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AHSFHS Master Researcher

179 Posts

Posted - 11/29/2022 :  14:03:16  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
7A: Thompson vs Auburn
These two teams were the favorites to get here in the preseason, but don't be fooled--the paths they took to get here were anything but straightforward. Thompson started 0-2 to out of state teams, played several other close games, and then got shutout by Hoover to finish 2nd in their region. But they got revenge with a massive 40-10 blasting of the Bucs in the semifinals. Auburn started their season with a win over Hoover, then ran the table before a blowout loss to Central Phenix City also cost them a region title. But like Thompson, Auburn got revenge in the semifinals. In terms of talent, the edge has to go to Thompson, but give my Coach Etheridge in the coaching matchup. I expect this one to be a battle most of the way.
Pick: Thompson wins 24-13

6A: Mountain Brook vs Saraland
It's no surprise Saraland is here. Actually, maybe it is. Everyone knew this was going to be a talented team coming into the season, but it's also an extremely young team with an offense led by three outstanding sophomores. For Mountain Brook, this was supposed to be a bit of a rebuilding year, and for much of the season, especially the loss to Gardendale, it appeared like it would be just that. However, this team has found its groove, and the spartans have finally gotten over the hump and are playing for a state championship for the first time since 1996. Two very contrasting styles in this one, as Mountain Brook are very physical, while Saraland relies on perimeter speed and tries to out-athlete opponents. Saraland has struggled against physical teams, but I picked them in my bracket and I'll stick with them to win the Battle of the Spartans. There's usually only a couple one score games in the Super 7. I expect this to be one of them.
Pick: Saraland wins 27-24

5A: Ramsay vs Charles Henderson
Charles Henderson are the Cinderellas of the playoffs this year. After winning a combined 5 games over the past two years, they're 12-1 and playing for a state title. They've matched up well against the physical teams from South Alabama, but Ramsay is a very different team. Although they are solid up front, the Rams have better skill players than any team Charles Henderson faced in the south bracket. I think Henderson's defense can keep them in this game, but can their offense find a way to win it?
Pick: Ramsay wins 31-16

4A: Cherokee County vs Andalusia
This was the matchup I had in my 4A bracket at the start of the postseason, which given the way this postseason has gone, it is shocking that I got both teams right. The north in 4A has been consistently out-classed in state championship games for many years now, and although Cherokee County is solid football team, I don't see the trend changing this year. Andalusia's physicality will wear down Cherokee County, and even if it's close for a half, it won't be by the end.
Pick: Andalusia wins 43-20

3A: Piedmont vs St. James
This may be the most intriguing matchup to me, because I don't really think St. James's schedule was anywhere close to as difficult as Piedmont's. With that said, St. James hasn't played any close games against 3A competition, so they've taken care of business against their weaker schedule, which makes it hard to know just how good they are. I think this is one of the best teams Piedmont has had, even with two close losses and some other close games. I think 3A overall is much stronger this year than it has been the past several year. If you want to see quality QB play from small-school teams, you won't find two better ones than these. Piedmont came from over 20 points down in the 2nd half to win the state title a year ago. They almost overcame a 23 point deficit in the 4th quarter against Anniston this year. It won't surprise me for St James to go ahead early, maybe 21-7, but no lead is safe against Piedmont.
Pick: Piedmont wins 44-28

2A: B.B. Comer vs Fyffe
On paper, this is the biggest mismatch of this year's Super 7. I don't think it's hyperbole to say that Fyffe has been pound-for-pound the best program in the state for the past decade. They remind me of the Clay County teams of the 90s. Comer has never won a state title and is playing in just their second ever state championship game. This has been a massive turnaround for their program. In just three seasons, they've already won more more games this decade than in either the 2000s or 2010s. They are extremely physical at the line of scrimmage, but they face the ultimate test of line play against the Fyffe Red Devils. Fyffe will be without their lead RB, which at the very least could give Comer a psychological boost, but they rotate out players on offense pretty regularly anyway. Comer's best hope is to keep this a low-score game.
Pick: Fyffe wins 28-12

1A: Pickens County vs Leroy
Well, after a very unpredictable year in 1A, we end up with two familiar faces squaring off in the state championship game. This is Pickens County's 4th appearance in 7 years, and 5th in the past 10. This is Leroy's 8th state title appearance since 2001, but all their previous appearances came as a 2A school. Both of these teams are among the seven teams playing for a state title this year after failing to win their region. Pickens County plays a lot of high scoring games, but they haven't faced a defense like Leroy yet. Leroy has allowed 20+ points only once, in a 36-14 loss to Millry in the regular season. They avenged that loss last week, only allowing Millry to score 11 points in the rematch.
Pick: Leroy wins 46-22


416 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2022 :  08:16:28  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Great insight as always. I appreciate you, David, Sloth, Giglin and everyone else who posts here regularly. It really helps to learn about teams that aren't in your region of the state. Really excited to get this super 7 going.
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125 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2022 :  11:25:53  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by TheMUBM

Great insight as always. I appreciate you, David, Sloth, Giglin and everyone else who posts here regularly. It really helps to learn about teams that aren't in your region of the state. Really excited to get this super 7 going.



Proud native of the "Free State of Winston"
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