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Sunday, August 30, 2009

Football: Thoughts After Week 1

It didn't go quite as Orrville fans had hoped, but with several key players sitting out for various reasons, it's not entirely shocking. The Riders lost to Northwest by a 40-14 score (game was closer than the score, but no excuses, we got outplayed) but played hard until the end. Below, you'll find scores from the other 9 teams on our schedule, as well as scores from all 30 teams in Division 4, Region 14. Below that you'll find some thoughts of mind from the Orrville game and from games from around the area as well.

I guess this is a new feature. Hope you like.

Before I get to all that...wanted to point you all to a link. Scott Ferrell Photography is a local, Orrville photographer who is providing a wonderful service to all Rider fans this year. He is offering his pictures taken at Rider games free of charge. You can download them and use them for whatever you please. All he asks is that you consider him for things like senior pictures, family protraits, and things like that. Can't do any better than free can you? Here are the pics from week 1, and here's a link to his homepage where you can find contact info.

Orrville Opponents
Triway lost to West Holmes (D3) – 28-27
Copley beat Jackson (D1) – 14-6
Lexington beat Mt. Vernon (D1) – 42-17
Mansfield Sr lost to Brunswick (D1) – 29-6
West Holmes beat Triway (D4) – 28-27
Ashland beat Willard (D3) – 28-0
Madison lost to Shelby (D3) – 14-13
Clear Fork beat Seneca East (D6) – 35-0
Wooster lost to Canfield (D2) – 24-21

Region 14 Results
(Region 14 teams listed first, games in bold were between 2 region 14 teams)

Black River lost to Berlin Center Western Reserve (D5) – 7-6
Bucyrus def. Ridgedale (D6) – 49-0
Chippewa def. Norton (D3) – 20-17
Clear Fork def. Seneca East (D6) – 35-0
Elyria Catholic def. Cleve. Collinwood (D2) – 35-0
Fostoria lost to Ottawa-Glendorf (D4) – 22-0
Galion def. Mt Gilead (D5) – 33-16
Genoa Area def. Rossford (D4) – 60-0
Huron def. Vermillion (D3) – 31-7
Lagrange Keystone lost to Monroeville (D6) – 33-24
Lorain Clearview def. Castalia Margaretta (D5) – 27-14
Metamora Evergreen def Otsego (D4) – 41-14
Milan Edison def. Norwalk (D2) – 35-19
Milbury Lake def. Swanton (D4) – 24-3
Norwayne lost to Wellington (D4) – 39-14
Ontario lost to Loudonville (D5) – 35-7
Orrville lost to Northwest (D3) – 40-14
Ottawa-Glandorf def. Fostoria (D4) – 22-0
Paulding lost to Wayne Trace (D5) – 23-12
Pemberville Eastwood def. Clyde (D3) – 32-21
Port Clinton def. Woodmore (D5) – 34-26
Rossford lost to Genoa Area (D4) – 60-0
Sheffield Brookside lost to Oberlin Firelands (D3) – 34-0
Swanton lost to Millbury Lake (D4) – 24-3
Tontogany-Otsego lost to Metamora Evergreen (D4) – 41-14

Triway lost to West Holmes (D3) – 28-27
Upper Sandusky lost to Carey (D6) – 28-0
Van Wert lost to Bryan (D3) – 35-7
Wauseon def. Fairview (D4) – 49-14
Wellington def. Norwayne (D4) – 39-14

1. Congrats to new coach Brent Besancon for winning his first game as coach of the Rittman Indians and snapping the school’s 28 game losing streak. I have no ties to Rittman at all, but a 28 game losing streak is much too long. Good to see them get a 'W.'

2. After listening to the Riders warmup music for 2 nights in a row…I think I’m a fan of this song. Won't ever top "Lunatic Fringe" but it's nice.

3. Gage Wyant did well in his first start as a Rider QB. Very gutsy and a fiery competitor. I hope he can find playing time with regular Rider QB Joe Besancon returning this week. I don't want to be accused of overstating things, but Gage reminded me a little of a young Tim Hiller. He's got a nice build and throws a real nice spiral.

