One week into season, beware of the FOOL

Published 10:00 am Thursday, August 27, 2015

St. Aloysius and Porters Chapel Academy are terrible and will lose every game. Vicksburg High’s offense will never move the ball, while Warren Central’s defense can’t stop anyone anymore.

After one week of the high school football season, based on the Fan Overreaction Optimization Level (or FOOL for short), all of these statements are true. The FOOL is, of course, a metric I just made up that measures the level of hyperventilation in a given fan base, divided by the square of the hypotenuse of the last thing they saw.

It’s science, man.

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Junk science, but science nonetheless.

St. Al and PCA lost their season openers by a combined score of 66-6. Never mind that one was against a defending state champion with legitimate designs on another title, and the other against a team with twice as many players. The FOOL states that neither team will win a game.

Vicksburg, a team that has dedicated itself to running the football, wasn’t able to run against a Harrison Central defense that put 11 men in the box. Walter Payton would’ve had a hard time gaining yards against that kind of front.

The Gators, of course, found a way to win with defense and by exploiting the one-on-one pass coverage Harrison Central’s defense created.

Warren Central, the team that has led Class 6A in scoring defense the last two seasons, gave up 42 points to Wayne County. According to the FOOL, the Vikings’ run as a Region 2-6A contender is over. Finished. Kaput.

Wayne County, of course, is a very good team capable of scoring 42 points on almost any defense. Warren Central has 15 new starters and will get better as the season goes along, no matter what the FOOL says.

When studying the FOOL, do listen to what it’s saying. Sometimes there is some truth in the message. All four Warren County teams certainly need to shore up a few things to become true contenders. Any FOOL can tell you that.

When the FOOL starts spouting overly negative messages this early in the season, though, beware. It’s been known to be wrong. There’s a lot of ways to measure FOOL and not all of them are accurate.

The more accurate reading is GENIUS. What does it stand for, you ask?

Give me a few weeks, let me see how things shake out, and I’ll have a better answer for you.

Ernest Bowker is a sports writer. He can be reached at 601-619-7120, or via email at

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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