The Rick, Week 10 – 2020
By Rick Notari, BDFN
(1538-413 overall, .780 winning percentage)
The P is for Processing….
The 2020 high school football season got even more bizarre this week when the PIAA made tickets for its state championship tournament games available this week online. Now maybe they were last week as well, but The Rick didn’t notice it until this week.
Anyway, what makes it even more bizarre than usual is that the PIAA not only is charging a ridiculous amount of money for a ticket to a high school football game during a pandemic, but they are charging an online PROCESSING FEE as well!!!
If it wasn’t bad enough that a parent, student, family member or friend has to pay $8 per ticket, but they also have to pay a $2.71 processing fee when buying online. And as far as The Rick knows, this is the only way to purchase tickets. There will be no in person sales – at least at Old Forge anyway.
The Rick knows he complains about the PIAA a lot but this is really just nuts. Like The Rick gets it. The online selling of tickets creates an additional expense for the PIAA. So why not just include that cost in the price of the ticket? Sell the tickets for $10 (another ridiculous amount), but don’t tell us there is a processing fee. A PROCESSING FEE!!!
This may be the last Rick’s Six of the year. Four of the teams in the Big-Six are finished for the season, and four of the teams in the Small-Six are also finished. Check back next week. I may change my mind depending on whether any of our teams wins this week. Western Wayne was the big jumper. They moved to No. 1 in the Small-Six after Lakeland upset previous No. 1 Lake-Lehman.
- Delaware Valley (5-1) 1
- Crestwood (8-0) 2
- Williamsport (6-2) 3
- Hazleton Area (4-3) 4
- Valley View (3-2) 5
- Dallas (4-4) 6
- Western Wayne (5-1) 2
- Lakeland (5-0) 3
- Prep (4-1) 4
- Lake-Lehman (7-2) 1
- Old Forge (5-0) 5
- Wyoming Area (5-3) 6
THE RICK’S PICKS (98-20 overall, 37-11 Godfather Games)
May their first child is a masculine child (The Big Boys) 9-0
Central York at Delaware Valley
The Delaware Valley defense is in for a test this week. Central York (8-0) has scored 70+ twice, 50+ twice and has not scored less than 42 points in any of its eight victories this season. The Warriors, who won their first state playoff game in program history last week, welcome the challenge. Linebacker Jason Henderson has lowered the boom on opposing offenses all season. Delaware Valley will need him to do it again. The Panthers feature a pass-happy offense with junior quarterback Beau Pribula at the controls. Pribula has thrown for 1,361 yards and 27 TDs this year and has also rushed for seven touchdowns. Top target, senior wideout Judah Tomb has 25 catches for 452 yards and eight touchdowns. Junior Taylor Wright-Rawls also has eight touchdown catches to go with 279 yards on 18 receptions. Central York, ranked No. 7 in 6A by PennLive.com makes the farthest trip of any of the team in the state this weekend, traversing over 200 miles to get to Milford. The Rick hates long bus rides.
Delaware Valley 34, Central York 30
The Luca Brasi (Toughest Pick of the Week) 5-4
Jersey Shore at Crestwood
It’s been a Cinderella-type season for Crestwood this year. While the Comets were expected to be contenders, The Rick is not sure anyone had them opening the PIAA Class 4A playoffs at home against No. 1 ranked Jersey Shore way back in August. Nonetheless, Crestwood is here and ready to rock. The defense has been outstanding and will have to be once again if they hope to move on to the semifinals. The Bulldogs feature senior quarterback Branden Wheary and senior all-purpose athlete Owen Anderson. Wheary has thrown for 1,400 yards and 19 TDs, while Anderson has a combined 789 yards and 14 touchdowns rushing and receiving. Senior running back Cam Allison leads the ground game with 833 yards and six scores, while junior Cayden Hess is the top target with 42 catches for 609 yards and seven touchdowns. Jersey Shore (9-0) has been tested only twice this year, once by Snooki, and the other time by JWoww. Can No. 7 ranked Crestwood cause a Situation in this matchup of unbeatens? The Rick will let you know after he’s done with GTL.
