Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Letter to Cass Tech coach a disgrace
Why can't Detroit Cass Tech just enjoy its first state football title in school history? Why do the Technicians have to face an onslaught of bigotry in the aftermath of their 49-13 win over Catholic Central in the Division 1 state final last Saturday.
It's sickening that just because an inner city team has success, people think it was sheer blind fate and those players are ultimately going to be failures in life, but unfortunately that was the tone of a letter sent to Cass Tech coach Thomas Wilcher in the wake of what was a great triumph for not only Cass Tech, but the Detroit Public School League.
A letter accused Cass Tech players of not having academic standards and that in a few years the players will end up in jail, unemployed or on drugs.
Disgusting and totally mindless.
Just because some inner city football players beat the snot out of a traditional private school power filled with suburban kids doesn't mean it was a case of "hoodlems" having their day.
Would the same thing have been said had Utica Eisenhower made the final and recorded a 49-13 win?
Those Cass Tech kids played great and deserve credit and well wishes going forward. By the way, many of those kids will be going to play football in college with a chance to earn a degree. Two are going to play at Michigan. Last Kosmo checked, those with college degrees do pretty well in life.
It's a shame such stupidity and bigotry exists in this society. Kosmo is happy to hear the Catholic Central people are just as upset about it, because administrators have done a search of alumni and students in hopes of tracking the sicko down, but haven't found anybody of that name with any affiliation to the school.
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Final 3 football stars of the year
The girls basketball preview done so well by Kosmo's spies has come out, which means one thing: Football season must officially be over.
Indeed, it was a fast few months from the start of practice in August to the state finals this past weekend, but the 2011 is in the books.
As the K-Man has done all season, he'll offer his 3 stars of the week for what was the final football week of the season.
Jayru Campbell, Detroit Cass Tech - OK, so Campbell doesn't play for an Oakland County school. Still, it's hard to ignore his performance in a shocking blowout of Novi Detroit Catholic Central in the Division 1 final. Just a freshman, that's right, a freshman, Campbell threw for 240 yards and tied a state record with five touchdown passes. I guess that means we'll be hearing a lot about this kid over the next three years.
Spencer McInnis, Orchard Lake St. Mary's - The Eaglets ended years of frustration in the state finals with a 45-7 shellacking of Mt. Pleasant in the Division 3 final. McInnis ran left, right, up the middle and everywhere else on the Oilers, finishing with over 200 yards and three touchdowns. Hopefully some college program will give this kid a shot.
Devin Church, Birmingham Brother Rice/Prescott Line, Oxford - Sorry, but the K-Man has to have this honor shared this week because both are deserving. Church continued his holy play in the state playoffs, rushing for 244 yards and two touchdowns in a 24-14 win over Lowell in the Division 2 state final, in the process setting a school record for rushing yards in a season. In what classifies as a brilliant decision, Line was voted as the Player of the Year in Division 1-2 after he made a million tackles on the season at linebacker and ran for seemingly a billion yards at running back. There was no other player even close to measuring up.
Friday, November 25, 2011
On Saturday in the Division 1 state football final, the two teams involved will both have "Detroit" in their names. However, only one will have the rooting interest of the city of Detroit.
No doubt, Detroit Cass Tech will be the sentimental favorite when it takes on Novi Detroit Catholic Central on Saturday.
This will be a classic case of city public school vs. an affluent suburban private school, which is always something that brings out more emotion than usual for your average high school sporting event.
Cass Tech will likely play on that theme, saying how it's playing for the PSL and the city it resides.
Heck, Cass Tech won't even need to take a bus to the game since it can walk the roughly two miles from its school to Ford Field.
Expect a very enthusiastic crowd and expect many around the state to be rooting for Cass Tech.
- It's hard to believe, but Orchard Lake St. Mary's has lost five state championship games in a row since winning its first four in school history. Kosmo thinks the Eaglets will be 5-5 in title games on Saturday. St. Mary's will benefit from its experience and will outlast what is a good Mt. Pleasant team.
Sunday, November 20, 2011
An old tired argument
The state football finals have arrived, and Kosmo can hear the shouting from people with Catholic League powers Novi Detroit Catholic Central, Birmingham Brother Rice and Orchard Lake St. Mary's have advanced to the championship games in their respective divisions.
"There needs to be a separate football tournament for private and public schools!"
Please. Those who feel that way need to grow up.
First of all, public schools recruit now just as much private schools with open enrollment.
Second, people will probably be shocked to know that six of the last seven state championships in Division 1 have been won by public schools. In Division 2, Brother Rice's titles in 2000 and 2005 were the only times a non-public school won championships in that Division. Otherwise, it's been all public schools. Since the playoffs expanded to eight Divisions in 1999, no private school has won a title in Division 3.
Maybe people are right. There should be separate tournmaments because public schools have been too dominant.
