Thursday, December 5, 2019

Finally, the State Football Finals

As expected, we had a lot of blowouts in the state semi-finals last week.  Trinity beat North Hardin 54-7.  Male beat Tates Creek 48-18.  Covington Catholic beat Bowling Green 28-0.  Johnson Central beat Madisonville 52-14.  The only really good game was Belfry's 15-14 win over DeSales in double overtime.  None of the 11 other state semi-finals was closer than 11 points at the end of the game.  In eight of the 12 semi-finals, the final margin was greater than 24 points or greater.  As we have pointed out before, Kentucky does not have good high school football teams to support six classes of football.  But obviously the KHSAA has some goal that I don't understand, because they keep having these blowouts year after year.

Anyway, now there are only 12 teams left, and we may finally get some competitive games.  Here are your match-ups for this weekend at Kroger Field in Lexington, along with the MaxPreps ranking (all times Central) (private schools in italics):

Class 6A (1 P.M., Sunday, December 8):
(2) Lou. Male (14-0) v. (3) Lou. Trinity (12-2)

Now this should be a great game.  These teams met in the regular season, and Male won 20-17 in double overtime.  I always assume Trinity is going to win any sports contest, but Male is the only school in the state that would have a chance against the Shamrocks.

Class 5A (7 P.M., Saturday, December 7):
(1) Covington Catholic (14-0) v. (6) Lex. Douglass (14-0)

It's been a great year for Douglass, but Male is the only public school in the state that can really give Cov. Cath. a game.

Class 4A (3:30 P.M., Saturday, December 7):
(5) Boyle Co. (14-0) v. (4) Johnson Central (14-0)

On paper, this should be a great game.  Neither team has played a close game all year, and it's very difficult to pick between them.

Class 3A (6 P.M., Friday, December 6):
(10) Belfry (10-3) v. (18) Bell Co. (14-0)

Two mountain teams that did not meet in the regular season.  Belfry has more of a history in the state finals, and they just pulled out a huge win over DeSales, so they would be my pick.

Class 2A (Noon, Saturday, December 7):
(11) Somerset (13-1) v. (13) Mayfield (13-1)

This should be a very good game -- both teams have been dominant in the playoffs.  Mayfield is the only team west of Louisville that's still playing.

Class 1A (1 P.M., Friday, December 6):
(9) Pikeville (13-0) v. (34) Paintsville (11-3)

I give Paintsville a lot of credit for making it this far.  It's particularly impressive when you consider that Johnson Central also has a great team, and that Paintsville dominated a private school -- Kentucky Country Day -- in the semi-finals.  But Pikeville is just too good for anyone in Class 1A.  Pikeville beat Belfry 22-21 earlier in the season, and Belfry is favored to win the Class 3A title.  So it looks as though Pike County will get two state titles, which would be a spectacular accomplishment.


  1. I am for Paintsville, Mayfield, Bell County, Johnson Central, Douglass and Male.

  2. Replies
    1. And people wonder why we have populism in Kentucky.

  3. I think what I'm going to do is mentally treat each of these games as a Bowl Game, and then whoever ends up at number 1 in the final MaxPreps ranking is the State Champion. So Pikeville won the equivalent of the Gator Bowl. Tonight we'll have Belfry and Bell County in the Sugar Bowl. Then tomorrow Mayfield and Somerset in the Cotton Bowl, followed by Boyle County and Johnson Central in the Rose Bowl, and then Covington Catholic and Lexington Douglass in the Orange Bowl. And then on Sunday, we get Male and Trinity in the Fiesta Bowl -- a special Fiesta Bowl, like that year Penn State played Miami for the National Championship.

  4. Here are the state champions for prior years (MaxPreps goes back to 2004):

    2018: South Warren (15-0)
    2017: Lou. Trinity (15-0)
    2016: Lou. Trinity (15-0)
    2015: Lou. Male (15-0)
    2014: Lou. Trinity (10-5)
    2013: Bowling Green (14-0)
    2012: Lou. Trinity (13-1)
    2011: Lou. Trinity (14-0)
    2010: Lou. Trinity (14-1)
    2009: Lou. St. Xavier (14-1)
    2008: Lou. Trinity (14-1)
    2007: Lou. Trinity (13-2)
    2006: Lou. Trinity (14-1)
    2005: Lou. Trinity (13-2)
    2004: Ft. Thomas Highlands (14-1)

  5. Here's the top public school each year from 2004 to 2018, along with their final ranking:

    2018: South Warren (15-0) (1)
    2017: Danville (15-0) (4)
    2016: Bowling Green (15-0) (2)
    2015: Lou. Male (15-0) (1)
    2014: Lou. Male (11-1) (2)
    2013: Bowling Green (14-0) (1)
    2012: Ft. Thomas Highlands (14-1) (2)
    2011: Bowling Green (15-0) (2)
    2010: Ft. Thomas Highlands (14-1) (2)
    2009: Ft. Thomas Highlands (15-0) (2)
    2008: Ft. Thomas Highlands (14-1) (3)
    2007: Ft. Thomas Highlands (15-0) (2)
    2006: Lou. Male (11-1) (2)
    2005: Lex. Henry Clay (12-2) (4)
    2004: Ft. Thomas Highlands (14-1) (1)

  6. Here's the top school west of Owensboro each year from 2004 to 2018, along with their final ranking:

    2018: Mayfield (14-1) (14)
    2017: Mayfield (13-2) (8)
    2016: Christian Co. (9-3) (17)
    2015: Mayfield (14-1) (16)
    2014: Mayfield (14-1) (7)
    2013: Mayfield (14-1) (15)
    2012: Mayfield (14-1) (14)
    2011: Mayfield (14-1) (17)
    2010: Mayfield (15-0) (8)
    2009: Lone Oak (14-1) (7)
    2008: Christian Co. (13-2) (9)
    2007: Fort Campbell (13-2) (10)
    2006: Henderson Co. (10-3) (18)
    2005: Christian Co. (8-5) (19)
    2004: Hopkinsville (13-1) (8)

    1. Mayfield is amazing. It took me a while to get over hating them after Heath, but now I kind of root for them. Sorry they lost yesterday, but I was also sort of glad for Somerset--first state championship ever for them, which surprised me.