4. I liked the play of Tre Simpson at tailback. He needs to be touch the ball 10-12 times a game…at least.

5. Jordan Thomas had a nice game at WR. With Sam, Dillon and Chase returning, we should have a very potent passing game the rest of the way.

6. Why weren’t the bands at the game Saturday night? I can understand the Northwest band not being there….they have economic troubles and may not have been able to justify it……but I don’t see a reason why the Orrville band couldn’t have played.

7. Triway losing a 27-7 4th quarter lead to West Holmes is downright painful.

8. There’s a good chance Copley will come into Red Rider Stadium for a week 3 matchup with a 2-0 record. Their opponent this week is Cleveland JFK.

9. For debuting a new offense, Northwest looked awfully solid. I’d like to think our missing players could have made a difference, but at best, it’s a close game. I guess those are the consequences for some poor decisions.

10. I’m hoping we come out and show Triway the real Red Riders this week. Time to start reaching our potential.

A few more....

11. I see Waynedale has new brown helmets (scrapping their classic gold helmet. They played at home this past weekend and wore brown helmets, brown pants and brown jerseys. Not the best look, IMO, for the GOLDEN Bears. Ever since they went away from the Wisconsin "Flying W" logo, their helmets have looked kinda amatuer-ish.

12. Speaking of uniforms...wonder when the last time the Riders wore their white jerseys at home? It happened this past weekend. Riders wore red jerseys on Friday night, but had to go to their road white jerseys when the game continued on Saturday. Wore the red pants too. Northwest wore their home jerseys and anothe variation of their silver pants.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Week 1 Football Preview - Northwest at Orrville

Who: Orrville Red Riders (0-0) vs. Northwest Indians (0-0)
Where: Red Rider Stadium - Orrville, OH (Click Here for Map & Directions)
When: Friday August 28th, 7pm

All Time Series: Orrville leads 19-6 (Click Here for Series Detail)
Last Meeting: 2008 (Northwest won 34-13)

Orrville and Northwest will lock up for the 26th time (counting the matchups with old Canal Fulton High School) with Northwest claiming the last 2 victories, holding the Red Rider offense to 14 points or less each time.

Let's not kid ourselves, there are WAY too many variables for me to accurately predict this game. Riders will be missing a lot of talent, and Northwest is debuting a brand new offense and replacing 22 seniors from last year's squad.

Add into it the unknown of Week 1 and it's a total tossup. So instead allow me to pay an homage to Nick Bakay (required reading, even if a bit dated) and let's do a 'Tale of the Tape' between the city's of Orrville and Canal Fulton.

City population: Canal Fulton - 5000.....Orrville - 8000.
Advantage: Orrville (it's still Orrville even if you count the wonderful levy defeating folks of Clinton (pop. 1337).

Noteable Alums: Northwest - Wikipedia says Mary Murphy (a judge on some dance show)...that's it....Orrville - Bobby Knight (I could stop there and win this one) & Western Michigan QB Tim Hiller.
Advantage: Easy...Orrville.

Alternative transportation: Canal Fulton - Canoes......Orrville - Amish Buggy
Advantage: Canal Fulton (because you can't drag a cooler behind Jonas and his trusty steed).

Local Watering Hole: Canal Fulton - The Canal Boat Lounge....Orrville - Jerry's.
Advantage: Orrville. This one was tough...both places are charming, Jerry's gets the nod because of the fish dinners.

Mini-Golf Courses: Canal Fulton - Sluggers and Putters....Orrville - Putt-n-Stuff.
Advantage: Canal Fulton. Better overall experience, IMO, of course.

Industry: Canal Fulton - Clay's Park??....Orrville - The JM Smucker Co.
Advantage: Orrville (not even a debate).

Movie Theater: Canal Fulton - none....Orrville - none.
Advantage: Push (unless you count large pharmacy corporations (no names please) that rip the soul from quaint downtown business districts. I'm speaking in generalities, of course.).

