Blogs > Burney's Bytes

Burney's Bytes will focus primarily on the local preps sports scene, but will also touch on some college and pro athletics, mostly in regards to athletes who hail and have played high school sports in Oakland County. My goal for the blog is to be conversational and anecdotal, a more relaxed and free formal take on high school athletics than you see in regular game day coverage.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Let's Play Trick or Treat

In honor of Halloween, your boy Burney wants to play a little game of Trick or Treat related to the prep football playoffs
Here are the rules;
Trick = SORRY, Boyz Burney does not see a long run on the horizon
Treat = MAD PROPS, Boyz Burney foresees trophies being hoisted in the near future
Alright, let's get going;
TRICK – South Lyon, Birmingham Brother Rice, Farmington, RH Adams, RO Shrine
TREAT– FH Harrison, Novi Detroit CC, OL St. Mary's, Clarkston, WL Western, Southfield, Pontiac NDP, MH Madison

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Instant Feedback - Taking It Up a Notch

My thoughts from Saturday's prep football action;
Straight from the COMPLETELY OUT OF NOWHERE department; The Farmington Falcons looked more like the nationally-ranked Farmington Hills Harrison Hawks on Saturday, manhandling PSL runner-up Detroit Henry Ford 49-19. TEAM BECHTEL literally played a perfect game and the score could have easily been MUCH, MUCH worse, since the Falcons played their second string for the final 2 ½ quarters of action. All Burney can say is; WOW!!!!
In Burney's humble opinion RO Shrine senior running back-linebacker Raymond Brown is MVP of the CHSL C-D Division. YEAH, I SAID IT!!!!  He just does so many things on both sides of the ball and is the ultimate X-Factor guy. No wonder he's a three-year starter. Brown had a pair of early touchdowns – a 1-yard run and a 15-yard catch – in the Knights 49-7 lambasting of GPW University Liggett. NO DOUBT, RB will make sure his SHRINERS come harder against Detroit Loyola in the district championship than they did last week versus the Bulldogs in the Catholic League finals.
Happy to see Southfield's Brandon "High-Wattage" Watkins back in TOP FORM – Coming off an injury which has sidelined him the past 2 games, Watkins showed his STUFF in the Bluejays 53-7 stomping of Birmingham Groves, rushing for a 15-yard touchdown in the first half and totaling close to 100 yards of offense in less than a quarter and a half of play.
Another CLASSIC COOP-A-LOOP occurred on Saturday when Novi Detroit CC quarterback Kyle Cooper found his gridiron and hardwood teammate Matt Doneth for a 41-yard scoring bomb in the Shamrocks 56-6 smashing of Northville…….LOVING IT BOYZ!!!! How 'bout a couple more next week for your boy Burney? I don't think that's asking too much
On the subject of BODACIOUS CC BALLERS, who is a COOLER DUDE, the Shamrocks' KOZ MAN, Alex Kozlowski (2 TDs vs. N'ville) or the Oakland Press' resident prognosticator Kosmo the Great? That's a crazy hard call, so I'm going to rule it a draw
You can't stop the OL St. Mary's rushing assault made up of the Parker Bros, Grant Niemic and Keylan Smith, you can only hope to contain them!!!!!!! The Eaglets rock-toting crew combined for more than 250 yards on the ground in St. Mary's 56-6 pasting of Detroit Pershing. C U BOYZ at FORD FIELD for a third straight year in a few weeks!!!!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Instant Feedback - On To The Next One

