Tag Archives: Football

Predicting Every Game of the 2022-2023 Lions Regular Season

The revamped Lions are looking to make sizable gains this upcoming season. My prediction is they trade games the first quarter of the season before falling to 2-4 in a loss to Dallas. Things will start to click for the young team and they will eventually pull even at 7-7 against the Jets and end the season just outside the playoffs with a season finale loss to the Packers. While not peaking early enough to make the playoffs, young talent proves things are headed in the right direction and the Lions will finish tied for second in the division, splitting games with Minnesota and edging out the Bears who bring up last place in the NFC North. The Packers claim the division… again.


PHI 1:00 PM Loss 0-1


vs WSH 1:00 PM Win 1-1


@ SEA 1:00 PM Win 2-2


@ NE 1:00 PM Loss 2-3


@ DAL 1:00 PM Loss 2-4


vs MIA 1:00 PM Win 3-4


vs GB 1:00 PM Loss 3-5


@ CHI 1:00 PM Loss 3-6


@ NYG 1:00 PM Win 4-6


vs BUF 12:30 PM Loss 4-7


vs JAX 1:00 PM Win 5-7


vs MIN 1:00 PM Win 6-7


@ NYJ 1:00 PM Win 7-7


@ CAR 1:00 PM Loss 7-8


vs CHI 1:00 PM Win 8-8


@ GB TBD Loss 8-9

Forecasting Week Two of MHSAA Football

Game of the Week
It may be July, but the days are quickly passing like a 7 on 7 tournament happening all over the Mitten state as teams prep to chase their dreams at a state title. While some may have more reasonable hopes of achieving that dream, squads of helmeted teens prepare, nonetheless, to take the field in just over a month.

We wanted to take an early look at what will be our game of the week taking place during Thursday/Friday week 1 action the Rockford Rams and visiting Mona Shores Sailors.

The Sailors finished their season last year with an 8-3 (6-1) record with victories and defeats that were lopsided. When the Sailors won, they did with emphasis. When they lost, it was by a large margin. Much of this was due scheduling some difficult opponents in eventual state champion Detroit Martin Luther King and perennial power Muskegon. Mona Shores eventually fell in the second round of the playoffs in a lopsided 49-12 defeat to Caledonia.

Rockford had a tremendous season 11-1 (7-0) that saw them finish the regular season with a conference championship and undefeated record before being bounced in heartbreaking fashion in the third round of playoffs to Grand Blanc 28-27. The Rams came through in clutch time with several close victories throughout the year, but were unable to do it one more time and the magical run came to an end.

If the game had been played last year, Rockford would have been the clear favorite, but a single year can make a large difference; even at schools with larger class sizes. Rockford graduated a considerable number of impact players on both sides of the ball in 2021 and will see someone new under center in 2022. Replacing such incredible talent won’t be easy. On the flip side, Mona Shores also graduated star quarterback Mark Konecny. Both teams will be looking to find success regardless of changes in the lineup.

Mona Shores struggled to keep up when their defense put them in a position to make the game a shootout last year. If the Sailors are going to have a chance, it will be with stout defense in a game that keeps the score tight and low. If the Rams start stacking up points, the game will likely get out of reach for Mona Shores’.

Our “too early” prediction for the week one game of the week is: Rockford 38 Mona Shores 20

Other Week One Predictions:
Coopersville 28 – Sparta 7
GR Catholic Central 35 – Port Huron 20
Unity Christian 48 – Whitehall 14
Cedar Springs 7 – River Rouge 56
Reeths Puffer 14 – Grand Haven 13
Kent City 20 – Newaygo 13
Forest Hills Central 21 – Jenison 14
Northview 27 – West Ottawa 20
Forest Hills Northern 40 – Wyoming 13
West Catholic 28 – Edwardsburg 35

Michigan Falters Against Hoosiers

Joe Milton topped 300 passing yards for a second straight week on just 18 completions and junior wide receiver Ronnie Bell pulled down 6 catches for 149 yards and a touchdown, but the Michigan Wolverines lost their second in as many weeks. Indiana dominated from the opening and held off a late surge by the Wolverines at the end of the third quarter; grabbing two interceptions and closing the afternoon 38-21. The loss marked the first time the Wolverines have lost to Indiana since 1987.

