Preps Talk

Edgy's Thoughts: Should teams consider scrimmaging other schools?


Edgy's Thoughts: Should teams consider scrimmaging other schools?

Bring back the scrimmage games.

Okay, I realize that we are already a week into the IHSA football season so this stroke of genius might be a bit too late.

But when I stumbled across a recent Division III scrimmage between Wartburg College and University of Wisconsin-Platteville it came to me.

What happened to the IHSA football scrimmage games against other teams? And why not bring them back?

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I realize that the many recent IHSA football detractors will say that adding a live, full-speed scrimmage is just adding another chance for injury and concussions.

Allowing this kind of competition against someone other than your own team can be beneficial on several different levels.

We preach about the importance of teaching proper tackling and making sure that kids are doing the correct things. But most coaches will tell you that their annual 'Red and Black' or 'Green and White' in-house scrimmage are nothing more than a dress rehearsal, and not exactly a great moment for teaching and evaluation.

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How about allowing IHSA football teams to have one controlled scrimmage game against another school, say, a week or so before the start of the regular season. Allow coaches to be on the field, giving them the chance to teach kids during proper live, full-speed action. Chance for injuries to players? There's no question every time you take the field you have that chance, just like in any other IHSA sport.

Yet if you want to make sure that your kids are tackling properly, why not allow the coaches to have a chance to see and evaluate kids in a live scrimmage?

It seems that the trend is to take away contact days in the name of safety (which no one involved in the sport would argue against), but why not allow a live scrimmage and give the coaches a chance to make the most out of those limited contact times?

63 Days to Kickoff: Shepard

63 Days to Kickoff: Shepard preps reporter "Edgy" Tim O’Halloran spotlights 100 high school football teams in 100 days. The first 75 team profiles will focus on teams making strides across Chicagoland and elsewhere in the state. Starting July 30, we’ll unveil the @NBCSPrepsTop 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 24.

School: Shepard

Head coach: John Rone

Assistant coaches: Andrew Porter, Ron Rivera, Chris Lewis, Ryan McGuire and Clint Connelly

How they fared in 2017: 8-2 (5-1 South Suburban Red Conference). Shepard made the Class 6A state football playoff field. The Astros lost to Marmion Academy in opening round action. 

2018 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 24 @ Leyden

Sept. 1 @ Stagg

Sept 7 vs Hillcrest

Sept. 14 vs Eisenhower

Sept. 21 @ Richards

Sept. 28 @ Oak Lawn

Oct. 5 vs Reavis

Oct. 12 vs Evergreen Park

Oct. 19 @ Argo

Biggest storyline: First-year head coach John Rone. Can the Astros challenge once again for the South Suburban Red conference title under a new head coach?

Names to watch this season: RB/LB Chris Harrison and TE/DE Kevin Graham

Biggest holes to fill: The Astros bring back 10 returning starters (five offense, five defense). Overall depth could also be a concern.  

EDGY's Early Take: Shepard will be led by former Eisenhower assistant Rone, who was able to retain an experienced staff at Shepard. It will help ease the transition from former head coach Dominic Passolano this summer. If the Astros can get off to a good early start they have the overall talent to again make a state playoff appearance in 2018. Can they challenge conference power Richards in the South Suburban Red race?

64 Days to Kickoff: T.F. South

64 Days to Kickoff: T.F. South

Head coach: Bob Padjen

Assistant coaches: Trent Jensen, Jesse Kikkert, Jonathan Hill, Doug Smith, Mike Tisza, Rob Shell and Tim Russell

How they fared in 2017: 6-4 (3-3 South Suburban Blue Conference), T.F. South made the Class 6A state football playoff field. The Rebels lost to Danville in opening round action. 

2018 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 24 @ Thornwood

Sept. 1 vs Julian

Sept. 7 vs Oak Forest

Sept. 14 @ TF North

Sept. 21 vs Bremen

Sept. 28 @ Reavis

Oct. 5 vs Hillcrest

Oct. 12 @ Lemont

Oct. 19 @ Tinley Park

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Biggest storyline: T.F. South has advanced to the playoffs 20 times in the past 24 seasons. Can the Rebels get back to the IHSA state playoff field and make more noise this fall?

Names to watch this season: QB Kamron Clayton LB Michael Smith

Biggest holes to fill: The Rebels will need to replace seven starters on each side of the football this fall. 

EDGY's Early Take: T.F. South head coach Bob Padjen was able to keep the Rebels on a winning path in his first season as Rebels head coach after several years serving in an assistant role. South always has talent. If the underclassmen can step up this summer, look for the Rebels to challenge for the top half of the South Suburban Blue conference race.