Meet Rock Springs, your Class 4A favorites.
Meet Cheyenne East, the team that’ll play the Tigers in the 4A title game.
And meet Week 4 in Class 4A football, a perfect microcosm of the 2009 season in which anything is possible, no one is a favorite and all 10 teams in Wyoming’s big-school football division are legitimate threats to win a state championship.
Both Rock Springs and Cheyenne East won their first games of the season on Friday — Rock Springs by a 17-14 overtime tally over Kelly Walsh in Casper, East in a 21-14 victory over previously unbeaten and second-ranked Cheyenne Central in the Capital Bowl.
It’s a classification where no one is safe. Along with Central, the only other undefeated team in 4A, Gillette, lost on Friday. The Camels never got any offense going and lost at home for the first time since 2004 in a 23-14 loss to Sheridan in the Energy Bowl.
Meanwhile, the last two winless teams — East and Rock Springs — beat ranked opponents.
Don’t even try to compare scores in this division. It’ll make your head hurt.
Laramie beat Evanston 24-17 in overtime on Friday. Two weeks ago, Natrona beat Laramie 38-7 in Laramie. The week before that, Evanston beat Natrona 28-7 in Casper.
Sheridan beat Green River 34-21; Green River beat Kelly Walsh 27-20; Kelly Walsh beat Sheridan 42-20.
There are a ton more examples, but…. ow. I’m going to quit now.
What’s this all mean, then?
It means nothing in 4A can be classified as an upset.
It means no team can be considered the favorite.
It means no team can be counted out.
Nothing is surprising, nothing is shocking, nothing is unexpected and nothing is predictable.
Yours truly went 1-4 picking 4A games this week; I only missed the picks on two other games in the other four divisions combined.
Sheridan, Cheyenne East, Rock Springs and Laramie all earned mad props this week, and Natrona nearly made it 0-for-5 for me but came up just short in a 14-7 loss to Green River.
It’s an absolutely crazy year in 4A. You can’t read too much into any one game — because if you do, next week will throw your theories into a tailspin.
The best you can do is take it one week at a time, enjoy the ride and don’t let anything surprise you.
Just remember that when you’re watching Rock Springs and East play each other in the state championship game.
The other two teams to earn mad props this week were a pair of 1A teams: Riverside and Lingle.
Lingle earned mad props by topping Lusk 49-20 in yet another impressive offensive showing. The Doggers’ offense has been one of the most consistent in 1A — and that’s a good thing when you’re topping 40 points per game. I’ll cop to this: I was one of the four voters statewide to give Lingle a No. 1 vote in last week’s wyopreps.com 1A-11 poll. And yet I picked Lusk. Either way, I thought this game would be closer than 49-20, and Lingle proved it deserved that No. 1 vote with its 29-point victory.
As for Riverside, the Rebels ratcheted up their defensive effort to beat Burlington 28-0 in a game that may well end up deciding a playoff spot. The game was likely for the No. 4 spot out of the 1A West — Cokeville, Wind River and Rocky Mountain are likely slotted for the top three spots, and Riverside’s win on Friday is a huge step forward to the No. 4 spot — or maybe something higher.
Other than that, I was perfect in my picks — got ’em all right in 3A, 2A and 1A-6 man. And in that, some other interesting stuff stood out:
The 2A West has clearly separated its haves from its have-nots. Four teams — Big Piney, Greybull, Lovell and Kemmerer — are unbeaten in conference play at 3-0. The other four — Pinedale, Lyman, Mountain View and Wyoming Indian — are all 0-3 in league action. The Greybull-Lovell game next week reigns as the biggest one in a division where the four playoff qualifiers might already be decided….
Midwest also took a big step forward to be the team to lose to Guernsey in the six-man championship game. The third-ranked Oilers beat second-ranked Hanna 32-20 in Midwest. Of course, the top-ranked Vikings still loom over the entire division; Guernsey won again on Friday, beating the Natrona freshmen and sophomores 59-19 to join Midwest at 4-0….
Who didn’t believe me when I said Torrington was for real? Torrington 40, Wheatland 6. That Week 8 game against Douglas just keeps getting bigger and bigger for the ‘Blazers, but Rawlins, Riverton and Buffalo would love to spoil Torrington’s success in the next three weeks…..
Don’t look now, but Powell is a dangerous team….
Rocky Mountain has played in nothing but shutouts — three victories to open the season, and last night’s 31-0 loss to Wind River….
Don’t forget about Cokeville. The Panthers have given up six points this season. Six. That is incredibly impressive for four weeks, no matter who the opponent is.
What caught your eye this week? Post a comment below and let’s talk.
This week: 25-6 (81 percent). This season: 114-27 (81 percent).