While the #23 ranked Wolverines seemed poised for a strong year after a season opening victory against Minnesota, but have taken a beating in back to back weeks. While #13 Indiana sits at 3-0, the loss must be a tough pill to swallow for the Maize and Blue as they struggled against a Hoosier squad that has showed flashes in years past, but remained a perennial second tier Big 10 football program.

The victory may show that the Hoosiers are for real in 2020, but it may also display that Michigan is on track to have their most disappointing season in a string of seasons full of them.

The Wolverines will try to get things back on track with a signature win against #10 Wisconsin next week, a game likely circled on the schedule by many at the beginning of the season, but the prospects of that are looking less likely after recent struggles.

Kent City Fends Off Morley Stanwood in Opener

Friday night brought fans their first taste of high school football this fall in a CSAA matchup between the visiting Kent City Eagles and the hometown Morley Stanwood Mohawks.

The Eagles managed to hold the Mohawks out of the end zone after a long drive in the first quarter that stalled with a strong goal line stand.

The Eagles were subsequently the beneficiaries of several short fields after repeated defensive stops, but failed to capitalize on the excellent field position with multiple fourth down passes falling incomplete.

A final defensive effort kept the Mohawks buried in their own territory and forced a punt in the closing seconds of the first half and took both teams into halftime with a scoreless tie. Despite the initial Mohawk drive, the Eagles managed to hold the Mohawks to just 61 yards in the opening half.

The score would not remain tied, however, as Kent City sophomore running back, Mason Westbrook, barreled in for a touchdown early in the third quarter. The Eagles capped off the score with a two point conversion to make the score 8-0.

A few series later, Mason Westbrook went down with an apparent leg injury midway through the third quarter and was sidelined to receive attention from trainers and coaches.

Sophomore QB Kyler Larson also went down shortly after and forced an Eagles timeout with under a minute left in the third quarter. Both returned to action after the Kent City defense stifled the driving Mohawks once again; this time taking advantage of a fumbled snap.

Kent City answered with a drive of its own, but was also almost derailed by a fumble before being recovered by Kent City. The Eagles gained 6 yards on the play and a few plays later, sophomore running back, Webb Longcore, sprinted into the endzone on a second and goal play. Giving the Eagles their second touchdown of the evening. A penalty pushed the two point try to the 7-yard line, but sophomore quarterback, Kyler Larson, was able to scamper through a small hole up the middle and gave the Eagles the 16-0 lead.

The Mohawks responded on the kickoff with a determined return by junior Levi Schuberg that gave them position at the 40 yard line. The drive extended once again, but ended with an interception on a highly lofted ball tossed by junior quarterback, Aaron Moore, that enabled Eagles DB, Kyle Monterusso, to step in and take the pass the other way with just under 4 minutes left in the fourth quarter.

In the end, the visiting Eagles stifled Mohawk attempts to get on the board and posted the 16-0 shutout to start the season.

HS Football Makes its 2020 Debut Tonight

When the class of 2020 graduated and athletes walked off their respective fields, diamonds and courts for the last time a bit earlier than planned, many had to assume their senior year would be among the most unique in history. Six months later, the argument could be made that the class of 2020’s swan song was mostly “normal.”

Tonight, thousands of Michigan football players will take to the field in helmets and pads. Only this year, those accoutrements will be accompanied by another piece of gear: masks.

As the 2020 high school football season kicks off we will all watch and hope it provides the athletes and fans some sense of normalcy in a tumultuous and tenuous situation this fall.

Stay tuned for our coverage of the CSAA conference matchup between the Mohawks of Morley Stanwood and the Eagles of Kent City.

Miami University Crowned MAC Champs as Central Michigan Comeback Falls Short

The Mid-American Conference Football Championship at Ford Field was full #MACtion on Saturday afternoon in Detroit. The Miami Redhawks came into the game with a 7-5 record after winning the MAC East Division despite being picked to finish third in the west by the pre-season coach’s poll.

Central Michigan’s path to the championship game was even more improbable as the Chippewas were picked to finish dead last in the overall conference pre-season poll, but clawed their way into the final with a 8-4 record.

NCAA Division 1 football often lacks the parity seen in other college athletics that often makes events like March Madness a draw for it’s unpredictability and underdog stories.

Football is a different animal. The underdog rarely wins. The college football playoff has seen only ten different schools represented in the five years since its inception. That is what made this year so special for the MAC conference. Parity abounded.

