Another wild whirlwind of football action, mixed with frightening incidents and recruiting gusto has come to a close. Remember, just because there wasn’t a major top-10 upset doesn’t mean the games weren’t intense, or full of drama. Here’s what we can all take away from Friday night’s undertakings around the nation, beyond the most clear cut storylines of No. 1 Bishop Gorman’s Tate Martell-inspired victory and No. 4 Mater Dei’s latest blowout.
1) Shootings continue to mar high school football’s signature night — Another week, another terrifying shooting at a high school game. This time, the violence unfolded during the Central Pennsylvania football game between William Penn and J.P. McCaskey, with the full stadium put on lockdown because of the incident. Two were shot, one was sent to the hospital, and luckily it was confirmed that neither was a child. There continues to be no logic behind the acts, only fear. It’s sad, and all we can do is hope that it ends. Soon.
2) Bomb threats, too — If it isn’t guns, it’s the threat of bombs. Two games in Ohio were affected by bomb threats that were called in, both in the Cincinnati area. Archbishop Moeller’s contest at Mason was called off before it started because of a bomb threat, while another threat delayed fans’ ability to exit No. 10 Colerain’s narrow 6-0 victory against La Salle. No devices were discovered or exploded at either site, but they already had a profound impact on both contests regardless.
3) DeSoto claims wild shootout in Texas — The Lone Star State retains two teams ranked in the top-12, but No. 6 DeSoto continues to fly highest, if only by the slightest margin. TCU quarterback commit Shawn Robinson led a furious final DeSoto drive to help Von Miller’s alma mater remain undefeated with a 49-43 escape job against Midland. Midland set the tone throughout the contest, but DeSoto always had an answer, largely because it always had Robinson, who finished his big night in style.
4) Helicopters galore — Amidst the downers, there were a pair of notable celebratory moments, with helicopters making loud appearances in Louisiana and Texas. The 5A contest between St. Amant and Higgins received a ceremonial start when the game ball was delivered via, you guessed it, a helicopter. Meanwhile, a state to the South, Texas A&M coaches were out recruiting in the school’s patented SwagCopter, taking in a game with three A&M pledges. Both events got a clear jolt from the arrival of the chopper, which is rapidly becoming the wacky inflatable tube guy of choice to hype up high school football events.
5) Najee Harris’ big night — Last week, Alabama-pledge and Antioch star running back Najee Harris was “held” to 201 yards and three touchdowns in an upset loss to Milpitas. This week he wasn’t going to be denied. Harris surpassed his Week 2 total in the first half alone, pacing Antioch to a commanding 36-14 lead at the break on 255 yards and three touchdowns on 20 carries. From there it was smooth sailing for the Panthers, who cruised to a 48-14 victory while Harris watched from the bench. That’s certainly some way for arguably the nation’s top recruit to bounce back from a loss.