Blogs > Kosmo Seer Speculation

High school sports quick hits from Kosmo the all-knowing Oakland Press seer.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Competition in OAA Red could be dead

Another year, another change in the football re-alignment of the Oakland Activities Association. This mostly has to do with the arrival of Oxford to the OAA, which Kosmo is excited about seeing.
The Wildcats will be placed in the OAA White, which should be a super-competitive division.
Perennial league power Rochester Adams likely will be the favorite, but the Highlanders should have plenty of competition with Southfield, Farmington, Farmington Hills Harrison and Southfield-Lathrup in the division.
Lathrup moved from the OAA Red.
Speaking of the OAA Red, this could be an ugly year competitive-wise. The divide between annual powers Clarkston and Lake Orion and the rest of the field may be bigger than ever.
Pontiac had a great year in the OAA Blue last year, but asking it to make the jump to the Red is a bit much. Rochester struggled in the OAA White last year, but moved to the Red because of its enrollment. Royal Oak hasn't won a game in two years. West Bloomfield, Troy and Troy Athens aren't pushovers, but they're not juggernauts either.
With all this in mind, it looks as if the OAA Red more than ever will be colored in Clarkston blue and yellow and Lake Orion green and white.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Get ready to JAMM

On Saturday, Aug. 7, one of Kosmo's favorite summer events involving one of his favorite people will take place.
Every year, Pontiac High School basketball and football announcer Ray Wright holds a "JAMM Session," with proceeds benefiting the afterschool program Wright founded, the "JAMM Project."
For those who don't know what the "JAMM Project" is, it stands for "Just Aim, Motivate and Move" and is an afterschool program that provides academic tutoring and counseling to kids who have been victims of abuse.
Such programs keep kids off of streets and train them to upstanding citizens in the community, so the cause is one to rally behind.
Not only that, but Wright is truly a class act who is all about the kids, so Kosmo hopes people come out and support the event.
It'll be from 3 to 6 p.m. at Birmingham Detroit Country Day High School. There will be a celebrity basketball game between Country Day Alumni and the JAMM All-Stars and various awards presentations, including to recently retired Pontiac AD Tarlton Small.
Tickets are $10 for adults, no doubt an affordable afternoon and evening of entertainment that will also support a great cause and a great man.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Good year could be on horizon for Birmingham schools

It's never too early to speculate on what will happen during the upcoming high school football season, but since the official start of practice is just over two weeks way, it really is an appropriate time.
One thing Kosmo noticed is that with the new re-alignment in the OAA, this could be a good fall for both Birmingham Groves and Birmingham Seaholm.
Each team had a rough go of it last year, but now both have been moved down to the OAA Blue, which could mean more success and a possible playoff spot.
The Maples and Falcons won't have to worry about competing with the likes of Farmington, Rochester Adams or Farmington Hills Harrison in the league, and while Kosmo feels Seaholm and Groves should usually be good enough to compete with those schools, not having to face them will definitely increase the odds of success.
Seaholm in particular, should be a much-improved squad. The Maples had inexperienced units along the offensive and defensive lines last year, but the players in those areas started to jell late last season and most are back. Add the fact Seaholm could have one of the state's top recruits, Michigan-bound receiver Shawn Conway, and it could be a nice year.
The only hangup could be that Conway might not be eligible to play for Seaholm because his official residency is in another school district. Stay tuned to see how that is sorted out.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Remembering Hessling

Kosmo wants to send his sincere condolences right now to Birmingham Seaholm and the family of Mike Hessling, the varsity softball and wrestling coach at the school since 1990 who died of an apparent heart attack on Saturday.
It's definitely a loss not only for the Seaholm community, but for Oakland County in general.
There aren't many coaches who coach two sports for so long, but Hessling did that, being the varsity head coach for both wrestling and softball since 1990.
It speaks to his dedication and his sacrifice to make the lives of kids better, and it's no wonder he was such a beloved coach.
More coaches are needed like Mike Hessling, and he'll definitely be missed. Kosmo has a feeling it'll be a jam-packed funeral on Thursday in Shelby Twp., because that's the kind of impact Hessling seemed to have.
- Need some evidence that summer is flying by? One, it's already been over a month since the baseball, softball and girls soccer state finals ended. Two, the start of football practice is now less than three weeks away. Enjoy summer now everybody, because it's fading fast.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Duzey of Athens makes college choice

