3A Notebook: Best Teams, Biggest Games, Boldest Predictions

  1. #1
    by gchs_uk9 is offline Premium Member
    gchs_uk9's Avatar
    This week's 3A Notebook is coming from the shores of Destin, Florida. With many schools taking fall break either this week or last, and with many teams enjoying bye weeks leading into or just inside of district play, I thought it would be a good opportunity to look at district races and the current state of the class. For each of the eight districts we will declare a best team, search for the biggest game, and toss out a bold prediction that is sure to go wrong!

    District 1
    Best Team
    Caldwell County has cemented itself as the team to beat in the district, and likely the region, with their performance so far this season. The Tigers (7-1) have reeled off seven consecutive wins after a close early loss to Christian County. With a win over Fort Campbell on Friday night, Caldwell would assure themselves home field advantage throughout the postseason

    Biggest Remaining Game
    Union County at Paducah Tilghman (Friday, October 16). Both the Braves (5-2) and Blue Tornado (4-3) will be looking to lock down the second seed in the playoffs and at least one home playoff game. The difference between finishing second (hosting Edmonson) and finishing third (traveling to Adair) would appear to be large. Union hasn't beat Tilghman since 2009.

    Bold Prediction
    Union County loses to Paducah Tilghman and finishes third in District 1, but then wins on the road at Adair County in the first round of the playoffs.

    District 2
    Best Team
    Elizabethtown. The Panthers (7-0) have roared to an undefeated start and look to be well positioned to finish the campaign 10-0. Behind a power running game (291 yards per game) and a strong defensive unit (8.9 points per game allowed), Elizabethtown could be a trendy pick to make it to Thanksgiving weekend.

    Biggest Remaining Game
    Elizabethtown at Adair County (Friday, October 16). In what should be one of the best 3A games of the weekend, the Panthers and Indians will square off for the likely district title. Adair (7-0) has responded to last season's success with another strong run and will look to knock off their northerly district rivals.

    Bold Prediction
    Adair County is upset by either Union County or Paducah Tilghman in the first round of the playoffs. The knock on Adair last season was that their wins had been rolled up against inferior competition. This year is no different, with the best Indian win likely either Taylor County or Kentucky Country Day. Can Adair overcome what may be the best #3 seed in the class?

    District 3
    Best Team
    Central, and it isn't really close. The Yellowjackets (5-2) put up something of a head-scratcher with their early loss to Knox Central, but followed it up with terrific wins over Christian Academy-Louisville and St. Xavier. This team is capable of winning a state championship.

    Biggest Remaining Game
    Central at Henry County (Friday, October 23). The shine went off this diamond a bit when Henry fell to Waggener last weekend, but an upset win by Henry (6-1) could still possibly force a three-way district tie. Central has left Jefferson County twice this year, with one win and one loss. Could a trip to New Castle be tricky?

    Bold Prediction
    Central wins Region II. When the new alignments were released last season, many felt it almost a foregone conclusion that either Boyle County or Lexington Catholic would win Region II. But Central will get either the Rebels or Knights at home in the playoffs and winning on Muhammad Ali Boulevard isn't easy. Everyone had South Warren beating Central in the playoffs last season and it didn't happen. Could a similar script be written this year?

    District 4
    Best Team
    Boyle County. The Rebels were considered by many the preseason class favorite this season and have done nothing to disappoint, with only the opener against Central Hardin not played partially under a running clock. Boyle (7-0) has ridden the arm and legs of superstar Josiah Robbins and is looking to give Chuck Smith his sixth state championship ring, the first since his return to the high school gridiron.

    Biggest Remaining Game
    Lexington Catholic at Boyle County (Friday, October 16). While there is an argument for Garrard/Western Hills (loser goes to Central), the obvious big game is in Title Town this Friday night. Lexington Catholic (4-3) has had Boyle's number a bit over the last few seasons, but this year feels different. Catholic has played much of the season without quarterback Legend Brumbaugh and the offense has shown positives and negatives during his absence. The loser of this game will likely have to play on the road at Central in the second round.

    Bold Prediction
    Three district teams will win a playoff game. Boyle and Lexington Catholic seem obvious, but the third place finisher could be a favorite in their first round game as well. Garrard County (4-3) and Western Hills (3-3) both have the ability to win on the road at either Henry County or Bardstown (4-3).

    District 5
    Best Team
    Russell, I guess. The Red Devils (5-2) have failed to impress for much of the season and have an ugly home loss to Fleming County on the ledger, but coach T.J. Maynard's team is probably still the best of the lot. West Carter (5-2) has also been solid this season.

