Well, teams are still surprising those of us trying to predict the outcomes. Luckily I’m still above .500 for the season in 3A at (6-4) right now, but that’s hardly a great percentage is it?
Here’s what stood out to me in Week Two:
• Jackson shutting out Lander. My first thought is that the Tigers must really be struggling or that perhaps Jackson is improving on defense from last year. Maybe both are true, but the Broncs 56-0 win tells me this is not the same team as last year.
• Douglas pulling out a 13-7 win over Cody. This surprises me and also doesn’t surprise me. Star Valley residents are building Fall condos in Douglas we’ve been there so much in the last five years so we know as well as anyone that winning with defense is Bearcat tradition at this point. But I didn’t expect them to hold the Broncs to just one score. I’ve either over-estimated the Cody offense or under-estimated the Douglas defense. I’ll get to see the latter this weekend so that should help clear it up.
• Brandon Fullerton was borderline masterful in Afton. No turnovers, he kept plays alive, Star Valley couldn’t sack him and he completed passes and converted 3rd downs when he needed. I was very impressed. Oh, and Dietrik Becker hitting a 50-yard field goal in Afton with temperatures at 25-degrees? Somebody call Coach Bohl right now.
Alright here’s my picks for Week Three in the Wyoming 3A Classification.
Worland (1-1) @ Buffalo (0-2) – Is it just me? Or are you starting to get the sense that the Bison are rounding back into familiar Buffalo football form. Power running game, stingy defense, timely big pass completions. The passing game is still a work in progress, but they will be much more of a handful than they were last season. Worland ran into a team that likely had a little film on their offense. That always makes things more difficult. The Warriors are also a run-first and run-second team like Buffalo but my considerable gut is telling me the Bison take care of them at home this week. Llama says – Buffalo – 28-14.
Rawlins (2-0) @ Jackson (2-0) – Yes, both teams are undefeated, but I don’t think this game will be close. The Outlaws are allowing nearly 200 yards rushing to two teams that may only win a few games between them. The Broncs are confident. They are at home, and they will have huge rushing numbers this week. Llama says – Broncs 48-6.
Cody(1-1) @ Lander (0-2) – This is always a tough spot. The Tigers are struggling to move the ball and the Broncs are coming off a loss on the road. Expect Carter Myers and his crew to run at Lander early and often unless the Tigers can stop them, and I don’t think they can. Llama says – Broncs (again) – 42-0
Riverton (2-0) @ Powell (2-0) – These are hard to pick because I’ve seen one team and will see the other one. I don’t want to upset anyone we haven’t played but I guess that’s the risk we run. I was impressed with the Wolverine QB, Tristan White the running back and their physicality up front. The aptly-named Casey Savage is a nightmare to handle defensively and made plays in Afton all night long. Powell is winning on emotion and that’s hard to predict. But they haven’t played a Wyoming team that can pass like Riverton can. And if it comes down to special teams? Dietrik Becker is an assassin from long range. I think the Wolverines move to 3-0 in a hard-fought battle. Llama says – Wolverines! – 24-10.
Green River (0-2) @ Torrington (2-0) – Ahh the Blazers. They continue to make me look silly. Well done. I think I have a great chance to rectify the situation this week though. I think Torrington wins big. – Llama says – Blazers – 35-7.
Star Valley (0-2) @ Douglas (1-1) – As always, I will make the case for either outcome because I just can’t objectively pick against my Braves.
Why the Braves Win: Douglas has faced a pair of quarterbacks with a combined 328 yards. Reese Hiibel has more than that by himself so far this year and has been able to spread it around to several different receivers. Cole Critchfield may demand a double-team so that opens it up for others to make plays. There’s no doubt that something’s gotta give with the passing game this week. Douglas allows 59 per game, Star Valley throws for almost 200. The Braves should be able to get some yardage on the ground with Jesse Sanders, thus avoiding the Douglas ability to make them one-dimensional like they have many times in the last five years.
Why the Braves Lose: In a sentence? Because they always have. Star Valley is 0-6 lifetime in Douglas. With six turnovers in two games, it’s hard to believe that the Bearcats won’t make the Braves pay in some fashion for losing the pigskin and may even score defensively. Douglas makes big plays at big moments and on their home field that’s all Star Valley fans have ever known. A final score in the teens is likely and that favors the home defense.
Well, that last paragraph was depressing, hopefully everyone gets through this week unscathed and healthy. Next week, the conference games begin and for some teams a new slate. Make your own predictions in the comment section. Keep it classy please!