WCAC Football 2009: Week 3 Recap

The Emerging Winners

Dandini’s Week 3 WCAC Power Rankings

  #1 DeMatha (2-0)
  #2 Good Counsel (2-0)
  #3 Bishop McNamara (2-0)
  #4 Bishop O’Connell (2-0)
  #5 Saint John’s College (2-1)
  #6 Gonzaga (1-1)
  #7 Paul VI (1-1)
  #8 Archbishop Carroll (1-2)
 

Pretty soon it is going to be cold, deathly cold, but right now we’re still sizzling in high school football in September.  A number of teams have already separated themselves from the pack and they will all eventually meet in their collective collision courses.  Case in point, if Marcus Coker was only trying to get to 1,000 yards this year as previously reported in the Washington Post, he would only need 10, one hundred yard games.  Peep the Coker versus Standard graphic after only two games played.  Now understand that one hundred yards in a game has long been the professional standard of a good game, for one individual player. The first week of the season, DeMatha did not play: the Stags had a bye. (What is he going to do for the next week?) Marcus Coker is already on pace for his goal through week five.

I joke, I kid.  I don’t mean to make light of, and or be in the slightest way disrespectful to the rest of the league, but this is looking like the Stags’ year although nothing is a forgone conclusion.  Ahem… The Good Counsel Falcons just announced that they are ready to play football in Maryland again, now that they are fresh off their recent California road win.  The Falcons travelled out to Mount Saint Joseph’s and shut them out 42 – 0.  Good Counsel will continue the trend of staying in the state hunt, as they will face the Gilman Greyhounds on Thursday.

McNamara beat Fairmont Heights 37 – 14 and proved that they can kick a little but close to home in Maryland, too.  All of these Maryland wins certainly say a lot about the conference so I am pleased that Bryce has the Mustangs representing for the WCAC so well.  For once, with the Mustangs the story wasn’t all about their outstanding wide receiver, Brandon Coleman.  Running back Hannibal Robinson carried the ball 24 times for 192 yards, and three touchdowns.

Saint Johns College couldn’t manage a win against out of Ohio high school power, Archbishop Alter.  The Cadets fell 27 – 12 and I guess their star running back Charles Brown is human.  Saint Johns wide receiver Danny Wright caught five passes and managed to get 145 yards, and grabbed the only two touchdowns.  The Cadets will hope to capitalize on their experiences and improve in league play. Saint Johns just seriously upped the level of the competition that they are willing to play so they only drop a couple of ranks for this loss.

Bishop O’Connell put a feather in their caps by besting Former Vice President Al Gore’s alma mater, St. Albans, in Washington DC.  The Knights proved that they can win non conference games for the second year in a row as they got past the Bulldogs 29 – 25.  Say what you want about the Virginia schools in the WCAC, they are beginning to round out the conference and make it competitive again from top to bottom.

Since we already know what the gem of the week was, let me now start to show you how the WCAC can disappoint you sometimes.  Paul VI lost to Georgetown Prep 32 – 3.  Granted the Panthers don’t have anybody left on their team that isn’t closely related to the coach at this point, but the Little Hoyas aren’t even that good.  I’m trying to figure out who is worse.

We might as well throw Archbishop Carroll into the discussion because they got blanked by the Landon Bears, 21 – 0.  Now two Independent Athletic Conference (IAC) –also known as the rich kids, schools have bragging rights over WCAC teams, which leads them to the belief that two conferences are comparable.  I contend that they are not.  The WCAC is so much more official because both Carroll and Paul VI are seriously tripping right now.  Gonzaga had the good sense to take this week off, but it seems like all three teams are fighting to see who can be the worst.

Even Saint Mary’s Ryken managed to beat Mount Zion Baptist this week 40 – 0.  Something tells me that this isn’t a major program win, but hey, they won.  The Stags were really impressive but I’ve already covered them enough this week.  Let’s suffice to say that DeMatha impressed me, and I’ve been following the Stags for a long time.  With that being said, I have seen other talented DeMatha teams melt down but I just can’t help but get the feeling that this is a good year to be a Stag.

The Gilman Greyhound team that DeMatha faced was no easy win.  Marcus Coker made it look easy, but DeMatha had a overcome a serious learning curve.  Gilman ran what amounts to a Wildcat Offense in which the running back and quarterback alternate taking snaps from the center.  What made matters worse is the fact that Gilman came into the game with a chip on their shoulders having bested DeMatha in Prince Georges Country Learning Center.  That is the closest thing that DeMatha has to a home loss.

This year the Stags were in hostile territory in Baltimore and played on a soggy field against the #2 school of that city.  Everything down to the game time and place were completely unknown, almost right until kick-off.  Perhaps this was due to the fact that the original venue had taken on too much rain, or perhaps Gilman was playing mind games to get into the Stags’ heads.  The marquee billed the Stags as the best that Washington DC had to offer despite being located in Prince George’s County Maryland, and Gilman was a Baltimore City, title contending, savvy underdog.  The game lived up to the hype from the first quarter.  I’m sure that you’ve already seen the highlights that I posted courtesy of Kevin Lynch.

If you have two eyes, you have probably already realized that this year is something special.  Case in point, it is only week two for the Stags and we’re still mentioning completely new names.  Michael Meriwether can flat out run the football: the Stag had fourteen carries backing up The Long Ranger and still had 129 yards and two touchdowns of his own.  He wouldn’t be much of a back-up on any other team.  Michael Coley caught a touchdown pass which sort of proved that Danny Tapscott is better than your average high school quarterback when he has to be.  With the DeMatha running game the way it is right now, Tapscott’s job isn’t all that hard.

#32 for DeMatha, Bailey, played awesome both ways, and the offensive line was utterly dominant and there are too many of the big boys to name.  (And so for all of the Offensive Line, we’re going to bring on the victory girl!  I know that she’s a repeat, but she’s never been fully featured before, kind of like our offensive line.  Be careful, she’s hot: Anna Burns.)  As I mentioned before, things are heating up on offense already and once Defensive Coordinator and Assistant Coach, Deno Campbell hooks up the defense the Stags could be playing every game for a mythical national championship run.  Of course, a lot of teams above them have to lose but if the Stags win the rest of their games, they will have virtually secured the Maryland state title without having to brave the danger of a tournament.  (In Maryland, only public schools play for state titles in divisions.)  Of course, at this point the same could be said for Our Lady of Good Counsel, too…

Time will tell, and we don’t have long to wait to see how the Falcons will fare against the Greyhounds.  Good Counsel is going to have to come up with some more dimensions just like DeMatha was able to prove that they had a number of different ways to win.  The Stags used a high powered running game led by a big, dominating offensive line, a timely defense, and a sharp passing game to take out Gilman.  That is the calling card of what anyone would call a great football team and the Stags would do excellent to sustain the image.  It remains to be seen if Good Counsel will have the same three facets because they lost some key skill position players last year.  If they should win there will be no doubt that DeMatha and Good Counsel will decide who will reign supreme in the state of Maryland in October, and probably again in November.

I know that there are some Stags out there that follow my column so let me make this statement here, now, and clear: I want DeMatha Football to go undefeated this year.  I want to see us atop the USA Today poll in December.  I know that our kids will continue to work hard, if only because the coaches will mold them into the best football players that they can be.  I know that our kids want to live up to the tradition, and set a benchmark of their own.

Make Coach McGregor proud.  Make DeMatha Proud.  Make school history. 

Go Stags!

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