    Biggest Remaining Game
    Fleming County at Bath County (Friday, October 16). With a four-way tie currently occupying the district, it is difficult to pick the biggest game, but we'll go with this one. Fleming County (4-3) followed their big win at Russell with a beat down loss to West Carter, while Bath County (5-2) has been a major surprise under Coach Johnny Poynter. Bath still has a game to play against Russell, but the loser of Fleming/Bath is likely out of the chase for the title and maybe even a home playoff game.

    Bold Prediction
    West Carter wins their first ever playoff game. The Comets have never moved beyond the first round in postseason play but could do so this year. While the district is up in the air, West Carter has remaining games with Lewis County and Pendleton County, two games they should win. A home playoff win against Pike County Central would have the citizens of Olive Hill jumping for joy.

    District 6
    Best Team
    Belfry. The Pirates have had a rough couple of weeks, but make no mistake, the best team is still on Pond Creek. Belfry (6-1) has struggled with turnovers this season and nearly lost to Lawrence County last Friday night. The playoffs could see a return engagement with Lawrence or a road trip to Russell. Belfry is the eastern bracket favorite but the road isn't as wide and clear as many previously thought.

    Biggest Remaining Game
    Lawrence County at Pike County Central (Friday, October 16). The problem with four team districts is when the two overwhelmingly obvious best teams play each other the first night, it leaves an empty slate of "big games" afterwards. Lawrence (4-3) should have little trouble with Pike Central (3-4), but the Hawks have won three of their last four.

    Bold Prediction
    Belfry wins the state championship. It seems like every season presents reasons to question Belfry but then November comes and the Pirates find their way to Bowling Green. I don't think this is a vintage Belfry club but the eastern part of Kentucky is packed with winnable postseason games. Whichever team comes from the west will have run through a gauntlet (possibly three top-10 opponents) that could leave them wounded. Who better than the Belfry Pirates to swoop in and take home another trophy?

    District 7
    Best Team
    You tell me. Seriously, I don't know. I guess Powell County (4-3), by virtue of consecutive wins over Estill, Morgan, and Breathitt, is now the district favorite, but the Pirates have yet to crack the discussion for Top 15 teams in Class 3A. Powell is having their best season since a Regional Final defeat in 2011.

    Biggest Remaining Game
    Either Morgan County at Estill County (Friday, October 16) or Morgan County at Breathitt County (Friday, October 23). Finishing third or fourth in this district means traveling to either Bell County or Corbin for a first round playoff game. A runner-up placement gets a home game with Casey County. The second seed in this district will likely be decided be these two games.

    Bold Prediction
    With the district winner assured a home game with Jackson County in the playoffs, it isn't really possible to predict a 0-for-4 in the postseason. So let's just predict a whole lot of 14th Region basketball coaches will have all their players in the gym by mid-November.

    District 8
    Best Team
    Bell County. Lost in the wake of Boyle County's 41-7 victory over Bell on August 29 is that Bell has steadily improved. Even a one-game suspension served by coach Wayne Mills for participating in illegal scrimmages hasn't stopped the Bobcats (6-1). But the gap between best team and second best team isn't very wide.

    Best Remaining Game
    Corbin at Bell County (Friday, October 16). The Redhounds (4-3) travel to Log Mountain in an attempt to clear a mountain of their own - Corbin has lost to all three ranked teams it has played. Can Corbin use lessons learned from tough defeats at the hands of Danville, Southwestern, and Mayfield?

    Bold Prediction
    There will be a rematch between Corbin and Bell County on Friday, November 20. Okay, that isn't too bold. But here is the bold part: whoever loses this weekend will win the playoff matchup between these two teams. How fun would that be?
    Last edited by gchs_uk9; Oct 11, 15 at 03:38 PM.

  2. #2

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    Great read

  3. #3
    charlesw88's Avatar
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    Great article as usual. I will disagree on state title winner is all.

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    Good article.

  5. #5
    ATLCat's Avatar
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    I was hard on Bell County early this year but this team is really starting to find their footing.

    Campbell County, TN by no means is some powerhouse, but that is a solid bigger class team that Bell went on the road and did their thing against them. The Wayne County win looks more and more impressive and their only blemish is a loss to Boyle that has basically obliterated every other quality team as well.

    If the Bobcats can beat Corbin this week I fully expect them to represent that Region in the Semi's and with the way Belfry is playing right now I would say the Bobcats have as good of shot as anyone.

  6. #6
    gchs_uk9's Avatar
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    ttt

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