In addition, how often would people be saying during a given season that "Wow, it'd be nice of Lowell and Brother Rice played to see who was really the best in Division 2, or if Catholic Central and Rockford could play in the Division 1 semifinals or finals. Too bad there are separate tournaments."
It'd be like following college football and not seeing LSU play Alabama.
Having separate playoffs for private and public schools is a ridiculous idea, and it's too bad it's nonsense Kosmo has to hear all week with Catholic Central, Brother Rice and St. Mary's playing for titles.
Friday, November 18, 2011
Game of the Century?
There's usually a lot of buzz each year about a supposed "Game of the Century" in college football, where two titans clash in a game that people insist won't be seen for many years.
The only problem is that there usually is a game the following year where the same is said.
LSU-Alabama was this year's "Game of the Century," but Kosmo feels Saturday will offer a "Game of the Century" on the high school ranks within Michigan.
For the last decade, many around the state have looked at the playoff pairings in late October and said "Hey, Catholic Central and Rockford are going to play in this round."
The only problem is that it hasn't happened due to upsets along the way, especially in the regional final round (Rockford in 2009, Catholic Central last year).
Finally though, the stars have aligned.
The "Game of the Century" will finally happen when Division 1 superpowers Catholic Central and Rockford meet in a state semifinal on Saturday at Battle Creek Harper Creek.
Hopefully this won't be like LSU-Alabama and will actually live up to the hype.
- Forgotten in all the hype surrounding the football semifinals and volleyball finals this weekend is the fact that the state girls swimming and diving finals will be held. Good luck to all area swimmers and divers in their ultimate and final meet of the season.
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Great day for OAA volleyball
It used to be that volleyball teams in the county were way inferior to those around the rest of the state because no team had ever won a state volleyball title.
That all has changed the past few years with Pontiac Notre Dame Prep (2007) and Birmingham Marian (2009, 2010) winning state championships and Farmington Hills Mercy advancing to the state's final four the last two years.
But one could've argued that it was just a case of the area's Catholic League powers taking over and that the public school teams were still very weak and vulnerable.
There will indeed be another all-Oakland County matchup in Battle Creek on Thursday, but it won't be Mercy vs. Marian as it has been the last two years in Cereal City (the semifinals two years ago, the final last year).
Instead, it'll be OAA Red and overall athletic arch rivals Clarkston and Lake Orion hooking up in a Class A state semifinals.
Kosmo hopes sports fans of these two schools show up in droves in Battle Creek because this is a once-in-a-lifetime type of deal to not only see these two rivals play on a such a big state tournament stage in any sport, but to also see that the OAA looks to be arriving as a conference that can produce state title contenders in volleyball.
Monday, November 14, 2011
3 Stars for regional finals
Two down and four more left. That is what the prep football scene in Oakland County is like now going into the state semifinals. Birmingham Brother Rice, Novi Detroit Catholic Central, Orchard Lake St. Mary's and Walled Lake Western are still alive and are one win away from going to Ford Field.
But while Kosmo is excited about the state semifinals, he offers his 3 stars of the regional round.
Jason Gamble, Walled Lake Western
What a week it was for the Warriors senior. On Thursday, he had a signing ceremony to officially declare that he'll be playing baseball at Central Michigan. Then a day later on the football field, Gamble was dominant along the defensive line, registering two sacks, a forced fumble and blowing up numerous other running plays for Port Huron.
Devin Church, Birmingham Brother Rice
Following an outstanding game against Farmington Hills Harrison the week before, Church was at it again in a 16-6 win over Southfield, rushing for 154 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries. Now, he and the Warriors will gear up to face one of the state's best in the semifinals, Dennis Norfleet of Detroit Martin Luther King.
Zac Leimbach, Walled Lake Central
Even though the Vikings lost to Utica Eisenhower handily, this is more in tribute to the season Leimbach had. Seeing your father die of cancer before the season has to be a lot for anyone to handle, but the terrific season Leimbach had is a tribute to his character and ability. He's definitely a role model for adults and children a like with the way he's handled a horrible situation.
Thursday, November 10, 2011
Some similiarities/differences between Penn State and W.L. Western
Seeing all the media coverage of Penn State's sex abuse scandal in recent days has reminded Kosmo of another recent scandal locally involving the hazing incident at Walled Lake Western.
To Kosmo there are plenty of differences and similarities between the two incidents.
Obviously, the crime is much more heinous at Penn State than at W.L. Western. Having a kid tied to a pole is nowhere near as appalling as sexually abusing children. The main perpetrators involved in the Penn State scandal are adults who acted like ignorant kids. The perpetrators in the W.L. Western case are kids. At Penn State, people lied in front of a grand jury. At Western, people just haven't been talking much. Also, the cover-up at Penn State was years of ignorance. In defense of Western, everything happened so quickly that it didn't have a lot of time to react. One final difference is that a grand jury has released the evidence of the Penn State scandal. The Wixom Police Department still hasn't released anything regarding Western.
