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Harding rams its way back into Observer Sweet 16 poll -- after long break

Harding running back Quavaris Crouch, right, and the Rams moved into the Observer’s Sweet 16 prep football this week. It’s been a long time since they’ve been there.
Harding running back Quavaris Crouch, right, and the Rams moved into the Observer’s Sweet 16 prep football this week. It’s been a long time since they’ve been there. jsiner@charlotteobserver.com

It’s been almost 30 years since Harding was last ranked in the Charlotte Observer Sweet 16 football poll.

But after the Rams, then unranked, upset Hough Friday night, Harding is ranked for the first time since 1989. The Rams enter at No. 14. Hough was ranked No. 9 last week before losing 24-22 to Harding

Dating to last season, Harding has won four of its past five regular-season games. This is news for a school that’s had two winning seasons since 1990 and 12 head coaches. The Rams will play at Garinger Friday. The Wildcats have lost 53 straight games and haven’t won since the 2011 season.

▪ Harding is the only new team in the poll this week. S.C. power Rock Hill Northwestern, ranked No. 12 in the preseason poll, dropped out after a 39-7 loss to No. 1 South Pointe. ...Two preseason top 10s -- No. 8 Vance and No. 9 Hough -- fell after opening-week losses: Vance fell to No. 12 and Hough to No. 13. That allowed A.L. Brown to jump two spots to No. 8 and West Mecklenburg to jump four to No. 9

Rk.

Team (Class)

Rec.

Prvs.

1

Rock Hill South Pointe (4A)

1-0

1

2

Mallard Creek (4A)

1-0

2

3

Charlotte Catholic (3A)

1-0

3

4

Butler (4A)

0-0

4

5

Richmond Senior (4A)

1-0

5

6

Charlotte Christian (IND)

0-1

6

7

Myers Park (4A)

1-0

7

8

AL Brown (3A)

1-0

10

9

West Mecklenburg (4A)

1-0

13

10

Shelby (2A)

1-0

11

11

Monroe (3A)

1-0

14

12

Vance (4A)

0-1

8

13

Hough (4A)

0-1

9

14

Harding (4A)

1-0

NR

15

Belmont South Point (2A)

1-0

15

16

Lenoir Hibriten (2A)

1-0

16

Dropped out: Rock Hill Northwestern (5A, 0-1). Also receiving consideration: Weddington (3A, 1-0); Hickory Ridge (4A, 1-0); Porter Ridge (4A, 1-0); Mooresville (4A, 1-0); Newton-Conover (2A, 1-0); North Rowan (1A, 1-0)

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