Thanksgiving Left-Overs by Bob Ryan

 college bowl gamesWe’ve all been there…..the Thanksgiving meal loads us down but the there is still an abundant amount of leftovers….doesn’t mean it was bad…just too much…..eventually we get to them…some stay good longer than others…likewise we also have some left-overs in the sports world…..


….rumor has it….. now that Chip Kelly’s win total has dropped each of the last 2 NFL years, his highly touted offense is sputtering, his players keep him at “arm’s length”…that he’s interested in returning back to college…did I hear you say “USC”…where he did most of his recruiting while at coaching previously at Oregon in the Pac 10—12–14—18–20…whatever it is


…with the 1-pt kicking conversion down to 94.7% in the NFL this year…teams like the Packers (3 of 4), Steelers (5 of 7), San Diego (2 of 3), in 2-point conversions should consider doing it each and every time….think how that’d change the strategy for the opposition if you maintain those percentages of 2 point conversions and score 8 points instead of 7 on a regular basis


….Do these college basketball coaches really think that taking their team “on the road” for 1 or 2 games over Thanksgiving is the best for their players…come on…the players already play 12 months a year…can’t you give them one of the biggest family Holidays at HOME …..Where they belong?


…if journeyman lefthander AJ Happ signs with Toronto for 3 years, $36mil …what’s a real pitcher going to seek….go ahead David Price…open that wallet even wider to hold all the cash that’ll be thrown your way..btw..Price has already reached his apex as a pitcher…he’s started the inevitable slide that touches all players…yet …teams will carry the treasure chest to him to sign


….the Bears upset win over Green Bay brought some thoughts to mind….the best part of the game was halftime….ya know the time when you usually “duck out” to go bathroom, get food, see if your wife went shopping, check on the dog, make sure the house isn’t burning down, look at the weather, etc…anyway seeing Bart Starr “welcome” Bret Favre into the GB HOF…or whatever they call it…brought back memories with both guys….apparently Starr had to really work hard physically to take that ride around the track..his ride brought back memories of the MAN’s final ride around Busch to me……other thoughts….GB receivers can’t get open….the Rammies showed the league that a cover 1 (i.e. m/m on each wide rec with 1 Free safety) severely bottles up the Packers…..btw…we saw the 3 best QB in the long history of Green Bay on the field on the same night…


….sports fans must REALLY be perverted….most that I know really enjoy football games played in the rain, wind, snow…anything out of the ordinary…sure it demolishes most offensive strategy but there is a different feel about the game…the Baylor-TCU game was one of those played in the pouring rain throughout the 2nd half of the game…these prolific scoring teams were 14-14 after a slow rain during the 1st quarter …after that…it was punt, punt, punt, punt….yada-yada-yada…yet was still entertaining as TCU won in 2-OT


….with all my years of high school coaching, I can’t ignore the MSHSAA football championship weekend… no particular order

… about Valle Catholic (Ste Genevieve)….won their 14th title in Class 1….steeped in tradition, the Warriors are coached by a Valle grad….don’t spell it Valley or they’ll be after ur head J …I haven’t been following the Warriors long (probably 10-12 years) but it always seems to be the same family names who are sons, grandsons, nephews of players of decades ago….congrats (again!)

…. John Burroughs ALWAYS seems to have a very high win total each year…this year they upended Odessa 30-6 to win their 9th championship in the Class 3 title game

….although they fell one game short…congrats to CBC & Chaminade …both from the MCC who fell in the Championship game…particular kudos to CBC the 2014 champion… where I taught/coached for 21 years –so I’m a biased….. who have been led by Coach Scott Pingel to new heights during his tenure as head coach…a tremendous coach but even a better person


…while I’m on the HS turf…it is assumed that in the 6 classes of football that the champion of Class 2 is better than 1; 3 better than 2..etc….why not offer the opportunity to any school (probably like Valle) who want to move up a classification to get more of a challenge or a better gauge on their skill level to do it? It would require…in my mind…that the ALL of the school’s teams move up a classification and the smallest school in the class above them would move down to the smaller classification. Each 2 year rotation, the school could reevaluate its status. Maybe a school wants more of a challenge in basketball, soccer, baseball….just a thought


..…Bears Coach John Fox’s gum chewing is from the same school as Pete Carroll…..dump in 3 packs of gum and chew in elongated , extended bites while vigorously using your jaws and cheeks in those wide bites …I guess so the gum doesn’t get stuck together?..anyway….do it as if you’re getting ready to swallow it and do it for each moment of the game…or at least when the camera is on you J However….Fox can coach…give him his due…


….I hardly follow the NBA…probably can’t name more than 10 players but….Golden State’s 18-0 record to start the season just jumps out at you…they have a 9 game lead in the division and we aren’t in December yet! Super-shooter Stephen Curry has the sweetest, longest J around. The NBA record of 33 consecutive wins is held by the LA Lakers. That team had some very famous basketball names…coached by Bill Sharman with a 35 year old Wilt Chamberlain, 2 slick shooting guards called Gail Goodrich and Jerry West. Those Lakers started their streak on Nov 5 (10th game of the year) and didn’t lose again until Jan 9 in Milwaukee..To a team with the great Oscar Robertson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar..and went on to capture the NBA title. This record is really stunning when you consider the nightly game-game-game in one city and then the next.


….I’ve heard of riding the same horse….but Bama Coach Nick Saban went too far in his 29-13 win over arch-rival-Auburn….every running play for the Crimson Tide in the 4th quarter was carried by star running back—Derrick Henry.. .Henry lugged the ball 46x for 271 yards..including the last 16 consecutive running plays….ya know…sometimes coaches try to “fool” the opponent too often…. The longer I coached football….the less I “fooled” people (and myself)


….ready or not….here’s the bowl schedule…without the teams….although there should be a bowl or three for the smaller conferences….the “REAL” bowls don’t begin until after Christmas

….why not try a new approach of names …removing the corporate names from the titles of the game (that reek of money)…let the title say something about the game–

These are some possible “new “names as well….in some cases…the types of teams desired—

The Pony Express Bowl (two teams with best rushers in the country); or the Air-Mail Bowl (2 teams with best passers); the Plumbers Bowl (2 teams that plug up the offenses); the American Idol Bowl (teams with 2 talented, pretty-boy QB); the Fox News Bowl (two teams with conservative offenses);the Plain-Jane Bowl (teams with the least colorful, most drab uniforms); the Beat the Clock Bowl(where no reviews, discussions, TV timeouts other than half or called time outs are permitted ); the New Year’s Bowl (starting at 12 mid-night on New Year’s Day); the American Bandstand Bowl (where the two bands are on stages at each end of stadium and one plays tunes each time-out)—this would be one of those bowls located in a place like Hawaii (where things seem to be more relaxed J


Saturday, Dec. 19

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Gildan New Mexico Bowl C-USA vs. MWC University Stadium Albuquerque, NM 2:00pm / ESPN
Royal Purple Las Vegas Bowl MWC or BYU vs. Pac-12 Sam Boyd Stadium Las Vegas, NV 3:30pm / ABC
Raycom Media Camellia Bowl MAC vs. Sun Belt Cramton Bowl Montgomery, AL 5:30pm / ESPN
AutoNation Cure Bowl American vs. Sun Belt Citrus Bowl Stadium Orlando, FL 7:00pm / CBSSN
R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl C-USA vs. Sun Belt Mercedes-Benz Superdome New Orleans, LA 9:00pm / ESPN

Monday, Dec. 21

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Miami Beach Bowl C-USA vs. The American Marlins Park Miami, FL 2:30pm / ESPN

Tuesday, Dec. 22

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl MAC vs. MWC Albertson’s Stadium Boise, ID 3:30pm / ESPN
Boca Raton Bowl MAC vs. American FAU Stadium Boca Raton, FL 7:00pm / ESPN