Ohio University and Toledo were picked to be the teams representing their respective divisions in the MAC conference championship game in the coach’s preseason poll. Toledo came in last in the West Division and Ohio, the far and away favorite to win the conference in August, only outpaced two teams in their division by December.

So what else could we expect to cap off the season than a tightly contested game that ebbed and flowed without providing any indication who would come out on top until the very last second ran off the clock and a Hail Mary attempt fell to the ground?

The game featured a 98-yard kickoff return that came just a yard short of a touchdown on the very first play of the game, a fake punt attempt deep in CMU’s own territory, a 48-yard booming field goal by Kicker of the Year candidate Sam Sloman and an onside kick that was ran in for the likely game-winning touchdown, only to be called back for an offside penalty.

Fans of both teams were treated to college football at its absolute best as CMU and Miami provided spectators hope that their team would be crowned champions even in the final moments as the ball hung in the air as outstretched arms desperately clawed to bring it in.

The game started in a hurry as Miami returner, Maurice Thomas, took possession of the kickoff at the Miami 1-yard line and proceeded to streak down the sideline with a wall of blockers ahead of him before cutting across the field and being brought down just a yard short of the end zone. The 98-yard kickoff return started Miami off with an early opportunity that they would capitalize on with running back Jaylon Bester leaping into the end zone for the first points of the game. Miami Kicker Sam Sloman booted the extra point and CMU found themselves down 7-0 just over a minute into the contest.

Both teams traded short-lived drives the rest of the quarter and Miami took a 7-0 lead into the second.

CMU opened the second quarter continuing their drive and was able to move the ball through a combination of their two quarterbacks, Tommy Lazzaro and Quinten Dormady, near the Miami Redzone. On 3rd and 3 from the Miami 21, Lazzaro ran the option from shotgun and busted around the left side of the line and in for the Chippewa touchdown. Ryan Tice’s extra point kick tied things up 7-7 with 11:46 remaining in the half.

The next two drives stalled out and CMU was forced to punt on 4th and 6 from their own 19-yard line. In a move that surely surprised all in attendance, CMU elected to run a fake punt and snapped it to one of the punt protectors who attempted to catch the Miami punt team sleeping. The play was unsuccessful as Oakley Lavallii was stuffed at the line of scrimmage. CMU’s defense took the field for the second time with their backs against the wall, but managed to hold Miami to a three and out and force the Miami field goal attempt.

Sam Loman lined up and kicked a 41-yard field goal that soared through the uprights with relative ease and gave Miami a 10-7 lead.

Miami and CMU traded possessions once again before CMU took the ball at 2:57 for what became the last drive of the half. Dormady was sacked on first down by Andrew Sharp, but came back on second with a much needed 24-yard pass to JaCorey Sullivan. This took the Chippewas to the Miami 23-yard line. CMU would manage to get themselves into a third and five situation with 1:01 left in the half.

CMU elected to run with Kalil Pimpleton for a gain of 7 yards, which gave the Chippewas a fresh set of downs inside the redone and with time waning in the half. CMU called timeout on third and ten with 36 seconds left in the half from the Miami 11. Dormady alluded pressure and rolled right out of the pocket where he found Tyrone Scott for the 11-yard touchdown catch. Tice buried the extra point and gave the Chippewas the final points of the half, leading Miami 14-10.

CMU’s first drive of the second half was stalled after 4 plays and a punt. Miami freshman quarterback Brett Gabbert took the Redhawks on a fast and furious drive completing passes of 35 yards to James Maye and 31 yards to Jack Soreneson with Sorenson’s catch delivering Miami their second touchdown of the game and a 17-14 lead.

Much like the first quarter, both teams managed to find their groove and a quarter that begin in a fury ended with several drives ending without points.

The fourth quarter opened with Miami driving again before stalling out at the Chippewa 15 yard line. Sloman came in again and easily knocked through the 33 yard kick for a 20-14 Redhawk lead.

CMU’s next drive began with several solid plays as Dormady competed a 9 yard pass to Da’Quaun Jamison and Lazzaro hit Tony Poljan for 24-yards. The completion brought the Chippewas into Redhawk territory and after a roughing the passer penalty on the ensuing play, the Chippewas found themselves at the Redhawk 27-yard line and a chance at taking the lead.

