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And the Answer Is...
by Michael Swisher (@michaelswisher)
9/13/2017 3:29:02 PM
posted in: Swisher's Suite

And the answer is....

I posed the question last week and my research staff soon had an answer.

When was the last time the Jenks football program lost four games in a row?

It was a realistic chance of it happening entering last week's Backyard Bowl with Union. Despite it being closer than just about everyone expected, it became reality as Union pulled away for the 59-40 victory.

To be fair, it's only a three-game losing streak for these Trojans. It is, however, the first time Jenks has started a season 0-3 since 1968.

But, for the program, it's a four-game skid. That hasn't happen since 1988 when the Trojans lost in Weeks 6-9 to Muskogee, Broken Arrow, Bartlesville and Union.

That stat is thanks to Jeff Johnson, a Wright City homer who has compiled a massive football database that takes six hours to download on your computer. Johnson pointed out that Wright City hasn't lost four straight football games since 1942 which is akin to saying Dover has never lost a water polo match.


This one's for you, Jacob

I gave Barry Lewis of the Tulsa World props for predicting Bixby's win over Jenks in Week 2. I must also point out that the Oklahoman's Jacob Unruh did the same (his picks just came out after the column was written, so I wasn't aware at the time). 


Speaking of (former) Oklahoman preps writers...

If you're a fan of college football, I definitely recommend you forking over the bucks to subscribe to The All-American, which is The Athletic's college football wing. It's spearheaded by Stewart Mandel, probably my favorite college football writer for a number of years.

I religiously waited for his mailbag to come out each Wednesday on si.com. 

The sports writing world has undergone a lot of changes/shifts/downsizings in recent years, leading to a lot of good writers looking for jobs.

Along came The Athletic, which used the subscription business model and promises no pesky auto-play videos, among other things.

Well one of the writers Mandel chose to join his staff was Jason Kersey, the proud Noble Bear (he'll be the first to tell you Noble has arrived because it's got an O'Reilly's).

Kersey has shot up the ranks since he was fielding calls for The Oklahoman. He was promoted to be one of the paper's high school writers and that's when I got to know him.

He's infamous among his peers for audibly noting how quickly a baseball state tournament game was going while sitting in the Shawnee press box, a stupid, stupid rookie mistake.

The rest of us gave him the equivalent of a verbal flogging, but it was too late. The game went into extra innings and had to last at least another 2 1/2 hours after his ignorant statement and it put the rest of the games way behind schedule.

All because of Jason.

Jason did an excellent job covering high school sports and eventually landed the OU beat and won a national award for his work there.

He then spent a year working for SEC Country covering the Arkansas Razorbacks (no doubt his punishment for his Shawnee press box miscue) and has now landed alongside Mandel at the All-American.

Jason sent me a text during the Alabama-Florida State game a few weeks back, one he was covering along with Mandel (a small step up from that Shawnee press box). 

According to Jason, Mandel had just mentioned - aloud - how quickly the game was going. Jason recounted his Oklahoma tale and prayed they didn't suffer the same fate.

Luckily for all involved - especially those on newspaper deadlines - it didn't happen.


I see you...

Millwood - Good Lord, Falcons. Millwood moved to 2-0 with a 67-7 thrashing of Douglass in the Soul Bowl, played this year at Langston. Now, the jury is still out on how good (or bad) Douglass may be this year. BUT, this is a big football rivalry and Millwood led 46-0 at the half. Class 2A is loaded with some really solid teams, but the defending champion Falcons may be too much to overcome yet again.


I'm watching you...

Yukon - That's how you break a 14-game losing streak. The Millers hadn't won since October 2015, but went on the road to knock off Norman North 38-31. The Timberwolves entered the game ranked No. 5, but couldn't figure out how to stop Yukon's flexbone offense, which accounted for 404 rushing yards. Is Yukon on the way up? The Millers have a four-game homestand with one telling game. They host Broken Arrow on Sept. 22. Make noise in that game and we'll definitely listen.


Sulphur - Multiple 3A coaches told me prior to the season that Sulphur was a sleeper. The Bulldogs have spent the last two weeks dominating some excellent teams from smaller classes (Wynnewood and Davis). This week comes the real test when John Marshall - my pick to win 3A - comes to town. The Bears pulled away to win 51-21 a year ago, but the atmosphere will be decidedly different in southern Oklahoma this week. You can bet Sulphur will be buzzing all week and rocking on Friday night. This is a chance for Sulphur to announce its re-arrival among the 3A elite.


Let's talk baseball

Fall baseball and fast-pitch playoffs begin next week as we'll see those seasons wrap up in October.

If you look at the Class A and B rankings for baseball, you'll see the usual list of suspects (the bluebloods, if you will) at the top: Silo, Okata, Dale and Roff in Class A and Red Oak, Lookeba-Sickles and Leedey in Class B.

However, lurking at No. 5 in Class B is a team you don't necessarily expect to be there - Drummond.

The Bulldogs are sitting at 14-7 with several of those losses coming by narrow margins to other highly-ranked teams.

They also have wins over Leedey (No. 3) and Vici (No. 4).

The team made a huge splash in the spring of 2016 when it upset Cimarron to reach the Class B state tournament.

It was doubly-sweet for head coach Jared Swart, a Cimarron graduate who had previously left the Blazers program to take over in Drummond.

Though not quite on the same scale, that moved made about as much sense to outsiders as when football's Ron Smith left Owasso for Bartlesville several years back.

But Swart has made his mark in a short time at Bulldogs and it appears Drummond will be sticking around.

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