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Posts posted by DarterBlue2

  1. Basically I would love to see more interdistrict match ups from north central and south teams.... Like how Carol city went to Lakeland or how some of the Dade teamed been going up to Jacksonville and vice versa.... It would be good for the State....

    Totally love this idea. In 2008/2009 a good Miami Jackson team came to Apopka twice. One game was competitive the other not so much. Since them a couple other Dade teams have made the trip (North Miami Beach, Hialeah Miami Lakes?)  but they were down. I would love to see Apopka take on, if not a Central or BTW, at least a Carol City, Norland or Miami Northwestern, or American Heritage again. It could be a home and away to make it fair. This kind of mid season match up would clearly provide a guide as to how competitive each of these teams would be deep in the playoffs and, perhaps, give insight into what needs to be done to be battle ready. 

  2. Who are the best teams out there that have had a few great teams, but still did not win states in the last few years? 

    Dr. Phillips 2010 was by far the best Central Florida team that year. They did not have any real weaknesses. Unfortunately, they ran in to an even more loaded Miami Central (and a determined Davonta Freeman) in the state title game. Still, given they took an early 17 point lead, better coaching may have kept that game more interesting. That year's Phillips team would have won state in some of the other classes.

  3. My bad!  Thank you DarterBlue2.  I copied and pasted the wrong game that I was looking for.  Same teams, different year.  It was 2006.....I'm getting old I guess.


    I would say this game had the best fourth quarter and beyond (overtime). For the first three quarters it was somewhat sloppy considering the caliber of the teams playing. I felt then and still do that St. Thomas crossed the plane on its final play. But it was very close and the call went against them.


    The three most entertaining games I have ever seen in no particular order were: 2006 State Semifinal Lake Brantley/Boone - In a wild second half Brantley won 34-31. At the half, Boone led 3-0; 2012 State championship - Apopka vs Cypress Bay - Apopka 53 to 50 winner; 2015 Regional Final Bishop Moore vs Hallandale - BM won 51-46. 


    Two great defensive struggles I have seen were: 2003 State Semifinal, Carol City vs Killian - Carol City won 3-0 at the old Orange Bowl; and, 2003, Edgewater vs Mainland, Mainland 13-7.

  4. Regarding BTW, given the youth of the program, the loss of good players via transfers, and the coaching changes, I think they did just fine and the future is bright.


    Regarding Raines, I think they have some of the issues that Dillard alluded to in another post. They need some changes in the coaching staff, but politics may prevent that from happening. Yes, they could also benefit from a better schedule but that may be difficult depending on County policies and school resources. 

  5. I watch the game live... Raines finally met a team they were not faster then or out athlete them... How the hell you had 7 opportunities in the red zone and you come out with 3 points? Is that coaching or was that BTW defense stepping up to the plate.... Raines was a slight better overall team then BTW but them young dudes brought it... Like I said before I'm not sold on TC.... They would only beat 1 team in the MC district... 5a every team can beat TC... What I'm trying o say is they are not that dominate team you try to paint them to be.... Their schedule pls... I'll give you west orange AHD and that's it.... Godby is horrible... Lincoln is horrible...

    You get seven opportunities in the red zone and only three points if one of the three happens: 1. You have incredibly bad luck. 2. You have incredibly bad play calling. 3. The team is terribly undisciplined. Sure, I get that BTW, stepped up its defense in the red zone. And I give them all the credit in the world for doing so. However, if it were just BTW's defense, Raines would not have gotten into the red zone that many times to begin with. You don't play with fire and not expect to get burned eventually, at least not unless you have a death wish. 


    Regarding TC, which I saw live, I think they are better than you think. They are a team that plays up/down to the level of its competition and they did just what they needed to to win. I think they would compete in both the Miami Central district and in 5A south. 

  6.  TC schedule is not that of the BTW  schedule,  but I thought it had a respectable schedule 2015.  They played about 8 top 100 teams in FL-  including slaughtering the following schools -  University Christian, Ribault, West Orange, Godby, Lincoln, Tampa Catholic and AHD.  TC also has multiple BCS Commits, one  the best Junior WR in the country in DJ Matthews (FSU) , and one of the best Junior DBs in the country in Shaun Wade (Ohio State).  

    Not sure if they beat STA, Flanagan, Central and Columbus but they could definitely compete and we both know BTW would get slaughtered by all of those schools. 

