I know, I know, all eyes are on the Rams tomorrow night. Which is why you can find the preview of that Glenwood-Winterset matchup here. But, for what it’s worth, there are some decent matchups elsewhere, including an interesting story development about the quarterback in Harlan So here is your week eight rundown for the rest of District 7:
Denison (4-3, 3-2) @ Harlan (6-1, 5-0): Both of these teams had to play in inclement weather last week. Harlan battled Winterset through torrential downpours and a saturated field, coming away with a 7-6 victory on the road to likely clinch a District 7 title. Meanwhile, in Denison, the Monarchs hosted the Carroll Tigers in a game was postponed until the following day after multiple lightning delays. Both teams had to get up the next day and resume the game with only five minutes left and Carroll leading 26-21. Neither team was able to put anything else on the scoreboard, and the Monarchs lost a close one to drop to 3-2 in the district. Now, they must travel to Harlan to take on the red hot Cyclones. Harlan has won six games in a row behind the superhuman running of senior halfback Nick Foss. Foss ran for only (yes, only) 142 yards, his lowest single game total since week one, against a tough Winterset defense in some even worse conditions. Foss now leads all of Class 3A in total yards (1,222) and total touchdowns (19), which officially makes him (statistically) the best running back in the state. Period. Despite being down to their fourth string quarterback in sophomore Jonathan Monson, the Cyclones have blown through their district schedule, riding the coat tail of a stellar defense and, of course, Foss. However, there is rumor that 2016 all-district senior quarterback Deren Schmitz could be making his season debut under center tomorrow night after breaking his pinky in early August. This would only give the Cyclones even more firepower on the offensive side. As for defense, Harlan is statistically the best District 7 has to offer, allowing an average of just under 11 points per game. Overall, this Cyclone team is solid everywhere, and doesn’t have any plans of ending their win streak at six games. On the other hand, Denison will be going into this game trying to pull off a miracle. While this seems like the kind of game that can throw a wrench in an entire season, don’t expect any surprises in this particular matchup.
My pick: Harlan 42, Denison 10
Kevin’s pick: Harlan 28, Denison 14
Atlantic (4-3, 2-3) @ Carroll (3-4, 2-3): Aside from the Glenwood-Winterset game, this seems to be the most intriguing matchup in week eight. Both of these teams are fighting to salvage what is left of the 2017 season. Atlantic is coming off a 26-0 bashing of ADM last week at home, and will now turn around and host a Carroll team that beat Denison by a fingernail last week. The Trojans are led by the dynamic duo of senior quarterback Jaxson Eden and junior receiver Chase Mullenix. Eden leads the district in yards with 1,315 while boasting a 68% completion rate, the best in Class 3A (minimum 50 attempts). On the receiving end, Mullenix has hauled in 31 passes on the season for 453 yards, the most in District 7. This one-two punch has worked wonders for the Trojans, as they’ve quadrupled their win total from last season. For Carroll, their offensive attack is the exact opposite of Atlantic’s high flying attack. The Tigers pounded the Denison defense last week on the ground as Higgins posted a season-high 212 rushing yards on a whopping 38 carries. The Carroll defense did its part as well, holding the Monarchs to just 184 total yards on the night. While the Rams battle it out with the Huskies, make sure you keep an eye on this game as it could be quite the matchup in Carroll tomorrow night.
My pick: Carroll 24, Atlantic 22
Kevin’s pick: Atlantic 21, Carroll 14
Creston (1-6, 0-5) @ ADM (1-6, 0-5): Well, while there is talk of playoff implications and teams clawing their way back into the race, these two teams are completely out of it. At this point, they are just trying to save their dignity and not finish last. ADM is coming off a blowout loss at Atlantic last week, while Creston is still licking their wounds after losing by 36 to Glenwood. The Panthers struggled immensely to stop the Glenwood running attack, while only finding success on offense through two 50+ yard passing touchdowns. Both the Panthers and the Tigers are two teams that get scored on a lot and like to air out the ball. This could be a shootout.
My pick: Creston 35, ADM 28
Kevin’s pick: ADM 20, Creston 14
Kevin: 4-0 last week, 28-8 season
Nick: 4-0 last week, 27-9 season