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Pass chance to run up final score?

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So the question of the day is whether a high school football team should be allowed to work on certain facets of its game if that means the score might get out of hand.

Take, for instance, the current Columbus East football team, which probably could batter most teams in the state by handing the ball to tailback Markell Jones on every play.

We all know that Columbus East has a dominant running attack. What is not yet known is how the passing game will respond when needed at clutch time. Yes, even the No. 1 ranked team in the state will run into crunch time.


As we have seen the past   10 years, East only has been pushed on occasion in Hoosier Hills Conference play. But there have been those times. What we saw in 2013 was the uncanny ability of East quarterback Alex Cowan to complete clutch passes.

Let’s talk about the other times, though, where the Olympians have the game in the bank by halftime. Should a team up by 35 points work on parts of its game that are less polished? For East, that would mean throwing a bunch of passes.

But we all know that isn’t going to happen if East is the team way ahead.

East coach Bob Gaddis has said flat out that sportsmanship takes precedence even if that means the Olympians will have to work primarily in practice on a passing game that has yet to figure into the game plan.

Myself, I don’t think a team really is running it up until it hits 60 points. That might sound cruel, but I really do think the losing team has a certain responsibility to field a competitive team.

If you are up 56-0 and want to work on a trick play that might make a difference later in the playoffs, I say by all means, do it. Air it out and get ready for Chatard.

Gaddis, meanwhile, chooses to run a dive and work on the trick play in practice. I guess that’s why he is in the Indiana Football Hall of Fame.

A 6-1 week brings me to 12-3 on the season. On to Week 3.

Columbus East 61, Seymour 0 — The Owls have been outscored 111-16 in their first two games and now play the No. 1-ranked 4A team in the state. I’m not going out on the limb here.

Columbus North 28, Bloomington North 27 — A great match-up of two teams trying to get into contention for a conference title. I think the key is going to be the Bull Dogs’ offensive line. I think they can push around the Cougars and set the tone. The fear for Columbus North has to be Cougars’ quarterback Jack Smith, who is special.

New Albany 35, Jennings County 28 — I know, the Panthers just showed me up with a nice win last Friday, and it was the only game I got wrong. Jennings County has come a long way, but New Albany did win this game easily a year ago. It won’t be easy this time around.

Knightstown 21, South Decatur 19 — One of several games that should be very close tonight. These teams have had very similar starts to a year ago, and I think the outcome will be the same, a close game that Knightstown pulls out.

Edinburgh 42, Trinity Lutheran 35 — Can you say “offense.” This one should be fun to watch and might come down to the last team to have the ball.

West Vigo 12, Brown County 6 — The Eagles finally will score a touchdown, but their lack of offense will ultimately let this game slip away.

Jay Heater is The Republic sports editor. He can be reached at or 379-5632.

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