Manual football ranks sixth in Associated Press poll halfway through the season


Fern Creek prepares to attack Manual’s defense. Photo taken by EP Presnell.

Reece Gunther

Approximately half way through the season, Manual ranks sixth in the Associated Press (AP) football poll.

Male, since the second week of the season, has held on to the number one position in the polls, mostly due to their quarterback, Garrett Dennis who was a powerhouse in the first two weeks, throwing for an 80-percent completion rate for 445 yards and seven touchdowns. 

Dennis has grown stronger ever since the first two weeks, allowing Male to go undefeated for the season.

When Manual plays Male on Oct. 19, Dennis will be the person to watch. In order to put up their best fight, Manual will need to have a strong defense against Dennis and wide receiver Izayah Cummings who also has an impressive completion rate.

The AP polls are voted on by sports reporters from around the state of Kentucky. Manual started out as tenth in the poll, which is an improvement from last year when Manual didn’t place at all. Each week, Manual has climbed in the polls, including this past week when Manual lost to Butler. 

Manual will have a harder time for the rest of the season after the announcement came that running back Aidan Robbins will most likely be out for the rest of the season. He injured his shoulder on the game-winning overtime play at Ballard and did not play at the games against Seneca and Butler.

Analysts voted on the AP poll before the announcement that Robbins would be out for the rest of the season, and now that the news has broke, Manual is expected to fall in the polls.

Manual will also play St. X (Number three) this Friday, and while St. X’s record for the season isn’t overly impressive, a Robbins-less team will have to work hard to defeat St. X, especially after their win against Trinity. 

Aidan Robbins (#7, 12) and Alex Conlin (#10, 12) at the homecoming football pep rally. Photo by EP Presnell.

Even though Manual’s main quarterback, Zach Recktenwald has been out for the entire season, Manual has had an impressive season this far, winning four games and losing two. When Recktenwald went out, Robbins stepped up.

Now that Robbins is injured, it will be on the three remaining running backs that Manual played at the Butler game. DeAaron Robinson (#20, 11), Ramont Townsend (#26, 10) and JaWaun Northington (#34, 9) will be the Crimsons’ important offensive players for the rest of the season.

Aidan Robbins (#7, 12) and DeAaron Robinson (#20, 11) stand on the sidelines as Manual defends against Fern Creek. “I’m just feeling content right now,” Robbins said. Photo by EP Presnell.

Northington, as a freshman, ran nine times for 53 yards against Butler and caught an interception that he was able to return for a touchdown. When Manual played Central, Northington also recovered a fumble and returned it for a touchdown.

“I really didn’t think I was going to get it but once I saw the ball laying on the ground, I just grabbed it and ran,” Northington said.

At the Butler game, Manual head coach Scott Carmony said that Manual is “struggling offensively” due to the loss of both Recktenwald and Robbins.

“I don’t really know what the rest of the season looks like for us. We’re just going to keep pushing,” Carmony said.

Another Associated Press poll will be released sometime next week, Manual’s exact placement will depend on their performance against St. X.