The Van Wert County Courthouse

Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2022

Monday Mailbag: Cougars, OSU, more

SCOTT TRUXELL/independent sports editor

This week’s Monday Mailbag features questions about Van Wert’s No. 1 ranking, this week’s ranking, a comment about officiating, Van Wert and Crestview at the halfway point of the regular season and Ohio State football.

Q: How much of a role did Van Wert’s No. 1 ranking play in Friday’s loss to St. Marys Memorial? Name withheld upon request

A: It’s tough to say, but I’m not sure if it played a role or not.

The Cougars already have a target on their backs by being defending state champions and I suppose it’s possible they came out a little tight to start the game due to a new No. 1 ranking.

However, let’s give credit where credit is due. The Roughriders had a game plan and executed it very well and they earned the win.

Q: How far do you think Van Wert will drop in the state rankings? Name withheld upon request?

A: We’ll find out this afternoon, but my guess is the Cougars will drop to somewhere between No. 7 and No. 10.

C: The officials were horrible during Friday night’s Van Wert game. Calling two touchdowns back cost the Cougars the game. Name withheld upon request. Name withheld upon request

A: It certainly didn’t help Van Wert and while I’ll agree at least one of those calls seemed a little questionable, I’m not going to blame the officials.

Be honest – if the roles were reversed and St. Marys Memorial had two touchdowns wiped out by penalties, would you think they were bad calls?

This is not a popular opinion but as I said before, the Roughriders earned the win.

Q: Would you have guessed that Van Wert and Crestview would both be 4-1 at the halfway point of the regular season? How will both teams fare during the second half? Name withheld upon request

A: I wasn’t quite sure what to expect but it’s certainly nice to see both teams enjoying success at this point.

Both teams have tough games ahead. The Knights have games at Bluffton and Columbus Grove, followed by a home game against Spencerville. None of those games will be easy. After Ada in Week No. 9, Crestview will close the regular season with Leipsic.

The Cougars have Ottawa-Glandorf at home on Friday then a trip to Shawnee. After Kenton in Week No. 8, Elida and much improved Bath will close out the season.

Q: The offense is inconsistent and the defense is downright bad. I think it’s time for people to realize that Ohio State isn’t a playoff-caliber team or even a team that will be in the Big Ten Championship Game. What are your thoughts? Name withheld upon request

A: As things stand now I think you’re correct.

There have been some bright spots on offense. Yes, CJ Stroud has been inconsistent but let’s not forget he’s a 19-year-old kid with three collegiate starts under his belt.

As long as he’s healthy I believe he’ll continue to improve and become more consistent.

Treveyon Henderson has obviously lived up to his lofty ranking as the nation’s top incoming freshmen running back and the receiving corp obviously is one of the best in the country.

The defense is a big problem. The Buckeyes did some things differently on Saturday and while they fared better against the run, pass defense stood out as a glaring weakness again. I shudder to think what some Big Ten quarterbacks will do when they play Ohio State.

At this very moment, it’s hard to envision the Buckeyes playing in the Big Ten Championship Game.

If you have a question or comment for the next Monday Mailbag, please email it to sports@thevwindependent.com.

POSTED: 09/20/21 at 4:00 am. FILED UNDER: Sports