Wednesday, Dec. 23

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
San Diego County CU Poinsettia Bowl MWC vs. MAC Qualcomm Stadium San Diego, CA 4:30pm / ESPN
GoDaddy Bowl MAC vs. Sun Belt Ladd-Peebles Stadium Mobile, AL 8:00pm / ESPN

Thursday, Dec. 24

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Popeyes Bahamas Bowl Middle Tennessee vs. MAC Thomas Robinson Stadium Nassau, Bahamas Noon / ESPN
Hawai’i Bowl American vs. MWC or BYU Aloha Stadium Honolulu, HI 8:00pm / ESPN

Saturday, Dec. 26

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
St. Petersburg Bowl American vs. C-USA Tropicana Field St. Petersburg, FL 11:00am / ESPN
Hyundai Sun Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. Pac-12 Sun Bowl Stadium El Paso, TX 2:00pm / CBS
Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl Big 12 vs. C-USA Cotton Bowl Stadium Dallas, TX 2:20pm / ESPN
New Era Pinstripe Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. Big Ten Yankee Stadium  Bronx, NY 3:30pm / ABC
Camping World Independence Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. SEC Independence Stadium Shreveport, LA 5:45pm / ESPN
Foster Farms Bowl Big Ten vs. Pac-12 Levi’s Stadium Santa Clara, CA 9:15pm / ESPN

Monday, Dec. 28

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Military Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. Navy Navy-Marine Corps. Stadium Annapolis, MD 2:30pm / ESPN2
Quick Lane Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. Big Ten Ford Field Detroit, MI 5:00pm / ESPN

Tuesday, Dec. 29

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl Big Ten vs. MWC Amon G. Carter Stadium Fort Worth, TX 2:00pm / ESPN
Russell Athletic Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. Big 12 Orlando Citrus Bowl Orlando, FL 5:30pm / ESPN
Nova Home Loans Arizona Bowl C-USA vs. MWC Arizona Stadium Tucson, AZ 7:30pm / ASN
AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl Big 12 vs. SEC NRG Stadium Houston, TX 9:00pm / ESPN

Wednesday, Dec. 30

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Birmingham Bowl SEC vs. American Legion Field Birmingham, AL Noon / ESPN
Belk Bowl SEC vs. ACC/Notre Dame Bank of America Stadium Charlotte, NC 3:30pm / ESPN
Franklin Amer. Mort. Music City Bowl SEC vs. ACC/ND or Big Ten LP Field Nashville, TN 7:00pm / ESPN
National University Holiday Bowl Big Ten vs. Pac-12 Qualcomm Stadium San Diego, CA 10:30pm / ESPN

Thursday, Dec. 31

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV Tickets
Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl At-Large vs. At-Large (NY6) Georgia Dome Atlanta, GA Noon / ESPN
Goodyear Cotton Bowl Playoff Semifinal Game AT&T Stadium Arlington, TX 4 or 8pm / ESPN
Capital One Orange Bowl Playoff Semifinal Game Sun Life Stadium Miami Gardens, FL 4 or 8pm / ESPN

Friday, Jan. 1

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Outback Bowl Big Ten vs. SEC Raymond James Stadium Tampa, FL Noon / ESPN2
Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl Big Ten vs. SEC Orlando Citrus Bowl Orlando, FL 1:00pm / ABC
Fiesta Bowl At-Large vs. At-Large (NY6) U. of Phoenix Stadium Glendale, AZ 1:00pm / ESPN
Rose Bowl Game Big Ten vs. Pac-12 (NY6) Rose Bowl Pasadena, CA 5:00pm / ESPN
Allstate Sugar Bowl Big 12 vs. SEC (NY6) Mercedes-Benz Superdome New Orleans, LA 8:30pm / ESPN

Saturday, Jan. 2

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
TaxSlayer Bowl ACC/ND or Big Ten vs. SEC EverBank Field Jacksonville, FL Noon / ESPN
AutoZone Liberty Bowl Big 12 vs. SEC Liberty Bowl Memphis, TN 3:20pm / ESPN
Valero Alamo Bowl Big 12 vs. Pac-12 Alamodome San Antonio, TX 6:45pm / ESPN
Motel 6 Cactus Bowl Big 12 vs. Pac-12 Chase Field Phoenix, AZ 10:15pm / ESPN

Monday, Jan. 11

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
CFP National Championship Semifinal Winner vs. Semifinal Winner U. of Phoenix Stadium Glendale, AZ 8:30pm / ESPN


What’s in Your Wallet by Bob Ryan

wallet imageThe items that a person carries around in their wallet will tell you something about the person…let’s take a look at some individuals…



Rick Pitino—note with a noose on it as Louisville Basketball Sex Scandal widens

Michigan punter…..notes on “how to catch a snap”

Gary Pinkel—plane tickets for the Birmingham Bowl

Sam Bradford—notes on how to overcome “shell-shock”

Tre Mason—notes on how to live as a shadow

St Louis Cardinal fan base-chill pills—U can’t win EVERY year

Terry Collins—notes on how to pitch the Cubs on 1st pitch (off speed, junk pitches)

Jonathan Papelbon—invitation to “Mr Rogers” classes—I wanna b ur friend

Cub Ground Crew—directions on handling grass in October

John Jay-notes on how to become the visible again after being invisible for 6 months

MO—notes on how NOT to look like Branch Rickey

Brian Quick- the modified Ram playbook designed just for him—1 page long

Matt Carpenter-a coin to be flipped to decide between being a lead-off hitter or a power hitter next season

LA Dodgers- $300/m receipt for 2015 and a blank sheet in return

Maty Mauk— a picture of a doghouse with the only exit to another school

John Rooney-notes on how to call balls & strikes since he does so much of it already

Toronto fans—notes on how to disagree without being disagreeable

Zach Greineke—notes on how to make more money than you need

Kurt Schilling—a pink slip from the Sunday Nite Baseball crew

Manifesto Mike—directions on fielding bunts—since in the last 2 years bunts have led to the Cardinals demise (Choate in 14 & Garcia in 15)

SEMO Ft Coach-a prayer card to keep him away from another Mizzou game

Don Mattingly—enjoy the “Get Out of LA mayhem Card”

Roger Goodell-a calendar with July 2016 circled as retirement date

Colby Rasmus-tube of Head & Shoulders

Mizzou TD X-pt snapper—Maytag Repair man award

Joe Maddon-book on how to incite a Bean Ball War

Art Briles (Baylor Head Ftball Coach)—a smiley note for 1 more cupcake week( until his real season begins as he faces Oklahoma, Okie State, TCU, Texas in final 4 games)

Pete Rose—a note telling him to join the Sesame Street Staff as a “stiff” after his TV gig on Saturday….it was awful

SF 49’ers—the “chance” card on new coach Jim Tomsula is ready to be returned


The Cubs went further in the playoffs than the Cards behind Joe Maddon. Since 2000, the Cubs have tried many different looks as Manager –take a look…I couldn’t have named more than 2 or 3 of these guys          

                                     Year(s)               record         winning %

Joe Maddon                2015               97-65              .599

Rick Renteria           2014                73-89              .451

Dale Sveum              2012-13           127-197           .392

Mike Quade              2010-11           95-104            .477

Lou Pinella                2007-10           316-293           .519

Dusty Baker              2003-06           322-326             .497

Bruce Kimm              2002                33-45               .423  

Rene Lachem           2002                   0-1                   .000

Don Baylor               2000-02           187-220           .459  

****Maddon’s .599 winning percentage is the best since Frank Chance 1905-1912

Chance was 768-389 .664 as the manager…yes…this is the very same” Tinkers to Evans to Chance” guy. Granted Maddon only has 1 year under his belt but it’s been quite a year.


Tidbits to chew on….

…..David Beatty the KU Head Football Coach is a grad of Lindenwood U

…..suggestion for baseball post-season—after the 5 teams are determined (3 div winners & 2 WC)…seed according to record….why should the #2 & #3 teams face each other in the WC game when they had better records than the other two division winners. Cubs & Pirates merited more than a one game series…or maybe we go back to old school and have the National League & American League with no 5 go into the playoffs..I mean is the division championship even remembered beyond ONE year?

