The late, great urban poet 2Pac once dropped a chart-topping album dubbed "All Eyez on Me."
This week, The Fumbler showcased his rhyming talents with a remix to that record -- "All Eyez on the WPIAL Playoffs."
The Fumbler collaborated with former Allderdice students Wiz Khalifa and Mac Miller on a song he hopes will be played at stadiums throughout Western Pennsylvania this month. Who knows? Maybe he'll even get an opportunity to perform at Heinz Field, too.
The WPIAL playoffs have always been a big event for players, coaches and fans. Every team -- regardless of record or seeding -- dreams of winning a championship. Each game is do-or-die, and as the playoffs progress, the excitement, tension and drama increase exponentially.
This year's playoff field is loaded with intriguing story lines ... Can Clairton win its fifth consecutive title and extend the longest current winning streak in the country? Will two-time defending champion North Allegheny three-peat? Is a championship in the cards for South Fayette and sensational sophomore quarterback Brett Brumbaugh?
In The Fumbler's eyes, the answer to all of those questions is yes.
When "Championship Friday" wraps up on Nov. 23, here are the teams that will be left standing -- Class AAAA: North Allegheny; Class AAA: Central Valley; Class AA: South Fayette; Class A: Clairton.
But that's just The Fumbler's opinion. In the immortal words of 2Pac: "How Do U Want It?"
Let The Fumbler know. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Fumbler was superb yet again last week, going 56-8. He finished the regular season with a record of 473-119 (.798).
Here are his thoughts on this weekend's top games:
Bethel Park (5-4) at McKeesport (6-3), 7:30 p.m. today -- An interesting matchup of quarterbacks. McKeesport is led by Akron-bound senior Eddie Stockett, while Bethel Park boasts promising freshman Levi Metheny. McKeesport has won four of five after a 1-3 start. Bethel Park is the only team to have beaten Upper St. Clair. The Fumbler believes Metheny is destined for a great career, but playing in his first playoff on the road against the surging Tigers might be too tall of a hurdle to leap. Winner: McKeesport.
Blackhawk (3-6) at Mars (8-1), 7:30 p.m. today -- Don't let Blackhawk's record fool you. The No. 15-seeded Cougars lost to West Allegheny by four points and Montour by five. They have Pitt recruit Chandler Kincade at quarterback and versatile running back Cole Chiappialle, who rushed for 404 yards in one game. But how will the Blackhawk defense hold up? No playoff team has allowed more points (30.9 per game). In the biggest upset of the first round ... Winner: Blackhawk.
Greensburg Central Catholic (6-3) vs. Seton-LaSalle (8-1) at Chartiers Valley, 7:30 p.m. today -- Wouldn't this be a semifinal matchup most seasons? If it wasn't for a blowout loss to South Fayette, Seton-LaSalle might be the No. 2 seed in Class AA. Some wrote off Greensburg Central Catholic after an 0-2 start, but the Centurions have bounced back impressively. The Seton-LaSalle passing attack will be the difference, as the Centurions have not seen one as good all season. Winner: Seton-LaSalle.
Perry (7-2) vs. University Prep (5-2) at Cupples Stadium, 1:00 p.m. Saturday -- For the second year in a row, these teams meet for the City League championship. University Prep is the defending champ, but Perry used a goal-line stand in the closing minutes to edge the Wildcats, 12-6, two weeks ago. Emotions were high for University Prep that game, as it came less than a week after tackle Ne'Ondre Harbour was shot and killed. The Wildcats hoped for a rematch and got it. In another low-scoring affair, the Wildcats will repeat as champions. Winner: University Prep.
And the rest (home teams in capital letters):
WPIAL CLASS AAAA -- NORTH ALLEGHENY over Altoona; GATEWAY over Peters Township; UPPER ST. CLAIR over Kiski Area; SENECA VALLEY over Hempfield; MT. LEBANON over Butler; Central Catholic over PENN-TRAFFORD; WOODLAND HILLS over North Hills.
WPIAL CLASS AAA -- THOMAS JEFFERSON over Hollidaysburg; CENTRAL VALLEY over Belle Vernon; WEST ALLEGHENY over Ringgold; MONTOUR over Trinity; HAMPTON over Hopewell; WEST MIFFLIN over Knoch; FRANKLIN REGIONAL over Elizabeth Forward.
WPIAL CLASS AA -- ALIQUIPPA over Steel Valley (at Moon); SOUTH FAYETTE over Freedom; WASHINGTON over Shady Side Academy (at Washington & Jefferson College); JEANNETTE over South Allegheny (at Norwin); BEAVER over Valley; Beaver Falls over FREEPORT (at Highlands); Mount Pleasant over BURRELL (at Valley).
WPIAL CLASS A -- CLAIRTON over Frazier (at Belle Vernon); STO-ROX over Carmichaels (at North Hills); ROCHESTER over Avonworth (at Ambridge); Neshannock over JEFFERSON-MORGAN (at Waynesburg High School); MONESSEN over Apollo-Ridge (at Charleroi); Bishop Canevin over NORTH CATHOLIC; Union over BETH-CENTER (at California High School); Brentwood over SPRINGDALE (at Fox Chapel).fumbler