Greasy Spoon Restaurant: Canal Fulton - The BnK...Orrville - Mrs. J's.
Advantage: Push....because no one wins when sausage gravy is involved.

Chants heard from each team's fans: Canal Fulton - "Scalp 'em!" (unconfirmed)...Orrville - "Move those chains!!"
Advantage: Canal Fulton, they could break out the Tomahawk Chop and it's still not as offensive as shouting instructions to the chain gang.

In an amazingly close battle (similar to the one we'll see on Friday night)....the advantage goes to Orrville. See, it's so easy when you break things down scientifically.

My Real Prediction.
Red Riders 26......Indians 20.

I think the Riders start the '09 season on a good note for the first time in the past 3 years. Even with a numbers of players out, the Riders have enough to withstand Northwest's new offense. It wont be pretty, but there's not style points for winning, especially in week 1.

Other predictions of note 28-21 Orrville.
Akron Beacon Journal: 2 votes for Orrville, 2 for Northwest.
Wooster Daily Record: 5 votes for Orrville, 4 for Northwest. (guessing Orrville by a 5-3 margin.)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Football: Season Preview 2009

It's been 1 year and 9 days since my first Football Season Preview (here's the article in case you need to relive the past), so why not do it again.

Without further delay, the 2nd Annual Red Rider Sports Blog Football Season Preview.

I mentioned this at the end of the 2008 season, but the 2009 season is (by my records) the 100th season of Orrville Red Rider football. We've amassed 569 wins in 953 games over the first 99 years and had plenty of memorable games, players, coaches and seasons over the first century of Orrville football. Let's hope that 2009 is a special capstone on the first 100 years.

I'd love to see a 100 year anniversary logo on the helmets this year. Maybe not something gaudy like this.....but maybe a small '100' logo on the back of the helmet.

I'd get greedy and ask for some kind of "All-Century" team, or maybe have a representative for each decade (as far back as you could go) at halftime of the homecoming game while the PA announcer reviews records and interesting facts (records, coaches, players, playoff success, etc) from each decade....but that may be a little high on the expectation chart......

So let's start with the low hanging fruit.

Varsity Roster
Varsity Schedule
Teams in Div. 4 - Region 14

We will find out very early in the '09 season whether this team is a special team capable of a deep playoff run, or another team that can't seem to beat the "bigs" on the schedule. With three of our first 4 games coming against 2008 playoff qualifiers (Northwest, Triway & Lexington)...the Riders can see their season get off to another tough start, or they can serve notice to the county, conference, region and state that they are a team to respect and a team to fear.

The challenges don't end after week 4 though...trips to both Mansfield schools (never a treat), a trip to West Holmes (a team we haven't beat since 2006), an improved Ashland team, an always interesting trip to Bellville (Clear Fork) and a run at 4 straight shutouts and 5 straight wins over arch rival Wooster await the Riders.

Not to focus on one game, but the Lexington game in week 4 has the potential to be one of the biggest games in recent memory at Red Rider Stadium. Lex will come in potnetially ranked in the top 3 of all Division II and will feature Michigan commit and "All-World" quarterback Courtney Avery. This game (win or lose) will serve as a huge test and barometer for just how far the Riders have come and may go in '09.

Each and every week will be a different set of challeges for this years team.

Our roster is deep and talented. Seventeen seniors dominate the roster and virtually all skill positions on both sides of the ball have a large senior presence. In my opinion, it's the most talent we've had since the 2006 regional finalist team. Our defense might just be the best unit since the 1998 state title team, and possibly as far back as the 1995 state semi-finalist squad.

As mentioned on this site months ago, the Riders bid farewell to the ultra tough Region 13 and now reside in Region 14. Our 7 wins were good enough for 10th place in region 13, and would have put us in 5th place in region 14 last year. Plain and simple, there are less "elites" in region 14. No Steubenville's, Mooney's, St V's or CCC's.

Since 2000, no team has missed the playoffs in Region 14 with more than 18.000 points. And last year, the #8 seed (Sparta Highland) had a paltry 11.950 points and a 6-4 record (with 5 of the 6 wins coming against Division 5 teams and all 6 wins coming against teams with a combined record of 22-38).

