• John Macon Gillespie

JMake's 10 Takes Coming In Hot: Week 8

Pictured | Calhoun City's Jobi Cook

Photo by John Macon Gillespie

Hello, all. How are you today? I'm doing well, thanks for asking.

Tonight starts Week 8 (?!?!?!?!) of the high school football season, but it seems like just yesterday we started fall practice. Soon, we'll see playoff races start to take shape, and then we'll all make the trek to Hattiesburg for the state championships (SES PARTY IN A HOTEL, Y'AAALLLLLLLL). At this point in the season, every game counts as region play starts to heat up (every game counts anyway, but you get what I mean). With that being said, let's jump into this week's Takes and see what Week 8 has in store.

1. No. 5 Starkville gets back on track against Greenville.

Some of you are saying, "JMake, you're supposed to give us hot takes. We all know that Starkville is better than Greenville." I get that, but I have this leading off my Takes for a different reason.

Northwest Rankin shocked the state last week as they knocked off then-No. 1 Starkville in a 27-20 slugfest. I was of the opinion that Starkville was going to steamroll every team in their path this season and burn villages in the process, but that didn't happen. I still believe that the Yellowjackets are one of the most--if not the most--talented teams in the state, and I think this game is important for them this week. Yes, I know that Greenville is 1-5, but that doesn't matter. The Jackets will come out swinging against the Hornets and will win this battle of the hives (yes, that's a bee joke) in a convincing fashion. Starkville wants to prove that they are still the best, and Greenville will just have to live with that.

2. Oxford stays hot against DeSoto Central.

Some people got #mad when I picked South Panola to beat the Chargers last week, and, as a result, Oxford took it to the Tigers to the tune of a 35-21 final. You're welcome.

Of course, I'm only kidding. Oxford is a good team, and they've shown that you can't count them out this season. They currently have a hot hand, and I like them as a team that could create some noise in the playoffs if that hot hand continues. DeSoto Central is coming off of a 32-3 loss against Horn Lake, and I don't think they'll be able to stop the Chargers when they roll into town. I like Oxford to improve to 6-1 this week, and don't look now, but the Chargers' only loss is to Starkville. This team is dangerous.

3. Smithville steamrolls Falkner.

Me: *picks Okolona to beat Smithville like a drum*

Me: *sees Okolona-Smithville score*


In case you can't tell, I love GIFs (how do you pronounce that, by the way?).

Anyway, Smithville showed up to play last week as they knocked off the Chieftains, and I don't think this week proves to be as much of a challenge. Falkner comes into this week at 4-3, but was blown out by Okolona two weeks ago (52-14, to be exact) and went down to the wire with Potts Camp in early September. Nothing against Potts Camp, but they're no Smithville.

Give me the Noles by three scores.

4. Biggersville keeps doing Biggersville things.

Speaking of Potts Camp, guess who the undefeated Biggersville Lions host this week?

The Lions have forgotten how to lose, which is a pretty good habit, if you ask me. Biggersville has never been a 1A powerhouse, but they seem to have forgotten that, too, as they enter this week at 7-0. SEVEN WINS. NO LOSSES. BIGGERSVILLE.

I hype the Lions up every week, but by thunder, they deserve it. I like BHS to get it done this week against Potts Camp, and it won't be close.

5. Poplarville beats Forrest County AHS, and I love option offenses.

Seriously, I do. Name another offense that is both pretty and is so rough it will make players lose their teeth.

You can't.

Poplarville runs some triple-option beauty that will make your head spin, and I expect the Aggies' heads will be doing plenty of spinning on Friday night.

I like the Hornets a lot in the southern-half of 4A, and I think they go to 6-1 this week in convincing fashion.

6. No. 1 Hattiesburg stays on the throne with a win over Pearl River Central.

Y'all: "JMake, you've already been through five takes. Are you not going to talk about Snoop Conner and the boys and how they're the new No. 1 in the SES Top 10?"

Thank you for your patience.

With the fall of Starkville last week, we here at SES (along with literally every other media outlet in the state) had to choose a new king to rule our rankings. We went with Hattiesburg.

If you haven't been paying attention, the Tigers have been demolishing teams like they're a wrecking crew and don't show any signs of slowing down. Hattiesburg quarterback Jarod "Snoop" Conner has been putting up video game-like numbers, and will probably eclipse 1,000 yards in both rushing and passing this season. Here's a GIF of rapping-sensation Snoop Dogg in honor of the Tiger signal-caller:

The guy to the right of Snoop Dogg is nodding his head in approval of how ridiculously good the Tigers are. Give me Hattiesburg this week as they try to prove to everyone that they belong at the top of the SES Top 10.

7. Calhoun City squeaks past East Webster.

I'll be covering this one myself on Thursday night, and this matchup is a classic.

East Webster and Calhoun City are both storied programs in North Mississippi, and they'll both be in the playoffs this season because Region 2-2A only has four teams thanks to the consolidation of Winona and Montgomery County. I would have picked Calhoun City in a landslide, but I was impressed with East Webster's 7-6 win over Eupora last week, so I think they keep this one interesting. I do, however, like the Wildcats to pull away late and win this one in the fourth quarter, much like they did last week against Philadelphia.

8. No. 10 Louisville tops Noxubee County.

Noxubee County was a 4A favorite coming into this season as they always are, but the road has not been easy for the reigning 4A champs. After losing on a rainy opening Friday to Starkville, the Tigers have lost three more games and sit at 3-4 entering this week. Louisville's only loss is to West Point, and I think they keep that statement true this week. Give me the Power Cats by two scores.

9. No. 7 Madison Central rolls past Warren Central.

Me: *looks at this week's schedule*

*sees this game*

*gets excited*

I love when these two meet on the gridiron. Warren Central comes in at 2-3 while MC holds a 5-1 mark. While the Vikings of Warren Central have surprised me many times over the years, I like the Jaguars to pull this one out. Madison Central by two scores as they improve to 6-1 and look to climb in our Top 10.

10. No. 8 Oak Grove blows past Meridian.

This game may be under the radar due to Meridian's 3-3 record, but I'm pretty excited about seeing this one unfold on Friday. Meridian had a rough and heartbreaking start to its season, but they were in our Preseason Top 10 and are still a talented team. While that may be the case, I think Oak Grove is better. Give me Plumlee and the Warriors in Oak Grove on Friday.


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