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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Mike Richard: Mott family football roots run deep

Mike Richard: Mott family football roots run deep

By Mike Richard
Posted Oct 16, 2017 at 7:00 PM
Updated Oct 16, 2017 at 8:14 PM
They are cousins who will be on a collision course Friday night in Baldwinville as the Motts meet again on the gridiron.

Narragansett senior defensive back Jake Mott will do his best to stop West Boylston running back Ryan Mott. Then, when the host Warriors take over on offense, Lions safety Ryan will patrol the end zone to keep Warrior halfback Jake from crossing the goal line.

However, there were times when these two players weren’t on opposite sides of the ball, but rather teammates.

“They started playing football together when they were 6, in the Oakmont tiny mite program,” said Jake’s dad, Rodney Mott, a former Nashoba football standout running back in the late 1980s, who coached both boys through their Pop Warner playing days.

“First, Ryan was quarterback, but as we progressed Ryan turned into more of a fullback/halfback and Jake became the quarterback,” Rodney recalled.

Ryan, the son of Rodney’s brother, Robert Mott, is two months younger than Jake.

The following season, the three Motts joined forces with the North County Panthers Pop Warner squad and for the next two seasons captured a pair of Central Mass. championships.

“We had an undefeated season the year Ryan was fullback and Jake was quarterback, but got knocked off in the second round both times in the regional playoffs,” said Rodney Mott, who is in the midst of his 17th season as an assistant coach at Narragansett. He also coached several years at his alma mater, Nashoba.

Ryan, a three-year starter at West Boylston, has been one of the team’s top defenders.

“He’s probably one of the best blockers in the league, if not the best blocker,” West Boylston coach Mike Ross said. “Then we put him back there (at safety on defense) and he usually cleans everything up if someone gets through.”

To carry the family legacy a little further, Ryan’s older brother, Gavin Mott, also played for West Boylston during the last few seasons where the Lions have had some recent success against Narragansett.

From 1994-2011, Narragansett won every game in the series, but over the past five years the Lions have won four of the last five.

“Ryan runs the ball hard, but is also very elusive making guys miss in open field, and does a nice job setting up his blocks,” Narragansett coach Wes Flis said. “He’s also a big part of our special teams return game. He takes pride in improving his blocking on offense to become more of a complete player.”

This Friday night the cousins meet on the football field for the final time.

“We’re calling this the ‘Family Senior Bowl,’ ” Rodney Mott said. “Whoever wins this one, gets the family bragging rights for the rest of their lives.”

The cousins are very close, they see a lot of one another, go on vacation together and this New Year’s Day have plans to attend the Rose Bowl Game in Pasadena, California, with their dads.

“They’re goofballs together. If they weren’t cousins they’d probably hate each other, but they get along together very well,” said Rodney Mott. “I’ve already invited them all over after the game, no matter what happens.”

So cliche

“Getting off the schneid.”

It’s a sports phrase which means to emerge victorious after piling up a series of losses.

According to one online source, ” ‘schneid’ is actually short for ‘schneider,’ a term originally used in the card game of gin, meaning to prevent an opponent from scoring any points.”

At the present juncture, six games into the season, there are several teams which are looking to get off their proverbial schneid by finding their way into the win column.

In Division 7-8, Gardner, Monty Tech, Quaboag, Southbridge and Sutton are all winless.

As a point of reference, Gardner’s last lost six straight or or more in 1981, when the Wildcats went 0-7 before picking up a win. Gardner travels to Ayer-Shirley Friday night.

Monty Tech’s last 0-6 start came in 2010, while Southbridge dropped six straight in 1987. Both Monty Tech (at BVT Saturday) and Southbridge (hosting Oxford Friday) won its next games, respectively.

Sutton, in the midst of its fifth season, and Quaboag, in its ninth season overall, have never had a losing streak this long. The Sammies enjoy a bye this week, while the Cougars head to Leicester.

Fortunately for several of these teams they may likely be going up against one another in the coming weeks. Then, non-playoff games will be scheduled over the final couple of weeks of the regular season. Hopefully, they’ll be able to get off their respective schneids by then.

Narragansett HOF

Narragansett Regional will hold its athletic hall of fame ceremony at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Kamaloht in East Templeton. Tickets are $25 and available at Huhtala Oil & Propane, 198 Patriots Road, Templeton.

Inductees include three-sport athlete Rick Schlapak (1960), cross-country runner David Landry (1982), basketball 1,000-point scorer Kathleen Jasinski (2008), and longtime cheering coach Sheryl Fontaine.

Also, to be honored are the 1979 and 1983 state champion boys’ cross-country teams.


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