Prep Football: Rowan teams piling up wins
By Mike London
Our heads are spinning from all the winning.
Our fingers are aching from the record-breaking.
What the heck is going on with Rowan football? West, East, Salisbury and North (with a running clock) combined for nearly 1,500 yards rushing Friday.
A lot of years Rowan isn’t all that special. We have our good teams, our sad teams, our not-too-bad teams and our occasional powerhouse.
But there’s something in the water or the air this year. While Carson (4-4) and North (3-4) still are on the bubble, it’s conceivable there won’t be a single Rowan team that finishes with more losses than wins.
That has happened before, but only once in the past 50 years. In 1974, there were no losing teams among the five programs, although both North and West posted modest 5-5 marks. The county just missed having five winners in 1975, when four schools were very strong and West went 4-5-1.
Since then, there have been a few 4-for-5s but no Ichiros. No 5-for-5s.
Now the county is trying to go 6-for-6 with newcomer Carson piling on.
Are the Rowan schools really that good?
Well, West clearly is. South is. Salisbury is.
West beat South. South beat Salisbury. Salisbury beat East by a bundle, so logically you can’t rank the Mustangs higher than No. 4 in the county at this point.
Yet they are 7-1.
There didn’t appear to be much difference between Carson and East when they squared off, so Carson is a reasonably stout No. 5.
You have to rank North sixth because they haven’t beaten anybody else, but the Cavs have defense and their offense is picking up.
The point is if your fourth-best team has won six in a row and your sixth-best team has won three straight, players, coaches and fans in the county are doing something right.
One thing Rowan teams are doing consistently is beating up their neighbors.
If you toss out the intra-county matchups for a moment, Rowan records become staggeringly strong.
Against teams outside the county lines, Rowan schools are 21-4 ó West (5-0), East (5-0), South (4-1), Carson (3-1), North (3-1) and Salisbury (1-1).
South would kill to replay its game at Northwest Cabarrus, while Carson would love to have back its lightning-delayed, two-trips nightmare at Hickory Ridge, but Rowan is still 9-2 against Cabarrus.
Rowan teams are 6-0 against Iredell, including road wins by Carson and East at Statesville, a school that’s been tough on them.
Lately, North has joined in. The Cavs, Rowan’s Marco Polos, are 1-0 against Stanly, Montgomery and Moore counties.
Sure, it could all come crashing down Friday.
North will have its hands full at Albemarle, one of the state’s best 1A teams, and maybe South won’t be able to break that West Iredell hex on the road.
But East is off this week, and it’s hard to imagine anything bad happening to West, Salisbury or Carson.
Just sit back and enjoy the ride as much as we are.