Received a communiqué from one of our readers voicing his displease that last week’s edition of Friday Night Lights was disseminated one day late. Said reader wondered if he was being punished because his alma mater dominates all the other teams that are being reported on. Actually, I was occupied attempting to determine how many players on said reader’s alma mater’s roster were Catholic boys from Fond du Lac, and how many were recruits from elsewhere. This reader also noted that I always write about the same elected officials, which can get stale. It is just that certain elected officials provide so many opportunities.
A number of years ago I was attending a Markesan – North Fond du Lac game. Sitting immediately behind me were the superintendent of the Horicon school system (now Horicon-Hustisford for football purposes) and his wife. They were scouting Markesan. The superintendent’s wife told me what a great group of 8th grade athletes Horicon had. So I informed her, and I was aware of this — I was not making it up — that Horicon was being heavily recruited by the coach of said reader’s alma mater. The principal’s wife became irate. I told her not to vent at me — I was merely relaying what I had heard; I was not the one recruiting athletes from Horicon. Besides, some schools “don’t recruit.”
And there was the year that said reader’s alma mater lost by less than one score to Winneconne. On the final play of the game a kid from St. Mary’s Springs had a long punt return, and was tackled on the five-yard line. It turns out that this kid resided in the city that was once left off the official state map of Wisconsin. But I don’t whether or not he had been recruited. Needless to say this made the victory doubly sweet for the Winneconne fans.
Also heard an interesting story from the president of Ripon College. Shortly after leaving the nation’s capital and matriculating to an administrative position at the University of Oklahoma, Dr. Messitte made a speech to some group. He wore a pattern tie, with burnt orange being the primary color. The first comment following his presentation was from a gentleman who came up to Dr. Messitte and told him to “lose” the tie; this gentleman was not joking.
So given that I was not selected to be the guest prognosticator for GameDay, I have submitted my application for Dancing with the Stars. However, because I am neither a dancer nor a star, things are not looking good there either. However, I understand that former Texas Governor Rick Perry will be one of the dancers. What’s up with that?
And, I was so looking forward to comment on whether or not Texas could score more than six points, which was the number of arrests of Notre Dame players, the Longhorns’ game-one opponent, in one day.
Some interesting numbers from the wissportsnet webpage on high school football participation in Wisconsin.
• There are 23 high school football teams where two or three (two instances — including Green Lake/Montello/Princeton) high schools have combined into a single football team. The Ridge & Valley Conference has three teams where two high schools have combined to form a single football team.
• There are 31 teams (Great 8 North Conference, Great 8 South Conference, Lakeland Conference and nine Independents [although Three Lakes seems to be in limbo]) playing 8-man football.
• There are five conferences (Central Lakeshore, Eastern Valley, Great Western, Olympian-Packerland-Small, and Rock Valley-South) that have disbanded over the past few years. Of course a major reason for this is conference realignment. Or, as the Repugs (a shortened combination of Republicans and repugnant — for those not familiar with the vernacular) call it — redistricting. I call it gerrymandering.
• The Western Peninsula Athletic Conference contains two teams from Wisconsin (Hurley & Northland Pines) and six from the UP. I didn’t know that there were six high schools in the UP. Note that Big Bay de Noc High School in the UP does not play football. The Thunder Bay Inn in Big Bay is where Anatomy of a Murder was filmed; loosely based on the only murder ever to occur in Big Bay.
• And this does not include schools, Cassville being an example, that made a late decision not to field a football team this year. Of course losing every game 2 – 0 makes it likely that Cassville will, at worst, tie for the lead in the fewest points allowed per game defensive category.
Hard to believe that many schools have played one more game than the number of days that school has been in session.
Ripon 12 Campbellsport 6
Tigers first victory since defeating Campbellsport in 2015, some 357 days ago.
Plymouth 28 Berlin 0
Waupun 27 Kettle Moraine Lutheran 17
Waupun scores 20 unanswered in the fourth
Kewaskum 38 Winneconne 8
Laconia 42 Lomira 10
Omro 53 Mayville 20
Winnebago Lutheran Academy 55 North Fond du Lac 0
St. Mary’s Springs 35 Ozaukee 25
Markesan 42 Montello/Princeton/Green Lake 7
Lourdes Academy 28 Fall River 0
Rio 31 Randolph 29
Randolph took 29-28 lead with five minutes and 37 seconds left. But Rio’s Mekhi Haugen kicked a 28-yard field goal with eight seconds left. I don’t know for certain, but by the name this kid could be a foreign exchange student. If so, we may need to build a wall around Europe; with Europe paying for it of course.
Kiel 40 Valders 21
Port Washington 28 Milwaukee Lutheran 27
Wautoma 41 New Glarus/Monticello 20
Wisconsin Rapids 53 Oshkosh West 32
Pulaski 54 Sheboygan North 13
Wrightstown 56 Clintonville 0
Rib Lake/Prentice 28 Pittsville 14
Kenosha Indian Trail 40 Racine Park 0
Third straight game that Racine Park has failed to dent the scoreboard.
North 26 Arrowhead 20
North defeats the defending WIAA D-I runner-up; Arrowhead falls to 1 – 2.
Menasha 28 Xavier 19
Cedar Grove/Belgium 53 St. Mary Catholic 7
West Bend East 24 Beaver Dam 21 (overtime)
WBE’s Logan Cunningham missed a field goal at the end of regulation, but made the 27-yard game winner in overtime. Third straight year that these two teams have played an overtime game.
And one game on Saturday
Pewaukee Pius XI Catholic
I needed to get this week’s edition of Friday Night Lights out early as we are on our way to Lambeau to watch Bucky take on LSU. We were hoping to take a side trip to Waupaca on the way up to personally view the deplorable conditions in the veterans’ home in King. I have invited Governor Walker and Senator Johnson to join us on the tour. So far no response from either. As stated earlier — they are such easy targets.