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2017 NCHSAA Realignment


New Northwestern 3A/4A Conference football predictions

4A Football 3A Football Pickem/Projections WNC

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#1 titanman27


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Posted 23 June 2017 - 09:27 AM

The new conference will feature McDowell (4A), South Caldwell (4A), Alexander Central (3A), Freedom (3A)  Hickory (3A), St. Stephens (3A), Watauga (3A), West Caldwell (3A)


I feel as if this conference doesn't have a clear favorite entering the season.


Alexander Central can score lots of points quickly with a solid QB, but gives up about just as many.


Freedom was way down last season but should improve this year.


South Caldwell had a rough season but should also improve.


West Caldwell may be the favorite after a 10-3 season in 2016 but I have no idea what they are returning/losing.


Watauga could also challenge for the top spot and can score points like Alexander Central


Hickory has really fell off the past few seasons but could they rebound?


St. Stephens will likely struggle again this year


McDowell returns some pieces from a 5-7 team but will likely finish in the bottom half of the conference..




#2 cougars'12


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Posted 23 June 2017 - 11:52 AM

1. Watauga

2. Alexander Central

3. Freedom

4. South Caldwell

5. West Caldwell

6. McDowell

7. Hickory

8. St. Stephens

#3 Chris Hughes

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 11:52 AM

I feel Freedom has the best chance to win the league based on talent and coaching but Watauga could have a say as well. Hickory will be much improved and Alexander Central will be explosive. I don't think West Caldwell will be favored, while they'll be solid, it's hard replacing such an important player in quarterback Titus Tucker.

South Caldwell I think will be improved going back to a system they can thrive in, but it could be a year before the results truly show.

I think McDowell can be sold and St. Stephens always plays hard as well and is well coached.

If I were to predict today;

1. Freedom
2. Watauga
3. Alexander Central
4. Hickory
5. South Caldwell
6. West Caldwell
7. McDowel
8. St. Stephens

#4 BlueDevilsBiggestFan


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Posted 23 June 2017 - 12:06 PM

Freedom has one of the best coaches in state so they will be competitive and better than last season

Watagua lost some but they are always tough and does pretty well every year.

AC: They return a solid core n they score a lot but Can they improve their defense?!

Hickory: With their new coaches, I think hickory will at least win 3-6 games this year n will keep improving under the new leadership!

South Caldwell: Don't know much about but I hope they change their scheme bc they spread don't work at SC!

WC: They had a great last yr but they prob lost some of the core guys so they maybe rebuilding.

McDowell: It's a tough place to win but they will prob win at least few games

St Stephens: Tough place to win but they have some players but won't be enough to win much.

My Standings:
1. Freedom
2. AC
3. Watagua
4. Hickory
5.South Caldwell
6. West Caldwell
8. St Stephens

Very Top heavy in my opinion



#5 GDG


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Posted 23 June 2017 - 12:15 PM

Swap South and West from above and that would be my prediction.

West Caldwell still has some good linemen on both sides that will make some decent back look good.

Alexander has Anderson back and the receivers. They will score a lot. Play defense and they win this conference but they haven't played D in 5 years. Carter may get the that straightened out. That RB is one quick dude.

Freedom finally has someone to lead the Patriots again. Young but coaching will raise the program very fast. Word is next QB has all the skill sets to bring excitement.

St. Stephens has a great band. Should be their highlights on Hudl.

#6 FHS1985


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Posted 23 June 2017 - 02:25 PM

One big advantage for the Patriots this year is that we won't play a game that is more than a 40 minute bus drive from Morganton all season; Shelby, Watauga and Alexander Central will all be home games.

My picks:
St. Stephens

Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

― C.S. Lewis

#7 HHS2003


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Posted 23 June 2017 - 09:48 PM

Alexander Central
West Caldwell
South Caldwell
St. Stephens

Half of the conference has new coach's.

#8 allenjd4life


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Posted 23 June 2017 - 09:49 PM

1. Alex Central
2. Freedom
3. Watauga
4. West Caldwell
5. McDowell
6. Hickory
7. South Caldwell
8. St Stephens

#9 Schmo


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Posted 24 June 2017 - 08:27 AM

The league might be a lot better than most suspect.  Freedom will make a giant leap with Bryant on the sidelines and Hickory will be better simply based on Stone taking over. West Caldwell will be good and everyone always overlooks Watauga. 


1A...  Alexander Central....Cougars will score tons and the defense will be some better.  JV team was 10-0 and most of that team was freshman.  Godfrey is the preseason pick to be player of the year. The Division I offers are starting to get serious and they're  going to be  lot more, Anderson is a prospect at quarterback coming off his injury late last season.  Devon Weiss is a stud a fullback and linebacker.  The defense will determine how well the Cougars do.  Isaac Chapman is a rising junior that shined at NC State and Western Carolina camps this spring.  He is an outright stud on the defensive line joined by another rising junior in Landon Strickland who missed more than half of his sophomore season with a shoulder injury.  The key to the season is how quickly a young offensive line jells and how much better the defense really is


1B...  Freedom...They will be better because the culture has changed.  They always have talent and now the trend is up.  They could be the favorite


1C....  Watauga...I don't know why everyone always overlooks Watauga but Ryan Habbich is one hell of a coach and he milks every drop out of the team from Boone 


4.  West Caldwell...Could be a factor if they can stay healthy.  Based on what I'm told but have not seen, they have limited depth


5.  Hickory...Russell Stone will make a big difference but he has a big hill to climb.  The culture has to change and he might be the man that can do it.  They have talent but not to the degree they had in their glory days.  All I hear is positive so far


6.  McDowell  The new turf will be nice


7.  South Caldwell...The first year without Butch Carter was a disaster


8.  St Stephens...They might struggle

#10 BlueDevilsBiggestFan


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Posted 24 June 2017 - 10:05 AM

For AC to have the chance to win Conference is They need more linemen , When AC played SI last yr at SI , Y'all were down 2 linemen from Injuries n Y'all didn't call up any of the Massvie linemen that u had on JV (Some of ur JV linemen look like Varsity Linemen).

Also the Defense got torched in that game and other games as well but the Biggest Key is Gunner , Godfrey , Strickland and Devon Weiss bc Those are your top 4 top studs I mean look at last yr vs SI , Once Godfrey went down that's when the game turn Sour for the Cougars

Your Safety's and DBs are the area for improvement bc Vs SI Pope just slung it all over the place deep and AC didn't stop it one bit!

Also The Scheme needs to change a tad, the pass game was Horrid last yr. the Run game is good only when Devon n Godfrey are healthy but if one of them are not then It's a uphill battle u can't win. I understand AC n Coach Carter are a Run first team but Passing game needs to open up a tad. Within this conference, The run game should do well but if u face Dudley Again or Catholic in the Playoffs then that's where the passing game will need to be used to help relieve some of the pressure of the run game



#11 titanman27


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Posted 28 June 2017 - 01:31 PM

McDowell is about to enter year 2 under coach Andy Morgan, I believe they will be a tougher out than many think. He is a good coach but has a tough job for sure. If he can continue to get more athletes to come out for football (not just basketball and baseball) the titans could contend in the next few years. This year I think they will be in the 3-5 wins range depending on QB play.

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