Ten things preps columnist John C. Cotey is wondering about Hillsborough County football at this very second:
1. Is Robinson-Jesuit bigger than Plant-Armwood? I don’t think so. Even though the first game is a district showdown, it’s not as if both teams shouldn’t still go to the playoffs. Even when it doesn’t quite pack the punch of past seasons, Plant vs. Armwood is, well, one of the few “classic” games in the Tampa Bay area. The state, even.
2. I still think Armwood wins. But these are always the kind of games in which, afterward, Plant fans point at me and say, “idiot!”
3. Yet, I’m willing to bet Friday’s game is more exciting than either of Plant’s games on ESPN this season.
4. Brandon is for real. I think. Solid defense, offense built around a good running attack. I’ll be a lot surer after I see how they do against Sickles. Either way, there’s no chance the Eagles don’t make the playoffs this season.
5. Sickles wasn’t so much overrated as it was overconfident last week against Largo. That tends to happen when you watch tape of a team like Largo beat another team that you think might be as bad as any you’ve seen this year, and the final score is only 7-6. More disconcerting is that the Gryphons seemed fairly lifeless on a night that was supposed to be their coming-out party.
6. If Sickles wins Friday, forget everything I just said about both teams. Thanks.
7. Is Plant City in trouble? Maybe a little after an 0-1 start in the district. The margin for error for the rest of the season is now miniscule for the Raiders, preseason darlings thanks to a strong junior class but now looking a little unsettled under first-year coach Wayne Ward.
8. With all the attention paid to tonight’s Robinson-Jesuit game in 2A-5, does unbeaten Lennard have a chance to break up that party? The Longhorns are off to a 4-0 start, but the combined record of their foes is 2-13 with more than 500 points surrendered. In two weeks, the Longhorns will get their chance in back-to-back games against the district big dogs.
9. Will Leto score? Ever? Eventually the Falcons have to, right? They have been shut out four times to start the season, and the last team that happened to was, I believe, Wharton, in their first year of existence in 1997. The Wildcats beat Blake in Game No. 5 that year.
10. My journalist credentials continue to quickly erode. I shot some video Thursday of Jesuit’s Anthony Harrell leaving a Port-A-Potty. It will make sense Saturday morning on Friday Night Rewind.