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Peterson: Rambling in a very rambling year

Since it’s been such a rambling year in every respect, I figured I would ramble through the sports of the past week.

First off, how about that North Central High School 8-man football team?

The Jets — the most successful sports small school in the Upper Peninsula — continued to impress with a big 70-48 state title win over Portland St. Patrick.

The amount of offense against a very solid team had to make points with all observers. The fact that it capped an unbeaten season and was the third overall for the Jets was just icing on the cake.

North Central also has a couple of state crowns in basketball and has produced several outstanding players. Not the least of that group is current Michigan Tech player Dawson Bilski…

On the subject of basketball, MTU men’s and women’s squads have already begun their seasons with promising results.

Former Houghton High star Brad Simonsen even made his collegiate debut in a reserve role.

On the prep scene, local teams started practicing for their long-delayed seasons this week. They could be ready to start next week … if all goes right down in Lansing.

Look for seasoned Jeffers and Tamarack City-Dollar Bay boys teams to be very good. The Blue Bolts stayed in Class D, while the Jets moved up to Class C. That eliminates a potential postseason confrontation in March.

On the girls side, Houghton could return to its former glory days with a bundle of talent. Baraga and Calumet will also be strong with veteran squads.

The hockey season will start early next month by all accounts. Calumet, as usual, will be the favorite with its superior depth.

But don’t count out Houghton or Hancock, who are always in the hunt…

The Detroit Lions have announced their perennial rebuilding task with a new general manager in Brad Holmes and coach in Dan Campbell. Both are unknown factors.

The new brass faces a formidable job of picking up the pieces left by Bob Quinn and Matt Patricia, who failed miserably to bring the magic of the New England Patriots to Motown.

The first big question to be answered by the Lions will be whether to bring back quarterback Matt Stafford, or to find a new quarterback in the college draft.

My guess is that they will keep Stafford for one more year and draft his successor. It isn’t that Stafford doesn’t have the talent …he just isn’t the QB to awake this dormant franchise. Joe Montana or John Elway, in their prime, would look good to do that.

So, there it is in a nutshell.

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