Meanwhile, back in Mercer County…
The celebration continues unabated, rings are being ordered, and somebody’s printing enough T-shirts to clothe everyone in Mercer County three times over.
But the weekend came and went without a football game for the first time in 16 weeks, and a few of the Titans were looking for something to do.
So if you’ve got some odd jobs that need doing, you might consider calling a Mercer football player.
Just four days after Mercer won the Class AA championship, quarterback Justin Morgan said a few days ago that he was just a little bit bored with all the extra time on his hands. Meanwhile, a number of players rolled into the Mercer fieldhouse early last week wondering if there wasn’t something they should be doing.
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The fact that Mercer broke the state single-season rushing record was well documented in this story by colleague Hal Morris, but that was only one of three places where the Titans left their mark in the state record book. Here are the details:
- Mercer’s 5,769 rushing yards surpassed the old mark of 5,671 set by Bryan Station in 1999. Danville’s 1992 team ranks third with 5,375 yards, and the Admirals’ 1998 and 1999 teams are tied for 10th place with 4,908.
- Mercer ranks fifth on the list of most points scored in a season with 760. Boyle County teams rank second (797 points in 2000) and fourth (764 in 2001).
- The 613 rushing yards the Titans had against Lloyd Memorial give them the eighth-highest single game total in that category.
And just in case you’re curious, here are the state records held by area teams and individuals in addition to Mercer’s new rushing record:
- Consecutive championships: Boyle County, 5, 1999-2003.
- Field goals, season: Boyle County (team) and Taylor Begley (individual), 17, 2000.
- Extra points, season: Boyle County (team) and Taylor Begley (individual), 97, 2000.
- Fewest points allowed, season: Danville, 0, 1927 (tied with two others).
- Touchdowns, career: Kelvin Turner, Danville, 116, 2004.
- Fumble recoveries, game: Stephen Grubbs, Danville, 3, vs. Corbin, 2000, and Marcellous Jones, Lincoln County, 3, vs. Madison Southern, 1999 (tied with 16 others).
In addition, Danville coach Sam Harp moved from 10th place to eighth on the list of career wins leaders. His career record is 277-80, and he remains fifth among active coaches. A typical Danville season in 2007 should move him past two other inactive coaches: Walter Brugh (280 wins) and Mojo Hollowell (285), and a 15-0 season would leave him tied with Joe Jaggers (292).
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If you thought it was cold at the state finals last week — and yes, it was — consider the conditions Thursday night (Dec. 7), when the temperature plummeted toward 10 degrees, and Friday (Dec. 8), when it struggled to reach the freezing mark.
The finals will be held on the second weekend of December beginning next season, when the entire season schedule is pushed back one week. That’s seven days closer to winter, and that means an even bigger chance of foul weather.
The title games could played be as late as Dec. 8 next year and Dec. 13 in 2008, and that’s pushing their luck. If the schedule pattern remains the same for a few more years, expect some championships to be decided with snow on the ground in the not-to-distant future.
By the way, the schedule for next year’s six state championship games isn’t set, but it’s likely that they’ll be played over two days, with three games each day.