Carpenter’s Crunch Time Column: The karma bus makes its rounds this week

BUCKHANNON – Most people who know me know that I hold grudges. I also firmly believe in the karma bus.

In week two of the high school football season, the Ripley radio broadcast team was caught on a hot mic having this discussion about our Buckhannon-Upshur Buccaneers, “They aren’t very good, in fact they are pretty bad. They are pretty bad, aren’t they?”

If those goofs would have decided to do their homework, they would have realized that the Bucs entered that game with eight starters out due to COVID-19 protocols. Never mind that Ripley also had a game under their belts while the Bucs were playing in their season opener.

Now, a quick check of the WVSSAC rankings show the Vikings are 1-6 on the season, meaning their only win was over the short-handed Buccaneers.

Even funnier is the Vikings are ranked 31st out of 32 teams in the Class AAA rankings, or four spots behind the Buccaneers. Maybe those two want to reconsider who the truly ‘pretty bad’ team is right now. Doesn’t look like the Bucs does it?

Also hopping on the karma bus was the Greenbrier East Spartans. Look, some people feel they weren’t running up the score against our Bucs in week four and that’s fine.

But last Friday, those same Spartans maybe wish they had some of those points they piled up against our Bucs as they managed all of a field goal in a 23-3 upset loss to a then 2-4 Oak Hill football team.

Interestingly enough, Ripley plays Greenbrier East this week.

Who else wants to jump aboard the karma bus? We shall see.

Turning to our friendly competition here at the Crunch Time, I posted a perfect 5-0 week last week while My Buckhannon founder Brian Bergstrom posted a 3-2 record.


Duane Carpenter 17-8 (5-0 last week)

Brian Bergstrom 15-10 (3-2 last week)

University (6-0) at Buckhannon-Upshur (2-4) – You can certainly see the improvement from our Buccaneers but this Friday night is going to be a tough one against the unbeaten and fourth-ranked University Hawks. Slowing down the Hawks will be the key as they average 46 points per game. I think the Bucs will keep it closer than in years past, but I think this will be a difficult challenge for the Bucs. My pick: University, 35-23; Brian’s pick: University, 35-21.

Robert C. Byrd (4-2) at Fairmont Senior (2-3) – Out of necessity, the Polar Bears overscheduled this year and have put themselves in a tough predicament at the moment. The Polar Bears have little room for error at 2-3 right now and are way outside the top 16 in Class AA ranked at 22nd. The Eagles are far from a perfect team but could provide a damaging loss Friday night to the Polar Bears. My pick: Robert C. Byrd, 29-23; Brian’s pick: Robert C. Byrd, 28-17.

West Virginia Wesleyan (0-6) at Notre Dame (5-1) – As I said last week, Wesleyan has to find a way to put points on the board and playing on the road against one of the best in the MEC, it isn’t going to be easy for the ‘Cats to find the end zone this Saturday. Wesleyan has just three points, one field goal in their last three games. Notre Dame is 6-1 all-time in their series with the ‘Cats and they will make it 7-1 after the game concludes Saturday evening. My pick: Notre Dame 45-6; Brian’s pick: Notre Dame, 35-13.

Marshall (3-3) at North Texas (1-4) – The Herd needed overtime last week to get past one-win Old Dominion. Something is amiss right now in Huntington, but I can’t quite put my finger on it. Marshall gets another cupcake this week at one-win North Texas. My pick: Marshall, 38-10; Brian’s pick: Marshall, 24-14.

Oklahoma State (5-0) at Texas (4-2) – The top game in the Big XII this week. Texas is licking their wounds after dropping a 55-48 contest to Oklahoma last Saturday. Look for them to rebound against the Cowboys, who never seem like that they can turn the corner to the top of the Big XII Conference. My pick: Texas, 24-21; Brian’s pick: Oklahoma State, 42-21.

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