Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Football Power Poll And Thoughts - Week 9

Here's how I see it:

1. Bishop Guertin...One more tune-up this week for BG before the Exeter game. They play vs. an Alvirne team which is not playing good football right now. Might be a trap game for the Cardinals. Both of the starting QB's for BG and Exeter are out right now. Keep and eye on the health of Cuipa and Cross as we near November 7.

2. Salem...They played Concord this past weekend, and have West this week. Should be a good chance to have some of the starters get some rest going into the playoffs after such a brutal schedule the first 7 weeks.

3. Exeter...They just keep chugging along, and keey playing Blue Hawk football. Another shutout Friday night in Dover. That's 4 shutouts on the season, and only 39 points allowed in 8 games, an average of less than 5 points per game. BG has allowed 57 points in games, although they have had a slightly tougher schedule.

4. Pinkerton...True, the Astros have 3 losses overall and North has just one. But out of division, Pinkerton has played BG and Brockton, the top team in NH and possibly the top team in Mass. while North has played Merrimack, a bad D-II team. Last weekend of the season should be very interesting when these two teams meet. The #2 seed in D-I will likely be on the line. They Astros also destroyed Londonderry a couple weeks ago, while the Titans beat them by 1 point in OT.

5. Nashua North...See Pinkerton.

6. Plymouth...I'm hoping that with the new classification rules changes in the NHIAA, Plymouth will be moving up in the next couple years so we can really see how good they are. This Saturday, two teams who should not be on the same field as each other as the Bobcats play against my Alma Mater, Sanborn. An undefeated team with a 52 game winning streak vs. a winless team. A team with a rich history over the last 30 years vs. a program in its second year playing at the varsity level.

7. Souhegan...Like Pete Tarrier, I also think their loss was an aberration, and that their talent level does not match up with what happened in the Milford game. Still, I can't justify ranking them with a loss ahead of an undefeated Plymouth team.

8. Londonderry...They're getting better as the year goes on. Sean O'Gorman and Alex Lambert keep having monster games for the Lancers. Hard to believe they lost to Keene in Week 1, the same Keene team that just lost to Merrimack.

9. Winnacunnet...This is a scary team right now. They're playing their best ball of the season right now. Last 2 weeks they have had crucial away games at Alvirne and at Timberlane. They were up 27-6 in Hudson with a couple minutes left, and they won 40-14 in Plaistow. They have a good defense, and Cronan, Knowles and a host of half backs on offense.

10. Nashua South...I know, I am probably the only one who still has them in my top 10. But This team is extremely dangerous on offense. They've given up a lot of points on defense, but this is largely due to injuries. And their best wins are against Lowell and Timberlane, which are better wins than the teams who are on the cusp of the top 10.

On the cusp: Laconia, Portsmouth, Manchester Central and Trinity

38 comments:

  1. Here's a serious and interesting question, Jeremy. If Souhegan were to meet Milford in the playoffs and win by their usual 30 or 40 point margin with their full team, would that buy them forgiveness from you and other pollsters when doing the following week's Top 10? In other words, would you put them back into the top 3-5 like you did before? I know people will get mad about another Souhegan post, but this is an interesting thought I was just thinking of when I read your comments on Souhegan, Jeremy.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Good question. A lot of it would depend on what happens with the teams currently in the top 5. Those 5 are head and shoulders above the rest right now. But if 1 or 2 of those teams were to lose some games then Souhegan might be able to get back into my top 5.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Bigger question if Milford gets to Souhegan again and wins again do they finish the season in the top 5? Only fair to me to say yes. After losing players and games early without their coach and several key players they have realed off some big wins including a real nice win against what most people thought was the number two team at the time. To me that would have to get them into the top 5. Anyone agree?

    ReplyDelete
  4. I say no because Milford is not even top twenty team!

    ReplyDelete
  5. So since Milford has gotten there team together and players back healthy they have been beating up on people pretty bad. Including Souhegan. If they win this week against Portsmouth convincingly and then beat Souhegan again? You would have to agree that the last 4 games they have played they have put numbers up as good as anyone in D3. If that happens, if it doesnt the is all mute.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Milford will have to beat Portsmouth this Friday night first. The winner of that game will be in my top 10 next week. More importantly, the winner will get home field advantage when the same two teams meet in the D-III semis for the second year in a row. So Milford will have to beat Portsmouth twice, THEN beat Souhegan for the SECOND time in the title game. If they do that, they'll end up pretty darn close to the top 5. But that's a big IF.