Commentary from Friday's start of the prep football playoffs;
SUPER job by WL Western head coach Mike Zdebski on Friday night. Despite all the hysteria of the recent hazing incident and the program having to deal with the suspension of five players, TEAM ZDEBSKI was in top form, supremely focused and fresh in their exciting 27-20 upending of Milford. GREAT EFFORT!!!!!
Speaking of sterling performances coming out of Walled Lake Friday – Could WL Central kicker Bryan Maxwell be any more MONEY? My main man, MAD MAX, booted a pair of FGs, including a game-winner as time expired in the fourth quarter of the Vikings 20-17 victory over defending state champion Lake Orion. WOW!!! Homey is CLUTCH with a capital 'C'!!
I'm loving the fact that Birmingham Brother Rice sophomore running back Brian Walker finally at that breakout game Burney knew he had in him, going over the 100-yard mark for the first time in his career (121 yards on 20 carries) and scoring one touchdown in the Warriors' 34-8 defeat of North Farmington. There's only more to come from this strong-legged sparkplug.
I've decided to nickname the South Lyon offense "TROOP TNT", mainly because the Lyons 'O' is led by MR. TNT himself, Derek Talaga, one of the more underrated field general's in the area. Quarterbacking SL to the playoffs for the first time in four years, Talaga threw for 210 yards and connected on a whopping FIVE touchdowns passes in his squad's 33-14 throttling of Holly.
In MH Madison's 35-0 pummeling of Detroit PEC, FAB FROSH Juan Johnson, showed he's not just a fast emerging star on offense as the FACTOR BACK in the Eagles' offense, but that he also stands to be a playmaker on defense for the years to come too – Johnson scooped up a fumble in the first half of Friday's blowout and ran it in for a touchdown. Johnson's big brother is DeAndre Johnson, one of Madison High School's all-time greatest athletes, having led the football program to the state finals in 2006.
With his team's 26-20 upset win over Oxford, RH Adams head coach Tony Patritto has the Highlanders' sitting on the doorstep of a district title in a season many had written him and his squad off on several occasions, only to see them come back swinging again and again. TEAM PARTRITTO is not deep. Starting the season with an all-time low of 35 kids on the roster, because of the normal rigors of playing an OAA schedule, the Highlanders are currently down to under 30 active members of the active roster. In prep football, this should be a killer.  DOESN'T MATTER. It hasn't been. That's how good of a coach Patritto is and how gritty and talented his team's core is. YEAH I'M TALKING ABOUT YOU; Tony Annese, (4 TDs and the game-clinching INT on defense on Friday night) David Jagow, Mike Fisher, Kyle Pelayo, Andrew McBride, Ben Hart and CO!!!!! I've said this before and I'm going to say it again – My man Coach Patritto has won a lot of games in his time at Adams, including a state championship and numerous postseason victories, however, in Burney's opinion, this might wind up being his best job of his career. AND THAT's SAYING A LOT!!!!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Dropping The Ball

The Walled Lake Western football team's hazing incident is a bad situation that has been made considerably worse by the way both the Warriors' football program and Walled Lake's School District have handled the fall-out from it.
As a rule, you need to jump out in front of these type of situations, be proactive and nip the scandal in the bud by taking ownership and addressing it straight on. In my opinion, stonewalling is the absolute worst thing you can do. Sadly, that is what we've gotten across the board from those involved in overseeing the damage control of this already well-publicized incident.

Although a recent e-mail was sent out through the district and to parents of Western students denouncing the incident as "unacceptable,", the company line this last week since the story broke has been to basically say "no comment," to every inquiry by the local media, who are rightfully looking to report on what exactly happened and what is being done to make it right.
All you've heard has been silence. That isn't smart public relations and only serves to let the situation take on a life of its own, which it has - have you been listening to local sports radio lately? 
The hazing itself that took place was wrong. Whether it started out as innocent and good-hearted or not, it ended in a significant crossing of the line.
Behavior like this, whether committed with malice or not, needs to be punished. Accountability needs to be established and a precedent set. This is especially the case right now due to the current climate surrounding high school students in Walled Lake – two kids have died in the past two years as a result boys-being-boys shenanigans going too far – and the growing national focus being shined on bullying in our education system.
Frankly, I am shocked that the school district, at the very least, hasn't issued a public statement saying it will not tolerate this form of football tradition, that bullying and hazing of any sort at the school will be dealt with harshly and an investigation into any possible pattern of past similar activity was going to be immediately undertaken.
Rather, it chose to remain mum and, let speculation to continue to run rampant. Bad move.
I am also disappointed in the fact that from what I understand certain powers that be at Western attempted to sit on this information and sweep it under the rug for the sake of preserving what has been a banner campaign so far on the gridiron, instead of coming forth and teaching the team a lesson in integrity alas the Clarkston forfeit situation last month. My sources tell me that much of the disciplinary action here was initiated by the district superintendent. I personally would have liked the coaching staff and athletic department to have come out publicly – like Clarkston did in September – last Friday, admitting to the situations and announcing the suspensions themselves, as opposed to them being handed down from the school district.
In closing, I will say I like and respect Warriors head coach Mike Zdebski very much. I think he is a good man, who has gotten himself and his program entangled in an unfortunate event. Personally, I hope this incident doesn't wind up costing him his job.
However, I do hope it acts to show him and other school districts and athletic programs around the area how not to handle a situation like this and sparks a change of protocol in some of the ways things are done over at Western from now on.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Pantheon - Part II

