2021: A Year in Review for State Champs!
2021 was… unique. So let’s take a look back at some of our most popular stories, highlights, and shows of 2021.
After starting the season 0-6, Oak Park fought their way back to a Regional Championship.
VIDEO: Check out the highlights of the Oak Park at De La Salle | Division 2 @MHSAA Football Semifinal from this afternoon. @DLSFootball_MI @delasallehs @DLSBrozone #StateChamps X @DMC_Rehab pic.twitter.com/euu0d65T0D
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) January 17, 2021
Once the football season (finally) came to an end, we crowned a new Mr. Football – Michigan-bound Donovan Edwards of West Bloomfield.
BREAKING: @UMichFootball-bound @DEdwards__ of @WBLakerFootball named the 2020 winner of the 13th-annual STATE CHAMPS! Mr. Football award >> https://t.co/iNtILFRb0A @therealepap @wbhslakernation @wbloomfieldschl @19Bellamy @wbhsTHESWAMP @CoachJim4UM @MHart2032 pic.twitter.com/xFjLvsDALE
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) January 29, 2021
And we named a new Anvil Award winner, Notre Dame bound Rocco Spindler of Clarkston.
BREAKING: @RoccoSpindler92 of @ClarkstonWolves named the 2020 winner of the third-annual STATE CHAMPS! Anvil Award >> https://t.co/AMcWQGGjzD @JeffKosin @CtownAthSec @TheeJungle @LearnAtCCS @NDFootball @FightingIrish @CoachBrianKelly pic.twitter.com/UBgmSAMmo5
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) January 28, 2021
Winter sports were finally given the go-ahead to start their seasons in February after a COVID surge forced the fall sports to end their season in January.
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) February 4, 2021
And Pierre Brooks II hit one of the best buzzer beaters we’ve seen.
VIDEO: Check out the Michigan State (@MSU_Basketball) commit and Mr. Basketball candidate Pierre Brooks II (@nba_pbj) from Detroit Douglass launching it from 85 feet to beat the buzzer to end the 3rd quarter this afternoon against Detroit King. #StateChamps X @DMC_Rehab pic.twitter.com/BOVsZWYAkK
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) February 26, 2021
We got over 75 schools to enter their hockey sweaters into the Hockey Jersey Bracket Challenge.
VIDEO: We got 75 schools to participate in the SC! Hockey Jersey Bracket Challenge that will start next week. @jonkidd & @SeanPBali wants to thank all the schools who submitted their jerseys. #StateChamps X @MichHSHockey pic.twitter.com/wJRIjdDsfX
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) March 9, 2021
And we named a new Warrior Hockey Player of the Year – Cranbrook-Kingswood’s Leyton Stenman.
VIDEO: Sean Baligian (@SeanPBali) talks to our 2021 STATE CHAMPS! @WarriorHockey Hockey Player of the Year – @LeytonStenman from Cranbrook. @AthleticsCK @CK_Hockey #StateChamps X @WarriorHockey pic.twitter.com/l15l4Xc49r
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) April 25, 2021
And a future member of Michigan State Basketball, Pierre Brooks II, was named the 41st Mr. Basketball.
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) April 16, 2021
Carlson’s Liam Ferguson hit a 2-run bomb that I think is still orbiting the earth.
VIDEO: Check out this 2-run home run by Liam Ferguson as Carlson went on to beat Summerfield 12-2 this afternoon. @BaseballCarlson @CHSMarauder @themoshpit16 @GSDathletics #StateChamps X @MHSBCA1 pic.twitter.com/JfxlvM0frv
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) April 28, 2021
Cass Tech made school history when their Lacrosse team won their first-ever playoff game.
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) May 25, 2021
The MHSAA announced a new change for the 2021-2022 Wrestling season – a State Tournament for female wrestlers.
Beginning with the 2021-22 school year, a championship division for female competitors who participate on @MHSAA member school teams will be added to the Individual Wrestling Tournament series.
Here’s the feature we did on fastest growing sport in the state of Michigan in 2020 pic.twitter.com/VzpBteLqgS
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) May 6, 2021
We broadcast the 2021 Michigan High School Football Coaches Association All-Star Game.
2021 Michigan High School Football All Star Game | Live Stream https://t.co/4MlzaQ3U2L
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) June 26, 2021
And the 2021 Michigan High School Baseball Coaches Association All-Star Game.