    ReplyDelete
  7. So you would put Portsmouth or Milford above Laconia? Laconia is better then both.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I have seen every Portsmouth game this year and I can't put them in the top ten. They can score but their defense is very suspect. I am discounting their lack of points against Souhegan since they were missing 5 offensive starters including their 2 QB's. Even if they had them all I don't think they would score 30 points against them but the game would have been closer then the beating they took.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I agree Jeremy, Milford has a ton of work to do but if they could pull all of that off it would be quite a turn around and something that the football fans of Nh should really appreciate. TO me Souhegan is still the favorite being they will play at Souhegan which is something I disagree with. I dont feel that two teams that make it to the last game should have that big of an advantage. Should be held at Exeter,Stellos or even at a college field somewhere.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Honestly, I agree that Portsmouth does not belong. I was one of those people that decided to go to the "top 10 showdown" in DIII a few weeks ago, but it was much more than just missing a couple QBs. Utter domination in the trenches to the point where even if Jones had've been in, he would have had no time. I actually expect Milford to win this week and steal the 9 or 10 spot in the top 10. Also, I agree in thinking that Souhegan will win it with their talent healthy and remotivated, but I wouldn't count the Spartans out either completely. However, I do see the Sabers winning by a few scores in a rematch, but they do play the games for a reason as Milford taught us!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I can't totaly agree about the Souhegan/Portsmouth comment. Portsmouth had five staters out, two on the offensive line both seniors with experience, one all-state. I do agree that our offensive line is not strong but they had to be better than they were in that game - I hope. You had two soph's at QB who had never played a down at the position in varsity, one never played at JV.

    The players not on the field that night are two way players so we lost one starting end, two offensive linemen, one defensive lineman, our all-state middle linebacker and our two corners. We used three sophs at ML and corner and they got whipped.

    Again, I not saying we can beat Souhegan, that would be difficult because they are talented but we would have had a much better showing.

    I don't know anything about Milford but they sure have turned it around and are doing great. Guess we are going to find out more about both teams on Friday.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Friday should be a great game but you have to wonder if either team feels like its a must win. I mean if I am a coach I may not want to show everything in my arsenal. I know a few years back this same scenario happened and Milford one a close game in the regular season and then Portsmouth dominating the playoff game. So it may be smart to hold some back. To me home field doesnt make as much of a difference as having a few tricks up your sleeve.

    ReplyDelete
  13. HOW MANY PLAYERS FROM MILFORD COULD START FOR BG? ZERO.

    ReplyDelete
  14. And how would you know that? It is to different levels and two different situations. That has nothing to do with the top ten rankings.

    ReplyDelete
  15. How many players are going to play at the next level from BG? Anyone got college offers?

    ReplyDelete
  16. How many players on BG would play for any team in the Southeast?

    ReplyDelete
  17. I don't think anyone is saying Milford is better than BG. We're talking about them vs. Portsmouth, and if the winner of that game will be in the top 10, can either team beat Souhegan in playoffs, etc.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I believe Kell and Phillips are getting D3 looks in the NESCACs, but this is merely hearsay that I've picked up as I don't go to BG.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Getting college looks in NH is very challenging. It happens, but let's be honest, NH athletes typically compete well at the D III level but are not offered free rides very often. It does happen, but by exception.

    Rise Magazine/ESPN has BG on the their "bubble" list for the Northeast Top 20. You know, this isn't crazy. Not that they are as good as those teams but I do think they could complete with most of New England. Once you introduce HS teams with 4, 5 or 6 legitimate D1 players (Don Bosco in NJ for example) then BG gets their doors blown off. But, could they play with the best in MA and CT...I think so.

    Regardless, it's good to see the best in NH considered for additional recognition at the regional level.

    ReplyDelete
  20. The fact that Exeter has let up 39 points and BG has let up 57 points for the season is misleading.

    Take for instance the Keene game where BG let up 19 points. Almost all of those points were let up by the BG JVs that played the entire second half.

    In fact, that has happened the entire season. Look at the Spaulding game where they scored on the last play of the game. For heavens sake...I think BG had it's freshman kids in the game.

    Can't look at points allowed...very misleading !

    ReplyDelete
  21. Exeter also had their JV players in the entire second half against Spaulding.

    ReplyDelete
  22. didn't keene score first against BG

    ReplyDelete
  23. C'mon guys.....You're picking fly crap out of the pepper. Points or no points.

    Not going to matter. I have seen Exeter play and I have seen BG play. The difference in team speed is very compelling. BG's pursuit to the football on defense will overwhelm the Exeter offense. Exeter will definitely have trouble scoring on the BG defense.

    BG offense has many weapons. If you shut down the option (Like Pinkerton did) Guertin will spread the field and go the air....which is trouble for a weak Exeter secondary.

    Doesn't matter....we'll know in a week...who is the contender....and who is the pretender !! Smart money is on Guertin.

    Final Score: BG 31...........Exeter 10

    ReplyDelete
  24. If you want to pick on an Exeter weakness, the secondary isn't it. You could argue that their defensive backs are their 4 top players. I could name some weaknesses that have been obvious but that wouldn't be among them.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I agree. I saw Exeter play Dover and Alvirne. I was impressed with the secondary. I wasn't real impressed with the Offensive line for Exeter. They couldn't score against Alvirne in the first half and didn't win at the line of scrimmage. I thought they would score more points against Dover also. I think BG will have trouble running between the tackles against Exeter.

