Sunday, August 16, 2009

Charlotte Christian causes Sweet 16 controversy

Oh my emails this morning.

"How could you name that private school No. 1 in the Sweet 16?"

And that was a nice one.

People were, um, surprised to see the Observer named Charlotte Christian as the first No. 1 preseason team in the popular newspaper poll.

At the end of the Sweet 16, I always try to list how we do it. We look at strength of class, strength of schedule, but not how teams would do against each other unless they really play. It's not a what if thing. Ultimately, though, it's our best guess as to which teams have the best chance to win a state championship.

The poll was created that way to give smaller schools, like 350-student Christian, a chance to be ranked with the Boiling Springs Crests and Rock HIll Northwesterns of the world. Generally, with some exceptions, the larger schools will usually beat smaller ones head-to-head. If we did a Sweet 16 power poll, it would look awful familiar year to year and be loaded with 4A and 3A teams.

I like that the Sweet 16 offers the little guy a chance.

Last, here is a video of Charlotte Christian that videographer Phil Hoffman put together that may offer a little insight into the Knights.
-- Langston Wertz Jr.
lwertz@charlotteobserver.com
twitter.com/langstonwertzjr
facebook.com/langstonwertzjr

56 comments:

Anonymous said...

This choice is hysterical. What the heck could CC do with Crest, Independence, Northwestern, South Pointe, etc? Can help but think that this was politically motivated in some fashion.

Anonymous said...

crest lost to country day last season.. christian beat country day. please stop crying its getting old.. its just a high school poll. everyone sounds like a bunch of children

Observer Sports said...

"Anonymous said...
This choice is hysterical. What the heck could CC do with Crest, Independence, Northwestern, South Pointe, etc? Can help but think that this was politically motivated in some fashion."

Actually, the poll only considers head to head play if the teams actually play. I put in the blog the criteria for inclusion. For some reason, you miss that. It's not a how would team X do against team Y poll. If it were, my vote would've been different, and would rarely include small school teams.

I think that's the beauty of the Sweet 16. You can be a 2A or 1A and still get in -- and still win.

-- Langston
twitter.com/langstonwertzjr
facebook.com/langstonwertzjr

Anonymous said...

Ok - I get that "criteria" but shouldn't the number one team indeed be capable of being better than, say, number five? If college football used your criteria then some undefeated NAIA team in Wyoming could potentially win the national championship.
I am not saying that CC is undeserving of a ranking... but number one is pandering to the private school subscribers.

Anonymous said...

This is a quote from the article:

We look at strength of class, strength of schedule, but not how teams would do against each other unless they really play.

It has always been a power poll. That explains why Independence is usually #1. Why wouldn't you use the criteria if they played each other.It only makes sense. If you are gonna start making some sort of sissy pole don't make a poll at all. I always looked forward to the sweet 16. Now I don't give a stinky about it now.

Anonymous said...

ya and a team like boise state wouldnt even be considered to a bcs bowl yet they still took down powerhouse oklahoma so you can just go on who you think would win because noone gave boise state a shot either

Anonymous said...

You can't possibly say use difficulty of schedule as a measuring stick. Outside of Country Day and Latin, who does Christian play who is any good at all? And don't even say "they are playing strong private school teams from Georgia and Virginia". Augusta Christian is a small school that plays other small schools. Liberty Christian is a school that even the big private schools in Virginia don't play because they are such a joke. Although, I'm sure when Christian beats these teams 70-0, the articles will refer to these teams as "powers in their state".

silk_milk said...

Little Langston, I see your at your foolishness again. There are only three teams in your sweet 16 that are nationally ranked...Independence, Butler and Rocky Hill South Pointe. You have made it clear that you’re not creditable on any level when it comes to evaluating high school football talent. You are a disgrace to real sports writers all over they country. What if we all decided to stop reading the Observer? What if we decided to start a potion to have you removed from covering high school sports? Sounds like a pretty good ideal. In closing Little Langston I would just like to say…. GO SLAP Yourself!!!!