There would be no such occasion, however, as Dormady’s next pass was intercepted by Miami defensive back Travion Banks and ran back for a touchdown, before being called back on an illegal block in the back penalty. Nevertheless, the play stifled CMU’s first comeback attempt. Gabbert got to work again, hitting Sorenson on three times on the drive. CMU held the Redhawks to a 4th and 4 at the CMU 30 when Sloman came on the field to attempt a 48-yard field goal. CMU’s best hope was a miss that would keep the game at just a 6 point differential. Sloman left little doubt that there would be such a chance.

The kicker delivered a strike and gave the Redhawks a 9-point lead at 23-14 with 4:06 left in the 4th quarter.

CMU was not done fighting. They started their drive at their own 20 yard line and proceeded to drive with speed and efficiency down the field before finally driving in for a rushing touchdown behind a diving Lazzaro. Tice’s kick made the game 23-21 with 1:24 on the clock.

CMU attempted the onside kick, which was caught off a bounce by the kicking team’s Rolliann Sturkey and ran all the way in for a score to the screams of a crowded Ford Field before being called off for an offside penalty. Another off-side penalty would be declined on the second attempt and Miami took possession at the CMU 30-yard line. CMU had one chance to get the ball back: do not give up a first down. The Chippewas did what they had to do and forced the Redhawks to kick a field goal on 4th and 4. Sloman booted yet another field goal, this time from 42 yards away.

The ensuing kickoff was sent through the end zone for a touchback and CMU took the ball at their own 25-yard line with just 28 seconds to go in the game. CMU managed to drive the ball 20 yards and stop the clock with just 6-seconds to play. Dormady rolled right as CMU receivers ran towards the end zone in a pack. Dormady heaved the ball as high and far as he could. The ball hung in the air for what seemed like an eternity and came down into the outstretched arms of both Redhawk defenders and CMU receivers before falling to the ground. Incomplete.

Miami players rushed the field in jubilation after securing the 26-21 Mid-American Conference championship.

CMU’s improbable run felt just as incomplete as the Hail Mary attempt. After a season defying the odds and rising from the bottom of the MAC conference standings, they found themselves just short of making their story complete. Both teams played their hearts out and it is only a shame that one team had to lose.

CMU’s season is not finished, however, as they move on to play in the New Mexico Bowl against San Diego State. Miami is also going bowling as they will face off against Louisiana in the Lending Tree Bowl.

Congratulations to both teams on stellar seasons.

Players of the Game:
Offense – Jack Sorenson (WR)
Defense – Emmanuel Rugamba (DB)
Special Teams – Sam Sloman (K)

Box Score

Central Michigan0140721
Miami University737926

Grand Rapids Catholic Central Punches Ticket to Ford Field

Grand Rapids Catholic Central will be returning to Ford Field for another run at a state title in what has become a bit of an annual tradition for the Cougars.

Unity Christian proved to be no match for GRCC and the Cougars dominated from start to finish en route to a 56-17 victory.

Unity Christian went into the half with at least some modicum of hope as senior kicker Grant Balcer booted a huge 48-yard field goal as time expired and the ball crossed just past the middle of the crossbar into the wind.

Sophomore QB Joe Silveri and Junior wide receiver Jace Williams connected on several leaping catches on deep balls on an afternoon where Silveri rushed for 4 tds and passed for another. GRCC advances to the division 4 state championship game next Saturday against Detroit Country Day. One thing is for certain: Country Day will be in a fight with an absolute juggernaut.

Kent City Flies High on Big 4th Down Plays vs. Northpointe Christian

Former president and co-founder of the NFL, Steve Sabol, once wrote the following lines which became famous through the narration of John Facenda of NFL Films:

“(The autumn wind) growls as he storms the country,
A villain big and bold.
And the trees all shake and quiver and quake,
As he robs them of their gold.”

The trees were not the only things quivering last night at Ward Memorial Field in Kent City, MI as temperatures dipped into the upper 30’s early in the game and only became less palatable with a spattering of cold rain in the 4th quarter.

Fans from Northpointe and Kent City braved the conditions in thick coats and hats, huddling together in such tight quarters that the packed stadium still left room in the stands. Their dedication would be amply rewarded with four quarters of incredibly hard-fought football.

They say defense wins championships and that is perhaps more true in high school football than any other sport. The cold temperatures plagued both teams last night as hand dexterity and tactile grip on the ball both dropped with low temperatures and rain causing both teams to fight for field position more often than points. The temperatures almost assuredly led to the mass amount of times the ball found its way rolling around the turf in a game that seems likely to have been scored in the mid-30’s by both teams if held in August.