    Final Score BG 24 Exeter 20

    ReplyDelete
  26. Hysterical - Dover and Alvirne are terrible! Absolutely aweful. Please don't praise Exeter in relation to their play versus these teams.

    BG is very good, Exeter is good. They play one another tough. BG 42 - Exeter 7. Honestly, that would be a great effort out of Exeter.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I have not seen Exeter play in person this year but have gleaned from my post observations that their defense overall is very good and that if they have a healthy QB, they have a decent offense. My inclination is to route for Exeter because I have had some friends son’s play there, I love the town and think that Bill Ball is a great guy. That being said, I think that BG will beat Exeter by a touchdown or two at least. BG has not really been tested, I don't know about the Catholic Memorial game but in the Pinkerton game they did not go to the pass after the option was shut down it was the opposite, they came out passing and when that stopped they went to the run, which was also shut down and these were the starters. The problem that Pinkerton had was completely on the offensive side of the ball and most of that credit goes to BG's team speed and tackling on defense not to mention some weaknesses in Pinkerton's offense which have since been corrected. I would dare to say that the BG, PA game would have a whole different feel to it, should it happen now, which is why realignment is so exciting. I do think that BG would still win the game (they are that good) but it would stop all this silly talk about Winnacunnet beating Pinkerton as it stands today without comparing early seasons wins or losses of common opponents. I wish Exeter luck and if anyone can pull the upset it is them. BG fans kudos to you, you have a heck of a team there, enjoy it.

    ReplyDelete
  28. I hear Exeter is moving to d1,but not BG.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Exeter has possibly its youngest team in recent history, especially on the offensive side of the ball. The young linemen made lots of mistakes early on but have been improving every week and as their mastery of the system continues so does the effectiveness of the offense. That being said, at this point they are serviceable. I agree that BGs speed will be the biggest factor and as much as I would like to see the Blue Hawks pull the upset (it would be a bigger upset than when Exeter broke their winning streak in 2006) I believe that BG has to be huge favorites.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Exeter will probably win - BG is very, very cocky.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Anonymous 9:44...

    You have a right to your opinion....but....I think you a greatly misled by what you see as BG's cockiness versus what it really is...confidence. Big Difference.

    ReplyDelete
  32. I heard today that Exeter is moving up to Division I in football and BG is staying down in Division II. Are you kidding me !!!

    Who will the big game be against for BG....Dover..Alvirne....Keene....ouch.!! Talk about a boring football season.

    If it wasn't for the Exeter rivalry with BG...the season would be extremely boring.

    BG versus Exeter is the best football rivalry in NH high school football. I hope they still play even if the Blue Hawks petition up to Div I.

    signed .."Nauseated in Nashua"

    ReplyDelete
  33. So what is NHIAA thinking? They will be taking away the best football game nearly every year in NH. Exeter has said they will play where they are placed and would be the smallest D1 team. If BG petitions up to D1, Exeter would be placed in D2. If BG stays in D2, Exeter will move to D1. Seems like a really bad decision to me or maybe it's their strategy arguably the consistently two best teams in NH to never play each other.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Well....tonight BG waxed yet another Division II rival (yeah right!!!) beating....no change that....demolishing Alvirne 48-0.

    It was so bad, the Alvirne coaches asked to let the clock run continuously halfway thru the 2nd quarter. This,of course, usurps the actual ruling which states you have to wait until the second half to perform this if the winning team is up by at least 35 points.

    It is incredible to think that if Alvirne wins next week...they will claim the 4th Div II playoff spot and win the grand opportunity to play BG again at Stellos. Of course, assuming BG beats Exeter next week....which they should.

    Can you envision next year where there won't be a BG-Exeter game at the end of the season ? Let's hope maybe Souhegan will petition up to Division II so Somebody will test Guertin.

    NHIAA should mandate either Both BG and Exeter go up or stay down. It is the most anticipated game of the season...what a shame !!!

    ReplyDelete
  35. See everyone next Saturday night at Stellos! Should be a classic...let's hope it's not the last time these two meet in the regular or post season.

    ReplyDelete
  36. BG scored 6 TD's before the hot dogs were hot.
    Alvirne is terrible - D2 is really bad and D1 is not much better...if at all.
    Too bad BG and Salem don't play...head and shoulders above the rest of the state.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Let's not forget that Alvirne was without their starting QB Jonathan Baldwin for the game on Saturday vs. BG. He got hurt in their loss to Merrimack. Still, he was in there the whole time when they looked bad the week before that vs. Winnacunnet.

    Alvirne and Timberlane meet Friday night with the winner getting the 4th seed in D-II. With the way both teams have played of late, neither deserves to go to the playoffs. Only teams playing good football in D-II right now are BG, Exeter and Winnacunnet.

    ReplyDelete