Part II
Burney's Top 25 CHSL Athletes of All-Time
1 Dave De Busschere (Detroit Austin) - Played in NBA and MLB. Hall of Famer in hoops
2 Frank Tanana (Novi Detroit CC) - Longtime MLB pitcher who helped hurl his hometown Tigers to the '87 division crown
3 Mike Lodish (Birmingham Brother Rice) - An NFL-record six Super Bowl appearances - with two rings to show for it
4 Chris Sabo (Novi Detroit CC) - All-Star 3B with the World Series Champion Cincinnati Reds in the early 1990s
5 B.J. Armstrong (Birmingham Brother Rice) - Sweet-stroking & heady point guard on a trio of Chi Bulls NBA title teams
6 Brian Brennan (Birmingham Brother Rice) - Superb NFL receiver with the Cleveland Browns in the 1980s
7 Derrick Alexander (Detroit Benedictine) - Quality NFL wideout in the 1990s-early 2000s after college career at UofM
8 Shawn Respert (Redford Bishop Borgess) - An NBA first-round draft pick & one of the best MSU Spartans of all-time
9 Gary Danielson (Dearborn Divine Child) - QB'd his hometown Lions to a Central Division title in 1983
10 (tie) The Paciorek Bros. (OL St. Mary's) - Awesome multi-purpose athletes that both played in the Major Leagues
10 The Seymour Bros (RO Shrine) - Early Fracassa disciples who had NFL careers
11 Jim Essian (Detroit De Porres) - Solid MLB'er behind the plate
12 Willie Burton (Detroit De Porres) - High-scoring guard who led UofMinnesotta to an Elite 8 in 1990 & played in NBA
13 Mark Messner (Novi Detroit CC) - Captained UofM to a Rose Bowl &saw time in the NFL with the Cleveland Browns
14 Pete Mitchell (Birmingham Brother Rice) - Very good NFL tight end in the 1990s
15 (tie) David Bowens (OL St. Mary's) - Pass rush specialist that spent over a decade in the NFL
15 (tie) Maurice Seawright (OL. St. Mary's) - Greatest "could have been" in the history of the CHSL
16 Braylon Edwards (HW Bishop Gallagher) - UofM receiving legend and current NFL'er
17 Steve Morrison (Birmingham Brother Rice) - Standout LB at UofM that started on the "cinderella" Indy Colts in '95
18 Brad Cochran (Birmingham Brother Rice) - Played DB at UofM and with the Raiders in the NFL
19 The Farr Bros. (Birmingham Brother Rice) - Lived up to the family name, first at Rice, then at UCLA, then the NFL
20 Jen and John Shasky (Marian/Rice) - Dominant brother-sister duo on the hardwood
21 Rodney Culver (Detroit De Porres) - Rushed the rock at Notre Dame in college, then in the NFL w/SD Chargers
22 John Wangler (RO Shrine) - This star field general took Bo to his first ever win in the Rose Bowl in 1981
23 Mark Campbell (MH Bishop Foley) - Workmanlike TE that played for the Maize&Blue and in the NFL
24 John McIntyre (Novi Detroit CC) - Superior long-distance marksman that started on very good UofMizzou teams
25 (tie) Neegle Knight (Detroit De Porres) - Took UofDayton to the NCAA prior to NBA career
25 (tie) Mike Peplowski (Warren De La Salle) - Was the big man in the middle of MSU's Big Ten title team in 1990
25 (tie) Bob Kula (Birmingham Brother Rice) - His aggressive play on defense helped MSU win 1988 Rose Bowl

