agree that enrollment isn't everything. but it can't hurt having 500-600 more students than some of your conference opponents.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Head Idiot on Tue Sep 18, 2018 11:07 am

ging wrote:
Head Idiot wrote:
ging wrote:
Horsefeather wrote: Their move to the Interstate 8 next year should help.

one would assume being the only 6a school in a conference of 5a and 4a schools will help the pirates build their football program back up.  
You could assume that, but it hasn't necessarily helped Clinton historically.

i agree that enrollment isn't everything.  but it can't hurt having 500-600 more students than some of your conference opponents.  
It sort of depends what those 5-600 kids are like, but we digress.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Bighitter11 on Tue Sep 18, 2018 11:34 am

Dont know anything about the new coach but Pontiac is off to a 4-0 start.

Ill give Cam Stone a Coal City grad who is HC at Iroquois West some credit too. They are 0-4 but havent had the 40 point clock put on them yet. They play a ton of Freshman on the Varsity and dont have too many upperclassmen of impact. They give Bismarck a game week 1. Their 8th grade class is full of talent as well. Dont know if they will all make it to their senior year but if they do...
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by wolverine55 on Tue Sep 18, 2018 11:41 am

It seems like Illini West is back to being Illini West, although I have yet to see them play in person. On the other hand, while most people knew they would be down a little bit, it is as shock to see Quincy Sally N D sitting at 0-4.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by illinipete on Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:10 pm

ging wrote:
Horsefeather wrote: Their move to the Interstate 8 next year should help.

one would assume being the only 6a school in a conference of 5a and 4a schools will help the pirates build their football program back up.  

Similar to Dixon joining the Big Northern and schools of 600!
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by crusader on Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:15 pm

South Seven may not be totally suck - Cahokia has only lost to Cardinal Ritter, an STL Catholic school with lots of talent.

Although it was Mount Vernon, Althoff got a win. I hope they do well enough in the conference to make the playoffs. All of those underclassmen will have seasoned during the season. Might win a playoff game with the right seeding.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by dusty7 on Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:45 pm

It definitely takes a few years to change the culture of a program but you cannot allow the program to become a revolving door of coaches. At Iroquois West, that seems to be a major issue but I can see becoming more competitive in the near future if the HC sticks it out for a few years. Same with Ottawa, they have the athletes and a conference they can be competitive in so it might work out well for them.

I was impressed with Sandwich when we played them last week. Much more physical and have the skill to run their system. They will be very competitive in their new conference but numbers are a huge issue since they don't have enough freshman for a team this year but I imagive numbers will improve.

A good example would be to look at Peotone. We had 4 HC's in my 7 years there. We were competitive, didn't experience many blowouts, when 1-3 in the playoffs but I always thought if the 1st HC was there in '12 - '14 we would've been better and kids fit his system. He was there for several years and had an established and competitive program and numbers were never an issue due to investing in the lower levels and attending their games (even away) when possible. I wasn't around but pretty sure he was intrigual in starting the youth program as well.

HC #2 was a young guy right out of college and nobody expected him to be around very long.
He didn't understand small school football. Demanded a lot of time from the kids and coaches. Was a good X's and O's guy but didn't value the experience of coaches and the lower levels so numbers starting the dwindle and we underacheived in my opinion.

HC #3 inherited a very talented group, installed spread system (which kids loved after running triple option) and had a great 1st season. He had career opportunities that he couldn't turn down so he moved on but he did help create hype and excitement around the program and got more kids to at least try playing football. Showed interest in lower levels but was more interested in getting Jr and Sr kids who "should be playing" on the field.

HC #4 got job last week in July but was the DC previous 2 years. We started the year with 4 coaches and were able to get a few more to help out. HC saw there there was potential in the near future with the Soph group. Did a great job on developing players, went 3-6, 4-5, 9-2 (lost to IC) with groups that won very few games at the Fresh/Soph level.

I guess in my experience the HC needs to 1. Show value and interest in the lower levels as they are the future of the program but you use your current team as the foundation. and 2, stick around. If you believe in yourself and your system you will be succesful.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by center on Tue Sep 18, 2018 9:52 pm

Good post Dusty. We played Peotone in 2007 playoffs and I was really impressed with your head coach at that time.

In this era it is harder to build up a down program than it used to be. There is no guarantee you are going to get enough numbers to get a program going. I know of a few very promising, hard working young coaches that are getting buried in bad situations.

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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by general maximus on Tue Sep 18, 2018 11:42 pm

Head Idiot wrote:

HASAAP- Hoopeston Area/Schlarman Academy/Armstrong Potomac has been playing better and isn't necessarily they debacle they've been for about the past decade.


We play them this week and I have to agree. They have some good kids with size. Their RB 36 shows some solid talent but is banged up. He didn’t finish the Oakwood game due to injury. The TE is also talented. QB throws a good ball and they have some other players that fit in well with the scheme. They have a very good LB as well. DBs are also better than in the past.

