|photo by Tiffany Tompkins-Condie|
Manatee quarterback Cord Sandberg is again a Lemmy Award winner.
The 3rd Annual Lemmy Awards.
This is all for fun and has no bearing on the All-Area Team, which will be unveiled after the season with input from Herald staffers and area coaches.
Now the winners...
MOST VALUABLE PLAYER - Cory Crawford, Palmetto: Crawford's absence didn't hurt the Tigers last Friday when they rolled past Lakewood Ranch. That said, his ability to play anywhere on the field has paid dividends for Palmetto, which is 5-0 and ranked No.1 in Class 5A. A wide reciever by trade, Crawford made a seamless transition to running back and still leads the area in rushing. And coaches feel so strongly about Crawford's ability to run the foobtall they have taken Josh Hicks, who rushed for 277 yards against the Mustangs, and put him at defensive back to aid a defense that lost eight starters from last year. That sound you hear is Crawford's stock rising.
HONORABLE MENTION - Cord Sandberg, Manatee; Courtney Allen, Southeast.
MOST OUTSTANDING PLAYER - Cord Sandberg, Manatee: He has completed nearly 70 percent of his passes (65 for 95), hasn't thrown in an interception while throwing 11 touchdowns, passed for 915 yards and has coolly led Manatee to a 4-0 start and the top national ranking in the eyes of MaxPreps and USA Today. You can't argue with Sandberg's numbers, so we won't.
HONORABLE MENTION - Courtney Allen, Southeast; Cory Crawford, Palmetto; Sinclair Laskett, Bradenton Christian.
COACH OF THE YEAR - Joe Kinnan, Manatee: Branding Kinnan the coach of the year is like awarding the driver with the most explosive engine. Yes, Kinnan has more weapons than anyone in the area - but his Hurricanes entered the year with the most expectations and have lived up to all of them. Manatee looked just as focused against Miramar and nationally-ranked Miami Central as they did against Riverview and thus far haven't overlooked anyone. The Hurricanes are a driven bunch and that trickles down from their coach.
HONORABLE MENTION - Dave Marino, Palmetto; Allan Gerber, Bradenton Christian; Shawn Trent, Lakewood Ranch.
GAMES TO WATCH IN THE SECOND HALF:
Manatee at Venice, Oct. 19 - Will probably decide the 7A-District 10 title.
Southeast at Palmetto, Nov. 2 - May earn one team a district title and cost another a playoff berth.
Palmetto at Manatee, Oct. 26 - The battle for area bragging rights again comes down to the Tigers and Hurricanes.
Largo at Lakewood Ranch, Oct. 26 - This decided the Class 6A-District 7 championship last year and probably will do so again.
Bradenton Christian at St. Petersburg Admiral Farragut, Oct. 19 - A win will go a long way toward the Panthers making their first trip to the playoffs.