Jesuit vs. Rummel: Louisiana’s prep game of week
Louisiana’s prep football followers will have their eyes trained on one game this weekend – the 47th renewal of the Jesuit vs. Archbishop Rummel showdown.
The two Catholic giants enter Week 9 of the 2011 season with perfect records.
Jesuit, coming off a demonstrative 41-3 victory over Brother Martin, is 8-0 and ranked No. 4 in the Class 5A Top 10 poll.
Rummel, fresh from a 48-6 rout of Chalmette, is 7-0 and ranked No. 5.
The rankings are great for morale and esteem, but it’s the power points that will ultimately decide who meets whom in the forthcoming state playoffs.
As of now, Rummel and Byrd have identical power ratings of 15.57, ranked No. 2 behind St. Paul’s 16.21. Jesuit is next at 15.33.
If Rummel wins, it will leap above Byrd, whose Friday opponent, Captain Shreve, has won just four games.
Jesuit has won or shared 15 district championships since 1957, while Rummel has won or shared 13 district titles since 1973. Jay Roth has coached the Raiders to nine of those crowns.
Rummel holds a 25-21 series lead.
This will be a classic confrontation of two well-coached teams that are fundamentally sound, opportunistic, play within themselves and make few mistakes.
The winner will be in line for a high seed in the playoffs, but there will still be work for both to do before either may claim the outright district title.
Jesuit will have to defeat a dangerous West Jefferson team, which has a 1-2 district record. Rummel ends the season with Brother Martin, which is 2-1 after suffering its worst defeat in a 42-year rivalry with Jesuit last week.
If Jesuit defeats Rummel but loses to West Jefferson or Rummel defeats Jesuit and loses to Brother Martin, Martin will share the district championship with the Jesuit-Rummel winner.
Jags also eye title
Athletic director and head coach Mark Jeanmard and his staff have turned the Pope John Paul II football program into a championship contender.
And a victory on Oct. 28 at home over St. Thomas Aquinas will give the Jaguars a well-deserved title.
The Slidell school takes a 6-2 record into the game and the No. 15 power ranking in Class 2A and has the best overall record in District 8-2A. The Jaguars’ two losses were to a pair of Class 4A schools, Riverdale and Warren Easton, which are potential playoff contenders.
Pope John Paul II has been impressive throughout district play. The Jags have run up scores on Springfield (56-13), Northlake Christian (42-22) and St. Helena Central (60-6).
St. Thomas Aquinas (4-4) is also unbeaten in district play and is the defending champion.
Playoffs in two weeks
It’s my guess that in two weeks when the “Road to the Dome” begins, eight schools from the Archdiocese of New Orleans will be among 28 that will be championship playoff contenders.
The only magic formula I’m using is the current power rankings.
They show that St. Paul’s is both the Class 5A No. 1 team in the weekly Top 10 poll and in the power ratings, and the Wolves likely will be the No. 1 playoff seed.
Rummel, Jesuit, Brother Martin, Mandeville and Fontainebleau should host first-round games as “home” teams. East St. John, Higgins, Covington and West Jefferson are other area teams that will make the playoffs as first-round visitors. Chalmette and Hahnville are on the bubble.
Look for St. Augustine to be a first-round host in the Class 4A playoffs, along with public schools O. Perry Walker, McDonogh 35, East Jefferson and Salmen. Belle Chasse, Riverdale and Warren Easton should qualify as road teams.
St. Charles Catholic is the No. 4 team by power ranking in Class 3A and will join Amite as a host school. De La Salle, Miller-McCoy, Reed, Independence and Loranger will be first-round “roadies.”
Area schools joining Pope John Paul II in the 2A playoffs will be No. 1 John Curtis and Riverside as hosts, and Fisher of Lafitte as a visitor. Thomas Jefferson and South Plaquemines are on the bubble.
Archbishop Hannan should make the Class 1A playoff field as a visitor along with Crescent City. St. Martin’s, West St. John, Kentwood, Varnado and Country Day will be host teams.
Volleyball wraps up
Defending Division I champion Mount Carmel brought No. 1 Fontainebleau’s perfect streak of 38 victories to a halt in last week’s Dominican Tournament by beating the Lady Bulldogs, 2-1. The two will probably be ranked Nos. 1 and 2, putting them in opposite halves of the playoff bracket.
Destrehan is the No. 3 seed and Dominican No. 4.
Two of the big hitters among the local Catholic schools are Ursuline and De La Salle.
Ursuline, Division II champion in 2009 and runner-up last year, entered the week with a 30-3 record and has swept 21 matches in three games.
De La Salle, 31-5, has won its last 15 matches without losing a single game.