Happy Thanksgiving to you from all of us at Michigan Sports Radio.
We hope you all have a great Thanksgiving and we want to thank you for helping make this one of our biggest seasons of High School Football. Feel free to click the contact us tab and let us know who you are, where you’re listening, and any suggestions that will make the basketball season or next years football season even more enjoyable.
The MHSAA Football season has finally reached its culmination. On Friday and Saturday, sixteen teams play for the opportunity to win eight State Championships. We will be sending Eric Wells and Dave Van Noord to Ford Field to broadcast the Division 5 and Division 3 games on Saturday. The pre-game coverage for each game will begin 20 min before the kickoff. Join us at 4:10 for the Division 5 game between Portland (13-0) and Unity Christian (11-2) and at 7:10 for the Division 3 game featuring defending champs Muskegon (13-0) vs Detroit Martin Luther King (11-2). Make sure to check back on the website after the games for recap articles. Then also, make sure you visit the site on Monday to see the Michigan Sports Radio staff’s selections for the Core Power Performance Impact Players of the Year. A quick preview of this weekend’s games can be found below:
DIVISION 3: MUSKEGON VS DETROIT MARTIN LUTHER KING (SATURDAY/7:30 PM)
The Muskegon Big Reds are back in Ford Field for the third straight year and the sixth time in seven seasons. They also are entering this game with a 27-game winning streak, the longest active streak in the MHSAA. On paper, they are arguably the most talented team in the state of Michigan, regardless of division. Led by run-first quarterback Cam Martinez, the Big Reds have scored a remarkable 50 points per game this season. This includes four games of at least 60 points, topped off with a 72 point output against Kenowa Hills.
Defensively, the Big Reds are also a very strong unit. They have held their opponents to an average of 18 points per game, holding three teams to single digits. There have only been two games that have finished in single digit margins for Muskegon this season. They held on for a 42-35 victory over East Grand Rapids in the first round of the playoffs, and the other was a 24-21 victory over Detroit Martin Luther King in Week 2 of the season.
The Crusaders of Detroit King have only lost two games this season, with a defeat at the hands of Cass Tech in the PSL Championship game as the other. They can also score the ball, averaging 36.8 points per game, including five games of 50 or more points. King is led by quarterback Dequan Finn, who is committed to play at Central Michigan next fall. This is the third trip to Ford Field for Detroit King in the last four seasons, and they are looking for their third title in that span.
DIVISION 5: UNITY CHRISTIAN VS PORTLAND (SATURDAY/4:30 PM)
The Unity Christian Crusaders have blazed a trail to the State Championship game for the first time in school history. After a 7-2 regular season, the Crusaders started their playoff slate against five-time defending champion West Catholic. They had little trouble in a 41-22 victory over the Falcons. After defeating Muskegon Oakridge, they knocked off a Kalamazoo United team that was 11-0 and averaging over 50 points per game. Last week in the state semifinals, they defeated previously undefeated and reigning Division 5 runner-up Swan Valley. Needless to say, the Saders have been tested throughout this postseason, and they have stepped up to the challenge each week.
Standing in their way of the first State Championship in program history are the Portland Raiders. The Raiders enter this one at a perfect 12-0, and they are one of the best programs in mid-Michigan each season. They have reached the playoffs in 14 of the last 15 seasons, and they brought home the 2012 Division 5 State Championship. This makes them the most recent champion that is not West Catholic.
The defense of Portland is dominant, holding their opponents to 8.2 points per contest. They have also pitched five shutouts this season. This statistically speaking will be the toughest defense that Unity has faced all season. At 34.5 points per game, the Unity offense has been very consistent this year, so it is truly a battle of strengths for the title in Division 5.