Still plenty of solid teams, but teams that I think we matchup well with. I will say that our strength of schedule is better than most every team in the region except for maybe Elyria Catholic. While most teams are beating D5 and D6 teams, we have SIX division 2 teams on our schedule. A win over a D2 school (5.5 first level points) is like 1.25 wins over a D6 school (3.5 first level points). It works in our favor, as long as we're winning games.

It's just a more even region (not easier), that is void of any dominant team. To illustrate my point, Clear Fork finished 5-5 last year and missed a playoff spot by less than a point. I don't think the region will be that weak this year, but it certainly will not take a 10-0 or even an 8-2 season (IMO) to make the post season. I'd rather not take any chances though.

The worst part about this region is the geography of it. Look at the area the region covers (Click on each helmet for driving directions, zoom in for a look at their stadium). We could really put some miles on our cars if this team goes deep in the playoffs. I'm sure very few of us would have a problem with that.

I don't think we've had this much balance on both sides of the ball in quite a while, and certainly think it's our most talented team since the 2006 regional finalist team led by Kyle Simmons, Josh Bowman, Isaiah Tyler and Brad Thomas.

Joe Besancon will return for his 2nd year at the helm of the Rider offense. He had a very productive junior season and is a threat to pass and run very effectively. What may be different this year are the options behind him at running back. Going into the season, there appears to be a multitude of backs that seem to be eager to bring Orrville football back to the days of 3 yards and a cloud of dust. Seniors Thirajn Pittman and Dillon Corbett, junior Tre Simpson and sophomore Mason Monheim give the Riders a potential run game not seen in over a decade.

Besancon will also have a many options to throw to as well...led by seniors Sam Miller, Chase Hoobler, Corbett and Jordan Thomas...juniors Max Pirman (when he returns from a collarbone injury) & Cody Rice...and sophomores Drew Brenner & Dylan Lemmon.

An experienced line that saw a lot of time last season will only add to our effectiveness as an offensive unit. The line will be anchored by seniors Vincent & Victor Monheim and junior Sam Reusser. Other that stand to make contributions include JT Mosley, Derek Vance, Daniel Groves, Dennis Raber & Derek Graber.

As good as our offense will be, our defense may be even better. Many of the offensive standouts will also contribute on defense. The unit led by Coach Haley will be anchored in the middle by Chase Hoobler and Mason Monheim at linebacker, Mosley & Raber on the defensive line, and a host of capable DB's led by safety Sam Miller.

Simply put, there's talent on both sides of the ball and at every position.

1. Win the big games. We've seen how losses to these teams have had a negative affect on our playoff standings. Winning 3 of the first 4 games (or all 4) will put us on the right track.

2. Steady QB play. Joey does not need to make plays with his feet this season. He's got weapons behind him and he'll have weapons to throw to. He needs to be smart and manage a good game. He'll have plenty of opportunities for himself if he does that.

3. The "Black Swarm" Defense. This unit has a chance to be very special. They have the strength, speed and experience to shut down opponents.

4. Special Teams. New kicker this season with the graduation of Aaric Milligan. A dependable kicker is invaluable. We've been real spoiled in Orrville with kickers and quarterbacks.

5. Shutout #4? No one associated with the team will say it (and I'm of the thought that there are bigger goals for the season) but a 4th straight shutout of Wooster would be an amazing feat. It would be athe 5th straight win over big blue, and even the decade series at 5-5. You have to go back to the 60's to find the last decade where Wooster beat Orrville more times than not. This would set the stage for the 2010 matchup which would be the 100th game in the rivalry.

6. Getting to the next level. Plain and simple, it's put up or shut up for this senior class. Plenty of hype, zero playoff appearances. I'm confident that they have what it takes this season.

I think at worst, the 2009 Riders go 8-2....and with the right breaks, there's an outside shot at going 10-0. I think our talent and the senior leadership simply will not allow this team to underachieve. I'll make an honest prediction of 9 wins and 1 loss.

