By Randy Gregory
The Rockford football team has played a daunting schedule over the course of the 2012 football season. Muskegon, Lowell, West Ottawa (twice) and Holt have provided some stern competition for the Rams on their way to a 9-2 record, an OK Red championship and a district title. But the stakes and the opposition have moved just a little higher on the Richter scale with this week’s draw. The undefeated and top-ranked Clarkston Wolves (11-0) will host the Rams on Saturday, November 10th at 1:00 P.M. in a Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 1 Regional contest.
“Clarkston is a big, powerful team that has a bunch of road graders,” said Rockford coach Ralph Munger. “They are huge up front on both sides of the ball and, first and foremost, will try to impose their will on you physically. But they can also throw the ball if they have to. Their special teams are also solid and they have an excellent kicker who will force us to go eighty yards when he kicks off.”
The Wolves are coached by Kurt Richardson and, as they proudly point out on their web site, went 27-0 on all three levels of high school football during the regular season. They have outscored the opposition 410-134 en route to their perfect record thus far, for an average score of 37.3 to 12.2. They have really only been challenged twice this season in a 21-14 win over Lake Orion and a 28-21 triumph over Rochester Hills Stoney Creek. They have rolled to wins over Davison (41-0) and Grand Blanc (35-19) in playoff action thus far. They feature an Illinois commitment, an MSU offeree and a pair of other potential Division 1 recruits at the collegiate level. In summation, they are loaded.
Rockford is in the midst of an eight-game winning streak of their own. They have run up an average score of 28.9 to 11.3 and are starting to play some of their best football of the season offensively as they have gotten healthier by the week. If it is a physical contest, the Rams will gladly answer the bell behind a punishing defense and a diverse offense that will take whatever you give them. It will truly be a battle of strength against strength with the Wolves rushing attack against a Ram defense that has seldom given up anything on the ground.
“We are thrilled to be in the position we are in at this time of the season,” said Munger. “We have our work cut out for us because Clarkston has an unbelievably talented team and it is at their place. But we really hope it is a physical game and we think we have a chance to move the ball because they really haven’t seen an offense like ours all year. It should be a great game and our kids have performed under difficult circumstances all season long.”