Anonymous said...

You're right. Week in/Week out, Charlotte Christian would be hard pressed to play and win every time against Indy/Butler/SouthMeck/Providence, etc. But, this year is different. They would be very competitive. Ask the Butler coach, or Knotts at Independence how Christian did against them in the 7-7s this summer. The linebackers are fast, mobile, and nasty, and not just one, but there are three of them. Getting to the corners on Christian this year will be a feat for any team. Plus, put the ball in Linton's hands, and watch the speed and raw power. Add two super fast receivers on the wides, and it will be exciting.

Anonymous said...

You talking about how they did in 7-on-7's? You do know that is no contact, right? Football's a contact sport = 7-on-7 is a track event. Let the fur start flying and watch the pampered boys start ducking. If they're so good, take on all takers...

Anonymous said...

I could make a list of 20 schools in the Charlotte Observer area that would beat CC... and yet you put them at number one?

If you are trying to stir up talk, congrats because you did it. IF you are trying to appear credible, you failed miserably.

silk_milk said...

Dude, I was there at the 7X7 when they played Independence. The LB's for CC were decent but not outstanding. Their team speed was decent but not impressive. Someone also wrote that CC beat Independence in the 7X7 and thats a flat out lie! I wish the kids from CC the best of luck, but please be realistic when matching them up with the big boy's!!!

Anonymous said...

As a rule the larger 4A schools are better because of the size of the student body that the programs pick athletes from. However the size is not always the case. I am from Shelby and I keep up with quality football. I dont care what anyone says there are great coaching staffs in North Carolina and these guys field great teams form year to year. As for being the best team in the state year in and year out teams like Independance, Butler,and Richmond are a few but to say private school like Charlotte Latin , Country Day, and Charlotte Christian are not up there with these teams from time to time is an injustice. You need to go out and watch these teams. They have speed size, great execution, and coaching staffs that are great. A few years ago the best team in North Carolina was Charlotte Latin with the Hanson kid at quaterback. I did not believe it until I saw them in person. These private schools and smaller schools can play. Dont belive me go out and watch and be proven wrong just like myself. Some smaller schools and privete schools can play with any team from time to time. Go watch some of these programs before you judge off numbers. Here are a few Country Day, Latin, Clinton, Shelby, Riedsville, and Charlotte Christian.

silk_milk said...

The number of kids at a school has nothing to do with the talent on the field. I have seen three of the best private schools in the area play. The competition level is no where close to the public sector in the Charlotte area. Schools like Reidsville, Thomasville and Shelby all have quality programs but those private schools don't even compare.

Anonymous said...

Private schools probably could compare to teams like Shelby and the like. Country Day has beaten Crest and Northwestern in the past year or two.

my2cents said...

Q: Which has The Observer deemed the most offensive of words?

A: Byrnes

Anonymous said...

why is everyone making a big deal out of this pre-season poll. Its just a poll stop crying. CC has a great team this year. Even knotts said indy is little down this year so why not mix things up for once. P.S. jupiter christian has a 29 game winnning streak longest in florida. christian plays them week 6 should be a great private school battle.. Im pretty sure that latin country day PD and CC are something like 30-6 against public school in past 10 years. they can play ball too

Anonymous said...

why is everyone making a big deal out of this pre-season poll. Its just a poll stop crying. CC has a great team this year. Even knotts said indy is little down this year so why not mix things up for once. P.S. jupiter christian has a 29 game winnning streak longest in florida. christian plays them week 6 should be a great private school battle.. Im pretty sure that latin country day PD and CC are something like 30-6 against public school in past 10 years. they can play ball too

Anonymous said...