    I agree with your comments. TC would compete, if not beat, all the better high schools in the state this year. And, DJ Matthews is a beast. One of the best receivers I have seen at high school (right up there with Dwayne Bowe and Mike Walker in the 2002 6A final). He gave Apopka fits last year and has a darn good arm as well. 

  7. 8A -  Flanagan/Osceola This game will be interesting .  Doesn't Osceola run a Double Wing T?  How do we know Flanagan will be able to stop it?   Flanagan Defense relies off a lot of blitzing which could be useless if the ball is not there.  I will have to look into and learn a little about that Osceola Offense.  


    7A - I also got this 24-21 but I have STA.  Their Kicker will be the edge in this game.


    6A -  Agree .  Armwood could trade blows with Central for 3 Quarters but eventually the Central Defense will be overwhelming.


    5A - I got Bishop Moore pulling out a 38 - 20 victory over Wakulla.

    Regarding Flanagan vs Osceola, if Devin Bush Sr. is a student of the game as well as a former participant at the highest level, Osceola's offense should be very stoppable. They run a veer similar to what the Apopka and Armwood teams of the early 2000s ran. Yes, that offense gave Miami Northwestern and Booker T. Washington fits back then (or for that matter West Orange Friday night). But as St. Thomas Aquinas showed last year it is very stoppable when you have the right defensive personnel and the right game plan for it. I am pretty sure Flanagan has the right personnel based on how they have shut down teams when at full strength this year. Will they have the right game plan? I don't know. If Flanagan loses, the loss will be on Flanagan, due to failure to prepare adequately for Osceola's offense.


    Last year, St. Thomas held Osceola to a net 38 total yards. Wilson had like 7 or 8 from about 18 rushing attempts. You can't make this up; a team with a stellar defensive line and good linebackers should really stop this Osceola offense. If Flanagan does so, it may be the best thing that could ever happen to Osceola. Embarrassing losses in back to back state title games, may finally open some eyes as to where the game has evolved ... but perhaps I hope for too much.

  8. FYI, Darter last night I texted and said Jesuit was getting hosed with calls... Let me clarify that it was actually Bishop Moore getting hosed but were still able to pull it off.


    It was a great game and great atmosphere.

    EC, I actually did not take the text that way. I though you meant that Jesuit was unlucky on several plays, not that they were being cheated by the officials. It seems both teams gave it their all and I deeply regret not being able to make the game, particularly in light of Osceola blowing out West Orange, which could only be enjoyed if you were an Osceola fan, but not if you just wanted to see a good game of football. 


    I believe and also hope that Bishop Moore wins the state title. This is a special team for a school like them that comes around only once in every 20 or so years. I may be wrong on this as recently it seems they are willing to put more resources into football. 

  9. Okay, so one week left and football is finished for this season in Florida. Here are my predictions/thoughts on the four games left:



    Osceola vs Flanagan - I think Flanagan wins this game which I expect to be low scoring by say 21-14. Osceola has the ability to compete physically with Flanagan, but I don't think it has the offensive creativity to score 21 or more points against a very solid, hard tackling, Flanagan defense. And I think Flanagan will score just enough to win its first state title.



    St. Thomas Aquinas vs Viera - This can only be characterized as a David vs Goliath game. I am going to go out on a limb and pick a shocking upset: Viera beats St Thomas 24-21. Why, St. Thomas's victory against Braden River was not impressive. This is consistent with several of its wins this season.  In my opinion the final margin in the St. Thomas/BR  game overstated St. Thomas's win. Viera is in uncharted territory, but playing its best football of the season and seems to be very good through the air. I was very impressed with the way they beat Columbia and I think they are a team of destiny. This year's St. Thomas team is average by their high standards and is beatable. I think this team beats them.



    Miami Central vs Armwood - While Armwood had a great semi-final victory, overall I am not as impressed with them this year as I was last. And Central seems to have peaked at the right time. I am, therefore, going with Central in this game 42-28. Armwood keeps it close for three quarters, but Central pulls away in the fourth.



    Bishop Moore vs Wakulla - I feel Bishop Moore's path to this title game has been tougher than Wakulla's. Wakulla may have the best player on the field in Franks. However, Bishop Moore is the better team. Bishop Moore is going to win this game and I don't think it will be close. I expect a score of about Bishop Moore 45 Wakulla 17.


    Comments or thoughts?