For a little self promotion, your fearless blogger will be right there with the Riders every step of the way. Game previews, region standings and any other pertinent news will be plentiful. My Twitter page will be used to highlight the press all the Red Rider teams receive throughout the season and I'll post in game updates when possible for some of my out-of-town readers. We'll also follow Red Riders playing college ball as we did last season. Should be fun.

Good luck in '09 Riders. Leave it all on the field. Play for your family, play for your coaches, play for your teammates, play for Riders of the past and future, play for your classmates, play for this community.

We will all be there to support you every Friday night. Hopefully we can all gather in the shadows of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, at Fawcett Stadium at 11am on Saturday December 5th to cheer the Riders on in the Division IV state title game.

Friday, August 21, 2009

What says about the 2009 season

If you've never heard of, don't sweat it, that just means you're not a stats dork like me. The site itself is pretty plain, unless you putting real teams in ficticious matchups. It allows you to select a team, and put them against any other team in the state and see how the projections work out on each teams' home field as well as a neutral site.'s how the site projects Orrville's 2009 season to go. All projections are based on the game being played on a neutral field.

Week 1 ----> Win vs. Northwest - 27-21
Week 2 ---> Win @ Triway - 31-14
Week 3 ---> Win vs. Copley - 34-7
Week 4 ---> Loss vs. Lexington - 22-28
Week 5 ---> Win @ Senior - 42-12
Week 6 ---> Win vs. Ashland - 28-8
Week 7 ---> Win @ West Holmes - 28-10
Week 8 ---> Win @ Madison - 35-7
Week 9 ---> Win @ Clear Fork - 31-8
Week 10 ---> Win vs. Wooster - 28-8

So, 9 wins and the only loss to Lexington. All but 1 of our wins are projected to be by at least 2 TD's. Not to shabby right?

As much as I'd take this outcome, you just can't do anything but look at this, and throw it in the trash. Games aren't played on paper. We SHOULD be a solid team this year, and a definite team to watch in Region 14, but it has to be proven on the field. Many things can affect a team's play. We've seen this play out already in the very early stages of the '09 season.

In these projections, only one team in Region 14 was projected to beat us and that was Genoa Area. So according to CalPreps, we have the ability, on paper, to be a regional finalist (at least).

To give CalPreps some credibility, their 2008 accuracy for Ohio games was 80%. According to them, picking the team with the better record (or the home team when teams have identical records) would have netted a 70% accuracy rating.

What they are saying is their projections better than what picking the better team would net. Their mark of 80% accuracy means they were ahead of the curve, for 2008 anyways, and that their projections have at least marginal credibility.

In looking at last years projections, they hit on 9 of 10 (missing only the West Holmes game), and hit the projection for the week 1 loss to Northwest square on the nose (and came scary close in weeks 2, 3, 4 & 9).

Again, doesn't take a rocket scientist, I think in my weekly predictions last year, I was 8 for 10....the same 80% rate that CalPreps achieved for the entire state.

Here's the link to CalPreps projection page. Have fun.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Gift to my Readers....99 Years of Red Rider

Been working on this for a long time. Behold...every result from every game the Orrville Red Rider football team has ever played. Every game since our first season in 1903. Every win, every loss, every tie, every playoff game.

I'm afraid I cannot take 100% of the credit for this. Part of the credit goes to local historian Mike Vasas. He published a book in the late 80's that's long been out of print. Some of you may even own's called A History of Wayne County High School Football (1899-1988), and contains every game played in Wayne County through 1988. The book is simply the authority on Wayne Co. Football history. I've heard rumblings of an updated version to include the past 20 years of data, but nothing solid. The backstory as to how I acquired this book is an interesting one.

I knew this book existed, from my early days doing this site, I knew I wanted to house the complete archives of Orrville Football, but the only copies known to me were at the library and they were reference copies. I needed a copy of my own if I was ever to make this a reality. Through my own research, I landed (or thought I landed) the author's email, but I never received a response to an inquiry. Some time went by and I thought the trail had gone dry....but then one day through one of my very connected resources, I discovered that the author of the book also sat on the board of the Wayne Co. Sports Hall of Fame as a historian, and now I had a phone number. I was so close I could taste it.