….Maybe Zach Greineke will RESIGN with the LA Dodgers for about $5-6mil MORE per year than on the previous contract that he just nullified

…Dallas Cowboys carousel of coaches has come to halt with Jason Garrett. Garrett is the 2nd longest tenured Cowboy Coach in their history (only behind Tom Landry)…the last Cowboys Super Bowl Championship was in 1995 with Barry Switzer as the Head Coach

…When the punter has the most rushing yards for a game, your offense is in trouble Mizzou- however it certainly was a “gutsy” call….some might say a “desperate” call

…how about the 6 lead changes in the exciting Northwestern(6-2) 30-28 over Nebraska. The Cornhuskers are now 3-5….their 5 losses have been by an overall total of 13 points-WOW!

…last week it was the amazing Michigan win over Michigan State…this week it is the Ga Tech punt return (as his coach signals from sideline—“let it go” and he picks it up and runs it for a TD– giving them a 22-16 win over Florida State

…I thought I was watching the same KC Royal team as last year since they played the same style…not even close…there are only 12 players on the 2015 roster as were on the 2014’s their style of play that has been constant

…the Chip Kelly offense @ Philly is fun to watch…especially if you like 4 yard pass plays.. I can’t decide if all those dump offs are part of offense or installed to permit Bradford to unload quickly and stay away from more “shell shock” reactions


Displaying Class….

…as a youngster I dreamed of playing sports…when I was cut twice (in 2 years) I high school my goals were modified….now I wanted to coach…I attended all the basketball/football games of my high school…..I observed, as close as I could, all the coaches…some things that I wanted to emulate and some that I didn’t ever want to use. One of the Coaches that I watched was DC Wilcutt of CBC. As a Frosh, I watched his 1963 STATE championship team in action but I watched him even closer. I modeled myself, as a coach, after many of the techniques that I saw him implementing…some were—when a whistle was blown, the players extended their arm and handed the ball to the official; when removed from the game, the players would sprint to bench, sit next to coach; no player could “correct” another player; his team seemed to be prepared for any situation; his team was disciplined; he was quiet yet he was a competitor – you could see it in him. There were many other ideas that I emulated but space prohibits me from putting you to sleep by listing them all.. now don’t misunderstand….NO ONE ever thought of me as a mini-DC. We do have our own personalities, approach, experiences, and god-given talent. Far later in my life, I was hired by CBC and the athletic Director was the very same, DC Wilcutt. He was really a true gentleman, spoke quietly but firmly, listened, carried himself with a certain elegance, smiled and when he disagreed with you—he’d pass it off easily for both of you. I teasingly told him, since he was in his last year, that he’d saved his “best Hire” (me) until LAST…he smiled, and with his wry sense of humor said something about “he wasn’t so sure about that”. I don’t know what the DC represented as far as his name…but it could have been “Displaying Class” as far as I was concerned. May he rest in peace.


Red vs Blue M&M by Bob Ryan

 M&M’s… everyone has to love them….the color doesn’t usually matter because they all taste the same…except for this article. Our M’s are red & blue…in this rare case they are totally different yet each will by contending for the Manager of the Year Award this year. Shockingly ….at least to me…this award did not exist until 1983!!

These two M’s have reached their spot in totally different ways.

Red M played parts of 13 seasons for 4 different teams….yes…he did play for the Cardinals as a catcher….if you know who he is already…name those 4 teams that he played for in his career…anyway.. Lifetime batting average was .239, hit over .260 once in his career and won 4 Gold Glove Awards (best defensive player for that position in his League) and earned over $18m as a player. Playing career concluded in 2006….left pro baseball…returned as a professional Manager in 2012…some think that his bankruptcy drove him back into the game…but that’s scuttlebutt….maybe I’m being snarkey…

Blue M never played MLB Baseball…in fact he started managing at 27 in a rookie league after an abbreviated career in the minors as a player. Then he worked in the Angels organization for many years for 31 years in a variety of positions- managed in the minors for 6 years; scout, roving minor league hitting instructor, coach for major league team and actually managed the Angels….for at least partial years in 1996,1999 and 2004. In 2006 he was named the Manager of the Tampa Bay Rays for 9 years. In 5 of those years he won over 90+ games.

Sure…Our Red M is Mike Mathany …referred to lovingly as Manifesto Mike usually in these parts….is a top contender for this NL Mgr of the Year award. Surprisingly in his first 3 years, he’s been voted 5th, 4th and 4th in the voting. He’s been in the post-season all 3 years…with this year’s edition having “booked its stay” in the playoff ballroom for the big dance also. Red M has demonstrated tremendous ability to get players to perform at their maximum levels throughout long stretches of time utilizing great off-field communication and understanding of big-league psyche. On the field, it has not been a different story. I personally think that his “in game” strategy moves have been upgraded this year…although, it was about the only direction it could go J Some have contended that Red M has the biggest, best, fastest horses of anyone in the league…so how can he be awarded for doing what is expected? This puts a manager in a tenuous position…if their team is picked for 1st place…then using this reasoning, the probably have the best players so…..should the manager be excluded?   I’m just saying…..

A Red M fan might shout out that Manifesto Mike has dealt with many injuries this year….A Red M detractor may counter with, “Show me a team that doesn’t have injuries”.

A Red M detractor may claim that in his first 2 years that he didn’t handle young players any better than Tony….A Red M fan might say…look how he’s grown as a manager and how he handles those youngsters now.

Some say he plays every game like a World Series game….never conceding a game by not substituting liberally in games that the Birds do fall way behind and wearing down his starters…others say this demonstrates his toughness, grittiness to play “9 hard innings”.

Some contend that he overused Rosenthal in his first 2 Rosey never works more than 2 consecutive days and his results have mushroomed even more with the added extra rest.

Looking at Blue M….you know its Joe Maddon of the Cubs….his wonderful success at Tampa Bay with a team composed of mostly young players was the factor in his hiring in Chicago. The Cubs have been rebuilding… seems for a century….anyway….this time they had real players coming along. The management felt that they needed a savvy, experienced, winning manager who could guide gently….but firmly…this young talent…

So…like the new girl that just moved into the neighborhood….he gets lots of attention…being in Chicago makes it grow exponentially. While management felt that this was the right move…most observers thought deep down…this is just another season for the team of futility….here we are as September looms on the horizon. The Cubs are playing great baseball and have practically locked up a playoff position……they wouldn’t blow a 4 game wild card lead over SF in the final month, would they?

Using young players in daily spots but demanding performance, Maddon has benched 23 year old, 5 year starter Starlin Castro. He’s made Jake Arrieta from a on-off-on again pitcher to one of the best in the league. He’s played around with several different 2B. He’s used mirrors in the bullpen because none of them out there are really good closers. In fact they just procured Fernando Rodney to help solve the problem. Rodney a 38 year old was very good last year with 48 saves….this year …not so much…a paltry 16 saves. Maddon will try to find the Old Rodney hidden under the New ONE!! He inserted Kyle Swarber and the offense took off. They now win games in the late innings….unheard of during the usual Cubs teams of the past.

Considering that they have many games against the weak-sisters of the league-Cincy & Milwaukee…it would have to be a Titanic sinking for the Cubs to miss out on the playoff fun.

There you have it….who will be the Manager of the Year…the Red M or the Blue M….I realize here in St Louis it’s a no-brainer….same-same in Chicago… so who do YOU think your fairest mind set….who do YOU think will win this award? Red M or Blue M? Or…someone else in the NL?

Some other tasty morsels of info….

…..the AL has a terrific race for the 2nd wild card team…joining into the fray is a newcomer….the Minnesota Twins…as of today …NYY have 71 wins and are in the top Wild Card position….battling for the 2nd spot with 67 wins is Texas, the Twinkies have 66 wins, Angels sit with 65; tied with 63 wins each is Baltimore and Tampa Bay.

