Michael Murphy’s five takeaways from Week 7 of the high school football season:
Shake-up in the Scenic City:
McCallie seemed to be firmly planted atop the Division II-AA East/Middle Region heading into last week’s slate of games. Sure, the Chattanooga school held only a one-game advantage, but it felt like a lot more. Not only was the Blue Tornado unbeaten, but it also had absolutely wrecked every opponent in its path — including Ensworth, which it crushed 62-34 two weeks previously.
That all changed Friday, though, when McCallie coach Ralph Potter welcomed Brentwood Academy, his former team, to Spears Stadium.
The result itself was surprising, but the way in which Brentwood Academy completely blew the doors off McCallie in a 59-24 rout came as a shock.
Brentwood Academy’s offense piled up 652 yards — quarterback Jeremiah Oatsvall eclipsed the 100-yard mark on the ground and through the air — and the defense held McCallie to its second-lowest point total of the season.
More Midstate muscle: McCallie wasn’t the only Chattanooga-area school to fall at the hands of a Midstate team last week. It didn’t have the postseason implications and it wasn’t nearly as one-sided as McCallie-Brentwood Academy, but Oakland’s 17-10 win over Baylor was still a pretty big statement for Middle Tennessee.
Oakland (No. 2 in The Tennessean’s Midstate Top 10) needed all four quarters to put away Baylor. With the score tied 10-10 since late in the second quarter, Oakland running back Josh Cunningham broke free from 51 yards out, scoring the eventual game-winning touchdown with 1:38 left.
Mississippi State commitment Nick Tiano threw Baylor’s only touchdown of the game — a 51-yard strike to teammate Gage Upshaw — but the 6-foot-5, 230-pound three-star prospect completed just 41 percent of his throws for 132 yards.
Weather wasn’t a problem — for offenses: There was plenty of inclement weather Friday, but it didn’t seem to have much effect on the area’s explosive offensive numbers. The state’s No. 3 scoring team, Pearl Cohn (55.9 ppg), wasn’t in action, but there were still plenty of gaudy scores in Week 7.
Hendersonville piled up 500 yards and a season-high 63 points against Mt. Juliet — the Golden Bears scored 38 themselves. Livingston Academy also eclipsed the 60-point mark, blanking Cannon County 61-0.
In all, 17 Midstate teams topped 40 points in the soggy conditions, and two of those teams — Coffee County (55) and Waverly (41) — lost.
Upset-minded: Waverly was caught napping last week, suffering a surprising 46-41 defeat to a three-loss Lewis County squad. It’s possible previously unbeaten Waverly was looking ahead to its Week 8 showdown with district-leading Camden. Or perhaps Lewis County is better than its 4-3 record indicates.
Lewis County, which came in riding a three-game losing streak, was thumped by Camden 40-22 on Sept. 19 but was competitive the next two weeks, falling to Hickman County and Fairview by a combined seven points.
In any case, Waverly is still alive in the District 11-AA race. If it can find a way past Camden, which will be coming off a bye, it will force a three-way tie atop the standings with two weeks left in the regular season.
Different game, same result: Not since 1997 had Father Ryan defeated Division II rival Montgomery Bell Academy. The Irish have come close in recent seasons, though, suffering five single-digit losses to the Big Red since 2009.
Last week’s 21-17 setback might have been the most difficult one of them all, though.
After waiting out a nearly two-hour weather delay, Father Ryan returned to the field and scored 10 unanswered points and took a 17-14 lead midway through the third quarter, only to have it snatched away by Big Red senior Michael Lacey’s 8-yard touchdown run in the final minutes.
Maybe next year, Irish.
Reach Michael Murphy at 259-8010 and on Twitter @Murph_TNsports