I've received a few emails regarding the Northwestern-Lakeland question.
GIve us your thoughts America...or at least Florida.
Here's one favoring Lakeland and another for Northwestern:
Northwestern Get's My Vote For #1
I would have a very hard time voting a team that gave up 42 points number one even if the game went into 2 overtimes. Northwestern beat a very stubborn Lake Brantley team that lacked a good passing game. But I grew up playing high school football in Miami and played college football. I have never seen a High School team as skilled at every position like NW High! If the U of Miami lets that NW quarterback get out of this town next year they need to pack and go with him he is awesome. The Dolphins could use that kid! Ok maybe that's taking it a little far. But I do think coach Smith should be considered for the FIU job what do you think?
And a vote for the Dreadnaughts:
I am tired of hearing about Northwestern being better than
Lakeland, or that they may be able to beat them. It never stops. There has always been, and apparently will always be those who think they can beat
Lakeland just by looking at the way they play other teams. Yet, when they line-up on the field they soon realize it is not as easy as it looks from the stands, or on TV. Lakeland has played many teams (STA, Mainland, Kathleen, etc.) that are just as talented as them and/or Northwestern, with better quarterbacks, however, the result is always the same; Lakeland Wins! The mind-boggling thing is this,
Lakeland has a simple run-oriented offense that every team knows about, but is still unable to stop. What is even more amazing is the fact that this run offense scores just as fast as any passing offenses. Furthermore, on the other side of the ball, they have a defense that can create and capitalize on turnovers, as well as special teams.
Now, I will outline my argument against Northwestern. The fact that NW is the first school to win a
Florida state title without leaving its own county, or city for that matter, says it all. I think it is ridiculous that any team would consider themselves for a national title, or think that they have a legit argument for the state’s all-class title, when at best; all they have proven is that they are “City Champs”; with the exception of the championship game against Lake Brantley, they basically played the same sorry (Miami) teams in the playoff that they blowout during the season. Therefore, how can they consider themselves to be the all- classification state champs? In addition to that, they play in 6A, which everyone in the state knows is the weakest classification, even more so before the 1A and 2A split. I mean, how competitive can that classification be when the Southern bracket comprises of teams in the Greater Miami/Ft. Lauderdale Area, and the Northern bracket is the rest of the state, particularly Sarasota, Orlando, and Jacksonville area. They don’t even play the traditionally good teams in their area during the season, like STA, Monsignor Pace, Chaminade-Madonna,
Deerfield Beach, or
Washington Booker T. Yet, they want to call out
Lakeland, give me a break. Northwestern is just a cheap imitation of Belle Glade Central and you saw what happens to a team that just relies on raw talent without good coaching or discipline in South Carolina.
Now my argument for
Lakeland is this, they played a schedule that not only included a national power, but they also played competitive teams from 3A, 4A, 5A, and 6A (talk about all-classification). Secondly, they played the traditionally top teams in their area, Lakeland Kathleen and Lakeland Lake Gibson, and just for kicks, they play Tampa Hillsborough in the Kickoff Classic (though cancelled this year due to weather) and Bradenton Manatee (5A semi-finalist) in their spring game. The only reason they don’t play Armwood is because Armwood would rather not play them (anymore), if you check the history books of the late 80’s and 90’s you will see why. Thirdly, they played a schedule of which teams representing different areas of the state, Tampa, Daytona, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Kissimmee, Port St. Lucie, Venice, and had they not played in Ohio they would have played Cape Coral. In addition to that, the team NW played in the final was in no way comparative to the one
Lakeland played, as was the case in
Lakeland played St. Xavier and De La Salle played an Elder team that finished the season (6-4). However, that’s another issue altogether. Lastly,
Lakeland beat more state ranked and higher Beef O’ Brady Top 25 ranked teams than NW, also many teams
Lakeland beat had significant wins over good teams, and only lost to other good teams.
· STA (12-2) (beat Coconut Creek (11-2), Atlantic (10-2), & Manatee (9-5)) only lost to
Lakeland & Deerfield
· Mainland (13-1)(beat Madison Co (10-3) & Bartram Trail (10-3)) only lost to
· Kathleen (9-3) (beat Miami Monsignor Pace (9-2) &
Cocoa (9-2)) only lost to
Gibson & Hardee (11-2)
Gibson (10-3) beat (Kathleen & Winter Haven) only lost to
Lakeland twice &
Tampa Riverview (8-2)
Winter Haven (9-3) (beat Armwood (11-2) & Bartow (10-4)) only lost to
Tampa Plant (15-0, 4A Champ)
· St. Xavier (10-2) (beat St. Edwards (12-2)) only lost to Lakeland & Colerain (13-1) All national competition
Kissimmee Osceola (7-3) only lost to
Orlando Edgewater (10-2, 6A #1 at the time)
Ironically, the only trash on Lakeland’s regular season schedule was Venice, George Jenkins, St. Lucie West Centennial (who held their own against Lake Brantley which only scored 10 point on them while LHS score 38 in the 1st half.) and the two garbage teams from Miami (Norland & Dr. Krop). Moreover, no team in
Miami beat Norland or Dr. Krop as bad as
Lakeland; these two teams were actually competitive in
Miami, go figure. Well that’s my position on the subject; I would love to hear a rebuttal for “Da West”.