Things got kicked off with Northpointe receiving the opening kickoff. However, their first drive would not last long. Big run stops led to a passing situation for the Mustangs formidable air attack. Stout pressure came up the middle from the Kent City defensive line and chased NPC senior Qb Drew Wurn from the pocket before KC senior defensive lineman Jesus Hernandez ultimately brought him down for the sack.

It would go from bad to worse for the Mustangs on their opening drive. Backed up deep in their own territory, a fumbled long snap was nearly picked up by Kent City before the Northpointe punter was miraculously able to recover and rugby style kick it at least a dozen yards down field. This turn of events led to Kent City starting their opening drive already deep in Northpointe territory and it wasn’t long before the Eagles marched in for the touchdown on a one yard plunge by senior RB/LB Max Hudson.

The extra point was partially blocked and failed to cross the uprights, giving the Eagles a 6-0 lead early in the contest. On a night where points did not come easy, this early turn of events would prove fortuitous for the Eagles.

Successive defensive stops allowed Kent City to make several trips to the red zone throughout the first half, but turnovers or huge tackles for loss by Northpointe spurned their advance each time.

Both teams struggled to gain much momentum offensively the rest of the first half until Northpointe’s final drive.

The Mustangs started by moving the ball through the air, seemingly the only way they would be able to reliably move the ball downfield Friday night. However, the Mustangs found their stride and shredded their way down the field on the strength of Wurn’s big-time arm and clutch catches by NPC senior RB/Wr Josiah Dooley.

The passing attack brought the Mustangs within one yard of the end zone with four downs and under a minute to go in the half. The Mustangs were stopped on first and second down. Wurn attempted the slant pass to the end zone on third, but failed to complete it. That gave the Mustangs a 4th and goal from the 1 yard line and 20 seconds remaining in the half.

Both teams lined up ready to battle it out in the trenches. The old saying goes, “these are the times that try men’s souls.” While that may be a bit dramatic in this particular instance, this was undoubtedly one of the times that determine ball games. The Eagles front 8 pressed hard into the Mustangs offensive line and managed to stop Northpointe for a loss. The eagles took possession and a 6-0 lead into the half.

The second half was as much of a defensive slog as the first half. Kent City got the ball inside the NPC ten yard line before the Mustangs rallied with a big sack fumble on a bootlegging senior Qb, Eli Carlson. The Mustangs scooped the ball and looked prepared to take it 90+ yards for their first touchdown of the game when Hudson screamed across the field and laid a vicious tackle that brought the NPC ball carrier down around the 50 yard line.

This play set in motion a wild series of events that would see the ball changes hands several times in the course of just a few minutes. Wurn dropped back and tossed a pass down the left side of the field where it was intercepted by KC junior DB Bradley Brooks. The series of turnovers kept the back and forth going for another several minutes before Kent City finally managed to gain traction and drive the ball inside the ten again.

The Mustangs looked poised to stop their advance again and forced them into a 4th and 11 from the Northpointe 12 yard line. It seemed making the contest a two score game would be enough to secure a victory with the way both teams’ defenses were performing and this play would prove as important to sealing victory as the prior fourth down standoff to end the first half.

Pressure from the Mustangs was instantaneous as Carlson flushed deep out to the right and dumped off the pass to Hudson. The Eagles hopes appeared to be dashed when Hudson found himself staring down a defender almost instantly. However, Hudson showed what he has all season: he is dangerous in space.

Hudson shook the first defender and burst towards the end zone. Another Mustang defender tracked hard from the secondary and appeared ready to stop him just short of the first down. Hudson would not be denied, however, and showed once again that it takes a host of defenders to bring him down. Hudson barreled through the would-be tackler and spun his way into the end zone, giving the Eagles their second score of the night. The Eagles racked on two more points with Carlson bootlegging to the left and finding a wide open Hudson in the end zone to make the score 14-0 going into the 4th quarter.

The Mustangs were undeterred and swiftly marched towards the end zone. The drive appeared halted on multiple occasions as the Mustangs were backed up on penalties, resulting at one point in a 3rd and 26. However, the Mustangs showed what they had all night, when Wurn had time and momentum, they could move the ball through the air. Wurn tossed the ball deep down the left sideline, completing the pass for the first down. The Mustangs continued their drive and pushed into the end zone for the first time of the night. They followed their touchdown up with a two point conversion, which brought the game to 14-8.

