Well, it’s said you can’t keep a good man down. So with that having nothing to do with ME specifically, I am back due to some help and encouragement to do so some added insight to the IFL.
It’s been an interesting beginning season so far. New teams to the league like The Hitmen, Hurricanes, and Blaze, Wildcats and Outlaws making large impacts, The Generals and Wolfpack to 2010 returning on a mission, despite reports they aren’t equal to their undefeated records, and Cutters and Mustangs not quite where they’d want to be. While some other like the Panthers and Force despite their records, still play good clean competitive football with few W’s to show for it.
But you already know all that, so after film review and data gathering, let’s pick some games…
Generals @ Cutters
Bloomington, IN. 7pm
This is the rematch of last year championship, but as we know, this will not be a similar game. While many feel the Generals have yet to be tested, I truly believe it is due to that there simply isn’t anyone who CAN test them right now. It isn’t just sheer numbers, its talent, coaching and the still bitter taste of coming up about three minutes short of last years Championship game that keeps them where they are. Hibbelien is still the best QB anyone will see, but can be human in some spots. Yet and still, with J.T callin’ shots, if you head to a game, don’t you blink. If you do, it goes from 0-0 to 21-0.
And a massive O line and Defense that attacks instead of defends helps quite a bit.
The Cutters are a shell of their former team, defensively, but have showed some real signs on offense.
They can score in bunches, and can make plays when they have to, but at times, have been very flat.
Not many know exactly what’s wrong with the Cutters, and I am sure no one gives them a fighting chance in this game.
I’ve seen the film, so I know they have the fight, but I also don’t give them a chance.
Outlaws @ Wildcats
Brazil, IN. 8pm
I like this game because it’s a test of two very good, defensive squads.
The Wildcats have truly come along recently and have really made some plays down the recent stretch. The D line has been stuffing the run and getting after/to the opposing QB, while Mike R. has the offense very steady.
They can and will pound you all game, but they CAN throw when needed.
The main thing I love about this team is that if you truly want a real definition of the word TEAM, look these guys up. Especially when something goes wrong, you’d never know it by watching their sideline.
Great Job Mr. Rindone!
The Outlaws are a team that in my mind, still haven’t played as well as they can.
They have the tools to do it, but miss executing on O here and there.
Seriously, a few plays/calls their way, and this team is easily 4-1. Their D is actually one of the toughest in the South, and I think the Wildcats will find that out this week.
They are somewhat reminiscent of the old blitz team (still active) that basically smashes you in the nose whistle to gun all game, and watches you bleed while doing it.
They also are one of the four teams in the entire IFL who has pitched a shutout this year.
But in the end, I think Landry and the Cats claw their way out of this tough slugfest.
Blaze @ Hitmen
Jimtown, IN 5pm
This may be a much more interesting game of the season. The Hitmen are – as Supa said – a team that seems to play to the level of the comp, and it was said by many of you “The Hitmen will not win another game this year.” when they were 3-0.
Well, they are 4-1 now, and this is off the heels of a 34-9 demolition of the Mustangs.
The teams’ secondary is far underrated and had the turnover in the plus four column last game and kept the short field most of the game, and was able to effectively throw on a recently opportunistic Mustang D.
Quite simply, they played out of their minds, and it showed.
The Blaze escaped - yet again last week in OT on the Canes.
That game can be looked at in two way, they played not as well, or The ‘Canes brought more than they expected.
I saw the film, it was a little of both.
The Blaze are yes, a very, very good team, but are scary to be a fan of come 4th qtr. Several times, they seem to almost quit after going up early and allowed teams like the Wolfpack, Mustangs and most recently; the Canes all be within striking distance near the gun.
Now they face a team that is on a high, and at home as well.
They will need tailback #15 to be at this best, and keep the ball away from the Hitmen Offense, and try to keep their QB in the pocket and pressured.
Many of you think this is an easy pick. I assure you, it’ not.
With both teams clinching a playoff spot already, and the tag of “worst 4-1 team” fresh in their minds, look for the Hitmen to come out drooling for respect here.
However, this IS still the Blaze, and they can null afford to let this team hang around too long. My guess is that they have learned by now that they won’t.
-Call me Mr. Chicken – But I will add that I reserve the right to be wrong here. Mr. Euriga and Co. have done well….
Wolfpack @ Shamrock
Elkhart, IN 7pm
The Wolfpack find themselves in the comfy position - undefeated and facing HFA through the north playoffs, despite the myriad of injuries they have faced.
Keeping a steady diet of run and short passes on offense…as simple as this diet is..its keeping them fat on the wins, despite everyone knows its coming.
That’s just good football, Mr. Marsh….
The defense is also just as steady, and running is mission impossible on these guys for the most.
Ask those who’ve played them.
Petrie keeps the airways safe, but the great play from #31 was not expected, and needed.
The times couldn’t have fallen harder on the Rock, who hasn’t seen a win yet.
Dissention on the ranks hasn’t helped, and Mitch, try as he will, isn’t getting allot of assistance with unity.
Despite his and a select few other best efforts, the grass OR Shamrock wont get any greener this weekend.
Hurricanes @ Mustangs
Bourbon, IN 7pm
Two huge surprises came from this match up, but at season start, one would’ve thought the records would be the other way around.
The Hurricanes came in new, untested, unknown, then immediately welcomed with a hard beating from the Generals. Then boom, we all looked up, and there they were at 2-2, but having took all the tough competition to the wire, toe to toe and not backing down from any of the perennial powerhouses, and nearly pulling it off against the favored Blaze.
