Youth Football

Lansing Lions claim four Southwest Midget 'Super Bowl' titles

2012-11-19T22:00:00Z 2012-11-20T06:47:03Z Lansing Lions claim four Southwest Midget 'Super Bowl' titlesJohn Burbridge john.burbridge@nwi.com, (219) 933-3371 nwitimes.com

The Pittsburgh Steelers have won six Super Bowl titles.

The Cowboys and 49ers each have five.

The Packers and Giants both recently claimed their fourth.

As for the Lions ... they got four in a single weekend. Here, we mean the Lansing Lions.

"And we won three of them last year," said Michael Herrick, who coaches the Lion Junior Widgets, who were one of the few Lansing teams that didn't win a Super Bowl -- because their age level didn't have a postseason.

Herrick, who also handles the Lions' public relations, doesn't feel cheated.

"Early on, we focus on fundamentals more so than winning," Herrick said. "We make sure our kids know the proper way to tackle ... to block, all the basic parts of the game. And we make sure our coaches are certified in teaching the game.

"There are a lot of parents who want to coach youth football, and God Bless them, every youth league needs volunteers. But if they're going to coach our kids, we make sure they're trained to do it right."

The Lions are members of the Southwest Midget Football League. They were formally members of the Metro Youth Football League, and won numerous Super Bowl titles there -- including three in 2006 -- before the Lansing program grew to a point where SMFL was a better fit.

The league's championship games were held the weekend of Nov. 3-4 at various sites.

In the White Division Varsity championship at Brother Rice, the Lions, under veteran head coach John Flowers, defeated Crete 12-6 to complete an undefeated season.

In the White Division Junior Varsity championship at Brother Rice, Lansing, under head coach Terry Earp, defeated Joliet, 28-14.

In the White Division Pee Wee championship at Brother Rice, Lansing and head coach Adrian Lewis defeated Glenwood, 12-6.

In the Blue Division Pee Wee (age 10) championship at Marist, Lansing, with head coach Sean Martines, defeated Mokena, 31-0.

Lansing lost to Mokena, 27-6, in the Blue Division Pee Wee (12) championship. The Lion Widgets placed third in their division.

In addition to the football teams, Lansing also had a stellar year with its cheerleading squads. The Varsity squad won its league competition, and all other Lansing squads placed second.

"We've got a lot of attention, lately," Herrick said. "Comcast Sports and Fox Sport Net both came out to stories on us.

"And there has been an outpouring of support from the community. It was nice to drive up and down Ridge Road and see all the congratulation messages on the business marquees."

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