4A #9 Knox Central vs. 3A #5 Ashland Predictions/Updates

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  • Knox Central

    1 14.29%
  • Ashland

    6 85.71%
  1. #1
    DragonFire's Avatar
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    4A #9 Knox Central vs. 3A #5 Ashland Predictions/Updates

    Knox Central looks to start another strong run after going 10-4 last season en route to a state semifinal finish, falling to Johnson Central 59-20. That was one week after Ashland fell to the same Johnson Central team by a 50-14 score, ending a 11-2 campaign where they lost both times to Johnson Central. They've escaped their tormentors with the drop to 3A. This is one of the marquee matchups in the state - who wins?
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  2. #2
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    The last time Ashland travelled this deep into the mountains, they forgot to play the first half against Harlan County and got handled by three scores in the season opener two years ago. I don't know if the three and a half hour bus trip had anything to do with it, but it certainly doesn't help. I could really see this one going either way. I'm kinda leaning toward the Tomcats' speedy backfield and defense getting the job done. Pittman and Hester can flat out fly and defensive coordinator Chad Tackett always seems to put a quality unit on the field.

    This is a great opener for both teams.

  3. #3
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    This looks like the Harlan County game all over again to me. Not making excuses, just feel like Knox will roll in this one. Much like after the Harlan County game, Ashland will be fine going forward though.

  4. #4
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    @JDEaston, I know it's hard to say before they've even played a game, but the personnel of this Ashland team is giving me strong 2015 vibes. That team had a dynamic 1-2 punch in the backfield (Baker and Brown), a big, talented offensive line, and were basically starting from scratch at the QB position. This year's team checks off all three of those boxes. Are you picking up that vibe too, or is it just me?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by DevilMayCare View Post
    @JDEaston, I know it's hard to say before they've even played a game, but the personnel of this Ashland team is giving me strong 2015 vibes. That team had a dynamic 1-2 punch in the backfield (Baker and Brown), a big, talented offensive line, and were basically starting from scratch at the QB position. This year's team checks off all three of those boxes. Are you picking up that vibe too, or is it just me?
    I feel mostly the same, though I haven't had a chance to see Ashland at all yet this year. The main difference I see between this team and that team is the line play should be a bit better this year than it was then, which is a big plus when introducing a new qb.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JDEaston View Post
    I feel mostly the same, though I haven't had a chance to see Ashland at all yet this year. The main difference I see between this team and that team is the line play should be a bit better this year than it was then, which is a big plus when introducing a new qb.
    Hopefully for Ashland's sake they develop some sort of consistent passing game. They were very one dimensional four years ago and it hurt them in the end. I haven't seen Jake Gregg since he was a freshman and I don't know what the receivers look like, but I could definitely see this team keeping it on the ground more this season than the last three.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by DevilMayCare View Post
    Hopefully for Ashland's sake they develop some sort of consistent passing game. They were very one dimensional four years ago and it hurt them in the end. I haven't seen Jake Gregg since he was a freshman and I don't know what the receivers look like, but I could definitely see this team keeping it on the ground more this season than the last three.
    They will most certainly be keeping it on the ground more, imo, I just don't see anyway around that. The line play and defense will be solid though so if they can at least pass well enough to keep the defense honest they should have a solid year.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by DevilMayCare View Post
    Hopefully for Ashland's sake they develop some sort of consistent passing game.
    This will be Ashland's achilles heel. Ashland will struggle in the passing game. I wouldn't even be surprised if they line up in a wishbone or some form of the I formation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ram View Post
    This will be Ashland's achilles heel. Ashland will struggle in the passing game. I wouldn't even be surprised if they line up in a wishbone or some form of the I formation.
    If that comes to fruition, it would be a dramatic change of pace from what we've seen from Ashland in the last few years. But then again, Tony Love doesn't strike me as a "system" coach. He seems like the type of coach who will tailor Ashland's offense to its personnel. Who knows what we might see out of the Tomcats this year. I can definitely envision some Wildcat stuff with Pittman and/or Hester.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ram View Post
    This will be Ashland's achilles heel. Ashland will struggle in the passing game. I wouldn't even be surprised if they line up in a wishbone or some form of the I formation.
    I agree. It makes sense for Ashland to use Hester and Pittman as a tandem though. It can work really well, imo, as long as they can keep the defense honest. Those two are a threat to score anytime they have the ball in their possession.

  11. #11
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    Knox Central 7

    Ashland 0

    5:27 1st quarter

  12. #12
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    7-7

  13. #13
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    14-7 Ashland at the end of the 3rd.

  14. #14
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    14-13

  15. #15
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    Touchdown Panthers, extra point is no good.

    Ashland 14
    Knox Central 13

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