Overall, great Job Big John and Dave and Hurricane team. No one saw you guys coming…
The Stangs came in favored and made curious enough into driving to see them in their opener.
Unfortunately, there wasn’t much to see in the opening day loss to the Wolfpack.
But then they put up 50 in 2 quarters against the panthers.
But then gave up 29 in one half against the Blaze.
But then score 22 in the second half.
And this has been their theme all year.
The Hurricanes can go deep anytime they like and have an extremely talented group of Wr’s and offense that is as fast as the team name. The Defense will certainly pick you off if you are careless, and Shepard, Outlaw, Ca=orpe and Wilson don’t make it easy for any QB OR WR..
The truth is – ‘Stangs have not yet played 4 quarters of football in a single contest all season and Mike W. has been plagued with uncharacteristic picks, despite a sparkling O line.
Once this is righted, there’s a different team here.
This game is for the final playoff spot, and it is in Bourbon where the Stangs haven’t lost yet this year.
This suggests Mike will have “the voice” of the city going, and I think this is the 1st time you will see 4 quarters of Mustang football in what I am calling my upset special of the year.
That’s all folks. As I always said, we never mean to offend any team we pick for or against.
All you have to go play, but myself, SR and Supa have to bust out the crystal balls and see it before it happens…..Try THAT sober!!
(Actually, I don’t recommend anything done sober except driving, marital vows and pick up lines in bars after 2am)
Hope all are safe, injury free, healed and if you get nothing hurt but your feelings this weekend, consider the alternative!
Seriously, whoever said “It’s just a game, never EVER played football!!
(or my wife at monopoly!)
Ya gotta love this game!
Welcome back Vince. Hope to see more of this threwout the rest of the year.
( not sure about the upset tho). Just sayin....
Haha I don't disagree with most Of the things u have said or predicted Sir. Very well put.. Thanks for the respect shown to us HITMEN. we may have to put a whoopin on the BLAZE this week so that way next week u predict us to win.. Haha.
Vince, I would just like to say thank you for giving us some respect. When we put this team together all I want to do was put a GOOD program together and be competitive. I'm not saying to are the best at our game right now and ALL my players should know that but this being a first year team we aren't doing to bad. Looking forward to playing the Blaze this weekend and I'm sure it will be a great battle.
PS. We love being the underdog!!
no you guuys do not like being the underdogs. your guys cry about it every day. even in the post right above yours hitmen28 is crying about it. you will get beat agaisnt the blaze, killed against the wolfpack and get destroyed by the generals. and get knocked out of playoffs first round. i cant wait to see the score of the general agaisnt you. 56-0 and shut your team the hell up. but keep up the trash talking, all you do is motivate you. and everybodt hates you cause your crybabies not cause your good
I have been around semipro football a for almost 11 years, and seen many a team rise, fall and everything inbetween.
I played linebacker for 7 years also, and on two good and not so good teams.
Not being a member of the Hitmen or the like, I will say that yes, they deserve respect, as Much as the Blaze, Wilcats, Generalts and all IFL teams, or semi pro football for that matter.
And I will add that when a team, a NEW team like the Hitmen come along, get verbally blasted because they won games and happened to be 3-0, and STILL go out and get a good win against a quality football team, if it were you, wouldnt YOU feel a bit of respect was earned? Especially when you you previously disrepected?
And when you disrespect a player, owner or team, you disprespect the league itself because we all are out there doing the SAME thing.
Think about what some say about what we do.....some say we are crazy to play for free. "What if you get hurt" was all I heard my first 4 years.
You know, I never worried about that. I am assured most you arent either. If you were, you'd be out playing badminton or bird watching.
I will do my picks, as requested, plus I enjoy it..But I will ask that when I do, keep it clean.
I do not care if you wanna talk some smack...when I played, I did my share...But I ALWAYS did it with respect.
Nah, I'll stick to the game I love, the refs who are doing thier best, and the opposing players that without them, I'd be home playing with............my Xbox360... Yeah...my box360...
Enjoy the week men.
Vince, well said. We as players play for the love of the game, why all this hatin. New or old teams, we all have one goal, 11 players, and except for some(heart). We have a great opportunity while we are still young enough to play, to complain so much. It could be worse, semi-pro football may never exist......that would be a sad day..
I have been trying all season to stay off my soap box. It hasn't been easy and even some players would argue the point that I have been in the center of controversy. Sorry Guys.
People love to have a pat on the back. It makes them feel like they have accomplished their goals, moved in the right direction, or even corrected something that was wrong.
People also like a challenge. Making something happen that many people said couldn't is an accomplishment far greater than one that can be done easily.
It never ends. Someone says something negative about a player, a team, or a coach and 2 things can happen. The person or team that the negative or challenge is directed at either stands up and prove them wrong, or they stand up and try to accomplish changing of opinions by verbally abusing their accuser. I'll take a player or a coach who busts their butt to prove themselves over someone who can run their mouth and not back it up. Or even worse, someone who shouts how big and bad they are, while hiding in the dark. I have never been affraid of a barking dog. But I get a little nervous around one that shows his teeth and is not on a chain.
Most of you get to still play the sport you love. Some of you get to coach some of the most wonderful atheletes that this area has ever know. Many are true legends in our world of semi pro football. And then their are those like myself, and Vince who sit back and wonder, "what if I had 1 more year".
Stop the hating. Get back on the field and thank the good Lord above that you can still walk on the field, let alone run on it.
The fun thing about this great game is come sunday we will all know what the truth is and all the talkin goes away for a couple days with some wake up calls here and there good luck to all teams this weekend and lets all get some....