  10. First Osceola. Let me say that I thought Osceola's chances were the least of the three Orlando area teams in the Regional finals. They have proven me wrong. Last night they raced to a 28-0 lead at the half utilizing counters and sweeps that seemed to baffle West Orange's defense. Their first touchdown was on a 60+ yard run straight up the gut by Wilson. This kid is like a miniature tank and once he gets into gear, he is difficult to stop. Early in the second quarter, facing third and long, they took a sweep 78 yards for the second score. On this play West Orange did not seem to know who even had the ball till it was about 15 yards downfield. The game was essentially over at the half as they scored twice more to take a 28-0 lead into the half. 


    On the other side of the ball, the defense harassed Woody Barrett all night. That, and Barrett's weakness of tending to stare down his receivers before release lead to turnovers via both interception and on downs. In the second half West Orange contained Osceola by mostly keeping their offense off the field. But their offense could not mount a realistic effort to come back from the hole they dug themselves into early in the game. I will say that West Orange had two touchdowns called back on holding calls; but this, in my opinion, did not matter. They were dominated by the team that was more physical and had the better game plan. Osceola utilized the same plays used by Apopka against Miami Northwestern 15 years ago to obtain a similar result. Not surprising since they were largely called by the same coach. Earlier, I had downplayed Apopka's chances against West Orange due to the lack of an APK passing game. I believe I was right on that call as the offense could not score enough points to beat them running the ball. It is kind of ironic that WO loses to a team that went 1 of 2 on passing last night. 


    Osceola's chances versus Flanagan. I don't like them. I think physically they will match up pretty well, as Osceola is a rugged, hard tackling team that has backs and linemen that can pound the ball. And on the defensive side they are hard tackling, pursue the QB and have a solid secondary led by Carlos Becker, a Miami kid that moved to Orlando his freshman year. However, I have a hard time believing that if Flanagan's defense is as good as advertised that Osceola will be able to score the 24 points I think they would need to win this game. They are just too one dimensional in my opinion. 


    I am going to pick Flanagan in this one in a defensive struggle by 21 - 14.


    Second, Bishop Moore. I believe they get the job done. Their path to state via: Palm Bay, Merritt Island, Hallandale and Jesuit is, in my opinion, much tougher than the path taken by Wakulla. Last night they contained a very prolific Jesuit team on the way to a 28-14 victory. Without a mobile, D1 quarterback or a unique running game like Lake Brantley's it is hard to put up big numbers on Bishop Moore's defense, which benefited from two interceptions last night, in the red zone, negating critical Jesuit drives. 


    Wakulla's only loss on the season was in its first game against Spartanburg, South Carolina which for most of the year has been highly ranked nationally. Spartanburg was eliminated from the SC playoffs last nigh in an upset. However, Wakulla has has a few close games against questionable opponents. They have a big time QB, Franks who de-committed from LSU and is now pledged to Florida. I have never seen the kid play and have only looked at brief clips on film. However, I have a hard time thinking he is better than Huntley of Hallandale. Perhaps I am wrong.


    I am going to go with Bishop Moore in the 5A title game by a score of around: 42-24.


    After a 45 year hiatus, they bring a title back to College Park, Orlando. This would be a feat their next door neighbor, Edgewater failed to do three years in a row in the early 2000s. 

  11. @cloumbia well said bro and real talk I respect you bro you alright with me and taught me a little about your school as well when I first came on this sight I only cared about promoting my school while hoping they backed it up in the process lol. But in all seriousness your cool people and we were in the same city wouldn't mind linking up with you. I know how you feel I felt the same way about my panthers in the first round hopefully soon they can get a compotent coaching staff together and bring back the old "dillard tradition" and there winning ways. im excited to next year and following your team we may be all scatterd around florida but we are all FOOTBALL BROTHERS straight up.!

    Classy comment, bro. I remember seeing Dillard in 2000 and 2001. You were good back then. I am a little familiar with the Dillard zone and like Evans in Orlando, you should be doing a lot better. If the alumni and administration recognize what the problem is and do something to fix it, Dillard will be back. At Evans the administration does not care for football. I don't think that is the case at Dillard.