Jupiter Christian may have a 29 game winning streak, but they play Division 1B football in Florida. They don't even have 600 students in grades PK-12. That's smaller than Northside Christian. Charlotte Christian is good. They should just try to play a legit schedule. I mean, if Christian wants to play out of state private schools from other states, I'm sure Bolles (FL), Westminister (GA) and Woodberry Forest (VA) and Collegiate (VA) would put up a better fight.

Anonymous said...

Langston, I disagree with you often, and don't know that I agree this time.. However, KUDO's to you for your choice! This is a no win situation for you, so great job for not playing favorites.

Anonymous said...

Based on the way the poll is setup I have no problem with Christian being number one. Basically the poll is stating which team has the best chance to run the table and win a state title.

As far as Latin being the best team in the state (that would be 2007 that the poster is referring to) I do not think so. I thought Country Day would have beat them with a healthy qb. CCDS had more depth and was very aggressive. Do not think either of them would have beat Indy, Butler, WC, or East Meck that season. Not enough depth especially on the lines and probably not enough overall team speed. btango

Anonymous said...

You guys are crying an awful lot for a preseason poll. Yet no team in the sweet 16 could come close to beating any football team in South Georgia. You guys are too soft for football, I mean really crying over a preseason poll!

Anonymous said...

I've never seen CC play but someone mentioned them in the same breath with PD. I have seen PD play, and while they are respectable, there are a very average team... can't help but wonder if CC is similar.

Anonymous said...

Langston

you screwed this up bigtime. I personally watched Butler and Indy scrimmage Wed and Butler is unstoppable. They will roll this year . They have three runnning backs that are D1 caliper. They could beat Charlotte Christian by 6 touchdowns and never throw the ball. You will see soon ennough.

Anonymous said...

by the way I watched Butler and Charlotte Christian also play 7 on 7s and Butler beat them 4 to 1 and they didnt even have to tackle them. Christians good but its like comparing Elon to Texas

Anonymous said...

Kudos for having the courage to choose a private school #1. But if Christian is 1, then how can Latin not be in the top 16? Latin returns more starters and expects to be much improved over last year's state runner up team.

As for the private schools, scheduling is a huge challenge. Unfortunately the publics won't play Latin, Christian or Country Day. Crest and Northwestern dropped CD, and Gaston County Schools now prohibit scheduling Charlotte Privates after Latin destroyed South Point 2 years ago in Belmont. Public school coach don't want to risk the public humiliation of losing to a private school with 75% fewer students?

Thankfully Catholic still plays Latin and CD who both have won 2 of the last 3 while Catholic was doing quite well in their public conference and states.

Anonymous said...

GOOD LORD...some of you people are CRAZY!!! It's just a friggin poll...get over it. And by the way...Latin did not destroy SP in 2007. Gaston County does not prohibit games against private schools, you may want to get your info straight before you say things you know nothing about.

Anonymous said...

Silk Milk, no one on this blog said that "Christian beat Indy" at the 7-7. What was said was "ask the Butler coach and Knotts how CCS did". Well, I was there scouting both teams. Both teams did quite well, lots of speed on the field. Both very well coached. Interesting that Eugene Robinson was offering tips to both squads on defense (it appeared he was a Christian coach, but he wanted to make sure all of the kids got better). What a class act. Only 2 of the 3 stud CCS linebackers were there. My notes had Christian about 30-40 with a pick and 7 tds. My notes had Indy about the same. Sounds like a far cry from a "flat out lie". The 7-7s are a track meet, and not indicative of a real game. But, for the skill positions, a very even matchup.

metroniner said...

Langston,
did you ever pick up a ball or play beyond Little League?

silk_milk said...

Check the main article about CC being #1 in the preseason poll. Someone did claim that CC beat Independence in 7X7.Simply not true.

Anonymous said...

Um, Latin beat South Point 42-20 2 years ago. I would consider that a pretty good beating. Sorry, just pointing out a flaw.

Anonymous said...

Solid choice. All those crying ought to blame, just like in baseball, not the private schools, but the CMS Administration, who continue to overrule their coaches and prohibit the privates from playing the publics.

