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Thursday, September 21, 2017
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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.

THE PIGSKIN PROPHET: Yeah this Jiya Wright kid at Homestead? Pretty decent.

Homestead quarterback Jiya Wright amassed over 350 yards of total offense in Friday's 42-0 shutout of Bishop Dwenger. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Homestead quarterback Jiya Wright amassed over 350 yards of total offense in Friday's 42-0 shutout of Bishop Dwenger. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Homestead junior Brayden Layton attempts to shed the tackle of Bishop Dwenger's T.J. Tippmann during Friday's game at Zollner Stadium. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Homestead junior Brayden Layton attempts to shed the tackle of Bishop Dwenger's T.J. Tippmann during Friday's game at Zollner Stadium. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Sophomore Jake Archbold of Homestead heads upfield after escaping Bishop Dwenger's Hayden Ellinger during Friday's game. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Sophomore Jake Archbold of Homestead heads upfield after escaping Bishop Dwenger's Hayden Ellinger during Friday's game. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Bishp Dwenger's Alec Wattercutter looks to corral a pass as Jack Klein, left, of Homestead defends during Friday's game at Zollner Stadium. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Bishp Dwenger's Alec Wattercutter looks to corral a pass as Jack Klein, left, of Homestead defends during Friday's game at Zollner Stadium. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Bishop Dwenger quarterback Eddie Morris looks for running room during Friday's game against Homestead. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Bishop Dwenger quarterback Eddie Morris looks for running room during Friday's game against Homestead. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Homestead quarterback Jiya Wright shakes off a tackle by Bishop Dwenger's T.J. McGarry during Friday's game at Zollner Stadium. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Homestead quarterback Jiya Wright shakes off a tackle by Bishop Dwenger's T.J. McGarry during Friday's game at Zollner Stadium. (By Josh Gales for The News-Sentinel)
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press
Friday, September 08, 2017 11:51 pm

As Homestead quarterback Jiya Wright scampered for a touchdown midway through the fourth quarter on Friday at Zollner Stadium — his sixth of the night — this particular prophet pondered a query...

Is this kid for real?

When asked about his star signal caller following a 42-0 demolition of Bishop Dwenger, coach Chad Zolman shook his head as if thinking the very same thing.

"He's the weapon, right?" Zolman said. "He makes everything tick. He is delivering the ball to a lot of weapons around him."

Friday's rout by Homestead still has The Pig scratching between his ears. Should he be more impressed with an offense that rolled a quality defensive unit? Or a defense that has held Bishop Luers and Bishop Dwenger to a combined three points the last two weeks?

We will likely get to the defense later this season (perhaps as soon as next Saturday at Lucas Oil Stadium vs. Snider?), but Friday was all about Wright for The Pigskin Prophet.

Now in his second year of running the read option, you can see that the scheme is a perfect fit for the 6-foot, 195-pound quarterback. When he had time in the pocket, Wright was able to pick apart the Saints in the short and mid-range passing game. When he was pressured, the Northern Illinois commitment showed he is a master at escaping and extending the play, eventually either piling up yards with his legs or finding an open receiver. 

For the night, Wright finished 21-of-29 for 265 yards and five touchdowns. He also ran 24 times for 95 yards and a score.

Homestead most assuredly has some talented players at the skill positions, guys like Jake Archbold, Grant Raber and Trevin Taylor, but this team isn't even close to its dominant 4-0 self without Wright.

Prior to the season, The Pigskin Prophet claimed that Wright was the SAC's MVP. For once, The Pig hit it right on the head.

When you begin thinking of the great Homestead quarterbacks of the past — Zach Terrell and Drew Keszei in particular — it is hard to keep Wright out of the conversation.

"He is as athletic as any quarterback we have had and he has just as strong an arm," Zolman said. "He is making good decisions as well. When you add those things up he can be one of the great ones.

"He has improved in every facet of his game (from last year). He is passionate for winning."
No single moment showed that passion more than late in Friday's game. Homestead was close to wrapping up the victory in the fourth quarter when The Pig eyed Wright on the sideline, tablet in hand and studying pictures of the night's action.

That or he was playing Angry Birds, but we will go with the former for the purpose of this column.

Good players relax when a game is wrapped up, but Wright was making sure he saw every wrinkle, every detail on the field and how he could improve the next time out.

Yeah, about that next time? It's a big one.

Next Saturday. Lucas Oil Stadium. Snider.

Wowza.

You want a quirky stat about next week's SAC showdown? Oh, allow The Pig to deliver...

Homestead's game against the Panthers will represent the fifth time in five weeks this season in which the Spartans have played an undefeated foe.

Northrop was 0-0.

Concordia was 1-0.

Bishop Luers was 2-0.

Bishop Dwenger was 3-0.

Can this Homestead team make it 5-for-5?

With Wright behind center, anything is possible.

This column is the commentary of the writer and does not reflect the views or opinions of The News-Sentinel. Email The Pigskin Prophet at nssports@news-sentinel.com.

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