    The Evans kids that have not gone elsewhere, have channeled their efforts into basketball and since Coach Jean took over four years ago, soccer. Even with Jean's departure for France this year, they have continued their soccer strength and are undefeated this year, after taking West Orange to penalty kicks in the playoffs last year. West Orange eventually lost the state title game on penalty kicks to Cypress Bay. The current head soccer coach has managed to secure the outside help of a former MLS soccer player as a technical resource. I am excited for these kids as it may mark the first time an "inner city" Orlando school makes a deep run in this sport. If they can get by: Lake Mary, Winter Park and Cypress Creek in the regional phase of the playoffs, I think they could even go all the way. The talent is certainly there with this mostly: Haitian/Jamaican/Mexican team. If some of the American kids there take to the game after seeing the recent success they have a chance to be very, very good for a long, long time.  

  12. you can follow for the convo and updates ....by febuary you will have far better insight then before. lol


    Dillard, not really a basket ball fan. Kind of funny since the Orlando area has actually done better at Basket Ball than football. Probably has to do with my Jamaican heritage. After football, I usually turn to soccer. But I will look at what you guys post. Just won't participate much. 

  13. If some of Jacksonville powers were in Miami like Raines and First Coast how do you all think they'll fair out. First Coast despite this year is usually good. Raines I believe has an enrollment of 1050 so they'll still be in 4A and First Coast is at 2330 which is 8A. I know this is redundant but I just wanna see how people feel about other parts of Florida since we all know South Florida too well.

    Apopka played First Coast two years running. So I have seen them live twice. Most years I think First Coast would compete well in South Florida. Not saying they make the playoffs every year, but they would be in the mix. Both years Apopka played them they had more D1 talent than we did (at least looking at the offer list). Apopka beat them because they literally punched them in the mouth. That and the fact that I don't think they ever properly adjusted to the Single Wing.


    To compete effectively in Miami/Broward, First Coast would have to toughen up a bit. But athletically there in no doubt in my mind that they are not lacking.


    What is interesting is that a much smaller county, St. John's, just south of Jacksonville, has done a much better job winning state titles over past 15 years.  Just sayin ...

  14. Let me ask this question. Why is it that since 1997 no public school has won a state title besides Raines in Jacksonville. Also, why is the talent level low. In South Florida you can look at someone's schedule like Booker T. Washington who's 8-5 going to states this Saturday, yet Raines is 12-1 going to states. The whole Bishop Kenny and Bolles thing as of private schools I get that.


    The talent level is actually not that low. If you look at College and NFL rosters, there are a number of athletes from Jacksonville on them that did not go to Bolles. Given its size, Jacksonville is reasonably represented.


    The problem lies elsewhere.

  15. first coast had 3 things that hurt them this year

    1: they started slow out of the gate and didnt really recover from it

    2: they had a lot of top players graduate

    3: they on top of what i stated with reason 2, i heard some of their players transfered out in the summer which depleated them a bit 


    They lost super sophomore DJ Matthews, arguably the best high school wide receiver I have ever seen live, to a certain christian school in Jacksonville. They also lost several other kids to transfer. Part of this may have to do with the murder of one of their players in the off season. 

  16. I think the Coaching has a lot to do with the "hood" schools.  There are plenty of "hood" schools that are horrendous in Dade and Broward.  Not sure if Boyd Anderson is a "hood" school but look what happened to Boyd when they get a coach.  So the talent is usually in the "hood" schools but on a team and individual basis- the "hood" kids do not succeed unless they are coached.  Even the successful "hood " schools have not the best but decent Coaching.  I think you have to have the right balance of everything to be successful

    The last sentence says it all. In the case of Apopka from the mid-1980s to 1994 under Chip Gierke, they were one of the three best Central Florida schools. When Gierke departed, they had three very bad years (including a 2-8). In 1999 Darlington took over and since 2000 Apopka has made the playoffs each year. Or take Orlando Evans. Under Bill Gierke they were a power. When he left in 1998, they remained good for four years under Coach Gordon, who had been on the staff before. Since then, with the exception of 2010-2012 when Chip Gierke briefly took over the program, they have not been relevant. This should not be so, as the school probably has the deepest, natural talent base in Orlando. Or take Timber Creek, which has a large Hispanic population but does quite well making the playoffs 5 of the last 6 years. They owe their success to a very good coaching staff (three Boone alumni) and a community that is very supportive of all the school's athletic endeavors. 

