In the spirit of Gambrel's idea to get together a webpage for all the teams in the state, I found it useful to put together a hierarchy of the best teams in Indiana. I've been working on this one since August and am happy to clarify any questions- or rebut any arguments you may have.
1. Hoosier Hurricanes
Not much you can say here- this team got better as the season went on and was among the best in the nation by the time it was all over. Speed, speed and then some speed. This is the best group of athletes in the state, and a team that knows how to execute.
2. Evansville Vipers
This was the only team to beat the Hurricanes in 2005, and despite the poor showing at the end of the season- could have beaten almost every other team in the state on a bad day. Look for this team to be back in a big way next season.
3. Fort Wayne Flyers
You can make a great case for the Flyers to be in the #2 spot, but their youth and relative inconsistency tells me that we've not seen the best of them yet. Besides the token loss to the Vipers and losses to some of the best teams in the region, this team dominated- and would be a clear favorite over EVERY team below them on this list.
4. Lafayette Lions
Though they have yet to solve the playoff riddle, you've got to take Brian and the Lions over most every team they play every week. Well coached, disciplined and deep- this team is good enough to intimidate most other teams right off of the field.
5. Circle City Soldiers
This Soldiers team quietly had the best season in recent memory, and did so with a lot of young talent. This was the best running game in the state, and it should return intact for 2006.
6. South Central Broncos
The champions of the IFL have proven me and lots of others wrong. A balance between a solid offense and defense could keep them at least in the game with most of the teams above them on this list.
7. Indiana Mustangs
Those that do not play in the MCFL will be surprised by seeing the Mustangs this high on the list. Anyone who saw their brilliant moments in 2005 will understand why they are here.
8. Madison County Pirates
Despite the late season slide, the Pirates featured one of the best defenses in memory- some of the most talented skill players in the state. Coaching, too, gets them into the top 10.
9. Kosciusco County Mustangs
The Mustangs find themselves here because of the end of the season run- they are capable of beating just about any team when they are clicking. A passing attack that rivals the Flyers, and one of the best systems around.
10. Indiana Titans
This team was very close to the CIB, and despite having lost twice to them, they match up better against most teams on this list. They are young in some crucial spots, and with more experience, could well crack the top 5 next season.
11. Central Indiana Bears
This team featured almost as much heart as they have talent- and that is saying quite a bit. The Bears had some exciting moments and in general overachieved in 2005- but when they get deeper, look out!
12. Hendricks County Generals
The Generals have all the right pieces, but fell short of expectations this season. They are not far from greatness, and perhaps things will be better next season.
13. Lagrange County Longhorns
The Longhorns have a solid core of dependable, talented and hardworking athletes, but could not find the rush defense or pass offense this season. A few new athletes should get them over the hump in the competitive IFL next year.
14. West Central Wildcats
This team had an impressive sophomore campaign, and fielded a tenacious defense and an efficient rushing game. Though they are not deep, they figure to be the toast of the MFL for years to come.
15. Grant County Scorpions
The hellish preseason benefitted this team- flat out. They beat the Wildcats twice, but could not close the deal in the end. This team will only get better- and for the rest of the teams in the MFL, that is bad, bad news.
16. Lake County Steelers
This team likely performed worse relative to expectations of any team in the state. Not for lack of leadership, the Steelers suffered from penalties and turnovers and chronic small numbers. Things can only get better in 2006.
17. Randolph County Cougars
Zeb's team overachieved in 2005 by bringing the pain on every down and creating plays for themselves. Though the team lacks the talent of most other teams and the numbers of most every team outside of the MFL- they had a decent season. No clue what next season holds.
18. Delaware County Chargers
Earl's crew finished in a place close to what was expected, but had some bright moments this season. Despite having lost a lot of talent to the Pirates, the team fielded a hard nosed defense and a determined offense. Perhaps 2006 will be the time when Earl finally mines the city of Muncie for some talent.
19. Adams County Patriots
It is not for lack of planning or effort that the Wayne and his Pats are at the bottom of the list. Chalk it up to having a tough first year in a very small market without much experience. I have faith that this team will get much better, and do so quickly.
There it is, gang. Now that our season is over- let the bickering begin.
I like that supa! here's an idea...a lot to ask, but still a good idea. we all know your busy, and it takes a lot of time to do your predictions....but here's a thought, how about including a power poll that would change weekly. Create a system that ranks teams game to game. much like high school rankings. IT's easy to say that a bigger team with a much harder schedule than that of a smaller team would be ranked higher. Examples...USC-Fresno State,
Ben Davis-West Noble. I don't know how you would do it, but when you check the high school rankings, you always see a 3a team in the mix with the big 5a schools. food for thought.... "Da Supa Poll"
I would have to toss in the Mercer Co. Cougars somewhere in there. After all they did play to a 7-1 season, just couldn't get past the playoffs.
Though the Broncos didn't play them this season, I know from last year how good these guys are.
Patty's 2 Cents
patty they are not in Indiana . Alzheimers setting in?
that may be a possibility over the long term, but I will have to get my team of mathematicians on it- assigning values to that many teams in that kind of closed statistical structure is beyond me.
thanks for the thought- power rankings would be a nice thing to add- and ultimately - to argue about.
Supa, I thought you were smarter than that! I don't play for the team anymore but the Indiana Mustangs at full strength would beat the South Central Broncos at full strength by 20 points. Come on!
I predict the Broncos at full health would win by about 135-0 or somewhere close in that range hahahahaahaha Just making convo.
I apologize for not having addressed this one in the past. I'm not sure if you saw the Broncos this season, but your suggestion that the Mustangs are 20 points better is a little hard to imagine.
There is plenty of evidence during the course of the regular season to support this conclusion, but one needs only to consider who would have won a game head to head at the end of their respective seasons-- and I think it is pretty clear that the Broncos were better.
There is no doubt that the MCFL is a better league- but head to head and based on their respective "resumes"- the Broncos are the better team.
Who have the Broncos beat that is any good? I don't mean that in a sarcastic way, I just don't know their schedule. Have they beat anyone outside of the IFL?
Keep in mind, COL destroyed every "AA" team in the region last year, and the Mustangs playing with 5 missing starters, at the end of THIS season, lost on a last second field goal on the road. I highly doubt the Broncos could do the same.
The Mustangs also took the nationally ranked, King's Comets down to a last second play to end that game too.
The only bad loss the Mustangs had all year was the game with Detroit, but come on, it's Detroit.
Seems like a pretty decent resume if you ask me. I don't understand your reasoning, Supa.
supa, since alot of the teams on this list are likely to be in the indoor tourney, do you plan to attend, or maybe offer up some predictions when and if there is a bracket available.
Are non confrence schedule was Lafayette Lions CI Bears Miami Valley Warriors.We won all of them X-cept Lions it was cancelled at half time we was down 6-0. Two of those teams went to there league Title game so I would say we could match up well with alot of teams in Indiana.
I believe the broncos where as good as the players they added on last year after another team folded and rosters were supposed to be set. There is a team that this year will beat S.C. Broncos in that league but I will let the play of that team speak for its self....
Yes i and a few others will be playing but we will see if the two matchup against each other if they do i will let you know.
HAHA Well see Greg. Broncos just letting everyone know for the IFL season next year. BACK 2 BACK for the broncos haha
Broncos had a team they struggled with last year and that team has improved ten fold for next year like i said we will let our game speak for its self. I do figure from what i have seen that we will meet up twice again.
You are with the pirates then I take it.I like the pirates and have respect for them so I hope you play with them and will see u next season.