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Pantheon - Part I

This winter the Catholic League will be celebrating its 80th anniversary by selecting its Top 80 athletes of all-time.
Burney wants in on the action.
I've compiled two Top 25 lists. One will be a ranking of the CHSL's Top 25 athletes of all-time and the other will be a breakdown of the Top 25 athletes that I personally saw play in high school.
Part 1
Burney's Top 25 –Catholic League Athletes I've Personally Seen Play
1 Maurice Seawright (OLSM) – Although he flamed out at the college level, Seawright was a dominating two-sport athlete, taking the Eaglets to state titles on both the gridiron (WR) and the hardwood (Point Guard). This kid defined the word dynamic and is a classic tale sure to go down in the "what could have been" Hall of Fame; Pro-grade talent, questionable attitude and behavior
2 Derrick Alexander (Detroit Benedictine) – Alexander was one of the best prep wideouts I ever saw play. He was equally comfortable stretching defenses vertically with his speed or going across the middle and making the tough grab in traffic. On the basketball court, DA was an all-league swingman and defensive specialist. His skills took him to UofM and then on to a lengthy career in the NFL
3 David Bowens (OLSM) – Pure power!!!! Bowens was a beast on the football field and the basketball floor. Recently retired from a 12-year career in the NFL, DB was a force of nature rushing the passer and catching passes from the tight end spot on the Eaglets '94 state title squad. As a hoopster, he was a rugged, yet smooth presence in the post, who made a name for himself as the best slam dunker in Oakland County during the mid-1990s.
4 Kalin Lucas (OLSM) – Simply a great prep and college point guard. Had a slew of electrifying performances in his years running the offense for TEAM PORRITT
5 Braylon Edwards (HW Bishop Gallagher) – "The Bray" could do things on the gridiron I've seen few others ever do. Quite a good basketball player too in his days repping BG
6 Casey Rogowski (Novi Detroit CC) – Led CC to state titles on both football field and baseball diamond. Physical specimen of an athlete and a superior athlete who was drafted by the Chicago White Sox out of high school
7 Andrew Mitchell (Detroit East Catholic) – Other than Durrell Summers, Mitchell was the best small school hoopster to come out of Metro Detroit area in the past 15 years. He was a rock-solid and playmaking floor general and hit a game-winning trifecta at the buzzer to send East Catholic to a state championship his senior year in high school. In college he was an all-conference point guard in college at Kent State where he was teammates with Antonio Gates and led the Golden Flashes into a pair of Sweet 16s.
8 Matt Conway (Birmingham Brother Rice) – Conway is the most naturally gifted hitter I have seen this past decade. He was just so lethal at the dish, you could literally see opposing pitchers break into a sweat when he came up. Currently, MC is tearing up the ACC at Wake Forest and appears bound for a shot at the SHOW
9 Kevonte Martin-Manley (Birmingham Brother Rice) – What a hard worker this kid is!!!! ALL HEART, BABY!!! Outside of Seawright and Bowens, Martin-Manley and Allen Robinson (OLSM) are the two best two-sport studs I've seen compete in the CHSL
10 Lauren Robak (WOLL) – May I present to you Mrs. Fourth Quarter, three straights Catholic League crowns and back-to-back state titles…ENOUGH SAID!!!!!
11 Jon Garavaglia (Southgate Aquinas)
12 Jason Singleton (Southgate Aquinas)
13 Chris Colasanti (Brother Rice)
14 Diallo Johnson (OLSM)
15 Jermaine Gonzales (OLSM)
16 Bob Malek (Novi Detroit CC)
17 Nicole Williams (WOLL)
18 Grant Mason (OLSM)
19 Dylan Putnam (OLSM)
20 (tie) Morgan Trent (OLSM)
20 (tie) Charles Davis (OLSM)
21 Dan Horvath-Justin Gorman (Southgate Aquinas)
22 The Martinez Bros (Warren De La Salle)
23 (tie) Julian Bonner (UofD-Jesuit)
23 (tie) Anthony Sherrell (OLSM)
24 Dion Simms (OLSM)
25 Paul Robak (WOLL)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Euro Invasion