Since that won't happen, don't blame the CMS coaches, the private schools, and most certainly not the players at a deserving school.

My guess is that the depth on the lines would probably be the difference in a head to head matchup if were best against best, but I do not think it is for sure.

For a school with only 350 students to churn out the quality of athletes they do, CCS deserves all the kudos they can get.

As for this years team, they appear to be as good as anyone, including those whining here, who do not demand the CMS administration to allow their teams to play.

Great choice - glad to see the poll is truely choosing the best, not just the politically connected.

Anonymous said...

keep living in your dream world if you like Lnagston, seven on sevens is not real football . Again your comparing Elon to Texas. Besides the three linebackers there isnt three other players on Charlotte Christians starting offense or defense that would start for Butler. And Chris Frost( Butlers outside linebacker) can match up with any of their three LBs. If you really think CC can match up with Indy or Butler at the skilled position , you need to switch to writing articles in the buisness section. Why dont you come over to Butler on National signing day and see how many Bulldogs go on to play in college?????

Anonymous said...

Didn't CC not make the playoffs last year. Then CC petitioned to have the rules changed and then some how made the playoffs.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
This choice is hysterical. What the heck could CC do with Crest, Independence, Northwestern, South Pointe, etc? Can help but think that this was politically motivated in some fashion.

Probably the same thing they do in baseball, which is WIN!

Anonymous said...

Public vs. Private? Let's go to another recent example...this time it's baseball. Ardrey Kell won the NC 4A state title this year (Congrats!). When they faced Christian in the Jack Sink tournament at Myers Park HS in April, Christian won the ballgame....private school prevails against the eventual public school state champion!

Anonymous said...

Baseball is completely different. Football you need numbers and great players at all 11 positions.
Public schools also cant recruit and give scholarships like Private schools . You are comparing apples and oranges. Private schools give out scholarships and in basketball if you have 3-4 stars you can win big, in baseball you need some stud pitchers and some support . In fottball you need all 11 players to be strong or you will get exposed by better teams.

Anonymous said...

Settle it on the field. Make charlotte Meck. schools play private schools in Charlotte. they will not do it. I guess their afraid they will get embarressed.

Anonymous said...

67 players from Butler went on to play college footall in the last seven years, please tell me a local private school that come close to matching those numbers???????????????????

Anonymous said...

Play the private schools !!
They want to play you and have asked and asked and asked. come on !!

Anonymous said...

Wertz is a joke. He is always trying to draw attention to himself in some way abd the reason he will never get anywhere further than a beat writer for the CO is what this article is all about. Just another WERTZ joke. I remember last year when he said the charlotte schools wouldn't allow Richmond Senior to advance in the playoffs and especially Independence who never loses at home. Well, we went to charlotte and kicked their ass and then went on to championship glory. End of story-Wertz!

Anonymous said...

why are you butler fans crying about this poll.. why dont you go beat indy and win a state championship and then you can worry about this stupid poll. Notice the Private schools dont cry about "unfair" polls.. if i do recall in 2007 east lincoln was ranked 6th in the sweet 16 right after CC smash them 36-14. CC didnt cry about it they just played the game and let there record talk. Catholic has lost twice the past two years to both Latin and Country day. Catholic dominated there 3A league. so dont even say CC Latin or Country day couldnt do well in the public school league..

Anonymous said...

Public schools and private schools should be ranked and play separately.

Anonymous said...

I think that CMS, and Iredell and Gaston Counties should play the private schools - I think you're scared you'll get beat (and you will). So...you don't like the poll? Well, then let's see...line it up and play Charlotte Christian - they would LOVE to play ANY public school around! Until then, quit the whining.

Anonymous said...

If Christian would love to play public schools, then why is their entire out of conference schedule comprised on tiny private schools from other states? At least play their big private schools, if not their publics

Anonymous said...

are you people really stuipid enough to think CMS coaches and teams are scared to play Charlotte Christian? CMS administration prohibits their schools from playing private schools. Yeah, Butler is scared to play pitiful Charlotte Christian so they scheduled Mt Tabor and Richmond County instead , you people are a joke.

