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Old 03-03-18, 09:56 AM
Harrycrane Harrycrane is offline
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5 months to go until players need to be ready to go for camp and win or lose jobs . A lot of improvement can happen in 5 months , how hard will kids work and how focused on the process of improvement will the players be will determine outcomes in close games .

Schedule isn't easy to start as Rocks play 4 play-off teams out of their first 5 opponents . Perrysburg one of the largest D-2 schools is a couple years removed from being a top team, but will be better this year , Rocks have some of the same physical advantages though and should be fine at home vs this club. Rolled last year without their top running back { Cam Scott} and one of the top Rising Juniors in the state in Mike Drennan .

Jerome follows and while the Celtics don't have as much talent as the Rocks do, they work their azzes off with the steel ,and have a focused plan and process and have a really good young HC and staff and well it's Coffman the emotions will run high and this game will be well attended and great for the community . These same district match-ups at this point with the problem of less revenue due to dwindling attendance can be a real boon to the budget.

This game will garner a lot of local attention and is always good for the district , Jerome numbers are rising a bit and eventually it is said will close in on Coffman's numbers? Not sure but the Celtic program while not there quite yet{ Liberty blowout kind of made that clear} is going in a positive direction and the Rocks will have to play well here.

Gahanna returns to the schedule for the third year in a row as does Olentangy coming right after them in week 4 .

The Lions return a real handful at QB in Mike Lowery, a rare 4 year starter at the varsity level . Mike as many might remember started his career at Pick North and saw action after then Soph Jimmy Weirick got hurt . Weirick also saw some starter action at North as a young Frosh pup.

Lowery gave Rocks some fits his Soph year on a hot night in Gahanna in 2016 , but Rocks offense was too much for the Lions as big plays doomed them and the Rocks also made some plays on defense to seal the comfortable win .

Last year was a different story , as the Lions with a more polished and accurate Lowery along with Senior Receiver David Miller and Senior Transfer Speedster Jerome Bruckner and talented Junior RB Justus Harris moved the ball really well taking a two score lead into Halftime at Coffman Stadium.

Rocks came out with a different attitude and basically after a highlight reel interception in the back of the end zone by Frosh All American AJ Kirk which prevented Gahanna from putting an early nail in the coffin , ran the ball down their throats with Cam Scott leading the way with help from Gavin Sturdivant the Rocks basically controlled the clock scored points and won at the line of scrimmage on both sides for a while .

Rocks as they did in multiple games had a chance to seal a victory with the offense running out the clock , but a costly penalty and a bit of conservatism , and a missed throw to an open receiver gave the ball back to the Lions who went down and scored to Senior transfer { Columbus academy } Bruckner getting behind Rocks secondary in the last minute . Great effort , nice adjustments in the second half but not enough .

Gahanna it must be noted isn't the biggest up front on defense and lose their best D-lineman / Tight End / H-back /blocking back Carter Johnson whose family decided to " move" to Pickerington so Karter will line up on defense with the defending D-1 champ Tigers his Senior season, file under a good thing young Karter's family didn't decide to move to Nerk or Logan lol. BIG LOSS for the Lions .

Always talent over there , but Lions may be in a rebuild situation at receiver , but Rocks have some atonement motivation in the secondary , but I wouldn't be surprised to see the Lions feature RB Harris heavily in the 2018 match-up.

Olentangy got revenge and then some from the 2016 31-0 beating they took, as they won both games vs the Rocks in 2017. First one they dominated the last 15 minutes of the game and came away with a well deserved 31-14 beat-down over in Lewis Center . Rocks were winning and moved into Tangy territory and a 55 yard fumble return for a TD by Tangy changed the momentum and Tangy pretty much dominated from there .

Second game was a gut punch , one of the worst losses I have seen as a Rock supporter . Rocks came out and pretty much controlled the first half totally shutting down the Braves to take a 10-0 half time lead . Rocks had a few opportunity's to move that score higher { Multiple possessions in Braves territory, missed a wide open by 15 yards receiver who would have walked in etc} and you couldn't help but think that may be it could come back to haunt them .

Well that's what I thought , because the disparity in play was greater than 10-0 and you knew a very well coached Tangy team with talent would adjust and score in the second half . Well they did , they scored 28 points in the second half, a surreal occurrence if you had witnessed the first half .

Rocks tacked on two more TD'S themselves and had a chance to run the clock out AGAIN and didn't do it, Tangy took the momentum had good field position and threw the ball over the Rocks head with a Freshman Middleton scoring the wining TD in the last 25 seconds from 30 + yards out , OUCH , brutal loss , controlled the game for about 42 minutes , last 6? not so much . I didn't notice any real physical fatigue being the reason for these late losses to Olentangy squared and Gahanna but it is something that should be looked into certainly and may be up their game conditioning wise for the 2018 season ?

Secondary should be better and certainly is more experienced so we should expect an improvement ? Tangy has a SR QB coming back [Haag} who played his Soph year lost his job last year and unless they brought someone else in he should be the guy . He will have a nice stable of playmakers to utilize in the aforementioned Soph to be Middleton { 6-4 hoops build} a beast at TE in 6-4 250 pound Ian Drummond and a excellent athlete { OSU baseball ?? } in 6-0 185 Caden Kaiser out wide. BIG challenge for the Rocks defense and especially the secondary .

Pick North follows and I assume they are brining in a QB and I think I heard that they did ?? Lose a lot of their pieces including obviously Jimmy Football but North always is a challenge and always has athletic talent , don't know a ton of what they have coming back but I know they lost some very good talent . Rebuild? PC insider Walt among others is bearish on North going forward ?

League play of course follows this five game opening and hopefully the Rocks won't be required to run that table in order to make the play-offs but ? I think a lot depends on the work and development and embracing the process the Rocks apply themselves to .

Looking at the league teams and some college Rocks in next post .
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