….while the Cubs look like a “shoo in” for the wildcard, that’ll be tough for them…basically they have a 2 man staff- Jake Arrieta and Jon Lester with Arrieta far above the off-on-off again southpaw Lester. So…that means that Arrieta will pitch the 1 game Wild Card game..if the Cubbies win, he’ll be available (with normal rest) for only 1 game in the NL Semifinal series against the top ranked team (probably our Birds)…fat chance of success in that series for the Cubbies

…Congrats to Colleen Quigley who just finished 12th in the steeplechase in China….this wasn’t against her sorority sisters, her best buds, her fellow Nerinx grads…it was in the World Competition! Collen only began running the steeplechase this year…congrats also to her proud papa, Gaylerd.

….with the return of Alex Gordon shortly from the DL, the KC Royals …already owning the best record in the AL…by far…. with 78 wins… the Royals consistent offense will be even better

…wonder why the Nats aren’t relevant this year….take a look (but get ur barf bag ready)…Zimmerman .224, Werth .205, Desmond .229 Ramos .238…that’s half your lineup that’s costing you just under $50m…Werth – $21m, Zimmermann-$14m, Desmond-$11m, and Ramos trails along with $3.5m

…on this date, Sept 28 in 1971, Philly pitcher Rick Wise hit 2 HR in a game….why are pitchers so bad at hitting…..almost always they were the star hitter AND pitcher in amateur baseball….give them extended BP …maybe in the cage out of sight of the fans with the hitting coach providing tips and suggestions…..and make their trip to the plate more than 3 swings…an about-face…march back to the dugout

…congrats to our friend, Terry Michler, who notched his 900th HS soccer victory on Saturday….have u ever thought about how many wins 900 is at the HS level? IF you win the STATE title, you may play 30 games….otherwise it’s in the neighborhood of 23-26 games. Despite his HUGE success, Terry is ever the student at improving HIS coaching game by visiting Holland most every year to refine, reshape, and rethink his teaching skills.

…passing of Al Arbour…make me realize again not to judge a book by its cover…did anyone ever look so non-athletic, non-competitive as Arbour? His long playing career in the NHL and the coach of 4 Stanley Cup championships for the Islanders tells us otherwise.

….HS football…always a part of my life since 1974….brings us all types of story lines…….

……in a David beat Goliath story……congrats to FZ North for upending FZ West 36-14 in an intra-district game. The newest of the FZ schools, FZ West was built as the largest and some considered it the gem of the district. Those Jaguars dominated the other FZ schools for the last 10+ years. Coach Joe Bacon (who’s been successful at several other schools) led the Panthers to the impressive win. For you south side folks, FZ North is located close to TR Hughes ballpark

…the heartbreak of HS games….trailing 24-22 to highly ranked Althoff, Collinsville missed its chance of an upset when a 32 yard FG attempt missed with 1:58 left in the game…we take FG kicking for granted since we see pros/collegiate kickers (who devote much of their life to kicking) banging them through the uprights seemingly with their eyes the HS level…it’s not so automatic

…btw…my congrats to Prepcasts by upgrading their LLI show that runs as part of their Friday night coverage. With Anchor Owen Shroyer at the helm, you can click on this show and we did Friday.. on your screen 3 different games (video) at one time AND if that isn’t enough, you’re hearing the audio pbp of 3 more audio games. Owen keeps you involved in each game. Very cool…..try it next week… –LLI show

…for the 2nd straight year, CBC got into the running clock situation (35+ point lead in 2nd half-the clock run continually-never stops with only a couple exceptions) over Jeff City. The Cadets won 49-14 over the Jays….somehow….I expect the Jays “won’t be available” next year for CBC.

If you’re a new reader or missed some of the ol’ stuff with vaca’s, busy work week, start of’s a chance to catch up on the last month—

Aug 19 Bob is taken to Roy Beans court to defend his “anti-Cardinal” attitude

Aug 12 A quick blitz of many different topics                          


Aug 7 The Annual Call-in show with Bob Straightalk (BS)

Aug 1 Trading deadline moves are examined 

James Damon’s Dome Predictions

damonIt’s time again for the blog that everybody loves, where I give my predictions for this year’s state championships.  A very interesting playoff run has shaped a round of title games pitting established powers against upstarts, many seeking their first state championship.  Onto the thoughts.  We’ll remind you that all games will be broadcast on the Prepcasts Broadcasting Network.
8-Man: North Andrew Cardinals vs. Stanberry Bulldogs
The rubber match between two teams that have met now three years in a row in the title tilt.  Stanberry rolled two years ago for their first state championship, and North Andrew captured their fourth title in the lowest scoring 8-man game ever last year.  These two teams can score with the best of them averaging 59 and 61 points per game.  Between the two undefeateds only one game has been within one score, so they both have not just won, but have been dominant.  Apart from turnover margin discussions, one gets the feeling that whoever has the ball last will win this one.  A coin flip might as easily determine the winner.  I’ll take Stanberry in a shoot-out. Click here for that game …
Stanberry 54  North Andrew 48
Class 1: Valle Catholic Warriors vs. Westran Hornets
This is a rematch from a classic 2010 championship game that was a rematch from earlier that year.  Westran beat Valle in season, only to see the Warriors win 22-21 in overtime when it counted most.  Alas, this is not 2010 and the earlier season meeting this year was a blowout win for Valle.  They seek title #13 which would put them atop the overall state tallies (at least until Webb City plays on Saturday), and Westran may have seen their best shot in that game four years ago.  Valle game plans out of the half as good as anybody in the state, consistently turning well played first halfs into blow-outs.  It’s tough to expect anything different here as the Valle spread is tough to stop and few teams can keep up with them.  Closer than the first meeting, but the Warriors do it again. Click here for that game …
Valle Catholic 56 Westran 20
Class 2: Lamar Tigers vs. South Callaway Bulldogs
I really want to suggest that this can be an entertaining ballgame.  I really think the Bulldogs have a lot to play for, and they have been impressive this season, even though the competition has not been spectacular.  None-the-less, they still have rolled in each of their games, scoring over 40 each game until their last two.  They hammered an undefeated Lafayette County squad, outfought another undefeated East Buchanan, and easily took out Palmyra.  But they have not seen a team like Lamar, whose only loss is a last second one to class 4 Carl Junction (whose only loss is to Webb City).  They rolled Class 3 solids Monett (lost to John Burroughs in the semis), Seneca (last year’s runner-up), and the rest of a yearly rough Big 8 schedule.  Three times they have scored less than 48 points in a game, and are 2-1 in those games.  I expect this game to be similar to the Strafford game, close early, but the Tigers two-headed QB attack rolls as the game wears along, and Lamar claims championship #4. Click here for that game …
Lamar 50 South Callaway 14
Class 3: Oak Grove Panthers vs. John Burroughs Bombers
The Bombers took a year off from their run to title games but return with a fury this year, with only one loss to Lutheran North.  Oak Grove plays for the title for the first time since 1990 and their first trip to the dome.  The Bombers expected to win at least once during the great EZ E days of Ezekiel Elliott, but came up short each trip.  This squad might be less heralded in some minds but has cruised in most games, including great wins over larger schools like Priory and Westminster (which is expected at JBS).  The Panthers, who shocked many, hammering Maryville a couple weeks ago come in with a crazy-sick rushing attack, netting over 500 ground yards in the semi-final.  They have won easily the last four weeks, despite their opponents’ having a record of 44-1 entering those games!  This is, in my opinion, the game of the weekend.  It should be dynamite with the Panther rushing attack, and Pat Richard looking for his third title as a coach (two previously at Orrick), and Oak Grove’s first.  The Bombers look to tack up title #9.  It could go either way, but the Bombers break through again in a tight one (unless they give up big plays early). Click here for that game …
JBS 34 Oak Grove 31
Class 4: Webb City Cardinals vs. Cape Central Tigers
Webb City has been a monster, currently undefeated and playing in their sixth consecutive title game, looking for a five-peat, and chasing title #13.  This year they added to the resume handing class 6 Rockhurst their lone loss in convincing fashion, and on the road.  Max Preps ranks them as the top team in the state from any class, and it’s hard to imagine this game will be any different from the 46-0 thrashing in last year’s semi over Cape.  Al Harris is a huge playmaker on the outside, but Minnesota commit, Kiante Hardin, owned him last year, and this team fits the Webb City mold.  Even though they have a superstar, they play as a unit, sound in all phases, big plays in all phases, capitalizing on opponents’ mistakes.  Great story for Cape to make the title game, but Webb cruised through two better teams the previous three weeks, beating Carl Junction, Harrisonville and Kearney. Click here for that game …
Webb City 43 Cape Central 7
Class 5: Nixa Eagles vs. Battle Spartans
This one should be fun as well.  Both teams look for their first state title, both are solid squads that snuck under the radar much of the year and entered the playoffs un-ranked.  Both have four losses, though that is quite misleading, as they are playing their best football now.  Added to the entertainment is that this is Battle’s first year of playoff eligibility.  Nixa features an option based attack with Mississippi State commit Alec Murphy, and showed a great defensive effort in shutting down Park Hill’s awesome ground game in the semis.  Styles are very similar between the teams as Battle mixes formations and likes the shotgun set, but prefers to run the football.  They are even similar defensively as they both run a 4-3 scheme and have quality athletes that play physical.  So who gets the edge?  This is a classic type of game of “who makes the bigger mistake, missing a tackle or turning over the football” or “who jumps out to a couple quick scores”.  Both teams will likely have jitters with a large regional audience watching on Fox and first time dome appearances.  It could go either way, and I think it’s a fun game.  I think Nixa’s athletes have a slight edge. Click here for that game …
Nixa 31 Battle 28
Class 6:  Rockhurst Hawklets vs. CBC Cadets
Two teams who have one loss collectively (Rock to Webb City), have played stiff competition and rolled nearly everybody, and have great coaching and athletes.  This game should be fun, but after seeing Rockhurst this year, they seem to have a real hunger to capture state title #10.  They, along with Jefferson City, were considered the creme de la creme for years in Missouri high school football.  Valle Catholic and Webb City have entered that conversation, and even surpassed it in recent years.  Can CBC match that hunger as they seek their first state title?  They have been in the mix the last several years, have consistently begun to produce quality athletes that play at the next level, and certainly can win against the big boys.  Rock has a balanced attack that seems to consistently get big plays from the passing game and TJ Green.  CBC has hammered every foe they have met this season, which is usually a solid schedule, but likely is down a bit this year.  Any take-aways from that?  Not likely, because they did not just sneak by but won every game by at least two touchdowns.  Apart from the two TD win (Rock Bridge, last year’s runner-up), the next closest game was a 31 point spanking of Ft. Zumwalt West.  This game is much closer, and I think this might be the year for CBC, but my gut says Rockhurst will find a way. Click here for that game …
Rockhurst 28 CBC 21

