Posted: 11:30 am Monday, August 26th, 2013
By Jeff Greer
I’ve never seen Dwyer lose in such a fashion.
Sure, I’ve seen Dwyer lose (in person) — in the 2011 playoffs to Bradenton-Manatee, in the 2011 season opener to Glades Central and on Saturday night. And I know the Panthers royally struggled last fall against Atlantic, losing 28-12 in what became the District 13-7A title game. But I don’t think they’ve ever quite played as poorly as they did Saturday.
“Disappointed in almost every aspect of the game,” Dwyer coach Jack Daniels said moments after Dwyer’s 44-13 loss to Miami Central. “I think we could’ve played with these guys. It was ugly. It’s the reality check we needed.”
There are several key pieces to pull from Daniels’ comments on the offense. First, the consensus from the all-knowing media at the game was that Dwyer needs to give the ball to running back Alonso Smith more. He was productive in limited use — 13 carries for 54 yards. Of course, it’s hard to run the ball once you’ve fallen behind by two touchdowns. But Daniels made it clear he’ll be looking at Smith more.
Parr was fantastic in the spring game at Vero Beach. He threw for 400-plus yards. His throws, after a slow start, were on-point. That leads me to believe he’ll be OK moving forward. He was 8 of 14 for 87 yards and two interceptions by my count, although my stats were iffy in the second half. He missed Johnnie Dixon on back-to-back go routes on the first drive, but Dixon did earn a pass interference call on one of them.
Remember, this was Parr’s third start at quarterback. He’s a junior leading one of the area’s preeminent programs and he’s throwing to three BCS-level receivers. That’s a lot of pressure. Tack on a start against the top-rated team in the country, and it doesn’t get much tougher on a kid. So before we start calling Dwyer overrated or any of that other nonsense (just click through our comment sections), remember the circumstances. Dwyer won’t play Miami Central every week. Parr has a real shot at 2,000-plus yards of passing this regular season.
But I do agree with the bottom line in all of this: Giving Smith the ball a bit more is a fantastic idea.