The drive showed one thing for certain. If the Mustangs were left much time they had the tools to score, and do so in a hurry!

Kent City found themselves marching into the red zone again when Max Hudson trampled his way around the left end and barreled inside the ten where he was hit hard by multiple Mustang defenders, jarring the ball loose in the wet & cold conditions.

The Mustangs took possession. Within just a few plays, Wurn tossed a bomb to the end zone to the outstretched arms of his streaking receiver for the Mustangs second and lead-taking touchdown. However, celebration turned to dismay as eyes made their way to a small yellow flag back at the line of scrimmage. Holding on the offense. Results of the play waived off and a ten yard penalty.

The Eagles forced the punt and began a crucial drive. With just a few minutes left and a 14-8 lead it became clear to the huddled masses in attendance that the Eagles offense didn’t need to score, but did need to help their defense by running off as much time and putting as field position between Wurn and the end zone.

Step one: get a first down. It appeared several times on Kent City’s final drive that NPC would be able to stop the Eagle advance and take back possession with time to score. However, the chess match between Kent City’s head coach, Bill Crane and NPC head coach Brian Haveman was underway as both teams fought to either drain or preserve as as much time as possible.

Crane strategically let time run down before calling timeout before two key plays on the drive, knowing if they were stopped every second mind count in the hands of Wurn and his Mustang receivers. However, on each instance the Eagle came up big with freshman RB Mason Westbrook having a breakout night in big situations. Westbrook’s runs weren’t flashy. In most cases it was hard to tell he even had the ball, but time and time again a swell of cheering would erupt as Westbrook burst from a pile of defenders 5, 10 or 15 yards downfield.

The Eagles ran Westbrook on multiple important downs and he delivered each time, pushing the Eagles downfield and, more importantly, draining time off the clock.

The Mustang defense managed to hold their ground one last time and give Wurn and the offense one last shot with the ball deep in their own territory, the season on the line and just over 30 seconds on the clock.

Their hopes would quickly be dashed. Successive incomplete deep balls that just barely fell incomplete were capped off by a huge interception by DB Bradley Brooks, his second on the night. Eagles rushed to celebrate and lift him up for sealing what amounted to be the final live play of the game.

The several Eagles helped up visibly distraught Mustangs who had made last gasp efforts to make a play for the ball, before calling victory formation and sending the home fans out with a playoff victory and retire Ward Memorial Field until next year.

While the game was not decided by two plays, two fourth down plays by the Eagles accounted for at least a 14 point swing in their favor and failing to make those plays could have easily had the Eagles on the wrong side of a 14-6 score.

Northpointe ends their season at 6-4. The Eagles advance with a record of 7-3 to play undefeated Pewamo-Westphalia for what is sure to be another big test for the Eagles, as PW has maintained an astounding average score of 42.9 to 2.1 this season.

Kent City Football Faces Northpointe Christian in Battle of 6-3 Teams

The Eagles will take the gridiron in Kent City at Ward Memorial Field at least one more time in the 2019 season as they face off against the Mustangs of Northpointe Christian HS. Both teams enter the contest with identical records at 6-3 and the only mutual opponent being Calvin Christian HS, which Kent City beat most recently 62-14 on October 18 and Northpointe handled convincingly on September 20th with a nearly identical score of 59-14. Each team will be relying on a strong host of senior-laden run-first backfields with QBs Drew Wurn (NPC) & Eli Carlson (KC) and RBs Josiah Dooley (NPC), Jake Shepherd (NPC), Dolan Bair (KC) and Max Hudson (KC) hoping to keep their senior seasons going deep into November.

That is where the similarities end for these two teams. Kent City is under the helm of fourth year coach, Bill Crane, while Northpointe has found its way back to the playoffs under first year coach, Brian Haveman. This marks only the second time in four years that Northpointe has made it to the post-season while Kent City marks their fourth such trip in as many years.

Following massive success in the mid-2000s, the Chargers have struggled in recent years, posting just above a .500 record during that time. Coach Haveman hopes this season will be the start of a new tradition in Northpointe football.