The Prepcasts Broadcasting Network Has 7 Dome Games

We are pleased to announce that the Prepcasts Broadcasting Network will be covering all the Championships again from the Dome on Thanksgiving Weekend.  Here is the schedule …

Friday Dome Games
Nov 28 @9:30 AM Stanberry North Andrew 8 Man
Nov 28 @1:00 pm John Burroughs Oak Grove Class 3
Nov 28 @4:15 pm Valle Catholic Westran Class 1
Nov 28 @7:30 pm Battle Nixa Class 5
Saturday Dome Games
Nov 29 @11:00 am Central (Cape) Webb City Class 4
Nov 29 @2:15 pm Lamar South Callaway Class 2
Nov 29 @5:30 PM CBC Rockhurst Class 6


New faces emerge from Quarterfinals!

Bob-RyanNew faces emerge from Quarterfinals!

Each year, it seems, we have some of the “usual” schools marching forward through the MSHSAA playoff system. While we do still have some of those familiar, annual sounding, names, there are some fresh names emerging…take a look at some of the New Kids on the Block and some of the same ‘ol names….

…Oak Grove, who last made the championship game in 1990, stunned—maybe even shocked- the entire STATE as they snapped the 42 game winning streak and ended the dreams of the Maryville Spoofhounds for a three-peat. The Panthers (11-2) powered their way over the Spoofhounds 69-23. While capitalizing on 3 fumble recoveries and 3 interceptions defensively, the Panthers unleashed Aaron Graham on the ground. Graham was incredible as he gained 345 yards on the ground, scored 7 touchdowns on 25 carries! He averaged 13.8 yards per carry against the previously unbeaten Spoofhounds (12-1). Coach Matt Webb of Maryville suffered his 1st loss as a head coach. He took over the reins in the start of the 2011 season. But a 42-1 coaching record isn’t too shabby is it? Oak Grove faces the California Pintos (13-0) in the semis next week. The Pintos handled Orchard Farm 56-21. The Eagles season concludes with them having achieved their 1st district title in the school’s history. The Panthers Coach, Pat Richard, will be one of our guests on the Road to the Dome Show on Thursday, 7-9pm. Click here for the show …

….in maybe the most riveting game of the night, this game was thrilling from the first seconds until it came down to the final play of the game. Park Hill edged Ft Osage 21-20. The opening 30 seconds of the game was really unbelievable. Ft Osage’s Bailey Williamson took the opening kickoff “to the house” as he went 93 yards. Park Hill took over on their own 35 yard line. On their 1st play from scrimmage, Matt Harris covered all 65 yards! It was 7-7 after just 29 seconds!! Ft Osage led 10-7 after 1 quarter and by a 17-7 lead at half. In the 3rd, Trojans Jeremy Benson plunged over from 1 yard out to cap a 16 play scoring drive for Park Hill. It was now 17-14 Indians. Ft Osage kicked a FG early in 4th and midway in 4th quarter, Benson rambled over from 38 yards out, and with the PAT, and the Trojans snatched a 21-20 lead. The Indians weren’t finished. Starting their final drive with 4:28 and on their own 28 yard line, they marched 14 plays down to the Trojans 3 yard line with 0:06 seconds left. In came the FG unit for Ft Osage. The possible winning FG attempt was missed and Park Hill advances to the semifinals to face a brand new face—the Nixa Eagles. Park Hill’s coach, Josh Hood, and Nixa’s coach, Rich Rehagan, will both be Guests on the Road to the Dome Show this Thursday, 7-9 pm. join us – Click here for the show …

…on the Class 6 level, the Rockhurst Hawklets held off the skilled Vikings of Francis Howell 25-20. The Hawklets jumped ahead 18-0 in the 2nd quarter when TJ Green hit his 2nd TD strike of the half and still were on top 25-6 when Green hooked up with AJ Taylor for a 71 yard TD pass. Howell fought back despite being behind for the FIRST time this season! When Desmond Niboh scored from 15 yards out, the Vikes cut it to a 25-20 game. After getting a huge 4th down stop against Rockhust, Howell drove it to the 21 yard line with 3:33 left. Unable to get the first down, Rockhurst successfully ran out the clock with a 1st down of their own.   Click here for the REPlay …  Rockhurst, who has won 9 state titles faces CBC in the Class 6 title game.

