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Why is a loss seen as more than it is?

October 18, 2010

It's a loss.

Nothing more.

Nothing less.

It's not the end of the world and the ultimate goal is still in sight.

Quit jumping ship.

Climb back on and get ready for the ride.

And, if you choose to stay on the outside, that leaves more elbow room for others.

Youngstown Ursuline came into Death Valley Friday night and beat Steubenville Big Red.

The Irish handed Big Red its second straight loss for the first time in 10 years.

Steubenville is 6-2 and still No. 2 in the region.

With two more wins, Big Red will still make the playoffs, will still host a playoff game and will still have its eyes on eventually winning a regional title and a state championship.

Two losses have not changed that.

I believe Big Red is a better football team than Massillon, but not on that night, and could not overcome six turnovers and penalties at terrible times.

The Tigers took advantage of those mistakes for the victory.

Ursuline is a very good football team and everyone saw why it has won two straight Division V state crowns and are the heavy favorites to grab three in a row.

No one in Region 11 has played a better schedule than Big Red.

Alliance Marlington has not seen any team near as good as McKeesport, Massillon or the Irish.

The only two Division III teams in Ohio who have played a schedule like Big Red is Cardinal Mooney and Columbus DeSales.

Mooney lost to St. Edward, DeSales, beat Akron SVSM and ends with Ursuline and Archbiship Moeller.

DeSales played New Albany, Mooney, Orchard Lake St. Mary, Mich., St. Edward, Bishop Watterson and LaSalle.

Big Red football coach Reno Saccoccia has said for years that the schedule is not made to win a bar argument.

It is made to get his team to host a playoff game in Week 11 and get prepared for the next four weeks after that.

It seems, to me, like that has been done with two more wins.

Don't think for a second that the current standings in the region will be the same after 10 weeks.

No. 3 East Liverpoool visits No. 7 Salem and No. 8 Edison heads to No. 12 Indian Creek in Week 10 (where I expect a full house). Those two games will determine a lot.

I really like Big Red's chances once the postseason hits.

I am not an Ohio State fan.

Never have been and never will be.

But, there is still too much season left for the Buckeye fans to lament a loss to Wisconsin.

I am also not a Pryor fan. I think he is an average college quarterback.

He's a very talented athlete, but not a top-notch quarterback yet.

The bad thing about the loss is now Ohio State's BCS fate is in the hands of a lot of other teams.

"It depends on if other teams lose," Pryor said. "We have to stop taking things for granted. We have to figure out what we need to do and get ready for Purdue.

"It was a team loss but we live to fight another day. We're men and this isn't the final message about this team.

"We have to bounce back. I don't want to lose another game and I'm sure nobody else does, either. You never know. Teams could lose and maybe we could jump up."

"We have to go back and look at everything," said running back Dan Herron. "There's a lot of football to be played and we're still hungry."

Unlike Big Red, which has its fate in its hands for the rest of the season, Ohio State does not.

Life met high school football on Friday when Buckeye Local head coach Anthony Barsch had what doctors determined as a "mini stroke."

I have no idea on what a "mini stroke" is, but I know it's a lot better with that word "mini" in there.

It is said Barsch should make a full recovery, but his return will be handled with kid gloves.

As it should.

I guess Barsch and his family would welcome our prayers. Our thoughts don't help anything.

Our prayers do.

I was in Richmond Friday night taking photos of the Edison-Bellaire game and the Edison band began playing when Bellaire had the football.

The referee came over and told the band to stop.

The Wildcats fans did not like it and began to make a lot of noise on their own.

The rule according to the OHSAA football manual is rather simple:

Bands shall not play music at football games while the ball is in play, or while signals are being called by the quarterback. This means that it is not permissible to use either:

1. Drum roll or beat

2. Cymbals clashing

3. Horn sounds, or

4. Any other kind of musical instrument while the play is under way in football.

The manual is for coaches and officials and is from OHSAA assistant commissioner Henry Zaborniak.

"Please review the band section on pages 13 and 14 of this manual. This was a concern at a number of high school games in previous years. We hope that everyone will be informed on the guidelines for high school bands during football games."

If the bands continue and the referees do not do anything, that is on the referees. Although, the manual says nothing regarding any penalties for repeated offenses.

My guess is a flag will be thrown and a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty will be called.

But, the rules say the bands cannot do that.

However, the fans can get as loud as they want.

Will the San Diego Chargers please fire Norv Turner. You ran the ball 17 times in Sunday's loss to St. Louis - 17 times against the Rams.

Can we please get Jon Gruden before the Browns do next year?

(Mathison, a Weirton resident, is the sports editor of the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times and can be contacted at

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