It has been a few weeks since The Pig and Carroll coach Doug Dinan have been able to see each other and exchange pleasantries, but this swine is of the opinion that Dinan has gained quite a few gray hairs over the past few weeks.
First, it was the Chargers holding off perennial power Penn on the road in arguably the biggest victory in Carroll football history.
That win was soon overshadowed by the victory last week over South Bend Adams that saw the Chargers erase a 14-point second-half deficit by scoring the final 23 points of the game.
The Pig has to be honest, while eying the score from the Penn game a few weeks ago, he thought that it was only a matter of time before the Kingsmen awoke and put the Chargers away. But as the game went on, Carroll did not go away.
Last week with the score 35-21, The Pig was ready to write the Chargers off again against South Bend Adams. Once again, The Pig was pleasantly surprised when Carroll emerged victorious.
It has been an exciting few weeks for Dinan and Carroll, but also stressful.
So, can Chargers fans expect more drama this week on the road at Merrillville?
The Pig says yes.
The Brothers Tranquill have been dynamic all season for Carroll, but Justin and Drue have taken their play to another level through the first three weeks of the postseason. To continue to advance, the Chargers need Justin to show that breakaway ability out of the backfield, while Drue needs to be a threat at wide receiver.
Merrillville will present more speed issues than Carroll has been presented with so far. Running back Dylon Collins is a speedster for the Pirates that can go the distance at any time.
If the Chargers are to advance to semistate, the difference may be in how the Carroll defense plays against a Merrillville team that can score a lot of points.
While The Pig hopes Carroll can pull out another win on Friday, there is no doubt that Dinan has the Chargers on course to being what people have expected out of the program for years, a competitive Class 5A program that can challenge fellow 5A Homestead in the NHC for seasons to come.
And if Carroll continues the magic on Friday? Perhaps we see a semistate
matchup between two teams that play their home games just a few miles apart in the Chargers and Snider.