For one, there's been blame towards media and accusations of a "mob mentality" at both places since the victims have seemed to be secondary to preserving the institutions that are the football programs. At Penn State, students rioted when Joe Paterno got fired. At W.L. Western, parents attended a school board meeting to voice their support for an assistant coach and the team. In both cases, many didn't have the victims as first and foremost on their minds. Another big similiarity is the level of the cover-ups. It was bad in both cases. Again, both places seemed more concerned about protecting the football institutions instead of putting the interest of victims first, and thus were not honest about what really took place. It made both look MUCH worse. Further details of both incidents will probably continue to come out in the future.
Tuesday, November 8, 2011
Recruiting news for multiple sports
A little recruiting update from you all-knowing one.
First of all, one of the state's top football prospects has made a decision on where he'll play in college, as Southfield senior tight end/defensive lineman Ron Thompson has committed to play for Syracuse.
Thompson is a 6-foot-6, 235-pound manchild who is fast and shifty for someone his size. He'll likely be a tight end in college, and possibly an unstoppable one.
In addition, Wednesday is another important day for area high school athletes since it's national signing day for sports such as basketball, volleyball, baseball, softball and golf.
The whole county will be dotted with signing day ceremonies over the next couple of days, so keep reading the Oakland Press and MIPrepZone.com to see who is signing where.
Wednesday won't be signing day for football players. That day will come on the first Wednesday of February.
Sunday, November 6, 2011
Kosmo's 3 stars for district finals
Well, Kosmo certainly took it on the chin last week. Just as your seer thought he had this forecasting business down pat, surprises dot the area football landscape in last week's district final round.
Kosmo certainly didn't expect Clarkston, Farmington Hills Harrison or Madison Heights Madison to lose, but that's how it goes.
Give lots of credit to Walled Lake Central and Birmingham Brother Rice for being physically dominant in their wins over Clarkston and Harrison, respectively.
Also give credit to Kosmo's 3 stars for the district final round.
The Walled Lake Western defense - These Warriors won't go away, will they? Despite all the adversity, Western is still very much alive in the Division 2 playoffs after a 3-0 shutout of South Lyon at home.
K.J. Schultz, Walled Lake Central - Is there a better slotback in the county than Schultz? He can amass 100 yards rushing and receiving on a given night and was an unstoppable force against Clarkston, collecting over 100 all-purpose yards and scoring two touchdowns.
Devin Church, Birmingham Brother Rice - This award could be given to the whole Brother Rice team after its surprising dominance of Harrison. But Church was absolutely brilliant. He entered the game knowing he would have to carry a big load with backup DeShun Brown out of the game with a foot injury. Showcasing his power, speed and elusiveness, Church ran for 159 yards and three touchdowns on 32 carries. A masterpiece.
Friday, November 4, 2011
Hazing scandal gettng uglier
On Thursday night in his cave in northern Oakland County, Kosmo watched the livestream of the Walled Lake Consolidated Schools board of education meeting, where many people attended to speak about the hazing incident involving the Walled Lake Western football team.
Many spoke in support of assistant coach Bill Brenner, who hosted the team function at the which the hazing of the player occurred. The player was taped to a pole with his mouth taped shut and reportedly struck.
Anyway, Kosmo didn't have a problem with the way the people supported Coach Brenner. He has had a big impact in the community as a teacher and coach and one mistake or oversight at a team dinner should not overshadow that.
Here is what was sickening though.
Not ONE person came to the podium to speak on behalf of the victim. Not one person acknowledged that the most important thing here is to ensure the victim's well-being and that he could lead a normal life.
One person talked about how his son gave the victim rides and tried to be nice to him, but that all of that stopped after a while and he told his father "Dad, this is hard to do?"
Maybe that kid should've imagined what it was like to walk the halls of the school in the victim's shoes.
The concern for the victim was an afterthought among the people who attended. Couldn't one have come up and said "We're going to try all we can do to help the victim through this process?"
It was SOLELY about Coach Brenner and it was all about how this has affected the team.
Disgusting. Absolutely disgusting.
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Great showcase for Avondale, Andover
Semifinal matchups in any sport between two county teams are already memorable events to begin with, but they become even more memorable when there are heartwarming angles to it.
Such is the case for the Division 2 boys soccer state semifinal between Auburn Hills Avondale and Bloomfield Hills Andover on Wednesday.
Kosmo couldn't be happier for Avondale head coach Dave Muczynski and Andover head coach Geoff Parkinson, two terrific coaches and gentleman who finally get a shot at the semifinals after years of waiting.
It'll also be nice to see that this game is at Avondale, so both teams should have rabid fan bases on hand.
It'll almost feel like a state championship football game.
Avondale is also playing for a former player who recently died of cancer, Keith Duncan, who graduated in 2004.
Finally, it'll be nice knowing that at least one county team will be represented in the Division 2 state championship game on Saturday.
This should all make for a special night at Avondale on Wednesday. Kosmo can't wait to see what happens.