….CBC (13-0) has been to the STATE championship game twice (2011 & 2006) but has yet to take home the Championship trophy. The Cadets used their blitzkrieg offense to stun the Kirkwood Pioneers 55-10 in the semifinal. The first half was a tight, very competitive, back and forth type of half, which actually saw the score 14-10 until late in the 2nd quarter. The Pioneers intercepted a Cadet pass and were driving down to the CBC 23 yard line. The key play of the game, according to Coach Matt Irvin of Kirkwood, was the 77 yard pick-six by Damion Baker that changed the momentum of the game. CBC erupted for 4 touchdowns in the 3rd quarter to break it wide open. CBC Coach Scott Pingel will also be a guest on our Road to the Dome Show on Thursday night- Click here for the show …


…Two very familiar schools in MSHSAA playoff football history, Kearney (12-1) and Helias (11-2) locked up in a terrific overtime game. Kearney prevailed 23-20. This was really an even game—in total offensive plays-it was Helias 65-64; in total offense it was Kearney 383-381; in 1st downs-it was Kearney 19-18, each team scored all their TD’s on passes…you get the picture! The first quarter was scoreless. In the 2nd, Bulldog QB Johnny Weidmaier threw for two TD’s and Kearney led 14-7 at the halftime buzzer. They stretched it to 20-7 at the end of 3 quarters. The Crusaders rallied and scored two touchdowns in 2:11 stretch to tie it at 20-20. The possible game winning PAT was blocked with only 1:57 left in the game. Dawson Goepferich’s 36 yard FG in the overtime pushed the Bulldogs into the next round against ….who else is there in class 4 but the Webb City Cardinals! The Cardinals (13-0) who own a victory over Class 6 finalist, Rockhurst, shut out Harrisonville 35-0 in the semifinals.  Click here for that REPlay …

…Two schools that have often gone into the playoffs in recent years, had an outstanding game on Saturday. In the Jackson Indians and Ladue Rams game, the momentum (and success) ebbed back and forth. For the most part, Ladue had success in 1st and 4th quarters and the Indians had the best of it in the 2nd and 3rd quarters. Using a punishing ground game to open the game, the Rams used the hard running of Daylen Edwards and the swift legs of James Scott to open a 14-0 lead after 1 quarter. But…you could feel the tide turning a bit in the 2nd quarter as Jackson cut the lead to 14-7. After halftime, the Indians seemed to really have more bounce in their step as QB Dante Vandeven led the way with nifty running and throwing to score two 3rd quarter TD’s to take a 21-14 lead. James Bell latched onto a beautifully thrown post pattern for a 33 yard strike early in the 4th. Now…the momentum jumped back to the Rams sideline. Neither team scored until Ladue, after receiving back-back short fields, scored on their 2nd great field possession when Daylen Edwards powered his way over the goal line from 4 yards out with only 3:18 left in the game. Jack Fox iced it up with a 36 yd FG with only 0:55 seconds left. Next up for the Rams is Battle High School.

….talk about a brand new face—Battle (9-4), in only its 2nd year of existence, continued its magical dream as they scored two TD’s within 50 seconds in the 2nd quarter to grab a 13-7 lead over Ft Zumwalt North (11-2). The Panthers answered in the 2nd quarter when Deon Lewis dove in from a yard out but, like the Spartans, the Panthers missed their PAT after their 2nd TD and the score was tied 13-13 at half. Just 5 plays into the 2nd half, Battle QB Brevinn Tyler hit Jaevon McQuitty for a 51 yard scoring strike. With the PAT, it was 20-13. From this point on, the Spartan defense dominated. Battle surrendered a meager 28 total yards on 11 rushes, allowed only 1 first down, no completions and forced three turnovers. This was against a Panther offense that averaged 35 ppg throughout the season.

…either team of the semifinal game between Cape Central (11-2) and St Charles West (11-2) will be making their 1st appearance EVER in the championship game. Cape Central (11-1) took advantage of three interceptions while controlling the LOS to hand Affton a 34-14 loss in the Quarters. Jaelin Reddin’s pick early in the 2nd half gave the Tigers a short field that they gobbled up in hurry to open up 21 point bulge. Braion Owens led the Tigers ground attack with 198 yards, 3 TD’s on 21 carries. Meanwhile, the Warriors of St Charles West jumped ahead 21-7 over the Westminster Wildcats in the 2nd quarter only to see the talented Wildcats rally to tie it at 21-21 in the 3rd. SCW then took control by scoring the next 4 touchdowns on their way to a 49-28 victory. While the Warriors rushed for 300 yards offensively, they halted the Wildcat rushing game to just 56 yards. The Warriors lost their first two games of the season and now own an 11 game winning streak. One of those losses was to Cape Central! Click here for SCW vs WCA REPlay … 

Cape Coach Nathan Norman will join us on the Road to the Dome Show on Thursday.  Click here for the show …

Other guests on the Road to the Dome Show should include Kevin Miles (Palmyra) – Click here for their REPlay …  and Brandon Shelby (Skyline). Click here for their REPlay … AND  Click here for the show …


To read other NEWS from Bob Ryan click here …

District Champion Night

Bob-RyanDistrict Championship Night saw many come-back rallies that led to victory. Yes…there were some real lopsided victories but the suspense of these rallies ruled the night….

….At Jackson, Vianney jumped to a 35-3 halftime lead. Nolan Snyder had 3 TD receptions and the Golden Griffins seemed “in charge”. The 2nd half started without much fanfare as the Indians punted on their first two possessions. Then the explosion started! Scoring on their next 3 possessions and a total of 36 unanswered points, Jackson prevails 39-35. All of the 2nd half TD’s were passes from Jeremy Elliot who piled up 478 passing yards with his 5 TD passes. This offensive-filled game saw Vianney generate 408 yards (254-passing; 154-rushing). Watch this thrilling REPlay—

…Behind 26-7 at half, a perennial Class 5 powerhouse, Ft Osage remained calm in the locker room as they “kept the course” against a fired up Winnetonka team. The Griffins (8-3) had piled up an incredible 276 yards while building their lead over the Indians. The 2nd half saw a different Ft Osage team. Scoring on their 1st possession of the 2nd half as Skylar Thompson scored on a 10 yard run, the tide seemed to begin to turn. Early in the 4th, Jonah Tuimaseve intercepted a slant pass to took it all the down to the 3 yard line. It was punched over – score now 26-21. On the next possession and with a short field, the Indians controlled the LOS and scored again to take a 29-26 lead. But…it wasn’t over…the Griffins marched deep into Indian territory with an impressive drive. Again the Indian defense made the play. Josh Tuimaseve picked up a fumble that was forced by his brother, and rambled 80 yards down the field to put the icing on the 36-26 victory. Ft Osage outscored the Griffins 29-0 in the 2nd half!

..btw….Prepcasts will hold their 2nd annual Road to the Dome – leading up to this weekend’s games. You’ll hear from Coaches in all six classifications in the next 3 weeks with the first presentation this Thursday at 7:00pm. Enjoy and learn about these STATE tournament teams directly from their coaches! Click this link to listen to the SHOW …


…Trailing 28-6 at half and still on the short end of a 28-13 score at the end of 3 quarter, the Ladue Rams looked to be in deep trouble against the Webster Groves Statesman (7-2). The 4th quarter saw the “Rally Magic” of the night! Ladue’s Daylen Edwards 14 yard TD scamper at the 10:34 mark cut the deficit to 28-17—still 2 scores. With 7:39 left in the game, the momentum really turned as Mario Whitley scored on a blocked punt from 45 yards out. Finally with only 36 seconds left in the game, Jack Fox shocked everyone as he raced in for the score from 37 yards out to give Ladue their only lead of the game 34-28.  Listen to the REPlay …

…behind 21-7 to Blue Springs, the Rockhurst Hawklets knew that they had an uphill climb. After all, the Wildcats were the 2X defending Class 6 Champions. Rockhurst scored 21 straight points to grab a 28-27 lead. This game was far from over. With 6:51 left in the game Cobi Bissell punched in a 1 yard TD run to cut the lead to 28-27. After a Hawklet penalty on the PAT, Blue Springs went for the 2 point conversion. QB Ian Brown rolled out, saw nothing he liked so he ducked into the end zone to give the Wildcats the 29-28 lead. At this point, Rockhurst turned in over to Jr. AJ Taylor. The running back had been told during the week to expect a heavy dose of work. He led the Hawklets down the field with run after run. It came down to a 4th & goal with 2:16 left. Taylor plunged over left tackle. In the officials view, he had crossed the goal line (barely) for the winning TD. Rockhurst wins 34-29. This epic battle came down to an inch—one way or the other—what a great game! Remember, Rockhurst’s only loss was in week 1 to undefeated Class 4 Champ-Webb City.