2021 Michigan High School Baseball All Star Game | Live Stream https://t.co/sjwLQFzQba
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) June 28, 2021
Lorne Plant hosted the 2021 Detroit Athletic Club High School Athlete of the Year Awards, back in-person after COVID-19 forced the 2020 ceremony to go virtual.
2021 Detroit Athletic Club Foundation | Michigan High School Athlete of the Year | Live Stream https://t.co/tr95oQhBiX
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) June 14, 2021
And Ike Irish lifted Orchard Lake St. Mary’s to a Catholic League Championship on a walk-off single.
VIDEO: Ike Irish (@ikeirish18) with the walk-off single in the bottom of the 8th as Orchard Lake Saint Mary’s (@OLSMBaseball) beats Brother Rice 6-5 in the @CHSL1926 Bishop Championship Game at Jimmy John’s Field.#StateChamps X @MHSBCA1 pic.twitter.com/QPaKB84kou
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) May 20, 2021
Marisa Metzger put Davison on top in the Pre-District
VIDEO: Marisa Metzger (@Marisam2517) with the walkoff basehit scoring Lalia Lupu in the bottom of the 7th as Davison upsets Grand Blanc 2-1 in the Division 1 @MHSAA Softball Pre-District this afternoon. @davisonwc @SoftballDavison @DavisonMade #StateChamps X @MHSAA pic.twitter.com/TXaS8zvNHF
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) June 1, 2021
And a Grand Slam helped lift Allen Park to their first State Championship game.
Check out the @umichsoftball commit @MadilynnRamey from Allen Park with the Grand Slam HR in the Division 1 @MHSAA Semifinal on Thursday night. @apvsoftball advances to the State Final for the first time in school history and will play South Lyon.#StateChamps X @DMC_Rehab pic.twitter.com/L4Togk6kY2
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) June 18, 2021
Total Softball helped us to announce the Softball Player of the Year – and for the first time ever, it went to a Freshman. South Lyon’s Ava Bradshaw.
2021 Total Softball Player of the Year | Live Announcement https://t.co/PHvrxsC4UE
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) June 26, 2021
As Summer ended and Fall Sports kicked off, we welcomed a brand new show – Above The Net. This would be our first show dedicated exclusively to a female sport, Volleyball.
Welcome to the first ever edition of “Above The Net”, where we touch on everything in the realm of MHSAA Girls Volleyball hosted by @gennarosetv #StateChamps X @LTUAthletics X @MHSAA X #MIArmyGuard pic.twitter.com/nV7ovQ0usp
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) August 30, 2021
We also announced the formation of State Champs! W – a new arm of State Champs! that would be focused exclusively on female high school athletics.
Big news from State Champs Sports Network! We are proud to launch the newest addition to the brand, State Champs! Women. A new platform dedicated to female sports & athletes in the tri state area. Get ready to watch her rise, only on SC!W #watchherrise pic.twitter.com/zkaY0qgd5b
— State Champs! W (@StateChampsW) August 10, 2021
We even had an Olympian join us on Above The Net!
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) September 27, 2021
Chippewa Valley’s @Shamar Heard kicked off their season strong, with an 85-yard kickoff return for a TD at the Prep Kickoff Classic.
VIDEO: Chippewa Valley sophomore Shamar Heard (@heard_shamar) with the 85-yard kickoff return touchdown in the 45-20 win over Detroit Catholic Central at the Prep Kickoff Classic tonight. @detpkc @CVBigReds #StateChamps X @MHSAA pic.twitter.com/V7o6hGZetV
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) August 27, 2021
Following the second Football State Championships of 2021, we named another Mr. Football winner – Detroit King’s Dante Moore
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) November 28, 2021
And we named a new Anvil Award winner, Traverse City Central’s Josh Burnham
Congratulations to the @NDFootball commit Josh Burnham (@JoshuaBurnham20) from Traverse City Central High School (@TCCHSAthletics) on winning the 2021 STATE CHAMPS! Anvil Award presented by @hungryhowies #AnvilAward X @hungryhowies pic.twitter.com/9pid9bDO8Y
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) December 8, 2021
2021 was a wild year, full of ups and downs. But as we look back, we’ve accomplished plenty to be proud of and we can’t wait to see what 2022 brings to State Champs!