Making last-minute football predictions

Published 8:58 am Thursday, August 18, 2016

We’re just about 24 hours away from the start of the 2016 high school football season. That means there’s just enough time to sneak in a few last-minute predictions. Some of these are serious. Some are not. Some are mini-rants disguised as predictions.

I’ll leave it to you to figure out which is which.

• The Vicksburg Gators will win at least one playoff game. The Gators have always had a decent offense and a tissue-thin defense. That started to change last year, when its defense gave up a touchdown less per game than in 2014. There’s a lot of talent returning on both sides of the ball — not just this year, but next year as well — and Vicksburg is about to make a big-time leap into the upper echelons of Class 5A. It’ll start this year.

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4 It will be approximately 300 degrees at the start of Friday’s first Red Carpet Bowl game between Warren Central and Oak Grove. At least one poor fan sitting on metal bleachers will spontaneously combust.

• Speaking of the Red Carpet Bowl, it’ll be a couple of good games. Warren Central and Vicksburg (which plays Wayne County) both have something to prove. This can be a springboard for them to go on to big things.

• At some point this season, a certain Vicksburg Post sports writer will mutter a few choice words under his breath about a high school marching band. I’m all for school spirit, and the bands do a great job keeping the crowd pumped up. But would it kill you guys to be a little quieter during the postgame so I don’t have to shout questions into someone’s ear?

• A cheerleader will get confused and chant “De-fense!” while her team is on “Off-fense!”

• A record-breaking 3,489 clichés will be uttered in postgame interviews. If that gets the ball rolling, I’m just glad I could be a part of our success.

• Our annual “Playmakers” preview magazine will be in today’s paper. More of a shameless plug than a prediction, but I’m running out of steam here. Read it, digest it, enjoy it, and inform yourself about the upcoming season. Heck, buy an extra copy for a friend. Or just buy it for the pretty pictures, the rosters and the schedules. See you at the stadium.

Ernest Bowker is a sports writer for The Vicksburg Post. He can be reached 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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