Week 9 predictions

Last week I went 21-0 in the paper’s high school football picks, which includes six-man and Oklahoma schools. So did the guy who’s one win ahead of me – J. Scott Russell.

While there were some really close games (Quanah-Seymour, Henrietta-City View), there weren’t a lot of toss-ups. Mainly the favorites won out.

If I have a perfect record this week, I’ll be thrilled only because I feel like there are a lot of games that could go either way. I have a feeling our area playoff picture will be even clearer at this time next week.

Here are my picks:

Graham at Hirschi – I’ll go with the Steers to win this one comfortably. That’s not to insult Hirschi, which played Graham close for three quarters last year. I just think unless the Steers come out flat off the bye, they’ll ’be able to move the ball pretty well against the Huskies. You’re going to have to try to outscore the No. 4 team in the state, and I just don’t think that will work out very well for a Hirschi team with nothing to lose.

Rider at Denton – The Broncos can move the ball better than some of the bottom teams in 5-4A (they scored 21 on WFHS, more than Nelson or Lake Dallas). But I have a feeling Rider is going to score a lot. I see a Raiders win of at least 17-20 points.

Denton Guyer at WFHS – I liked what I saw from the Coyotes last week. That was a nice road win at Lake Dallas. Having said that, I’m not going to sugarcoat this: WFHS is not in Guyer’s league. The Coyotes may hold the Wildcats to fewer points than Rider did (maybe), but I don’t think they are going to be in the game in the fourth like Rider was either. This will be a good measuring stick for WFHS, which I still think can make a little noise come playoff time.

Iowa Park at Burkburnett – This one is really close to call. I even had Graham coach Kenny Davidson call me this week asking my thoughts (Graham deeply cares about this game’s outcome), and I couldn’t give him a straight answer. The Bulldogs have the more potent offense. I think the Hawks are better suited to handle Burkburnett’s run game up front. The safe pick is probably the home team (and maybe I’m being swayed because I really want a Graham-Stephenville playoff game), but I’ll go with the Hawks by one point.

Bowie at Pilot Point – I don’t think Pilot Point will roll over Bowie. The Bearcats have a pretty good quarterback but are playing their regular season finale and don’t have much to play for after locking up a playoff berth two weeks ago. I’m going to go with Pilot Point because it’s the safe pick, but I wouldn’t be surprised if this game is close. It’s worth noting a Bowie win doesn’t help them that much with the playoffs, but a loss doesn’t hurt either. Either way, the Jackrabbits need to win next week.

Holliday at City View – Time for your crazy stat of the day. Although Holliday has been outscored 62-0 in the fourth quarter this year in district, the Eagles have allowed zero points in the third quarter. How strange is that? This is a toss-up, but the Eagles have been more competitive overall than City View – they haven’t been allowing 55 points per game in district. And I don’t think the Mustangs have ever beaten the Eagles. So I’ll go with Holliday

Nocona at Jacksboro – The Tigers are really peaking at the right time. Not to say that Nocona isn’t playing some good ball, too. But it just seems D.J. Thomas is breaking off a couple long runs a week for Jacksboro, which has formed an identity upfront. Going with the home team to win the 5-2A Div. II title by 10-14 points over a pesky group from Nocona.

Alvord at Henrietta – I think if history holds true, then Alvord squeaks out a close win. It seems like the Bulldogs have had the Bearcats’ number through the years. But Alvord got whipped up front last week against Jacksboro, and I think that’s where the Bearcats win the game this week.

Archer City at Seymour – How will Archer City respond after a bye week that followed two last-minute losses? I’m not real sure. The Panthers are the pick, but it could either be a couple touchdowns or a lot depending if the Wildcats are still gung-ho about a season that had too many close losses.

Quanah at Olney – It sounds like the Indians are finally healthy and starting to figure things out (hence almost beating Seymour last week). Jacob Roberts had a big receiving day last week – it’s no coincidence Quanah’s Clay Robertson had a big game with him returning. I like Quanah here, although Olney might score some points.

Perrin-Whitt at Electra – In potential toss-ups like this, I like to go with teams that are more desperate. Perrin-Whitt has lost a couple close games and has almost no shot at the playoffs. Electra needs a win to have a chance at Week 10. The Tigers have more big-play threats and are the more desperate team – they are the pick.

Munday at Era – There hasn’t been a bigger surprise to me in an area district this year than Era, which is on the cusp of the playoffs. Munday needs to play well here on a long road trip, but I think the Moguls find a way to win the game. Should be close though.

Muenster at Petrolia – The Pirates may have a chance next week against Perrin-Whitt, but they aren’t winning this game against a ranked Class A team. Muenster by a lot.