THE PIGSKIN PROPHET: Is your team’s stock rising or falling as the postseason begins?
Whatever stock market term you like to throw around to sound smart, the same principles apply when it comes to high school football.
As we enter the postseason, which team’s stock is rising? Which is falling? Should you sell that Snider stock or stay in for the long term?
What about Woodlan?
Lucky for you, not only is The Pigskin Prophet a master of predicting the future on the football field, he also has a pretty solid grasp of smart investing.
Let’s take a look at some area teams and whether you should be buying or selling.
It was trendy last week to question the Panthers’ ability to go deep in the 6A tournament, with The Pig as guilty as anyone.
After last Friday’s 48-7 drubbing of Bishop Luers, Snider put the doubters on notice.
Look, there is no question that the road to a 6A state championship is exponentially more difficult than in 5A. But The Pig is of the belief that IF the Panthers play up to their potential on both sides of the ball, this team is fully capable of returning to Lucas Oil Stadium.
Michael Haupert hasn’t thrown an interception since Week 4 against South Side and has grown into a legit playmaker. Christian Covington’s 1,127 yards and 21 touchdowns on the ground are impressive numbers.
But it is defensively where this team’s future will be decided. When locked in and healthy, Snider’s defensive unit is straight up nasty. Can it play that way beginning next week against Homestead?
And against Carmel? Or Penn? Or Valpo?
THE PIG SAYS: BUY.
The Pig could go either way with the Saints at this point.
On the one hand, Bishop Dwenger lost three games in the regular season, but one was decided on a tackle at the 1-yard-line (Carroll) while another came down to a last-second field goal (Snider).
Conversely, you could say that the Saints have only beaten one team with a winning record, a 15-14 victory over a four-loss Luers squad in Week 7.
There is nothing eye-opening or overwhelming with this team through nine weeks. The offense under sophomore Patrick O’Keefe is solid but not spectacular, and the defense allows way too many points to above-average offenses.
That said, it is Dwenger. It still looks like the team to beat in Sectional 20, with all due respect to New Haven and Leo.
But regional and beyond? Not so sure.
THE PIG SAYS: SELL
Ah, the apple in The Pig’s eye. His Hornets ran roughshod over their regular-season foes, outscoring opponents by an average of 30-plus points.
Chance Roddy at QB.
Chase Schnepf at RB.
Bunch of other guys that love The Pig.
Yes, it has been a magical season for Angola.
But let’s be real for a second here.
The Hornets have quality non-conference wins over Leo and Jimtown, but their strength of schedule still ranks 170th in the state. Only Culver Academy (172nd) has a lower SOS in a loaded Sectional 19.
This week’s sectional-opening matchup against DeKalb is favorable, but Angola will next likely have to travel to NorthWood, the defending 4A north champion from last season.
It’s been a fun ride for Angola, The Pig just isn’t sure it lasts much longer.
THE PIG SAYS: SELL.
A few short weeks ago, the Bulldogs were 6-0 and looking like arguably the local 4A team with the best shot at a deep postseason run.
But a pair of close wins over Bellmont and Huntington North sandwiched around a blowout loss to East Noble has led to some doubts in The Pig’s ol’ noggin’ regarding the Bulldogs.
Coach Jim Rowland’s team has had some key players out recently, players that are expected to be back for this week’s showdown with Leo, but that doesn’t entirely excuse the mediocre play over the final third of the season.
The fact that the 4A north is absolutely brutal doesn’t help. SEE ABOVE.
THE PIG SAYS: SELL
It wasn’t the regular season the Knights expected.
That may be an understatement.
With plenty of talent, particularly at the offensive skill positions, Luers was a trendy pick to perhaps be the biggest threat to Snider in the SAC.
Unfortunately, injuries and a lack of proven depth trimmed the Knights’ chances in the league, with blowout losses to Homestead, Concordia and Snider among the four regular-season defeats for the team.
But as we saw last year with Concordia, the 3A postseason has nothing on the rigors of the SAC. If the Knights can stay healthy (a big if with RBs Tyreeon Hambright and Jordan Presley missing time this year due to injuries) and the majority of top 3A squads being in the south, Bishop Luers could end up being the local team with the best shot at a state title.
THE PIG SAYS: BUY
OK, pretend The Pigskin Prophet is a teacher named Mr. Prophet.
Mr. Prophet teaches Prognosticating 501. It’s a Masters class, so no use signing up for it until you finish the significant amount of pre-reqs.
If Mr. Prophet was giving out a letter grade to Woodlan for its performance over the final three weeks of the regular season, it wouldn’t be pretty.
D-plus. At best.
Losses to Lima Central Catholic and Adams Central over the last few weeks have made the Warriors look downright mortal. This is a team that has had difficulty playing to its potential in key games over the last few years (see South Adams, 2016).
A sectional title is all but guaranteed for Woodlan and the regional doesn’t look all that daunting either, but semistate against an Eastbrook or a Rensselaer Central may be a different story.
That said, The Pig feels Woodlan will find its groove.
THE PIG SAYS: BUY
Good news: The Flying Jets are playing their best football of the season.
Bad news: The 1A north is no joke.
There are six teams in Sectional 43 with at least six wins, including Churubusco and Southwood which sport just one defeat each.
The Pig believes the Flying Jets are still the favorite to win the sectional crown, but regional may be even tougher. Sheridan or Monroe Central will be the opponent, both top-notch teams.
Adams Central was able to navigate a brutal sectional and regional draw last year to make it to semistate. Can they again?
The Pig has his doubts.
THE PIG SAYS: SELL