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A Knight salute

Congratulations to Bishop Luers and head coach Matt Lindsay and his staff on their eighth state football title, and here's another reason why high school sports are better than just about anything else: The maturing process goes on right before your eyes.

Case in point: Luers quarterback James Knapke.

It occurred to me, watching him complete all those passes on Luers' last clock-eating drive last night -- every one of those passes as big as they get, considering what was at stake -- that the last time I saw him he was an 8th grader playing CYO ball for St. John the Baptist.

It was the morning before the CYO title game. The team was practicing at Benoit Academy (St. Henry's to us geezers who grew up out that way) on Hessen Cassel Road. And I was there because St. John the Baptist was in the middle of an epic 42-game winning streak.

Hard to believe, watching Knapke operate with a poise beyond his years in Lucas Oil Stadium, that that was just two years ago. Hard to believe ... and an immensely gratifying thing to watch.

Ben Smith's blog.