Questions Still Surround Top Football Picks


Opinions are like rear ends (I must use that word, the editor won’t allow me to use another more descriptive noun), everyone has one.

So, it is with those gridiron views and beliefs that make the recently completed naming of the All-Division football teams a much-debated controversy. Most everyone who follows high school sports is arguing and debating the merits of the players chosen for the postseason honors.

The three All-Division teams named include one elected by high school head coaches, another chosen by The Arizona Republic sports staff and a third by “Coach P” at Arizona Sports Network.

While the all-division selections of the three are similar in many ways, there are also some differences that are stirring debate around the state.

One of the concerns that has surfaced is the naming of the large number of Blue Ridge players to the All-Division teams.

BR finished the year undefeated rolling easily over most every opponent they faced, but some are questioning whether there weren’t other individuals around the state just as deserving as some of the Yellow Jacket selections.

In the White Mountains, however, they are mostly likely saying Blue Ridge and state runner-up Show Low dominated all season long, so it’s only fair their players reap the rewards of their accomplishments.

A given in selecting postseason individual honorees, no matter who is doing the choosing, is the teams with the best records will have the most players named and those with less than stellar marks will be left on the outside looking in.

A hard, cold fact in prep football is that a standout player can exist who might be passed over in postseason selections because he plays on a dreadful team.

It might not be fair, but it’s life.

Arizona rebounds

How about those Cards?

What an amazing turnaround they’ve made after such a disastrous start to the season.

Only a month and a half ago, the Cardinals had a 1-6 record and there was talk coach Ken Whisenhunt’s job might be in danger.

Pundits from around the state were clamoring that the Cards fell back to their former woeful ways when they were lucky to win four or five games a season.

But then the Cards went on a roll, winning five of their past six gems including a 21-19 thriller on Sunday over the San Francisco 49ers at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale.

That win ended the Cardinals’ five-game losing streak to the 49ers.

At 6-7, the stubborn Cardinals maintain their slim hopes of making the playoffs, but even if they don’t, the recent turnaround is a gridiron wonder to behold.

Most impressive in the Arizona win was the rock-solid effort the defense came up with for the sixth consecutive time.

SF was in the red zone on three occasions in the first half and had they scored TDs, they would probably have salted the game away. But the Card “D” rose up to force the 49ers to kick field goals each of those times.

Offensively the Cardinal passing game has been AWOL all season long, but on Sunday it churned out just enough “O” to win, thanks to some dazzling catches by the amazing Larry Fitzgerald and a gutsy effort by reserve quarterback John Skelton, who took the reins after Kevin Kolb suffered a head injury.

Wow, this season could get exciting.

Go Cards!


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