Anonymous said...

hey guys , I m watching the Panthers and Giants. I see Hakeem Nicks - Independance High School and Kenny Moore - Butler High School play against each other. Please tell when I can watch a Charlotte Christian grad play in a game in the NFL

Anonymous said...

jeremy thompson (Packers). daniel bard(Boston Red Sox), stephen curry (golden state warriors). NFL NBA MLB .. all CCS grads.. Chris Canti went LATIN.. Get ur head out of your butt...

Anonymous said...

Those guys played there like 5 or 6 years ago. That's great. Indy and Butler have tradition. Charlotte Christian is busy making their own. No matter how successful their players have been in the past, it doesn't matter because we aren't comparing who has a better tradition, it's about who has a better TEAM THIS YEAR.
Get off your high horse. Christian deserves their due.

Anonymous said...

didnt know Golden State and the Boston Red Sox were new teams in the NFL...what division are they in???
Not taking away anything from Christian , I wish them the best , know a couple kids on their team - first class. But they cant compete with Butler and Indy in tackle football ..PERIOD.I had always thought the Sweet 16 poll was about the best team in this area , they arent even close to the best so IMHO Langston has destroyed the credibility of the poll.

Anonymous said...

Look. Grampa Wz is getting on up in the yrs losing brain cells as geezers do so you really cant blame him. He could be bordering on Alzheimers at his old age so you people need to chill.

Hes prob lost his hair and his teeth are falling out plus being on a diet of poached eggs milk and toast is less than nutritional.

He may even use dentures and keep them in a cup at night plus his eyes could be failing and needs lazer surgery.

He is doing the best he can like any oldtimer many who still coach and cant even remember their own name half the time.

Like they say old sports writers never retire they just snooze 24/7 although that Sweet 16 is not that far off and Crest needs to quit whining like a baby. They gonna suck like RC.

Anonymous said...

well orrin thompson played the whole 2nd and 3rd quater last night while nicks played the 4th, daniel bard touched 100 mph nightly, stephen curry shocked the world and went top 10 in the nba draft, jeremy thompson plays for the green bay packers, all of these athletes attended charlotte christian. 4 players in the pros from one school with about 400 students. and 2 players from all of CMS. need i say more?

Anonymous said...

There is no way that any of you can get mad about CC being #1, they have no say in this. Also, CC is not aloud to play public schools in this area because of CMS rules. The knights blew out Ashville and East Lincoln, none of which renewed their contracts with the knights. What can they do if nobody wants to play them?? Im sure they would LOVE to come out and get some of butler and indy.

Anonymous said...

Listen, private vs public will always be heated but it is simple public schools have better talent from year to year but every few years a private can compete and win. The 07 latin. Team was unbelievably good and smashed perenial powerhouse south pointe. Christian is gonna have a good year. Butler and independence are going to do well too. The publics will always believe that. They are athletically superior, and sometimes they are but the privates can be good too

Anonymous said...

Sorry about the random periods in the 12:34 comment

Anonymous said...

It really is funny to see the public school enthusiasts claiming that privates will never compete. After Latin's thrashing of South Point 42-20, and Independence nearly losing to Mallard Creek, I'd expect any of the privates having a 'good year' to be able to beat any public or private team in North Carolina.

While publics will usually be athletically superior due to the rule where you can choose which public school you want to go to (Independence gets a lot of good athletes obviously), privates are significantly better coached. Witman, McNulty, and the ex-NFL Christian staff are all better coaches than anyone except possibly Knotts.

Like it or not, privates would toe to toe and flat out romp most of the public schools in North Carolina. I think it's a pretty safe bet to say the privates would love the opportunity to play any of the publics in Charlotte, it really is a shame that cannot happen.