Common Sense picks
Common Sense says it’s rare for a team to run the table in the regular season, but the Salisbury Hornets can do it in 2008.
Not that Common Sense commands any credibility after last week’s 6-4 prediction record (the SPC was out of control) that knocked the season mark down to 27-14. That’s not quite 66 percent. An orangutan couldn’t pick 66 percent right, but a chimpanzee probably could.
But back to the Hornets. They’re going to go 11-0 this time because they’re finally going to get over the Game 5 hump. Coach Joe Pinyan’s Salisbury squad is 4-0 heading into tonight’s game at Central Davidson, and that’s a game the Hornets figure to win by three TDs.
Pinyan’s coached three previous 4-0 teams, but none survived Game 5. His 2005 and 2006 teams lost to West Rowan while his 2004 club bit the dust in an upset at West Iredell.
The Hornets have stated their case that they’re one of the top 10 2A teams in the state, and they’ll be favored in every remaining regular-season contest.
Sure, talented Lexington will be a test. Ledford has a run-or-pass QB in Cody Williams who can give the Hornets trouble. Physical West Davidson always causes Salisbury headaches.
Still, Salisbury’s chances of reaching 11-0 are pretty good ó if the Hornets stay healthy.
A 4-0 start is a little unusual for a Rowan team, but this is Salisbury’s 10th since 1971. The school on Lincolnton Road also had 4-0 starts in 1932, 1933, 1958, 1959 and 1968 when it competed under the Boyden banner.
Back in the 1940s and early 1950s at J.C. Price, Salisbury’s segregated school for black students, opening a season 4-0 was an annual thing. The Red Devils didn’t get excited until they were 8-0.
Salisbury’s best start ever was turned in by a devastating 1995 squad that won its first 12 before losing to Thomasville in the playoffs.
South Rowan has had only five 4-0 starts. A.L. Brown fans will tell you that’s because the Raiders like to play the Wonders early.
South’s first 4-0 start was in 1963. That team holds the distinction as the only county team that began 4-0 yet had a losing record. The ’63 Raiders finished 4-5-1.
South’s best start ever was 6-0 in 1964. A.L. Brown took care of that streak.
South hasn’t started 4-0 since 1988.
East Rowan has started 4-0 three times ó 1968, 1969 and 2007. A forfeit knocked the 1970 Mustangs off the list.
East’s 1969 club won all 13 outings and remains the only unbeaten team in modern county history.
North Rowan has jumped out of the gate 4-0 six times, including coach Larry Thomason’s 1982 and 1985 teams that were 11-0 when they fell in the playoffs.
Mount Airy got the Cavaliers in 1982. Bunker Hill did the damage in 1985.
West Rowan has had five 4-0 starts, and it’s no surprise four have come during Scott Young’s tenure.
Davie’s gotten the Falcons several times early, but West opened 4-0 under Young in 1999, 2002, 2005 and 2007.
The 2002 Falcons suffered perhaps the biggest upset of any 4-0 team in county history when they were ambushed by North Iredell in Game 5.
West’s best start ever was in 2005 when it won its first 13 before losing in the playoffs to A.L. Brown.
East (1969), North (1982, 1985), Salisbury (1995) and West (2005) are the only five county teams in the past 50 years that ran the table in the regular season. Keep an eye on the Hornets. They can join an exclusive club.
Davie is off this week and will heal some wounds.
Salisbury 35, C. Davidson 14Dario Hamilton has no mercy when it comes to the Spartans.
Ledford 27, North 6
It’s unlikely the Cavs can score enough to stay in it.
Lake Norman 17, Carson 14Seriously, this might be the game of the night.
West 24, Statesville 14
Falcons were fortunate to escape the fired-up Hounds last year.
Mooresville 35, East 13Blue Devils had O-line injuries last week. Maybe that will slow down Jjshaun Pinkston a little.
South 27, W. Iredell 21Raiders are due for a break or two ó or three.
NW Cabarrus 26, N. Iredell 7North Iredell has been a get-well card for everyone.
A.L Brown 35, Marvin Ridge 17Six SPC teams, including the Wonders, are 1-1.
Other guesses:CCC: Lexington 42, East Davidson 14; West Davidson 21, Providence Grove 17.
SPC: Sun Valley 24, Hickory Ridge 17; Anson 42, Piedmont 13; Concord 24, Porter Ridge 21.