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Bay City Western's offense will need to keep pace with Mark Ingram and the Flint Southwestern Colts

Is It Offense or Defense That Wins Bay County High School Football Games?

A Quick Look at Stats -- And What They Might Mean to Friday Football

September 13, 2007       Leave a Comment
By: Kevin Leahy

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EDITOR'S NOTE: In GRAFF HIGH SCHOOL GRID REPORT games on Friday, Western hosts Flint Southwestern Academy, Central is home to Mount Pleasant, Garber entertains the Frankenmuth Eagles, John Glenn is at Standish-Sterling, Pinconning travels to Ogemaw Heights, and All Saints is at Buena Vista. New sports columnist Kevin Leahy looks at the race in the Saginaw Valley.

The only vital statistic in the tenth week of high school football is the wins and loses column. That"s the one that tells who plays and who stays come playoff time.

When I was handed my assignment to write a football article based on three weeks of stats in the Saginaw Valley League, there was a recurring theme across seven pages of numbers.

The three undefeated Valley teams; Western, Mount Pleasant and Flint Southwestern showed up prominently across the top of every category.

When you pore over the numbers of how teams win in the valley it becomes more clear:

A balanced offense that gains yards against defenses is like Bay City Summer festivals - often and diverse. There are a couple of top Valley performers that after three weeks defend that assumption.

Mark Ingram of Flint Southwestern leads rushers with 618 yards and eight touchdowns and Tyler Mills of Mount Pleasant leading receiver with 358 yards and 6 touchdowns. You know what happens when you assume anything.

Although both teams are undefeated, Mount Pleasant's attack comes at defenses equally efficient through the air and on the ground; Flint Southwestern is all Mark Ingram running the ball. Once films get passed around the league, defensive coordinators will key on these top performers and Southwestern's one-dimensional attack will become easier to defend, Mount Pleasant will rely on their equally proficient platoon rushing and receiving attack.

This is the week our Bay City teams will have to figure out those two offenses. Western will be doing all it can to contain division one prospect Ingram while Central's defense will be seeing there own division one prospect in William Arnold quarterback for Mount Pleasant who is completing 63% of his passes and has thrown for 9 touchdowns.

Both teams will have their hands full defensively, but their keys to victory will be their offenses. From the stat sheet it looks like our teams are poised to take on these powerful offenses; Central is number two in team defense giving up just 284 yards rushing and 310 passing while Western is third giving up 313 rushing and 306 passing.

Flint Northern is actually tops in team defense yet they are winless in the Valley because their offense is second to last. Offense wins games in The Saginaw Valley League.

The top two offenses in the Valley will be in Bay City Friday night with number two Western getting 62% of their 1055 yards on the ground while sixth rated offense Flint Southwestern rides their horse Ingram for 82% of their offense.

Bay City Central has not yet figured out how to utilize all their speed and talent this season on offense and are mired in seventh place in team offense getting 60% of their 730 yards on the ground while Mount Pleasant's number one rated offense being a bit more balanced gives the nod to their passer getting 55% of their 1169 yards through the air.

"Hopefully this week our offense keeps up against Mount Pleasant and we come out with a win," said Tim Marciniak, Principal at Bay City Central.

We will review the statistics again in a few weeks and determine if the offense is where you win games in the Saginaw Valley League, but until then go to one these games Friday night at 7:00PM and see for yourself.

Is it offense or defense that wins games? 11:21

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Kevin Leahy

Kevin Leahy has an interest in all sports-related activities at the Local, State and National levels. Looking for the inside story? Leahy's got it . . .

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