Oakland County has been developing an increasing European influence on its local prep basketball scene.
It started two years ago when Birmingham Detroit Country Day's Adam Zavadil came to town from the Czech Republic and helped take the Yellowjackets to a state championship in 2010.
Now, here comes the new breed. And he's an absolute BEAST on the hardwood.
Specifically, his name is Miroslav Jaksik and he's a 6-foot-10 swingman who is enrolled at Walled Lake Western.
Think Dirk Nowitzki meets Drazen Petrovic…I'm not joking. This is not hype. This is the REAL DEAL HOLYFIELD. Jaksik, known as "Milo" is a MONSTER!!!!!
Top put it as simply as humanly possible – This kid is about to set the county prep hoops landscape ON FIRE!!!!!!
Playing his first two years of high school ball in Canada, this native Serbian has already hit the D1 college recruiting radar and his stock is in the process of going OFF THE CHARTS following a recent set of impressive workouts around the area. Last winter he averaged 25 points, eight rebounds, four assists and three blocks per contest and was selected to play on TEAM CANADA's 16-U squad.
This summer he moved in with his uncle and aunt in Wixom, betrothing upon the Walled Lake Western Warriors and their new head coach Ra'Redding Murray, a gift of epic proportions. Jaksik will be one of the state's top recruits in the Class of 2013 and could very easily challenge the Chosen One himself aka James Young of Troy for bragging rights as best prepster in the OC by the conclusion of the 2012 campaign.
Word of Jaksik's talent is already attracting the big boys in the recruiting game. UofM, Michigan State and Indiana have all made recent visits to open gym sessions at WL Western to scope out this WARRIOR DIAPER DANDY!!!!!
Murray will also benefit from another transfer this upcoming season in 6-4 forward Aaron Primm, who followed Murray from his previous coaching gig at Detroit Osborne, and freshman point guard Jalen Gardner, a ninth-grade floor general expected to be one of the area's best underclassmen. Last year as a junior, Primm led Osborne to a Class B district title.
Don't be surprised if Murray, Jaksik, Primm, Gardner and company take Western to a KLAA championship and challenges for the program's first trip to the Elite 8 in over a decade.
With Zavadil graduating from DCD in May, his shoes as the Yellowjackets resident EURO CAGE FIEND will be filled by 6-foot-9 Robert Ivanavic, a senior transfer from Lithuania who already has offers from more than one mid-major D1 school.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Pairings Party

Comments from Sunday's Prep Football Playoff Pairings
Burney's ABSOLUTELY LOVING the fact that the MHSAA let so many 5-4 teams into the BIG DANCE this fall………MAD PROPS 2 "The Second-Chance Ferry" for descending on the OC Sunday and giving a number of teams (i.e. Farmington, AH Avondale) NEW LIFE!!!!
Playoff draws I REALLY like – Clarkston, Southfield, RH Adams, OL St. Mary's, Birmingham Brother Rice, Clawson, Milford, Oxford, Holly, South Lyon,
Playoff draw I'm not a big fan of – Birmingham Seaholm, Novi Detroit CC, RO Shrine, Birmingham DCD, North Farmington, Pontiac NDP, Birmingham Groves, Troy Athens
IMO It would be kind of cool to see superpower FH Harrison and upstart crosstown rival North Farmington meet up for a D2 district final. Quick reminder; Harrison had lots of trouble with Berkley last year in their district title tilt and NF is very similar and maybe even better than the '10 Bears. If TEAM SCHULTZ aka RAIDERSNATION can find a way past Birmingham Brother Rice – which despite the Orange and Black's 5-4 record would still be a gargantuan achievement – they could be in position to SHOCK THE WORLD!!!!!
I foresee Troy Athens getting their intra-city foes Troy's backs in RD 1 and bouncing Romeo, winners over the Colts in the season opener.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Five For Fighting - Heroic Efforts

Five For Fighting – Prep Performances In The OC From Saturday
1 Kyle Cooper (Novi Detroit CC football) – The CC senior field general was brilliant running the unusually pass happy Shamrocks offense and leading the BIG BLUE MACHINE to a Catholic League title. Burney's main Shamrocks homeboy KC was 10-of-18 passing for 115 yards, while scoring two crucial touchdowns, one a CLASSIC 16-yard 'COOP-a-LOOP in the fourth quarter on third down to senior tight end Matt Doneth that proved the dagger to OL St. Mary's in the CC 21-7 victory
2 Michael Hill (AH Avondale boys soccer) – CAN U SAY CLUTCH?!!!!!! Hill, a senior back-up goalkeeper for TEAM MUCZSYNSKI, came off the bench in overtime to do his best TIM HOWARD impression and lead the 'Jackets to a thrilling win over upstart BH Lahser & the program's first district title in four seasons
3 Kevin Nimmo (Southfield Christian boys soccer) – CAN U SAY CLUTCH part II!!!!Nimmo scored the game-winner on his team's final attempt in penalty kicks in the Eagles 2OT upending of district-favorite Birmingham Roeper….CONGRATS TEAM BROSE!!!  
4 Danny Durkin (Pontiac Notre Dame Prep football) – The Fighting Irish senior signal caller was in TOM BRADY MODE at Ford Field, tossing three TDs in NDP's 38-7 thrashing of AA Gabriel Richard
5 Jake Hall (BH Cranbrook football) – Hall ended the Cranes 2011 season in style, dissecting the Southfield Christian secondary for 275 yards through the air and four TDs in Cranbrook's exhilarating 45-42 win

