Ron Agostini

Agostini: High school football – the longest season grows longer

Oakdale quarterback Adam Olsen, center, runs up the middle during the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III championship game Dec. 4, 2015, in Stockton, Calif. The Mustangs lost to Central Catholic 21-7 but are arguably better than a handful of teams who are still playing two weeks before Christmas.
Oakdale quarterback Adam Olsen, center, runs up the middle during the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III championship game Dec. 4, 2015, in Stockton, Calif. The Mustangs lost to Central Catholic 21-7 but are arguably better than a handful of teams who are still playing two weeks before Christmas. jwestberg@modbee.com

Reading time, two minutes:

▪ The high school football season is not officially over, and it’s 13 days before Christmas. And we haven’t reached the state finals.

▪ We’re not saying the season is too long, but ... well ... that’s exactly what we’re saying.

▪ Thirteen state champions will be crowned. Is the state that big? Are we going by weight classes?

▪ Something else to ponder: Oakdale and Elk Grove, both out, could beat the majority of teams still playing this weekend.

▪ About the Giants’ “dodging a bullet” when ex-Dodger Zack Greinke signed with the Diamondbacks: The Giants were 8-11 vs. Arizona in 2015.

▪ The Giants signed Jeff Samardzija. Giants fans need more convincing.

▪ Blaine Gabbert suddenly is touted as the future of the 49ers. I need more convincing.

▪ Two points about Gabbert: He’s clearly improved over his first NFL stay at Jacksonville, and one wonders about his potential if the 49ers can upgrade the talent around him.

▪ Question: Did no one in the NFL realize Gabbert could run?

▪ Seems strange to write about the 49ers without mentioning Colin Kaepernick. So there.

▪ When media narratives go astray: The Raiders, within one month, downsize from “the next good team” to “see you next year.”

▪ Still true: One slump (read: one bad quarter) doesn’t diminish the future of quarterback Derek Carr.

▪ The Warriors already have won more games than the Golden State teams from 1998 through 2002. No, they don’t miss Donyell Marshall.

▪ While the Warriors continue to make history: There’s concern for coach Steve Kerr; he may not return until after the All-Star break.

▪ The Cavaliers’ LeBron James complimented the Warriors while calling them “the healthiest team I’ve ever seen in NBA history.” Methinks he’s worried about Steph Curry stealing away his King’s crown.

▪ Earth to James: Championship teams stay healthy. That’s why they win.

▪ After James’ comment, the Warriors’ Harrison Barnes and Klay Thompson both were injured. His wish came true.

▪ Dodge Ridge and Bear Valley, after some not-so-good years, both opened before Thanksgiving. Cause for celebration in the Sierra. And Badger Pass opens Saturday.

▪ Regardless of the final Heisman Trophy voting, Stanford’s Christian McCaffrey is college football’s best player. Alabama’s Derrick Henry could not do what McCaffrey did in the Pac-12 final.

▪ When you break Barry Sanders’ record for all-purpose yardage, you deserve a Heisman.

▪ The Heisman is not won in October: Leonard Fournette, LSU.

▪ Sonny Dykes and Cal finally settled. It seems they’re in deep for each other.

▪ The 78th Modesto Junior College Invitational, one of the nation’s longest basketball tournaments, will happen next week. The 1991 Pirates, the only MJC team to claim a conference title since 1957, will be honored Wednesday night.

▪ A subplot: Columbia beat MJC last weekend at Oak Pavilion. The teams could meet in the semifinals.

▪ Worth watching: The Pirates’ Mason Washington (ex-Modesto Christian), 20 points per game, ninth in California.

▪ Spencer Thomas, a quarterback for MJC in 2014, is recovering from a heart attack. Support him at a benefit spaghetti dinner from 6 to 11 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 2, at the FES Hall in Oakdale.

▪ Nice run by the MJC women’s soccer team to reach the State Final Four. The Pirates lost 3-0 to Rio Hondo, which eventually lost 3-0 to Cerritos. Conclusion: Only one team cheers when it’s over.

▪ Not clear on the concept: Admission price to watch the Pac-12 Conference champion Stanford women’s soccer team was $10. It cost $12 to watch the MJC Pirates in the NorCal playoffs.

▪ Top-tier Sac-Joaquin Section Division III final last week between Oakdale and Central Catholic. The teams performed like they belonged in the title game.

▪ If I’m a basketball or wrestling coach at a school still alive in the football playoffs, I’m still waiting for athletes – and growing impatient.

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