Some rallies fell just short…

…in the Class 5, District 6 Championship game, Carthage piled up a 35-6 halftime lead over Williard. Tiger QB Alex Derryberry had 4 TD tosses in the first half. The 2nd half was completely opposite. Both teams moved the ball up and down the field. It was really wild—punts were a foreign object! When Williard scored with just under 2:30 left, the Williard Tigers had cut the lead to 48-47! Williard decided to go for 2 points and the win. Cathage made a diving tackle to save the 2-point conversion and Carthage prevailed 48-47! There was plenty of offense for each side-Carthage had 487 total yards while Williard finished with 459.

…Cape Central never trailed. The opening kickoff return saw Al Young scamper 90 yards for the TD. However, the quick striking Tigers had a genuine battle with the Hillsboro Hawks. Cape also scored quickly on their 1st drive of the 2nd half to build a 28-14 lead. Hillsboro answered—the Hawks assembled a 13 play drive when Chris Walsh scored his 3rd TD of the game to make it 28-21. Central came right back with a scoring drive of their own to stretch the lead back to 35-21 late in the 3rd quarter. Hawks running back Trey Terry’s 41 yard gallop highlighted the Hawks next drive which again cut it to a 7 point margin 35-28. Each team scored again on their next possession so now it was 42-35, Cape Central. Finally, on the final play of the game, Hillsboro’s Sam Mock’s pass fell incomplete to end this thrilling game. Taking a page out of the past, Hillsboro did it all on the ground—400 yards on 66 carries and 0 for 3 in the passing game!

…not a monumental number like some of the earlier scores, the California Pintos (#2 rated, 12-0) needed late heroics to upend the #8 team in STATE, the Blair Oaks Falcons. After a back-forth first half with the lead changing hands frequently, at the 7:38 of the 4th, the Pintos took their first lead since the 2nd quarter as Jaden Barr connected with Landon Mouse on a 20 yard TD strike. Blair Oaks came right back and scored in just four plays when QB Jordan Hair hit C.J.Closser for a 36 yard TD pass with just 6:11 left in the game. California then started its 11 play drive that culminated when Jose Magana kicked his career FIRST FG with only 1:25 left from 35 yards out! The Pintos advance with the 32-30 victory.

…some explosive offensive machines clicked ahead

…Kirkwood steamrolled Lafayette 56-9 … Click here for that REPlay … while CBC manhandled long-time foe, Hazelwood Central 45-0. Click here for that REPlay …     This sets up a terrific Class 6 semifinal matchup.

 Click here to read some of Bob’s other NEWS articles …

We’ll be with you on Thursday -7:00pm for Road to the Dome II —join us!  Click here for the SHOW …

Now the 2nd Season Begins

Bob-RyanSeveral teams taste defeat for 1st time in week 9!

A goal for good teams is to go unbeaten for the season. Week 9 is the conclusion of the regular season play in Missouri as Week 10 sees the beginning of District/State tournament. Look at some to the teams that fell for the first time this season—

….SLUH (6-2) tops Kirkwood (7-1) 38-35 in a terrific game. Click here for the 2nd half REPlay … Kirkwood had been ranked #4 in St Louis and #5 in class 5 MOsports Power Poll. The Jr Bills are enjoying their best season since 2008 when they were 9-4 and now are shooting to repeat this “unbeaten snap” at least one more time since they are in the #3 slot in their district as CBC and Hazelwood Central are each unbeaten.

….Jackson (8-1) knocked off Miller Career (8-1) 28-14 at home in a matchup between two top 10 teams. The Indians were ranked #7 in class 5 while the Phoenix #5 in class 4.

…St Charles West Warriors assures itself the top seed in Class 4, District 3 as the topple the Ladue Rams (8-1) 33-24.

…In a prelude to a likely District championship matchup in 3 weeks, Westminster (8-1) used field position and domination in the line-play to topple Borgia(8-1) 35-14. The two teams will likely flip-flop their #1-2 seeds in Class 4 district 4 as District opens up next week.

…in a battle between TWO unbeaten teams—someone had to be removed from a perfect record. It was a battle between the #3, Class 4 team (Carl Junction) and #1, Class 2 team (Lamar). Deciding the Champion of the Big 8, Carl Junction scored two 4th quarter TD’s to edge the Lamar Tigers 29-28. On their final drive, Lamar’s FG attempt from 42 yards out was wide.

…Lockwood was only 1 of 3 class 1 teams with an unblemished record but Jaspar handed them a 36-16 defeat to push them out of the unbeaten ranks.

…the Bolivar Liberators spoiled Reeds Springs hopes of a perfect season with a 33-28 victory.

On the other hand….some did finish with a perfect regular season mark….

…CBC (9-0)trailing 13-3 during first half, scored big in the final quarter to upend Rock Bridge 40-26.

…Park Hills Central (9-0) after whipping Farmington 39-3.

…California Pintos (9-0)beat Warsaw 56-20 as they win the top seed in Class 3, District 1.

…Valle Catholic (9-0) continues their 24 game winning streak as they trounce St Pius 47-9. The Warriors enter district competition as the team “to beat” if you have your eyes set on the Class 1 STATE title.

…In the same district, Class 2, District 8, Brookfield (9-0) and E.Buchanon (9-0) will be the two top seeds.

…Malden (9-0) smashed Dexter in the worst looking score of the night 76-9 as they grab #1 seed in Class 2, District 1.

…very quietly, Hogan Prep as stayed unbeaten in Class 3, District 7 play.

…one of the teams that always seems to be there—Maryville notches another perfect season as they as they tumble Lafayette (ST. Joseph) 55-28.

..Affton caps off an exciting season as they beat St Charles 36-21. Only a couple years ago, the Cougars were struggling but now they’ve gone 9-0!

…of course, how could we have this section on unbeaten and NOT expect to see Webb City (9-0). The Cardinals handled Branson 42-5 to round out another regular season.

Some other district flashes…

….Nixa (5-4) upended the top Seed of their district(entering week 9) Republic(5-4) 23-7. The Eagles will flip-flop their #2 seed with the top seed on the basis of the win. Down 7-3 at half, the Eagles regrouped offensively and shut down the single wing offense of the Tigers. Nixa will earn the top seed of Class 5, District 5 with a 5-4 record.

…in class 2, District 5, the Brentwood Eagles finish 9-0 but most likely will NOT catch the #1 seed, Lutheran North. The Crusaders (8-1) will keep their 1st place seed with their win over St. Mary’s . How could this happen? The point system being employed by MSHSAA (devised by Football Committee) has several parameters. Wins alone is just one consideration. Other parameters include size of opposition (larger/smaller classification); record of opponents; margin of victory provides points (up to 13). Clearly, the team with the “tougher” schedule gets rewarded with their wins. Ditto same scenario for Strafford (9-0) as they pound Ash Grove 50-0 but won’t win top seed as Liberty-Mt View (8-1) beat Houston 55-6 and should hang on as #1 seed in Class 2, District 3.

…when it’s all tabulated, there is a good chance that Cardinal Ritter (3-6) will grab the top seed of Class 2, District 2 after losing to Sikeston 20-0. The Lions seldom compete in regular season against other Class 2 level teams so…see note above

…talk about tough—Class 2 District 7 has not one or two but three unbeaten teams with two other teams only beaten once. Yet, another team lost Friday so they finish 7-2 and have the 6th best record in this amazing district! Lafayette County, S.Calloway and St. Paul Lutheran (Concordia) all finish 9-0 ! Ft Tolten Catholic and Cole Camp finish 8-1 while Hallsville drops to 7-2! WOW! Lafayette County and S.Calloway were 1-2 in the seeds prior to this weekend’s action. Final totals will be very tight!!