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Instant Feedback - Celebration Time

Thoughts from Friday night's action on the prep gridiron;
Lots of congratulations and CELEBRATIONS to go around on Friday –
Let's start with THE LEGEND himself, Al Fracassa getting win No. 400, as Birmingham Brother Rice rolled over HW Chandler Park to break a three-game losing streak and keep alive the Warriors chance at a playoff spot
All I have to say about the Clarkston Wolfpack is – Was there really any ever doubt? Burney's main C-Town homeboys Joey Goss and Mitch Baenziger went HAM all over the LO 'D' and rallied their squad back from a late deficit and into the playoffs……HOLLA "Rock Steady" Baenziger and JGoss aka "The GRINDMASTER" aka "GRIMEMASTER G"
And then what about AH Avondale, Novi, Ferndale, Waterford Mott and Rochester, all teams that had disappointing seasons and ended the 2011 campaign on a high-note with a resounding victory to close things out.
Burney likes the Rochester returning corps for next year. Here are some names to watch out for with the Rochester Falcons in 2012;
1.      John Dorshewitz (QB) – Showed nice pocket presence by seasons-end
2.      James Ward (RB) – Shifty and powerful
3.      Manny Mendoza (WR) – Big-time playmaker (3 TDs on Fri) battling injuries in '11
4.      Dametrius Magee (WR) – This slick-footed speedster can beat you in a number of ways, on Friday night he had an 80-yard KO return for a TD
Holly will be raising the program's first league championship in 59 years by besting Ortonville Brandon and knocking the Blackhawks out of the playoff race for the second consecutive season. FEAR THE HORSE!!!!!
Birmingham Groves not only walked away with bragging rights from Friday's takedown of crosstown rival Seaholm, the Falcons also grabbed its first playoff berth in seven years and a OAA Blue crown to boot.
There were a couple of JASON HANSON SIGHTINGS In the OC Friday night – Avondale's Kyle Sroka and Holly's Blake Ordiway, both kicked game-winning FGs in their team's respective wins. Sroka's game-winner came as time expired. Ordiway's came in the fourth quarter of a nip-and-tuck affair. Each had previous game-winners earlier in the fall.
WL Western sophomore QB Kyle Bambard = FUTURE SUPERSTAR!!!!!
On one down note to the evening, I don't know what's happening over at West Bloomfield, but I do know it's not an encouraging sign that the Lakers got a 66-spot put on them by Pontiac, giving up 500 yards on the ground in another blow-out loss. The Lake Show closes the season 2-7, with only one real win – the other via forfeit – over lowly Royal Oak. This is a sad state of affairs for the WB, coming off a 3-6 record in 2010. There are just too many talented and athletically-gifted players in the mix with the Lakers for them to be barely competitive (I emphasize barely).

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Prep Football Picks - Week 9

