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2017 NCHSAA Realignment

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2017 1A Preseason Power Rankings


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#51 Paul Graham

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Posted 31 July 2017 - 11:40 AM

I spent a little time with Murphy this past Friday at WCU. The Bulldogs certainly passed the eye test, even if i had rain in my eyes. I know 7 on 7 is not a tool to judge a team with but they looked good. And they weren't the only team to look good.


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SMC

The standard in 1A since 1969

26 state titles in 35 apperances

22 consecutive finals appearances

SMC 1A/2A 32 state titles


#52 NC nole fan

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Posted 31 July 2017 - 12:46 PM

Murphy always starts slow out of the gate. Im hoping its pedal to the metal from start to finish. Just hard to predict what they will do. Im more concerned with the line play than dogs ability to put points on the board.

That probably has to do with the caliber of opponent more than anything, plus first game rust, jitters, injured players after practices and scrimmage games, that type of thing. It takes time to get everyone (players and coaches) on the same page and to get things rolling smoothly. But this team has a chance to start in midseason form if they can stay healthy through the first few weeks of practice and the scrimmages. There aren't as many question marks as usual and they are loaded. The only other fairly recent teams I can think of that came into a season with few question marks and loads of talent like this were the 01 and 08 teams. Those teams came out of the gate strong but ultimately came up short at the end of the season. Hopefully this team can start the season fast and end it with another title.

#53 smashmouth

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Posted 31 July 2017 - 03:33 PM

Who else looked at western Paul?

#54 Superkase

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Posted 31 July 2017 - 04:06 PM

Any validity to my thought that Murphy may start a little slower because the Wing T is complicated?  I know all offenses get more wrinkles as the year rolls on, but my (limited) experience with the Wing T is that it takes some time to get the whole offense going well.



#55 Mitchell county mountie

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Posted 31 July 2017 - 05:48 PM

Any validity to my thought that Murphy may start a little slower because the Wing T is complicated? I know all offenses get more wrinkles as the year rolls on, but my (limited) experience with the Wing T is that it takes some time to get the whole offense going well.


With the experience this team has, they should come out of the gate thumping. As long as the o line does its job, the skills should have no wrinkles...

#56 SMC Observer

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Posted 31 July 2017 - 09:07 PM

I don't think Murphy will be nearly as good next year. Not a dig.


They won't be nearly as deep next year (at least as far as proven depth goes) but that's not a knock considering this year's squad is one of the deepest teams Murphy has had. Murphy will still be plenty damn good next year though, with or without the QB transfer. Murphy is going to be worse in a few spots next season but there's a few where they will better too. Overall I do next expect them to be as good next season, but if the QB transfer happens then it could be close.

Offensively Murphy will be bringing back McTaggart, Dorsey, Nelson, Murray, Allen and Roberts at the skill positions and on the line Shope and Cruse will be back, as will a couple of talented sophomores that will be backups on the o-line this year but potentially good starters next season. That's not including I. Smith, Rathburn and D.Smith moving up at the skill spots.

Defensively the d-line will have some holes to fill but Murphy's best d-lineman this year will be back next year (Shope) and arguably Murphy's strongest position on JV this season is the d-line, so some talent moving up. I don't think it's hyperbolic to say that the linebacker unit next season will be one of the best Murphy has ever had with McTaggart, Roberts, Cruse and Allen, in addition to Rathburn coming up from JV. The secondary should be excellent as well with Dorsey, Nelson, Murray and Beal, as well as I. Smith and D.Smith coming up from JV.

The biggest question marks for Murphy next year are 1.) quarterback (nothing else remotely close) 2.) defensive tackle and 3.) offensive guard. If the QB transfer happens, 'Dogs will comfortably win the conference again next season, you can hold me to that Knights. If the QB transfer doesn't happen, Murphy still wins the SMC next season but it will be very competitive (remember next year's juniors and seniors won the SMC on JV).



#57 SMC Observer

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Posted 31 July 2017 - 09:21 PM

Any validity to my thought that Murphy may start a little slower because the Wing T is complicated?  I know all offenses get more wrinkles as the year rolls on, but my (limited) experience with the Wing T is that it takes some time to get the whole offense going well.

 

That's very valid Superkase, Murphy always starts a little slow out of the gate (especially offensively). The one thing that could remedy that this season though is the fact that there are a ton of starters returning, so they may start out a little faster than most years.



