Maybe the first order of business should be an explanation of our “Pick Em” challenge. Above you will find the standard pick format with one exception. Buddy the Bassett Hound will be a weekly participant, and we will also have a weekly guest picker.
Buddy’s selection method is very scientific. My 12-year-old daughter will show him two dog treats. She will tell him one treat represents team A, and the other team B. Which ever treat Buddy eats first will be his selection. Don’t laugh. Buddy doesn’t play favorites and in fact went against our entire household last week and picked Tattnall to defeat DWS.
This was an obvious point of friction as our son plays for the Knights, and is the hand that usually feeds Buddy. I brushed off this initial pick against the grain as a slight jab to the ribs. Kind of a “Hey man, could you put a little more food in that bowl” signal.
Then the hound did it again. He has picked FPD over the Knights! What in the world is going on here? Is there some internal feud between son and hound? Is the dog trying to impress some female Basset in Macon? You can accuse me of playing favorites, but never imply that about Buddy.
Oh yeah I almost forgot. Buddy is willing to accept challenges, so if you have a pet willing to take him on, contact me at MLFII@aol.com.
Could Monroe win region 1-AAA?
There is one date that stands out on the Tornado schedule that may answer this very question. The defending State Champion Cairo Syrupmakers pay a visit to Hugh Mills on Sept. 25. Put that on your calendar. While Cairo lost their opening contest to Bainbridge 16-13, they made a furious second half comeback, and nearly won after trailing 16-0 at the half.
The Tornadoes breezed past Kendrick 40-0 and should handle their next two opponents with ease, before entering the meat of their schedule. While Dougherty and Westover will have good seasons, Monroe could be a Dome team. Coach Charles Truitt knows how to win and motivate players. He has a talented bunch of seniors, and believes in winning the old fashioned way, with defense.
This is a bit premature, but right now I like Monroe’s chances to beat the Syrupmakers and take the lead in the region race.
On to controversy!
The next statement will be met with some angry screams. The Albany High Indians should be merged into the Westover athletics program. It is not fair to AHS players to march them out as sacrificial fodder for the rest of GHSA to pummel. Miller County destroyed the Indians 40-0 in the season opener. In case you didn’t know, Miller County plays in a classification below AHS.
I cannot blame coach Reginald Mitchell for leaving abruptly to take the opening at Sherwood. Nor can I blame the eight players that transferred to private schools for trying to improve their circumstance. It is no secret that Albany High is in a poor neighborhood with gang, drug and crime problems. Given the chance to move on, you would have done the same.
Who I do blame is the Dougherty County Board of Education. The school board has allowed Albany High in particular to erode from a once proud institution to a joke. The team has won two games in three years and is currently looking a long season square in the eye. Hopefully no one will get seriously injured.
Other systems have merged with success Look at Americus-Sumter. They have two high schools campuses, and one power house team. A proactive board would have noticed the developments at AHS and instead of sending an out manned team into battle, merged the players onto the Patriot roster thereby giving Westover a huge boost and the Indian players a fair opportunity to compete.
If the additional players would have forced a reclassification for the Patriots, then the Indians could be broken up between Dougherty and Monroe as well.
At least then players with tough circumstances in front of them already, would be given an opportunity for success.
By Mike Flynn