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Johnson Central vs. Belfry Predictions/Updates


Pirates vs. Golden Eagles  

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  • Poll closed on 10/29/2021 at 11:00 PM

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Pond Creek braces for impact as JC and Belfry size each other up

Records: JC (7-2), Belfry (4-5)

BGP Ranking: JC (#3 in 4A), Belfry (#5 in 3A)

Series History: Belfry leads 28-9 all-time

Table Setter: Fans of old school, smashmouth football should have this game circled on the calendar every year. Watching Belfry and Johnson Central do their dance is like stepping into a time machine and witnessing Barry Switzer's Sooners and Tom Osborne's Cornhuskers go toe to toe in the 80s. They're among the last of an increasingly dying breed. Arguably no game in the state this week will result in more ice packs on Saturday. Physicality is woven into the fabric of both programs by their respective masters of the craft.

This series was all Belfry for over thirty years, before the late Jim Matney, one of the aforementioned masters, got JC over the hump in 2009. The zenith of this series occurred in 2016, when two of the greatest teams ever assembled in EKY waged war until Belfry emerged with a 21-16 win. Both went on to claim state titles that year. The Golden Eagles have taken control of the series over the last three meetings, winning all by multiple scores, including a running clock victory two years ago at Belfry's CAM Stadium. It's the worst defeat the Pirates have been dealt on that turf.

Turning the page to this season, Johnson Central looks primed to continue their control of the series. They've just completed their district slate, crushing everything in their path by an average score of 43-7. JC's backfield is as deep as you'll find. They haven't missed a beat since losing top back Mason Lawson for the year. Each week someone new steps up, be it Zack McCoart, Chase Price, Carter Conley, or Matt Crum. It always helps when you have one of the biggest, strongest offensive lines in the state opening holes for you. The right side of that line is occupied by UK commit Grant Bingham and human road grader Owen Lemaster.

Belfry isn't small by any means, but they'll be at a slight disadvantage in that area. One advantage the Pirates will enjoy, is the big play capability of Isaac Dixon. No one player on the field this week will have more eyes on him than the Mr. Football hopeful. He went for 100+ yards and two touchdowns against JC last year. He may need a career night to put Belfry in position to win this game. The Pirates were equally dominant in their district run this year, boatracing their way through the last four games after an 0-5 start.

Even by their usual ground and pound standards, both teams are extremely one dimensional this season. JC and Belfry have combined to put the ball in the air 27 times. This will be trench warfare at its finest.

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I am not so sure I wouldn't sit Dixon and a couple other key players to make sure they are 100% heading into November.

It is going to be a major uphill battle and with the current RPI I am not sure how much it really changes Belfry's fortunes even if they did win. Most likely it doesn't change anything at all, at most it wont change your Round 3 pairing but maybe where it is played.

On the flip side, a key injury to a key player with belfry razor thin depth chart could doom any chances for a deep run.

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, ATLCat said:

I am not so sure I wouldn't sit Dixon and a couple other key players to make sure they are 100% heading into November.

It is going to be a major uphill battle and with the current RPI I am not sure how much it really changes Belfry's fortunes even if they did win. Most likely it doesn't change anything at all, at most it wont change your Round 3 pairing but maybe where it is played.

On the flip side, a key injury to a key player with belfry razor thin depth chart could doom any chances for a deep run.

 

 

 

I was just thinking about the RPI impact of the game. Coming into this game Belfry is 14th in 3A and Johnson Central is 4th in 4A.  It looks as if Belfry has little to gain in the RPI and their path is pretty much set even with a win over Johnson Central. Johnson Central still could gain some ground in the RPI with the win over Belfry. With the chance of gaining some ground in the RPI I could see JC really come out in this game trying to prove a point. From what I’m told JC is healthy and should be playing with a full roster. Does anyone know Belfry’s status? I’m hoping it’s an injury free game and both squads take home the gold in December. 

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On 10/25/2021 at 8:54 AM, ATLCat said:

I am not so sure I wouldn't sit Dixon and a couple other key players to make sure they are 100% heading into November.

It is going to be a major uphill battle and with the current RPI I am not sure how much it really changes Belfry's fortunes even if they did win. Most likely it doesn't change anything at all, at most it wont change your Round 3 pairing but maybe where it is played.

On the flip side, a key injury to a key player with belfry razor thin depth chart could doom any chances for a deep run.

Circumstances - be it pre-existing injuries or tactical self preservation - seldom allow these two to really get after each other in the manner most fans would like to see. As you well know, this game has a tendency to fall short of the hype, with 2016 being a rare exception. You can't blame either side, but especially Belfry this year with the way they're finding their footing in the 3A picture.

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13 hours ago, DevilMayCare said:

Circumstances - be it pre-existing injuries or tactical self preservation - seldom allow these two to really get after each other in the manner most fans would like to see. As you well know, this game has a tendency to fall short of the hype, with 2016 being a rare exception. You can't blame either side, but especially Belfry this year with the way they're finding their footing in the 3A picture.

True. Almost wished they played every year on Labor Day but I’m sure they play in Week 11 because no one would want to play either team this late in the year. 

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It's now 21-0 JC. Matt Crum takes it in from 24 yards out.

6:21 in the 2Q

Still a lot of football to go, but I don't know that Belfry has what it needs to claw out of this hole.

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