Hello and welcome back to the Barbarian Blog. Today we’re going to take off our Head Scout hat, put on our writer’s hat and go old school by having a look at the match-ups we’ve got for week one.
Brussels Black Angels vs Gent Gators, 12pm @ Beringen
Here’s a tasty little match up for you to start things off. The Gators looked smooth on offense at times last season but faltered against bigger defenses. To start the season they’ll face the biggest and baddest defense of them all! Can they protect their quarterback and give him time to hit his receivers?
Speaking of quarterbacks, how will the Angels go with their new quarterback, and also their new system on offense? Hopefully for them it all gels quickly, because sometimes these things don’t.
Prediction : The Gators should find a way to the endzone but until they prove they can deal with bigger opponents I’ll stick with what I know. Black Angels 27, Gators 14
Antwerp Diamonds vs Limburg Shotguns, 3pm @ Beringen
The second game in Limburg is the return of the Shotguns, and nice to see them back it is. They’ll take on the Diamonds who will be looking to return to their form of two years ago, rather than their form of last season. Their juniors had a rather successful season so let’s see how many of those kids can make an impact with the big boys.
It’s hard to know what to expect from the Shotguns, I saw video of a practice game they played but that doesn’t tell the full story.
Prediction : Again, I’ll stick to what I know. The weather might not be great on Sunday and I’m sure the Diamonds can grind it out. Diamonds 20, Shotguns 6
Leuven Lions vs Ostend Pirates, 12pm @ Izegem
So the Lions have neither been here nor there the last few seasons, and now they face a new team in the Pirates. Although as we all know, the Pirates aren’t ‘new’, they’ve probably got more playoff experience than any team in the whole BFL. And not to mention that their big play ability is second-to-none as well (believe me, I know. The only touchdown against the Barbarians at the Treasure Cup last season was scored on such a play).
Leuven are going to have to find a way to stop the big plays and find time to make a couple themselves, perhaps on turnovers or special teams.
Prediction : I think it’ll be hard to contain the Pirates for the whole game. I’m not expecting a whole lot of scoring though. Pirates 24, Lions 13
Brussels Bulls vs Izegem Tribes, 3pm @ Izegem
Izegem are one year removed from a winless season (although they tied one and probably should have won at least one other), while the Bulls tasted defeat in the Belgian Bowl. That should mean that both teams have some good motivation to play well. The Tribes are still young, and they’re at home so they should have enthusiasm and the crowd behind them, but it also means they will have to be careful not to let their heads hang if they get behind.
The Bulls will do what the Bulls do – speed around the outsides, pound it up the middle and play defense, not to mention they have probably the best special teams around.
Prediction : This will be a tough match for the Tribes. The Bulls may not be as spectacular as some other teams but they’ll get it done : Bulls 38, Tribes 12
Quote of the week
“The West Flanders Tribes will be together on a field in Izegem.. Not at the same time though”, Pirates TE Andy Brutyn
So this is going to be dangerous! I’ve seen just one practice game live and a couple of others on tape, but here we go with some predictions for the 2014 season.
So, I boldly predict that :
– Despite losing their first game, the Gent Gators will lead the FAFL in scoring. Not only that, but they’ll make the playoffs and do some serious damage along the way, winning at least one game before time by leading by 50 (and as far as I know, they have never done that before).
– The Pirates will have a great first season, just missing out on the playoffs.
– For every team that steps forward, one will step back. The Fighting Turtles will still make the playoffs, but they won’t be the threat that they were. The new challenge in the LFFAB to the Tigers will come from Waterloo.
– Playoff teams LFFAB – Brussels Tigers, Waterloo Warriors, Corbais Fighting Turtles
– Playoff teams FAFL – Brussels Black Angels, Gent Gators, Brussels Bulls
Agree? Disagree? Want to make your own BOLD prediction? Let me know by leaving a comment!
There was a meeting a week ago to discuss all areas of the Barbarians. A lot was figured out, actually. I guess the most important thing for you guys was about the player selection. I’m not going to talk about it here because it’ll just get buried in all the other information in the blog. However, your coaches, and you, therefore, will hear about it soon enough though.
I guess that this is just about all I’ve got for now. These prediction blogs are always the hardest to write, once the football actually starts things get much simpler! So anyway, I’ll be in Izegem on Sunday, and I’m very much looking forward to it. And don’t worry, I will have my scouting hat on! Until then