Bishop Luers (14-1 in 2011) at Snider (9-5): The common premise is that this game is for the SAC title – even though it is only the season opener. Last year, the three-time defending Class 2A state champion Knights had the experienced quarterback in the graduated James Knapke and won the game 32-21 and eventually won the conference championship. Snider, which went to the 5A semistate, has the experience at QB with senior Brandon Phelps.
Huntington North (5-5) at Homestead (10-1): The Vikings have a new coach, and the Spartans will have a new quarterback. So will this game be the same old game in the rivalry with a lot of points and excitement? The two teams played twice last year, with Homestead winning both – 57-43 and 68-17. Trent Fine is in for Huntington North as coach and Matt Skowronek takes over for the graduated Zach Terrell as the Spartans’ signal-caller.
New Haven (8-3) at Heritage (5-5): The Bulldogs travel to take on their rival Patriots after winning 21-14 last year, possessing one of the best running backs in the state in Te’Vaughn Hurse and multidimensional quarterback Lydell Trainor. Both have graduated, and Heritage looks to turn things around this year with a good 1-2 punch of its own in quarterback Conner Sheehan and running back Wil Knapke.
West Noble (3-7) at Angola (5-5): Part of the answer of how will the pass-happy Hornets look this year under new coach Josh Schoeff will be known after playing the Chargers. Last year with Luke Amstutz (now at East Noble) at the helm, Angola averaged 30 points per game in moving the ball through the air. Schoeff, an assistant at Huntington North last year, promises to mix things up more this season. The Hornets beat the Chargers 34-18 a year ago.
Southwood (1-9) vs. Southern Wells (5-5): The nomad life begins for the Raiders, who will play this “home” game at Eastbrook because of unplayable field conditions back in Poneto. Southern Wells will also play four home games at Bluffton and a game at Ball State, plus three scheduled road games. Southern Wells, which has a young team this year, beat Southwood 47-19 last year.