Thanksgiving week is always quite the week for Blitz.
For one, there is food. No matter who is playing in Indianapolis over Thanksgiving weekend, Blitz always eats well on Thursday.
But secondary to food, we have football to focus on. This year, we have a team we are unaccustomed to getting hype for this time of year – East Noble.
It is refreshing and almost fitting.
Look, Blitz loves Bishop Dwenger and Snider and Bishop Luers. While it means the world to those programs to get to the state championship game, it almost feels like “been there, done that” when it comes to the fan bases.
Seriously, are Bishop Dwenger graduates getting excited about an 11th trip to the state finals? Believe me, Blitz knows some Dwenger folks who almost see it as an inconvenience that they have to go to our state capital for state.
That gets us to East Noble. Those who were not in attendance at last Friday’s semistate game against Hobart have no clue how much it means to Kendallville that East Noble is in this position. Now, Hobart brought a ton of people, but the East Noble side of the field was absolutely insane. Folks were actually ringing the field along the fence two or three deep in support of the Knights.
In a year in which we saw some “different” teams take center stage, it is almost refreshing that we are left with East Noble, which has not won a state championship since 2000.
We all thought that South Adams would be the team that would carry the northeast Indiana torch to Indianapolis. While the Starfires did fall short in a loss to Adams Central, they did give us plenty to talk about throughout the year.
Seriously, when is the last time we spoke about anything in Berne? James Arnold, Nick Miller, Aidan Wanner and the rest were nothing short of incredible all season. The Starfires gave us someone else to talk about on a weekly basis that did not fit the same old cookie-cutter team that we are used to talking about.
And what about Eastside? Who did not love the Blazers earning their first-ever sectional championship in program history? Who deep down wasn’t rooting for them to venture deeper into the postseason when they lost at Eastbrook?
East Noble faithful will pack Lucas Oil Stadium on Saturday come 3:30 p.m. To many, it will be the first state championship game they have ever been to. The Knights are not regulars when it comes to playing for the big trophy in football, basketball or any other sport.
While there will be some mainstays in the games this weekend, East Noble is a relative newcomer with a rabid fan base that will show up in the thousands come Saturday afternoon.
For that, Blitz is blessed. This bear does not want to root for a local team largely by himself, nor does he want it to feel like just another trophy for the school to find a place to display.
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