What should be one of the top prep football players in Oakland County has made a decision on where he'll play in college.
Troy Athens wide receiver/tight end Jake Duzey, who had multiple offers from Division I programs, has committed to Iowa, according to a recruiting website in Iowa.
Duzey recently received an offer from Michigan State and already had a offer from Oregon, but decided on the Hawkeyes.
Even though he projects as a tight end in college, Duzey will likely be a wide receiver for Athens this fall.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

A historic event in Lake Orion hopefully will be just that

It's getting near mid-July, and so that means the nearly three-decade countdown is almost over for the football programs at Lake Orion and Oxford.
The Dragons and Wildcats haven't met on the gridiron since the 1980's, but they'll finally meet again on Aug. 27 at Lake Orion.
The two border towns quit playing each other largely because of vandalism and other issues that occurred back in the day.
Without question, it's been a date circled on the calendar for many in those two towns since they announced last year they will play.
The move was made possible since Oxford is leaving the Flint Metro and joining the OAA starting with the 2010-11 school year.
Both towns might be empty and at that football game, and rightfully so. The only thing Kosmo hopes is that the game matches the hype of the event.
The K-Man has his worries that'll be the case.
Lake Orion is an annual state powerhouse in Division 1 and within the OAA, while Oxford has been an average-to-pretty good team in a weaker Flint Metro conference.
The Wildcats have one of the state's legendary coaches in Bud Rowley, so hopefully that'll help in making the game itself a spectacular one and actually match the hype of the event itself.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

AAU aftermath

Sitting in his air-conditioned cave over the weekend, Kosmo was reading up on all the great, in-depth articles on AAU sports drummed up by his spies and fellow colleagues at the Oakland Press.
It certainly brought up many great issues surrounding AAU sports and how they're impacting high school athletes and their families.
As for as Kosmo is concerned, AAU brings mixed feelings.
In their purest form, AAU/travel sports are great. They help athletes get more opportunities to develop skills and increase their competitiveness, which in turn helps them during their high school seasons. For that matter, it helps them in life as a whole.
But as people correctly pointed out, coaches of AAU/travel sports and parents can ruin the whole experience.
If those people are just acting as agents for their kids to college coaches or just looking for the next shoe deal or something, it can get a little dangerous for the kids.
It becomes about me, me, me and money, money, money, which obviously isn't the purest form of high school athletics.
Kosmo is concerned going forward that more people will turn to AAU/travel sports, especially hockey players.
With pay to play costs going up every year, more and more probably will figure that playing AAU/travel sports is worth the investment, particularly since high school sports aren't a cheap option, either.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

All-Star debate

This Sunday as part of a massive project detailing the pluses and minuses of AAU sports to families and kids, the Oakland Press has a story describing the Michigan High School Athletic Association's rule regarding high school all-star games.
The rule says that if an athlete competes in a sport and then plays in an all-star game in that sport, he or she must forfeit athletic eligibility for the rest of the season.
That's why the football all-star game is played in June or July, some nine months after the season ends.
The MHSAA said all-star games tend to exploit athletes and don't promote educational virtues of high school athletics, which is why the rule is in place.
Kosmo can understand that, but he also understands why a kid would want to have a chance to compete in a once-in-a-lifetime event without being punished. For example, if a football player gets selected for a national high school football all-star game in January, that player can't play basketball or a spring sport.
Kosmo knows the MHSAA means well, but he would tweak the rule to allow an athlete to play in one such game, because there's only so many chances to compete against and mingle with some of the best players in the country.