Snider is good.
That much we know.
But how good?
That is a question not even The Pigskin Prophet can answer.
This swine has been around long enough to see several instances in which teams jump out to hot starts, receive critical acclaim and then fall completely flat later in the season.
The Pig isn't saying that is what happens to the Panthers, they of the 128-14 scoring margin, but crazier things have been witnessed by this snout-nosed omnivore.
- The 2008 Bishop Luers Knights. Led by IFCA Top 50 player TyQuan Hammock at linebacker, the Knights' defense pitched six shutouts in the regular season, including three straight to open the year. Close losses to North Side, Snider and Bishop Dwenger tempered the enthusiasm a bit for Luers, but the road still seemed fairly smooth to the state championship game. Unfortunately, Jimtown wasn't scared of the hype and knocked off the Knights 21-14 in the sectional championship.
- The 1998 Snider Panthers. Quarterback Anthony Young and d-end Jonqual Jones led a loaded squad to an undefeated regular-season. The year started with a pair of blowouts of Concordia and Harding by a combined score of 115-12. Snider breezed through the first nine games, winning by an average of 41 points. But in first week of sectionals, the Panthers were taken down by fellow undefeated Homestead.
All the good vibes of a dominant regular season were lost before Halloween.
- The 1981 Bishop Dwenger Saints. Now we are REALLY traveling back in the time machine. The Saints opened the year with back-to-back 28-0 victories at South Bend Adams and Merrillville. In fact, no team scored more than eight points on Dwenger until Snider earned a 17-6 victory in Week 7.
With the defense only allowing a TOTAL of 51 points through the first 10 games, all looked great for the Saints heading into the 3A playoffs. But a postseason trip to Lafayette Jefferson saw the Bronchos drop 36 points in a one-point victory.
Oh, and don't forget...
- The 2016 Woodlan Warriors. No explanation needed. You all know THAT story.
Now these examples aren't to take away anything from the Panthers' impressiveness thus far, but rather to put things into perspective. Snider judges seasons on championships. Yes, league titles are important, but of greater importance is the postseason.
How else to explain the program's "#5Dubs" Twitter slogan the last few years. It's not "#2Dubs" or even "#9Dubs".
But this year, those "#5Dubs" have to come in Class 6A. And that is where this Panthers squad will truly be challenged...
And perhaps not until then.
This column is the commentary of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of The News-Sentinel. Email The Pigskin Prophet at email@example.com.