Jersey Shore 27, Crestwood 26
Don’t ask me about my business (No Rhyme or Reason) 4-5
Riverside over Mid Valley
Riverside quarterback Johnny Gilchrist goes after the all-time career passing mark in Lackawanna County this week in his last game as a Viking. Gilchrist is in the neighborhood of about 200 yards needed to surpass legendary Lakeland quarterback Evan Kraky. Riverside has done everything it could to play a full-season this year to help Gilchrist accomplish that goal. The Vikings will be the only team in District 2 to have played 10 regular-season games this year when the take on Mid Valley. The two teams played an exciting game early this season, with the Vikings outlasting the Spartans. The Rick expects a whole lot of passes in this one.
Riverside 35, Mid Valley 31
Leave the gun, take the cannoli (Easiest Pick of the Week) 8-1
Valley West v. Erie Cathedral Prep at Brockway
Wyoming Valley West has not played a game in almost a month, yet the District 2 Class 5A champions will take the almost 200-mile ride to Brockway High School to take on No. 5 ranked Erie Cathedral Prep (5-2) in the PIAA Quarterfinal this weekend. Prep is a perennial state title contender and is no stranger to playing this late in the season.
Erie Cathedral Prep 45, Valley West 14
Going to the mattresses (A Rivalry-type Game) 9-0
Steel-High at Old Forge
Even before this season became abbreviated, football fans in Old Forge had their sights set on a matchup with No. 4 ranked Steelton-Highspire (7-0). You see in some twisted way, us Blue Devils always find a way to get ourselves motivated, and a matchup and victory over the Rollers would put our team in the Eastern Final. So here we are, a COVID – shortened season and the removal of two weeks from the PIAA State Tournament, and Old Forge hosts Steel-High in their first hurdle on the Road to Hershey. And a high-hurdle it is. The Rollers have put up some points this year, including 50 in last week’s matchup with District 4 champ Muncy. Led by junior wideout Mehki Flowers, Steel-High plays high-octane football, spreading it out on defense with speed at all positions. Flowers is a major FBS prospect, having received 21 Division 1 offers already. He hauled in seven passes for 127 yards and a touchdown last week against the Indians. But Flowers isn’t the only weapon in Coach Andrew Erby’s offense. Senior receiver Damien Hammonds grabbed 11 passes for 255 yards and four TDs last week and senior all-purpose back Odell Greene rushed 24 times for 240 yards and a score. The coach’s son, Alex Erby – a freshman – pilots the offense from the shotgun. The 6-foot-2 quarterback with the big arm went 26-for-35 for 409 yards and six TDs. Those are a lot of numbers for the Blue Devils defense to look at, especially since they have only surrendered 305 yards passing all season. But Old Forge has been no slouch on offense either, averaging 48.4 points per game. The Rick is excited to see a football game that is sure to entertain.
Old Forge 37, Steel-High 30
I ain’t no bandleader (Give Some Respect) 7-2
Wyomissing at Lakeland
District 3 Champion Wyomissing (8-0) makes the trip to Chapman Lake to take on Lakeland in the PIAA Class 3A Quarterfinal. The No. 2 ranked Spartans are a perennial state playoff contender and are familiar playing District 2 teams in the post-season. The Chiefs are motivated to continue their record-setting season and etch their names in the storied history book that is Lakeland football. Maryland-commit CJ Dippre leads a stifling defense while the Spataro brothers – Giovanni and Dominico lead Lakeland on offense. The Rick would love to jump on the Chiefs train, but something tells me this is the end of the tracks.
Wyomissing 27, Lakeland 15
Time to settle all Family business (57-12)
Tunkhannock over Honesdale
Pittsburgh Central Catholic over Eric McDowell
Souderton over Pennridge
Upper Dublin over WC Rustin
Pine Richland over Peters Twp.
Lampeter-Strasburg over ELCO
Thomas Jefferson over Aliquippa
Upper Moreland over Oil City
Danville over Archbishop Carroll
Hickory over Bedford
Central Valley over Elizabeth Forward
Southern Columbia over Richland
Bishop McDevitt over Camp Hill
Beaver Falls over Sto-Rox
Wilmington over Chesnut Ridge
Bishop Guilfoyle over Homer Center
Redbank Valley over Reynolds
Clairton over Jeanette