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OT Riley Norman, Cadillac Look To Secure Playoff Spot Against Mustangs

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At the beginning of the year, the 5-2 (3-2) Cadillac Vikings looked like they might run through their schedule and take home that elusive conference title. Things didn’t play out like they wanted, but they are one game away from qualifying for the playoffs and that means winning one of their next two games.

This week looks like it will be a good shot for them to pick it up when they face the 0-7 (0-7) Clio Mustangs. They are going to look to go up big with their running game led by quarterback Jalen Brooks as he will hit the holes created by his line, being anchored by Riley Norman and Jack Ford.

Clio plays an interesting schedule. They play in a large conference and have only 1 non-conference game, which is this week against Cadillac. They have had little success this year as well. They have rotated home and away games all year long, but haven’t been able to pick-up a win regardless. They opened the season at home against the Lapeer East Eagles and fell in a close one 13-6.

They then hit the road to take on the Swartz Creek Dragons and were destroyed 51-13. A similar fate was given to them at home when they hosted the Linden Eagles who blanked the Mustangs 49-0.

Back on the road brought them to the Holly Bronchos who again took it to Clio 49-13. The Fenton Tigers came to visit next and defeated the Mustangs handily 39-7. They did play a close game when they went on the road to face the Kearsley Hornets. They still came up short as the Hornets won 35-29.

Last week Clio hosted the Lapeer West Panthers. They didn’t even come close in this one as the Panthers blanked them once again 31-0.

I don’t think it will get any easier for the Mustangs as they will try to move the ball against this tough Vikings defense. Clio has only managed 68 points all season long while Cadillac’s defense has been giving up 16.9 points per game.

It should be noted that this number is elevated from one game where they gave up 40 points. Every other opponent has been held to 21 or less. If Cadillac hadn’t played the Alpena Wildcats this week, I would think that Clio might have a chance at scoring their first victory, but I think they’re going to struggle once again to move the ball.

The real test will be for the Clio defense to slow down this running game. The Vikings are averaging 28 points per game, while the Mustang defense is allowing 38.1 points per game. We have seen Cadillac put up big numbers as they have scored 33 or more points in 4 of their games.

They have that big offense line that opens up gaps and their backs hit the holes for big plays. What makes it worse is that they can throw the ball when needed and it really opens things up when the running game is working very well. I don’t think Clio will be able to slow this down.

These two teams didn’t play last year, so I don’t have any history to go on. My prediction though is that Cadillac will qualify for the playoffs with a victory this week. I think the margin isn’t going to be close and they will run away with it, literally. I believe the running game will go for big numbers behind Norman and Ford. We saw what Brooks did last week, though I don’t think he will have that big of a performance, he will still put up enough for them to win big. My prediction is the Vikings win on the road 35-14.

This game will be played in Clio, Michigan on Friday October 12th at 7:00 p.m. at Clio High School.