Kent City’s losses this season came at the hands of 9-0 Muskegon Orchard View, and 6-3 Morley-Stanwood & 6-3 Grant HS. Northpointe’s losses came against 9-0 Niles-Brandeywine HS, 8-1 Adrian-Lenawee Christian and 6-3 Centreville.

Both teams take the field at Ward Memorial Field in Kent City, MI this Friday at 7pm. Good luck to both teams. Tickets are available for pre-sale at both high schools for $6.

Michigan Defeats Middle Tennessee State in Season Opener

The University of Michigan Football team opened up their 2019-2020 season on Saturday with a 40-21 victory over Conference USA foe Middle Tennessee State (8-6 & 1st in C-USA East Division in 2018) at the Big House.

All eyes were on senior quarterback Shea Patterson and Michigan’s new hybrid offense, which borrows elements of the pro-style, spread and up-tempo offensive systems, under first-year offensive coordinator Josh Gattis. The Wolverines received the kickoff to start the game, and the senior quarterback and his offensive teammates trotted out on the field ready to unleash their “speed in space” scheme.

It didn’t exactly start off as expected, though.

On the first offensive play from scrimmage, Patterson fumbled the ball over to the Blue Raiders while scrambling to escape the MTSU pass rush. It seemed as if all air was sucked out of Michigan Stadium, and on the ensuing possession, Middle Tennessee State QB Asher O’Hara would escape three Michigan tacklers in the backfield and scamper for 18 yards into the end zone to give his team a 7-0 lead early in the game against the heavily favored Wolverines.

“A win is a win, but I don’t think anyone in that locker room felt like we played up to our standard.” Shea Patterson

Michigan would straighten things out, however. After a Jake Moody field goal to make the score 7-3, Patterson found a wide open Tarik Black in the end zone for Michigan’s first touchdown of the season.

Despite some sloppiness on both sides of the ball, Michigan had the game relatively in hand for the rest of the night after Black’s touchdown catch. Patterson tossed two more scores on the night, one to wide receiver Nico Collins and another to tight end Sean McKeon. Jake Moody added to the scoring, tacking on another field goal, and both backup junior quarterback Dylan McCaffrey and running back Ben VanSumeren ran their way into the blue-turfed end zone. A failed two-point conversion after the McCaffrey touchdown would leave the Wolverines with the 40 points that concluded their scoring for the night. Blue Raider quarterback Asher O’Hara would go on to throw for two touchdowns, including one coming in garbage time with just over a minute left to play, to bring us to the final score of 40-21.

Shea Patterson did not seem to be completely pleased with the Wolverine’s performance:

“A win is a win, but I don’t think anyone in that locker room felt like we played up to our standard,” said Patterson after the game. “We’ve got to play better. I’ve got to play better.” Questions were raised by fans and media members about the quality of Patterson’s play both during the game and after, but fifth-year head coach Jim Harbaugh seemed to provide an explanation during postgame interviews:

“I thought Shea (Patterson) played extremely well. He was working through a little something, he was being evaluated at halftime. I was keeping a close eye on him. (Patterson) Had some quarterback runs designed in the third quarter that I prefer to see Dylan (McCaffrey) running because I didn’t want to make Shea’s issue worse. Made some great plays, did a great job.”

The Wolverines obviously suffered through some growing pains in their first game under the new offensive system.

Despite that, Harbaugh was optimistic and said that he had seen a lot of good things, but admitted, “we’ve seen in practice (that) we can operate cleaner…That’s what we’ll strive for this next week. This is a new offense, and for a first time out, it was good. Could it be better? Yeah, sure, and that’s what we’ll be striving for.”

Nobody knows how deep Josh Gattis delved into his playbook on Saturday night, but despite the shakiness, he did enough to spark excitement from a lot of the Michigan faithful.

Michigan’s defense, for the most part, looked promising. Like the offense, they faced some adversity, and still have a lot of room to improve. They gave up 301 total yards and three touchdowns, but also forced a fumble and an impressive interception by junior Ambry Thomas. Don Brown is in his fourth year as Michigan’s defensive coordinator, and it is expected that the Wolverine defense will be a bright spot once again this season.

The Michigan football team continues their season next Saturday at the Big House in what could be a dangerous trap game vs. the Army Black Knights at Noon ET. Army runs the triple option like Navy and Air Force, which is an offense that has been known to give even the most talented defenses trouble. However, all eyes will still most likely be on the Gattis-run offense.