  17. @DarterBlue2 look at Evans high school out of Pine Hills in Orlando. The Trojans have a population of 2600 students and over the last 3 years they are 3-27 not making the playoffs. Cypress Creek out of Orlando has 3100 students and they went 1-9 not making the playoffs. Is Apopla, West Orange and Dr. Phillips near Evans and Cypress Creek because if so that would explain the decline in talent. With all of these students talent should be coming in somwhow. Booker T. Washington well we all know about Miami schools is going to states for the 5th straight year chasing their 4th state title and the enrollment is 900 students.

    Evans's major problem is not currently poaching of its talent pool (which is very good, as I think you know). It has to do with school administration and its attitude toward football. The current principal was at Olympia and chased Coach Head (now at West Orange) away. Immediately after, West Orange began to rise and Olympia now struggles to make the playoffs. So kids that could make Evans relevant again either don't go out for football or go to: Wekiva, Dr. Phillips, West Orange, Edgewater or, in a few cases, Apopka. With the exception of Wekiva and depending on where you live within Evans's zone, Edgewater or Dr. Phillips, it is not easy to get to the other schools I listed, though, due to Orlando being a pretty spread out urban area. 


    Regarding Cypress Creek, it is majority Hispanic and and when Freedom opened up in the early 2000s it took the little talent it had away. Cypress Creek is in the extreme South of Orange County and aside from Freedom, is actually closer to Gateway and Osceola High in Osceola county. To the extent they have talent in their zone, it either goes to Freedom, or the parents probably move across county lines to Osceola.  

  18. The thing is for Dade in particular we have hoods next to hood next to hoods if you get my drift and the kids mainly play football then track then back to football year round.... It's competetive from the early start......

    Yes and no on that. I am fairly familiar with Dade (my sister lives in North Dade), and I don't necessarily consider Norland, Carol City, Miramar, or even Hallandale (the last two are South Broward schools, but have attracted Dade talent at times), to be hood schools. But all have had very good football talent at one time or another. But yes, having Northwestern next to Central, etc. does also provide another advantage: The talent can easily transfer to the school (or two schools) that have the best chance to win a state title in a given year. Dade is a more population concentrated County than the Orlando area, which has over 1.4 million people (but they are spread out over more miles); so to go from say Apopka to West Orange, you would have to either move or own a car as the commute would cause problems and unless you were in a specific program, you would not be bussed there. 

  19. Do you all think the talent poll is better down south then it is up in the North?


    Yes and no. I think several factors have driven the south's dominance over the north in recent years. I will list the ones I consider important:


    1. In the Dade/Broward area, there is more population concentration than in the rest of the state.

    2. Based on the dispersion of this population (concentration in certain neighborhoods), certain public schools get a disproportionate draw of the talent (in another post you mentioned the schools that sucked in Dade (Braddock, Varela, etc.). In the Orlando area, with a few exceptions, the talent is more spread out (there is no little Havana or little Haiti in Orlando). Thus, a number of schools are pretty good from year to year but lack the extra 3 or 4 kids to take it to the next level.

    3. Many of the north's coaches still cling to running traditional offensive schemes that may not necessarily cater to the talent they have.

    4. Overall, certain areas on the south do have a greater overall number of elite, talented individuals.


    In any event, I think power balances shift with the passage of time. At some stage, I don't know when, we will see a shift again. For now South Florida, particularly Dade and Broward (to a lesser extent if you exclude St Thomas), is enjoying its day in the sun. It should be savored while it lasts.   

  20. Slick, I hear you and understand that it would be difficult for Columbus to get Central, MNW, Norland, etc, talent. Regarding Broward, you are again correct, it is a lot easier for Aquinas or Gibbons, or AHP, for that matter to draw talent away from Plantation, Dillard, etc. But it is more than that regarding the public/private problem. 


    In Florida, coaches don't get much for putting forth the effort that developing a program that is going to be strong year in and year out. So I think a number of potentially good coaches at the high school level leave for states like Georgia, etc., or take college positions. Perhaps not so much in South Florida, but certainly in North and Central Florida. Also, in larger population areas, individuals are too transient. Apopka has benefited from from the fact that although it is near Orlando, there are certain areas there where people have lived for three to five generations. These areas represent the backbone of the team. That and having Darlington, who runs a system driven program has worked. 


    I am concerned that with the rise of Bishop Moore in Orlando over the last three years, they are going to draw away a number of talented individuals from the local public schools further watering down the local talent. While I have no problem with them being successful, I don't want them to be at the expense of the public schools. 

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