Picks – THE OC's Top Games
Lake Orion v. Clarkston – C-Town pride shines bright on Friday night!!!!!
TEAM K-Rich 27, LO 23
Novi Detroit CC v. OL St. Mary's – Senior quarterback Danny Clements throws a critical last-second TD to lead OLSM to the Catholic League crown
OLSM 20, CC 17
Birmingham Groves v. Birmingham Seaholm – Maples down their intra-city rivals and ride win-streak into the playoffs!!!
Seaholm 32, Groves 28
Pontiac NDP v. AA Gabriel Richard – "Good Looking" Jake Romeo gets himself a couple of TDs in the Fighting Irish's win at Ford Field
NDP 31, Gabriel Richard 26
HW Chandler Park v. Birmingham Brother Rice – Burney loves him some Rice junior linebacker Luke "The Duke" Cherocchi…..this kid is getting better and better every game and by next season will be a spitting image of his two big bros….AND THAT's SCARY!!!
Rice 30, Chandler Park 18
RO Shrine v. Detroit Loyola – The Knights take home a CHSL crown when Connor Franeck finds Jack Wangler in the end zone in DOUBLE OT……..Francek-to-Wangler is one of the OC's great pass-catch combos and what Burney likes most about them is that they will reunite on the field once again next season as seniors………THAT'S PRETTY SCARY TOO!!!!
Shrine 36, Loyola 33
Southfield-Lathrup v. Southfield – On the subject of great QB-WR connections in the OC, the Bluejays get 4 TDS from senior field general Justin Danzy (2 to "Big Diesel" himself, Ron Thompson, 1 to Leviticus Payne and the other to Trey Walton) and march on to the postseason
Southfield 38, SL 21
Farmington v. FH Harrison – HAWKS=RANGERS, FALCONS=TIGERS……and it probably won't be that close, either

FHH 41 Farmington 24
Oxford v. Oak Park – REALLY? Is there any doubt what's going to happen here? O-Town FACTOR BACK Prescott Line tops the 300-yard mark to finish off his EPIC regular season romp through the OAA

O-Town 42, OP 25
Troy Athens v. Troy – Get busy my main RED HAWKS HOMEBOY Ivan Karchenko!!!!
Athens 27, Troy 20
Holly v. Ortonville Brandon – The Bronchos Pat O' Connor runs wild on the OB defense, racking up another Buck-Fifty and two TDs and TEAM HORSE snares its program's first league title since the Eisenhower administration
Holly 32, OB 24
BH Andover v. BH Lahser – You can't stop Lahser senior captain Nate Cole, you can only hope to contain him!!!!
Lahser 28, Andover 26
West Bloomfield v. Pontiac – Yaktown rolls and Coach Zube finds himself in the thick of the race for OC Coach of the Year!!!
Pontiac 41, WB 23
Lakeland v. Milford – Head coach Pat Fox's first year back on the sidelines leading the Mil-town gridiron gang translates to the Mavs returning to the playoffs with their takedown of the Eagles
Milford 29, Lakeland 25

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Hoosier State of Mind

For the second time this month, the juggernaut Waterford Our Lady of the Lakes girls basketball program has placed a player at the college level.
And this one is going to be a Hoosier!!!
On Tuesday, standout senior combo guard Carlee Cottrell, a starter on the Lakers 2011 state championship team, verbally committed to NAIA powerhouse Indiana Wesleyan.
A few weeks ago, Tori Duffey, another star player for the Lakers, committed to the University of New Hampshire, a Division I school which competes in the American East Conference.
Cottrell averaged 12 points, three assists and three rebounds per game as a junior, garnering all- league, all-district and all-region honors after coming over to WOLL from Auburn Hills Oakland Christian, where she was a two-year starter and all-conference selection in 2010.
This winter she will be the captain of the Lakers Lady Hoop Brigade and will help lead the Blue Cru's journey towards a third straight state title.
Plain and simple, Cottrell's game is as SMOOTH as SILK. While early in her prep career, she was merely an ace outside shooter, the past 16 months has seen a transformation in this STUD HOOPSTRESS's arsenal of moves. During the Lakers run to the state crown back in March, my homegirl CC displayed her newfound versatility and was absolutly KILLING THE COMP taking the ball to the dish and creating for her teammates. This added dimension will most certainly come to full bloom this year and only make her and Lakes even more lethal on the hardwood then they already were…….Now, THAT's DOWNRIGHT SCARY.
I'm thinking Mama and Papa Cottrell should probably check their baby daughter for weapons when she comes home from hooping 'cause this girl is a STRAIGHT ASSASSIN on the basketball floor!!!!!   
Indiana Wesleyan is one of the top NAIA programs in the entire country. In 2007, the Wildcats went a perfect 38-0 and won a national championship. Last season, IW went to the Elite 8.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Green With Envy

Oakland County SHOWED ITS STUFF on the national stage on Saturday.

