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October 28, 2012

RH100 Notes: Holy War shakes up rankings

RANKINGS: View the updated RivalsHigh 100

Dallas Jackson is the National Columnist for Rivals.com. Email him your comments or story ideas to DallasJ@Yahoo-Inc.com and follow him on Twitter.

A week after comparing the national title fight by Cleveland (Ohio) St. Ignatius to that of the Florida Gators in this space, the pair shared a similar fate, losing in their respective rivalry games this weekend.

Turnovers and mistakes sealed the fate of Florida against Georgia in the World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail party, while the same sentence was handed down to St. Ignatius against Lakewood (Ohio) St. Edward in The Holy War.

St. Edward capitalized on three St. Ignatius turnovers as well as a blocked punt late in the fourth quarter to earn a hard-fought victory, 20-13.

St. Edward will move from No. 29 to No. 5 in the RivalsHigh 100, while St. Ignatius will slide from No. 3 to No. 6 when the poll is released Monday afternoon. The two will likely meet in the Ohio Division I playoffs for the right to advance out of the Region and into the state semifinals.

St. Ignatius head coach Chuck Kyle knows his team had plenty of chances to win the contest.

"We made some mistakes that gave them field position, and you can't do that," Kyle told the Cleveland Plain Dealer. "But give (St. Edward) credit. They played a nice ball game. We had the lead, made a couple of mistakes and that was it."

St. Edward quarterback Ryan Fallon threw for two touchdowns in the final quarter, turning a seven-point deficit into a seven-point victory. He finished the contest with 191 yards on 16-of-31 passing with the two scores and also rushed for a team-high 70 yards on 19 carries.

It was a 34-yard pass with just over 10 minutes to play in regulation -- on a flea-flicker no less -- to Anthony Young that tied the game. A blocked punt set up the final 4-yard strike to David Dowell with just over four minutes to play in the contest.

St. Edward safety and Iowa commit Solomon Warfield told Rivals.com that the win was gratifying but that it was far from a completed season.

"It is a new season for us," he said. "After we finish these 10 games, it is a new season. We are going to start off strong and working like it was our first game."

St. Edward earned the top seed in Region 1 and will face Mayfield (Ohio) High in the first round next weekend.

St. Ignatius, which was paced by running back Tim McVey and his 191 yards on 32 carries, will be the No. 2 seed in the Region and take on Youngstown (Ohio) Austintown-Fitch.

WIN NO. 600: While Summerville (S.C.) High has not been nationally ranked since the middle of the 2009 football season, ignoring milestone victory No. 600 by coach John McKissick would be an obvious mistake.

The 86-year old McKissick is the all time leader in football victories regardless of levels and leads his closest competition, J.T. Curtis of current top team in the nation River Ridge (La.) John Curtis Christian, by 88 victories.

This past weekend McKissick led his team to a 37-21 victory over Summerville (S.C.) Ashley Ridge and was carried off the field by his players.

Currently in the middle of his 61st season of coaching -- all at Summerville -- McKissick has had only two losing seasons.

McKissick's most famous former player, Cincinnati Bengals WR A.J. Green, caused the only major change to the Summerville play style during his time on campus as McKissick switched to a pass-heavy offense to accommodate his skilled player.

Now back to a 70-percent running package, as opposed to the 70-percent pass that was used for Green, Summerville will be taking on undefeated Bluffton (S.C.) High in the season finale next week.

TRINITY TUMBLES: The 2011 RivalsHigh 100 National Champion Louisville (Kent.) Trinity football program dropped its first game in 33 contests this weekend to then-No. 62 Cincinnati (Ohio) Moeller. And for the first time in nearly two years, the Shamrocks will fall from the Top 25, dropping from No. 12 to No. 38.

Moeller and Trinity traded scores in an offensive explosion, but Trinity was never able to overcome an early deficit and fell, 45-42.

The teams combined for 887 yards and converted on 13 of 20 third down opportunities.

Trinity quarterback Travis Wright threw for 379 yards and five scores. Shamrocks receivers James Quick and Reggie Bonnafon combined for 19 receptions and 277 yards as well as four of the touchdowns for Trinity.

Quick set a new state record with 273 career receptions in the loss.

Moeller has alternated wins and losses each of the last seven weeks, falling to Cincinnati (Ohio) St. Xavier, Cincinnati (Ohio) Elder, and Lakewood (Ohio) St. Edward but defeated Louisville (Kent.) St. Xavier, Cincinnati (Ohio) La Salle, Indianapolis (Ind.) Cathedral and now Trinity.

Moeller will move from No. 62 to No. 42 and join a cluster of teams that includes Cincinnati St. Xavier and Trinity.

Playoffs begin for both teams this week, and final rankings will be dependent on the results they produce in the final months of the season.

UNBEATEN TEAMS BREAK INTO RANKINGS: There will be six new teams entering the RivalsHigh 100 this week, and five of the six will be undefeated teams making their first appearance in the national rankings.

Lake Forest (Calif.) El Toro will enter the rankings for the first time ever at 9-0. The team checked in as the No. 7 team in California and No. 58 nationally. It will be immediately tested this week against No. 49 Mission Viejo (Calif.) High.

