Brian Paglia, firstname.lastname@example.org
I thought I had seen the future.
Correction: I thought I had seen two futures.
There were futures full of playoff dreams and upset victories. Field goal kicks slipping just inside the goal post for the win. Sure tackles and one-handed diving catches. “How’s our side of the playoff bracket look, coach?”
Then there were the futures full of frustration and tumult. Plagues of penalties. Rash of interceptions. Devastating injuries. Players looking for rides to watch local playoff games.
That’s where I was in mid-June. Ater spring practices and the 7-on-7 tournament circuit was complete, I asked two questions — How would a team’s regular season look if everything goes right? How would it look if everything goes wrong? — and answered them.
Now, after a whirlwind of a regular season, I had to look back and see where reality fit in.
So, here’s a look at my best- and worst-case scenarios for each local team made in June and how the regular season actually finished:
Final: 6-4. Losses to Mundy’s Mill (32-31) and Union Grove (34-33) were devastating.
Final: 6-4. Locust Grove loss (40-37) was the surprise on the schedule.
Final: 1-9. Just needed a respectable defense to match impressive offense.
Final: 9-1. That Washington County loss (24-19) looks even better now.
Final: 0-10. Panthers struggled picking up first-year coach Don Williams’ West Coast offense.
Final: 1-9. Loss of senior talent was too much to overcome.
Final: 9-1. But I didn’t see Mario Atkinson emerging at quarterback.
Final: 6-4. One of the few overachieving teams.
Final: 9-1. That Colquitt County loss will only help the Wildcats.
Final: 2-8. Lions were just six points away from going 5-5.
Final: 1-9. First-year coach Leroy Foster had no spring practice to get team ready.
Final: 1-9. Tough first year for new coach Ervin Starr.
Final: 4-6. But I didn’t see Rodney Smith’s breakout season coming.
Final: 2-8. Eagles were 12 points away from going 5-5.
Final: 3-7. Mustangs were two touchdowns away from going 5-5.
Final: 9-1. But I didn’t see a first-ever region title.
Final: 4-6. Fast start (3-1) and tough finish (1-5).
Final: 7-3. Raiders weathered mid-season QB change and all.
Final: 9-1. But I didn’t see Derrick Craine rushing for over 1,700 yards.
Final: 2-8. Wolfpack had a tough schedule; opponents’ record was 61-39.
Brian Paglia covers sports for the Clayton News Daily and Henry Daily Herald newspapers. He can be reached at email@example.com. On Twitter? Follow him @BrianPaglia.