Specifically, I'm talking about in the Michigan State Spartans gridiron triumph over arch rival Michigan.
THE OC was ON-POINT in the EL for the Sparty football squad this weekend, DOING THEIR THANG and GETTING BUSY all up in the Wolverines grill all afternoon long Saturday in front of a national television audience.
No need to thank us Coach Dantonio, we got your back!!!!
Senior left guard Joel Foreman, a Spartans team captain hailing from Milford, made a mark in the MSU record book on Saturday, becoming the only player in school history to start on four straight teams that beat UofM. PRETTY IMPRESSIVE!!!
The only other times in Sparty history that the Green and White defeated the Maize and Blue four times in a row was back in 1934-37, 1950-53 and 1959-62.
Then, there was Burney'S main OC homeboy Edwin "Rock" Baker, again showing why he is soon to be an NFL first-rounder lugging the pigskin. Baker dazzled the home crowd and bewildered the Michigan defense to the tune of 175 yards and a one-yard touchdown run in the first half of the resounding Spartans' victory.
When he was in high school, Baker was a STRAIGHT MENACE. In both his junior and senior year he averaged 12 yards per carry, putting up a rotound 436 yards in a single game - second most in OC history - against Royal Oak in 2008.
Here is a list of all the OC Spartans;
Joel Foreman (Milford), Edwin Baker (Oak Park), Tyler Hoover (Novi), Ethan Ruhland (Lake Orion), Jordan Sanders (Rochester Adams), Dion Sims (OL St. Mary's), Jonathon Strayhorn (Oak Park), Taylor Calero (Southfield Christian), Kevin Muma (Troy) Tommy Vento (FH Harrison), Bennie Fowler (Birmingham DCD), Niko Palazeti (Novi Detroit CC), Kyle Selden (Waterford Our Lady of the Lakes), Chris Rucker (Birmingham DCD)
Quick notes;
Hoover is a two-year starter at defensive end for MSU
Sanders is the son of Detroit Lions Hall of Fame TE Charlie Sanders
Sims was all-state in both football and basketball with OL St. Mary's
Palazeti was the captain of the 2009 state champion Novi Detroit CC Shamrocks
Fowler started on both DCD's varsity football and basketball squads, helping take the 'Jackets gridiron gang to back-to-back state finals and the school's cage crew to consecutive quarterfinal appearances.
Ruhland captained the Lake Orion offensive line to a district championship as a senior in 2007
Vento quarterbacked FH Harrison to a state championship last year in his first season as a starter under center, throwing for close to 3000 yards and 31 touchdowns
Calero led Southfield Christian to the school's first ever playoff berth in only the program's third year of existence
Muma was an All-American kicker with Troy and as a senior stepped behind center and quarterbacked the Colts to the playoffs after kicking on their final four team the year prior

Monday, October 17, 2011

Prep Football Rankings - The OC Shuffle

OC Top 10
1 FH Harrison – The Hawks are the most talented team Oakland County has seen in the past decade……Yeah, I said it!!!!
2 OL St. Mary's – Jalen Watts-Jackson (CB/WR) is a budding superstar for the Eaglets!!!!
3 Oxford – The most impressive thing about Prescott Line's amazing season rushing the rock is the fact that he literally gets 80 percent of his yardage on yards after initial contact…..Kid's a Blue-Chipper if I've ever seen one
4 Novi Detroit CC – David Houle has done an excellent job filling the shoes as CC's powerback specialist with the Shamrocks' HUMAN WRECKING BALL aka Wyatt Shallman on the shelf with nagging injuries.
5 Clarkston – It's crazy and a bit unfair in this journalist's opinion to think that the Wolfpack could possibly miss the playoffs if they get upset on Friday by Lake Orion
6 (tie) Troy Athens – All I can say is; WHAT A SEASON!!!!!
6 (tie) Lake Orion – With a four-year field general like Sean Charette I don't care what LO's regular season record ends up being the Dragons will still be potential poison in the playoffs
7 Pontiac Notre Dame Prep – TEAM ZIMM just zooming along…..Watch out Gabriel Richard!!!
8 (tie) WL Western – Sophomore Kyle Bambard is a future SUPERSTAR
8 (tie) Southfield – 'Jays WILL rally!!!!
9 RH Adams – Have I mentioned before that Highlanders senior quarterback Tony Annese is a STRAIGHT KILLER on the football field?
10 (tie) Birmingham Seaholm – You can't stop Burney's main Maples homeboy J.D. Hess, you can only hope to contain him!!!!
10 (tie) North Farmington – Most surprisingly dangerous team in the area right now