Now the 2nd season begins—lose now and your season is history.

Check out other NEWS from Bob Ryan …

Around the State of MO Football – Week 7

Bob-RyanLooking for more…

The Lamar Tigers have been in complete domination this season. Their 7-0 record just doesn’t tell the story. The Tigers have permitted just 1 touchdown all YEAR while scoring….are you ready…an incredible 410 points! Their final regular season game against Carl Junction (7-0) should be a dandy. Coach Scott Bailey has turned this program around completely. I’ve wondered for years if schools could apply to move up a Classification to compete against larger, presumably stronger, teams. If that request would be honored, ALL the teams from that school would also have to move up. The smallest school in the larger class, if they agree, would move down a class.

Turnaround in ONE year…

The Affton Cougars went 5-6 in 2013. After last night’s 47-0 win over Normandy, the Cougars are 7-0 in 2014! Jr QB DeVontae’ Burse has played a major role in this about-face. He is 25 of 51 passing for 451 yards, 11 TD. On the ground, Burse is averaging 7.9 yards per carry on 67 carries (532 yards)-4 TD’s


The Ray-Pec Panthers beat the Blue Springs Wildcats 31-13. It really shook up the Suburban Gold Division in KC as now four teams are 2-1 in conference. More importantly, at least to some, it was the 1st time that the Panthers upended the Wildcats. Ray-Pec took advantage of a costly fumble deep in the Wildcat area (4 yard line) to take an early lead. Isiah Truss had two long kickoff-returns to gain field position and keep the momentum on the Panthers side. Two Interceptions in 2nd half by the Panther defense stalled any intentions that the Wildcats had about rallying.

7-0 but can’t crack Top 10!

The Borgia Knights won the AAA-Large school crown with a convincing 49-11 win over the St. Mary’s Dragons. A long-time Independent, this was the first conference title for the Knights. Now 7-0, Borgia hasn’t been able to make it into the STATE top 10 rankings or the local Top 10 rankings! Coach Dale Gildehaus, who already has 4 regular season undefeated teams, would like to have his 5th and go deep into the playoffs. Watch the replay of this game…

22 straight wins with little fanfare…

Valle Catholic blasted Potosi 41-0 on Friday to notch their 22nd consecutive win. The Warriors have been a long-time traditional Class 1 powerhouse program. So long, in fact, that many, if not most, of the players had parents or relatives who wore the Warrior uniform at one time a few decades ago! Most in MO have just come to expect Valle to be “there” at STATE Playoff time. Listen to replay….



72-65—this isn’t a basketball score!

The Glendale Falcons and the Rolla Bulldogs scored the 3rd highest total of points in MSHSAA history in a prolific offensive game. Glendale scored on all 9 possessions of the 1st half as Falcon QB Alex Austin put on a show. He threw for 390 yards, 8 TD while running for 126 yards and the 9th TD of the half! It was 64-29 at half. The Bulldog defense held Austin to 50 yards in the 2nd half, rallied and cut the lead to a 7 points with just over 3 minutes remaining. The Falcons were able to run out the clock. I’m sure that these statisticians are still recovering from all of their work.

Ebb and Flow…

Whenever two schools engage in long-multi decade rivalries, there is always an ebb and flow—one school dominates for some time, then the other, it shifts again and so forth. CBC and SLUH have met over 80 times. SLUH had a long run of success, now the Cadets have the upper hand. Coach Scott Pingel has never lost to the Jr Bills during his tenure as head Coach and it continued on Friday with 49-16 Cadet win. Watch the replay …

Best Comeback of the Night…

Trailing 23-7 entering the 4th quarter and 30-14 early in the final quarter, the Harrisonville Wildcats seemed to be in trouble against the Oak Grove Panthers. But, the Wildcats found their passing game and really put it to work. When Chance Chamberlain hooked up with Adam Schrock for TD pass with 1:56 left in the game the Wildcat defense had to “put up a stand” to gain the thrilling 34-30 win. It was the 3rd TD pass of the quarter that saw onsides-kick recoveries, 4th down stops, a KO return going to the house—a little bit of everything!

These Vikings are back…

What about the job Bryan Koch has done at Francis Howell? After their convincing 49-6 victory over Howell Central, the Vikings are 7-0. When Coach Koch started his career as the Head Football Coach, the Vikings football program was struggling. This powerhouse program is now at the level that few teams want to compete against the Vikes in non-conference battles. Welcome to the world of the big-time winners.

Check out other weeks NEWS from Bob Ryan …

Around the State of MO Football Week 6

Bob-RyanTwo Top Ten, Class 6 teams battle to a one point game—

Each year, you can count some things to be true in MO. HS Football. Two of those things are that the Blue Springs and Rockhurst teams will be good—very good. Last night’s battle between the two of the titans of Class 6 football resulted in a 14-13 Hawklet victory. The Wildcats (#3 ranked, Class 6)dominated the first quarter and led 13-0 but Rockhurst, led by TJ Green-son of Trent Green (former Chief QB), Rockhurst (#5, class 6) took advantage of some Wildcat special team miscues and a stout 2nd half defenses to chalk up the win. More than likely, this is only chapter 1 of the 2014 games between these 2 teams.

Was this a season total of carries?

Sean Chambers of Fox HS carried the ball 45 times for 192 hard earned yards in a 28-7 victory over the Mehlville Panthers. WOW-45 times—I bet he slept well last night … Click here for the REPlay …

2nd time is a charm!

Park Hill South had been down this road previously. In their last home game, the Panthers got the ball late in the game with a chance to win. It didn’t work out. This time, the Panthers drove it into the end zone with only 43 seconds remaining in the game to edge the Truman Patriots 21-20.

Games that kept you on the edge of your seat!

…In a game that went down to the final buzzer, Joplin outlasts Waynesville 49-48. Remarkably, Skyler Duley scored ALL SEVEN Eagle TD’s! He started the game by returning a KO to the house and scored in the last 34 seconds to give Joplin the one point lead. The Tigers final FG attempt as time expired from 43 yards out fell short. Joplin scored the last 14 points of the game to push this result into the victory column!

….on the last play of the game, Carthage QB Alex Derryberry was forced out of the pocket, scrambled and was looking for someone, anyone who was open. He found Ralston Schramm in the end zone and the Tigers defeated Republic 40-35. Republic had taken the lead on a fake extra point as the holder ran it in for 2 points to grab a short-lived 35-34 lead with only 1:20 left in the game. The final drive saw Derryberry hit on six consecutive passes! The homecoming theme of “a Night to Remember” could not have been more appropriate.

….Overtimes are really exciting- 2-OT even better. St Clair won their 1st game of the year in the 2-OT in a game that had 112 points scored!! In the 2-OT, QB Collin Scott scored on the 2 point conversion and the Bulldog defense deflected a St. James (3-3) pass attempt to tie the game. St Clair 57 St James 55

….Shut out the League

CBC (6-0) rolled past De Smet 60-0 for their 3rd consecutive conference win in the MCC. The Cadets have won by an aggregate score of 167-0 in the 3 games. SLUH is up next in their final conference game. The Jr Billikens are 4-1 after beating Parkway South 44-0.  Click here for the REPlay …

…Rival Game

…Lee Summit (4-2), ranked #8 in Class 6, knocked the top ranked Titans of Lee Summit West (5-1) from the ranks of the unbeaten with a 44-38 win in a Suburban Gold Conference game. The Tigers jumped out in front 20-9 at half. LSW kept challenging! They cut the lead to just 3 points twice, 34-31, 41-38 but the Tigers continued to meet the challenge with scores of their own. Lee Summit rode the 299 passing yards of Drew Lock to the impressive win.

….Showing their Stuff

East Buchanon (6-0), ranked #4 class 2, really solidified their ranking as they handled the always tough, Lawson Cardinals (#12, Class 2) 40-0.

 Check out previous NEWS articles from Bob Ryan …