Regarding enrollment; I saw their roster and it indicated which of the 3 schools each player represents. I thought that was kinda cool. They are getting worthwhile contributions from each school. They do have a pretty large enrollment compared to the rest of the conference. We are under 290 and declining. I think they are over 600 when you figure in all the schools.


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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Head Idiot on Wed Sep 19, 2018 8:53 am

Head Idiot wrote:Clinton is 4-0, but that may be more of a function of having played teams that are a combined 4-12 at this point.  They will receive a test this week with Tuscola coming to town.  Coach Ridgeway has done a very good job with a pretty weird situation.

Tremont has been playing some really good teams very tough.  I imagine Coach Zehr will have them playing at the top of their conference soon enough.

HASAAP- Hoopeston Area/Schlarman Academy/Armstrong Potomac has been playing better and isn't necessarily they debacle they've been for about the past decade.

For whomever dinged me for this post- I assume for the Clinton comments- my comments on their strength of schedule comes from Coach Ridgeway himself. In congratulating him on his victory Friday he said that yes, they're 4-0 but that's more of a function of scheduling than good play.

But, you do you boo.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by OldTitan on Wed Sep 19, 2018 10:53 am

I'll echo the sentiment about the Pontiac coach. I believe he was a long time Bloomington assistant under Rigo, but could be wrong.

St. Thomas More has bounced back a bit and has a legitimate shot at the playoffs. More importantly, their numbers are up.

I have sympathy for Tolono Unity. Losing a long playoff appearances streak sucks - been there!

My thoughts are also with Coach Walters at BCC. Hang in there Coach! I remember the tough times Bobby went through in '02 and '03.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Head Idiot on Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:19 am

OldTitan wrote:I'll echo the sentiment about the Pontiac coach. I believe he was a long time Bloomington assistant under Rigo, but could be wrong.
He indeed was. In fact, he still teaches there.

Disclaimer- before you think I'm some kind of stalker, I looked him up because I had not heard of him. Google is truly an amazing tool.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by net on Wed Sep 19, 2018 1:27 pm

OldTitan wrote:I'll echo the sentiment about the Pontiac coach. I believe he was a long time Bloomington assistant under Rigo, but could be wrong.


i'm like 99.9% coach kuch has posted on here before. i know he used to read the site.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Huck on Wed Sep 19, 2018 2:20 pm

You are right, net.  I have.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by net on Wed Sep 19, 2018 2:35 pm

Huck wrote:You are right, net.  I have.

hey kuch!
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Head Idiot on Wed Sep 19, 2018 2:38 pm

general maximus wrote:
Head Idiot wrote:

HASAAP- Hoopeston Area/Schlarman Academy/Armstrong Potomac has been playing better and isn't necessarily they debacle they've been for about the past decade.


We play them this week and I have to agree. They have some good kids with size. Their RB 36 shows some solid talent but is banged up.  He didn’t finish the Oakwood game due to injury. The TE is also talented.  QB throws a good ball and they have some other players that fit in well with the scheme.  They have a very good LB as well.  DBs are also better than in the past.  

Regarding enrollment; I saw their roster and it indicated which of the 3 schools each player represents.  I thought that was kinda cool.   They are getting worthwhile contributions from each school.  They do have a pretty large enrollment compared to the rest of the conference.  We are under 290 and declining.  I think they are over 600 when you figure in all the schools.  

I've always thought there should be some sort of coop formula used for schools. You never get anywhere near the interest from a coop school as from your own kids. Sure, they may have an enrollment of 200, but you don't have 100 boys to draw from. Especially if it is a coop that is entirely one sided- all practices/games at one place. I don't know what the fraction should be, but I've always thought there could be a solution out there somewhere. If done right, maybe you could get more kids involved in playing sports in coops that schools otherwise wouldn't engage in because it may bump them up a class.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by OldTitan on Wed Sep 19, 2018 3:03 pm

Huck wrote:You are right, net.  I have.

Glad things are going well for you. Keep up the good work!
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Huck on Wed Sep 19, 2018 3:12 pm

Thanks
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by Head Idiot on Wed Sep 26, 2018 3:51 pm

How about Paris Illinois for this thread? 5-0. Wasn't too terribly long ago they were a doormat in the Little Illini Conference.
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by 19delta on Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:31 pm

First-year Freeport coach Anthony Dedmond has the Pretzels at 3-2 with a better than decent chance to pick up two more wins. If Freeport can end up at 5-4, it would be the first time in a decade finishing better than .500.

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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

Post by OldTitan on Fri Sep 28, 2018 10:11 am

Mascoutah is 4-1 and is almost certainly going to qualify for the playoffs for the first time since 2009.

HFC Josh Lee 2016 1-8, 2017 3-6, 2018 4-1 so far (predicting 7-2)
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Re: Ok... lets get the juices flowing a bit...

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