Will Red Mountain make a leap?
Each year there seems to be optimism for the football program at Red Mountain, and with good reason. The Mountain Lions won a pair of state championships at the turn of the century, and have the enrollment and talent base to be competitive every season.
Despite those built-in advantages, Red Mountain hasn’t finished more than one game over .500 in a season since 2007. Ron Wisniewski took over as coach last year, but the Mountain Lions finished only 6-5, albeit against a brutal schedule.
While this is only the second game of the season, Friday’s matchup with Mesquite could be pivotal. If Red Mountain can beat the Wildcats, it will begin the season 2-0 after already downing top-10 team Avondale Westview on the road in the season opener.
Red Mountain gets Brophy next week and Desert Ridge on Sept. 30, but those will probably be the only two games it is seen as an underdog the rest of the year. A win over Mesquite would give Red Mountain a great shot at eight or more wins this regular season, which could give it a high seed come playoff time and a reasonable chance to do some damage in the Division I playoffs.
The Mountain Lions seem to have the right building blocks in place to consistently be a top-tier Division I program. This week would go a long way in proving it.