I contacted Mr. Vasas and he told me he had some copies in his attic, he dug them out, we met up and I bought 2 (autographed) copies from him. I could now begin the daunting task of inputting all of his work into a spreadsheet.

The files from 1989 to present day were researched and entered by me, as well as all of the editing, but let's not kid ourselves, the lion's share of the work was done by Mr. Vasas and he deserves a lot of credit for this endeavor even being a thought in my mind.

Currently, I have 1900 through 1989 uploaded for your viewing pleasure. Just go to the dropdown menu at the top of the page, hover on "Football" and then "Results by Decade" and select the decade you want to view.

Enjoy, and please notify me of any discrepancies or errors.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Volleyball: Brenner & Short named to All-America Watch List

Two Orrville senior volleyball players have been named to the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Pre-Season All American Watch List.

Setter Hannah Brenner (Clemson commit) and Outside Hitter Erin Short (Eastern Michigan commit) were both named to the watch list. This list contains 383 players from 37 states. Specifically to Ohio, the list was 18 players deep, and Orrville was the only Ohio school to have more than 1 player named to the list.

Jade Craycraft from Wooster and Laura McDermott from Cloverleaf were the other locals to be named to the list.

Here is the entire list of nominees and here is the press release containing nomination requirements.

The list will be pared down to 48 players in November with 24 student-athletes on the 'First Team' and another 24 on the 'Second Team.' The First team selections will be invited to play in the AVCA All-American game which will be held in Tampa, FL in December.

Congrats to these two young ladies. What a great honor and here's wishing good luck on what is hopefully a successful senior season.

Friday, August 7, 2009

The Case for a Wayne County Football All-Star Game

Hear me my opinion, some of the best high school football in Northeast Ohio is played right here in Wayne County. Backyard rivalries are held weekly, and multiple county teams qualify for the playoffs year in and year out. So why not have a showcase football event that the entire county (and a segment of 2 other counties) could be a part of? I'll tell you why I think it's a no-brainer, and you'll have a chance to tell me why I'm crazy for even suggesting it.

First off, this isn't a new idea. There was an all-star game held from 1990 through 1994 that pitted Wayne County versus Medina County. The 1992 game was held in Orrville. Wayne County won the final game in 1994 held in Wadsworth, their only win of the series. The game was marred by a bench clearing brawl (maybe one of my readers can shine a better light on this). The series coincidentally was ended after the 1994 brawl, and Wayne County has not participated in an all-star football game since.

My idea in a nutshell, divide the county into East and West....that would give you 10 teams....seems like enough right? Sort of, the monkey wrench comes in the form of the Hillsdale Falcons, who reside in Ashland County, but are a part of the Wayne County Athletic they must be included. Now you have 11 teams, an odd number, so a 12th team is needed. Sitting down in Holmes County all by themselves are the West Holmes Knights. As the only football school in Amish country, I'm sure they'd be more than willing to participate. One third of their schedule is against Wayne Co. teams so they'd be a nice fit.

Now you have 12 teams....the 8 teams from the WCAL, the 3 teams from the OCC, and Triway.

If you're going strictly by geography (Route 3 & 83 seems to be the dividing line), here's how the county would be split and what division each school currently resides in.

Hillsdale - D5
Northwestern - D5
Wooster - D2
West Holmes - D3
Triway - D4
Norwayne - D4

Dalton - D6
Waynedale - D5
Orrville - D4
Chippewa - D4
Rittman - D6
Smithville - D5

Quick glance says that the West team has a more proportional distribution of teams (1 from D2, 1 from D3, 2 from D4 and 2 from D5) whereas the East team has no team bigger than D4. I think the more tradition rich schools come from the East part of the county. So each side has something going for them.....let's call it fair and move on to the important details.

The logical location of the game would be Wooster, and with the college's John P. Papp stadium getting fresh artificial turf (sorry...field turf), it's a natural fit, and there's no worry about the field getting torn up.