Greenwood (S.C.) High has been a nationally ranked team but will be making its first appearance this season as a 10-0 squad and as the No. 3 team in South Carolina, leaping over Rock Hill (S.C.) South Pointe, Rock Hill (S.C.) Northwestern and York (S.C.) High.

York (S.C.), on the back of a 31-17 victory over then-No. 36 South Pointe, will move into the rankings at No. 70. York is the lone team to enter the rankings with a loss this week as the 8-2 program is wrapped up in a bundle with South Pointe and Northwestern as all three hold places in the rankings.

Upland (Calif.) High has been on the fringe of the rankings this season but makes a move into the RivalsHigh 100 at 9-0 and as the No. 8 team in California, leapfrogging ahead of Santa Margarita (Calif.) Santa Margarita, Ventura (Calif.) St. Bonaventure, and Corona (Calif.) Centennial. Upland stakes its claim as the No. 76 team in the country.

The top team in Indiana moves back into the poll as Indianapolis (Ind.) Lawrence Central downed Indianapolis (Ind.) Warren Central in the first round of the playoffs moving to 11-0. The team takes over the No. 99 spot in the RivalsHigh 100 as Michigan was the latest state to lose its representation this season.

Finally, Murfreesboro (Tenn.) Siegel enters the poll at No. 100 with a 49-0 victory over Smyrna (Tenn.) High. Siegel added victories over other traditional powers Murfreesboro (Tenn.) Riverdale and Murfreesboro (Tenn.) Oakland to finish its regular season 10-0, but it was the victory over Smyrna that separated the Stars from Brentwood (Tenn.) Academy as the No. 4 team in the state.

The six will be replacing previously ranked teams: No. 41 Lilburn (Ga.) Parkview; No. 82 Mission Hills (Calif.) Bishop Alemany; No. 89 Kahuku (Hawaii) High; No. 98 West Chester (Ohio) Lakota West; No. 99 Zeeland (Mich.) East; and No. 100 Muskegon (Mich.) High.

KEEP AN EYE ON ... ... Hoover (Ala.) High as it moves into the playoffs.

The top-ranked team in Alabama has had two straight tough outings, and while the team is still ranked as the No. 10 team in the RivalsHigh 100, it has not impressed and begs the question: Did Hoover peak too early?

The Bucs -- without five starters -- struggled in a 14-0 victory over Adamsville (Ala.) Minor two games ago and followed up that performance with a 28-10 victory over Northport (Ala.) Tuscaloosa County in which the team trailed 10-7 entering the fourth quarter but rallied for a victory.

This week Hoover will host Opelika (Ala.) High before it starts a playoff push.

With Mobile (Ala.) McGill-Toolen, Montgomery (Ala.) Carver, Auburn (Ala.) High, Mobile (Ala.) Davidson all playing elite football at points this season, any of the quartet could prove to be troublesome if Hoover does not come ready to perform.

ON HIS SHOULDERS: Just get it to Akia Booker.

That was the apparent play calling mentality of No. 33 Duncan (S.C.) Byrnes in its 51-41 shootout victory over rival Roebuck (S.C.) Dorman.

The 6-foot receiver filled the stat sheet, scoring five touchdowns with 184 yards rushing on 17 carries as well as hauling in five passes for 93 yards.

Booker was called on to make more plays this week as Dorman was expected to play a two- or three-high looks on defense in an attempt to limit what quarterback Shuler Bentley could do through the air.

The back-and-forth battle was still in question with under three minutes to play. Dorman was trailing 44-41 with the ball but fumbled deep in Byrnes territory.

On the ensuing drive, Booker broke free on a 34-yard run to seal the final score and keep Byrnes as the No. 2 team in the state.

ON TAP THIS WEEK: As playoffs get rolling across many states, there are plenty of teams that will have a couple of easy victories before serious contests pick back up.

That said, there are still plenty of games to pay attention to this coming week, headlined by one of the most difficult first-round playoff games in the country: No. 17 Cincinnati (Ohio) Colerain vs. No. 41 Cincinnati (Ohio) St. Xavier.

The two played earlier this season and Colerain won a 31-28 decision at St. Xavier. Prior to that victory, Colerain had lost its last five decisions to St. Xavier including the last two years in the playoffs when St. Xavier ended the season for Colerain, 28-15 in 2011 and 24-23 in 2010.

The Ohio battle is not the only game between ranked teams as there are two other intriguing games in California with No. 40 Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco playing host to No. 79 Ranch Santa Margarita (Calif.) Santa Margarita and No. 49 Mission Viejo (Calif.) High welcoming No. 58 Lake Forest (Calif.) El Toro.

Other ranked teams in action against nationally relevant opponents include: No. 7 Kingsland (Ga.) Camden Country traveling to play Valdosta (Ga.) Lowndes; No. 14 Concord (Calif.) De La Salle heading out to play San Ramon (Calif.) California; No. 18 Galena Park (Texas) North Shore squaring off with previously ranked La Porte (Texas) High for a district title; and No. 74 Hampton (Va.) Phoebus will host its rivals Hampton (Va.) High.


Dallas Jackson is the High School Football analyst for Rivals.com. Email him your question, comment or story ideas to DallasJ@Yahoo-Inc.com and follow him on Twitter.



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