Week 9 Common Sense Picks
No Shrine Bowl selections.
No teams ranked in the top 10s in their respective classifications in the AP media poll.
Still, Rowan County football is pretty good this year. It's likely there won't be a dominant, 2,000-yards-of-offense guy for the first time since 2004, but there's a host of very good backs and a whale of a battle for the county rushing title.
West, East, Salisbury and North won't be easy outs in the playoffs, and any of the four could get on a roll depending on the matchups.
It's an unusual year, but a fun year in that there is no clear-cut, best team in the county. People argue about it in barber shops and around water coolers.
Everyone has lost at least one county game, a statement that hasn't been true since 2001.
North beat East but lost to West and Salisbury. West beat Salisbury and North but lost to East. East lost to North but beat West and Salisbury. Salisbury lost to East and West but beat North.
Doing the math, North and Salisbury have two county losses apiece, while East and West have lost once in the county. East beat West head-to-head, so Common Sense will declare East the mythical county champion for 2012 as long as it beats South tonight.
Unlike golf, cross country, wrestling, swimming, etc., the trophy for the county championship in football is imaginary - although if there's a sponsor out there who wants to provide a handsome trophy each year, we'll be more than happy to present it.
If tangible county football championship trophies had been handed out in recent years, West would've been the undisputed winner in 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2003 and 2002.
We leave 2004 out of that long line of West conquests because there were two unbeaten county teams in 2004. West (10-3) went 3-0 in the county, while Salisbury (12-2) was 2-0. It's a shame they didn't meet. Common Sense has courageously declared them co-champs for that season.
Common Sense had to declare tri-champions in 2001, a year in which North, South and West all went 3-1. South beat North. North beat West. West beat South.
If you're wondering when was the last time East could stake a legit claim to the county throne, that would be 1997. West, North and East lost once each in the county to share a tri-championship. West beat North, North beat East. East beat West.
If you're wondering when was the last time East could be declared a solo county champ, that would be 1991. East went 3-0 in the county.
That 1991 season also was the year in which East won an amazing 35-34 game against Statesville. Maybe that's an omen of things to come.
The picks weren't great last week, with misses on North Rowan-Albemarle and Davie-West Forsyth. But you're used to that.
East Rowan 35, South Rowan 14
The Mustangs should earn that invisible county championship trophy.
West Rowan 45, North Iredell 0
West's offensive numbers should improve significantly.
Carson 28, West Iredell 13
It's the key game for Carson as far as getting to the playoffs.
North Rowan 34, Chatham Central 14
Cavaliers on their way to a strong 8-3 regular season.
Salisbury 35, Lexington 20
Joe Pinyan's record against the Jackets is perfect.
A.L. Brown 24, Hickory Ridge 21
Wonders have won 18 straight SPC games, and they'll find a way to make it 19.
Mount Tabor 17, Davie 10
The Spartans have a track record of success against Davie.