The game should be held sometime in mid-July (after the 4th but before kids leave for college), and the game should definately be held at night, to avoid being played on a 95 degree day.

As far as coaches, I think it should rotate, 2 head coaches per team, so basically, every coach will have a shot at coaching in this game every 3 years.

Those coaches, along with a small committee of local media (...meekly raises hand...) should be in charge of doling out the invitations to recently graduated seniors sometime in the late spring. An effort should be made to basically include every athlete that was named to the Daily Record All-Star team.

Each team should have somewhere in the neighborhood of 30-35 players, meaning each team would send 5 to 6 players. I think that's a real solid number, there's still some exclusivity, but totaled up, somewhere between 60-70 graduated seniors will have an opportunity to suit up one last time.

Speaking of suiting up, let's talk uniforms. Here's a picture of the all-star game that was played over in Canton last month....the uniforms are very rudimentary, but at least everyone looks like they're on the same team. Plain white pants, all-star jersey and team issued helmet.

Here's what I envision the jerseys looking like, nothing special, but always nice to see it on paper.

About the helmets, a lot of all-star games turn into mashup projects for the helmets worn by participants. Check out this pic (pay attention to the helmets) and this one. Tell me it wouldn't be fun to see the combinations that would come from this. A Smithville decal on an Orrville helmet? The Wooster 'W' on a purple Triway lid? The possibilities are endless. Except for Dalton and Orrville who have no decals to speak of (unless you coulnt Orrville's award decals).

So we have the teams, coaches and uniforms. What about the fans? Easy enough...sell color coded tickets to fans from every participating school for $5 each. The school that brings the most fans gets a small award to their schools Booster Club. Nothing much, $500 or so.

Band? Nah. Maybe at halftime, there's a quick skills competition by some of the players, or even a few fans picked from the crowd via 50/50 drawing to compete in something. I also think that 1 athlete from each team should be recognized with a small scholarship (again, nothing more than $500 or so). This could also be done at halftime.

I also think it would be a great venue to plug the Wayne Co. Sports Hall of Fame. Maybe during induction years, the inductees could be announced or listed in the programs. Great way to plug the upcoming induction dinner.

After the game, allow fans on the field, do a team trophy and MVP presentation....and you're done.

Of course, sponsors would be needed for the uniform cost and other costs associated with the event (programs, trophies, officials..etc.). If businesses/individuals from each participating town pledged $1000 (from one source or a hundred sources)...I'd think you'd have more than enough to cover expenses.

I do think this needs to be a totally not-for-profit venture. I'm sure there would be no problem finding local charities to benefit from this game. Maybe rotate it yearly among several local charities.

So...that's kind of it. That's my case for the game. Now it's your turn....tell me why this is a good idea, or the worst idea ever. We have the Wilbur Berkey classic for Wayne Co. basketball, why not the football equivalent?

Saturday, August 1, 2009

All Things Tim Hiller....In One Convenient Location

A new site, launched by the Western Michigan Athletic Department...a sort of clearing house for all things Tim Hiller. Check it out. - Make sure you have speakers turned on to hear Tim tell you where he'll be this fall.

View the latest news, which currently includes a number of awards and honors that Tim has been nominated for, his career stats, and various stories in the media about Tim.

Make sure to check out the 'Media' tab, or just click here....notice anything? Maybe a certain 2 part interview done by a certain Red Rider sports blogger? How cool is that? I got the link to the site forwarded to me today, but had no idea my interview with him was included as a link until just now. Another feather in the cap.

Anyone else think it's a little comical (in a harmless way) that a team that plays at Waldo Stadium is doing a "where is" promotion? I smell a book in the near future.

Give the site a visit. It's really amazing to see where Tim ranks in MAC history, and that another solid passing season may put him at the top of the list for all-time MAC quarterbacks...statistically speaking. It's also quite impressive to listen to Tim's teammates speak so highly of him as a leader on and off the field.

For anyone making plans to see Tim play this season, WMU stops in Ohio twice, at Toledo on October 10th at 7pm and at Kent St. on October 31st at 2pm.