#58 SMC Observer

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Posted 31 July 2017 - 09:27 PM

Im more concerned with the line play than dogs ability to put points on the board.

 

The Murphy defensive ends and interior o-line should be ready to rock and roll, both d-ends return (Cantrell and Shope) and 2/3 of the interior o-line returns (Farmer and Hincke) but offensive tackle could take some time since 'Dogs will be replacing both o-tackles. 'Dogs will not be as good at d-tackle this year either. That of course is no shock considering they lost the best defensive player on the team, in the conference and in all of 1A at d-tackle. On the bright side though Rayburn returns at the other d-tackle spot and Sullivan should be a solid starter opposite him.

 

The breaking in of new faces at some key line spots could well hurt Murphy in the early going though, especially considering Pisgah and Franklin are the first two games of the season. Both Pisgah and Franklin are almost always big (and good) on the line.



#59 Paul Graham

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 06:31 AM

I saw RJ Reynolds and Maiden in the 7 on 7 portion and thought Murphy handled them. I watched Rosman practice and was very impressed. If they get in the type of shape they need to be in and settle into their offense they will be dangerous this season. More than a few teams will be surprised by the Tigers.


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26 state titles in 35 apperances

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#60 smashmouth

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 07:34 AM

I also heard that the tigers handled maiden and ws reynolds in 7 on 7. If we stay healthy I think we are going to surprise some people.

#61 uncgrad1998

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 11:26 AM

I will say that Murphy has historically started slow since 2002 due in large part to the rise of the Franklin program as well as some of the other non-conference teams Coach Gentry has scheduled.  However, I have always said that it is not the size of the dog in the fight but the size of the fight in the dog.  Prior to 2002 Coach Gentry scheduled larger schools for the non-conference games and won most of those games.  This team will be good if they have to quote Coach Flip Watson, "the want tos." 

 

I would argue Murphy should be a fast starting team due to the stability of the coaching staff in recent years.  Plus, all the players should be very familiar with the Wing T since JV football.  I know they have added some wrinkles to it over the years but opponents are still going to get a steady diet of traps and buck sweeps throughout the game.  The one drawback to essentially running the same offense for 30 years is that teams have a pretty good idea of what's coming.  That's when those "want tos" come back into play.  If the players have put in the work and have the "want tos" to beat their man then they will have success.  Another factor to quote Coach Bill Gaither is "how will they handle success?"  Will this team be satisfied with last year's state championship or do they want to leave their own legacy and potentially go down as one of the best teams in Murphy history.  Time will tell.  I have no doubt they have the talent and the coaching staff to prepare them for the task at hand but do they have the "want tos."


Murphy Bulldogs
NC 2A State Champs: 1974
NC 1A State Champs: 1986, 1987, 1991, 1996, 2011, 2013, 2016
NC 2A Western State Champs: 1970
Western Region Champs: 1974, 1986, 1987, 1991, 1994, 1996, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2016
Smoky Mountain Conference Champs: 1956, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1974, 1975, 1978, 1985, 1986, 1991, 1992, 1994, 1996, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2016


#62 WarriorLife04'

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 11:50 AM

So my Warriors are preparing to defend the West again(hopefully change topic)and once again underdogs. We are at peace with it, not like we've been favorites in Aug, Sep, Oct before. But November and December they can't deny us. Warrior Nation is ready to rumble fellas.

#63 GoodKNIGHT

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 05:35 PM

It won't take long to find out whether or not this Murphy team is as good as advertised, that's for sure. I'm sure Murphy will be plenty "good" this season, but a "special" Murphy team will come out of the gate and handle these two teams. This is supposed to be a "special" team. We will find out soon.

Murphy by 2tds in both games

#64 WarriorLife04'

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Posted 06 August 2017 - 07:24 PM

Just now checked out the Max Preps 1A rankings for 2017, I agree more with them than I do others. But all said and done the December rankings are what matters. GATA!!

#65 allenjd4life

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Posted 08 August 2017 - 07:46 PM

Just read Marcus Graham is now at mountain island charter wow

#66 dogtuff

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Posted 08 August 2017 - 09:27 PM

Just read Marcus Graham is now at mountain island charter wow

luckily made it through the lottery.



#67 Knights

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 05:09 AM

By the skin of his teeth.





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