Friday Night Football.
After a couple of three-day weeks to open the high school schedule, it looks like the area’s slate will be ‘limited’ to one day for Week 3.
And looking at the list, this may have been a week where the casual fan would have liked things a bit more spread out – because there are some pretty attractive, and high-powered, matchups.
(One of those scheduled matchups has been canceled, as Summertown will not travel to Collinwood because the hosts are dealing with pandemic issues.)
Coming off a perfect weekend, let’s see what Mostradamus sees coming this time around.
Independence (0-1, 0-0) at Centennial (0-2, 0-1): With last week’s scheduled contest against Christ Presbyterian Academy canceled because of inclement weather, the Eagles have had two weeks to let their late loss against Summit marinate. That may not be a development that favors the hosts, who already have one Region 6-6A loss under their belt after falling to Ravenwood 48-0 in their opener before last weekend’s 34-10 loss at Smyrna. The continued progress of Indy senior QB Jaxson Campbell, who accounted for 337 offensive yards and four TDs in the 40-34 Week 1 loss to Summit, will be an intriguing aspect of this matchup. Independence 31, Centennial 20.
Memphis Nighthawks (0-1) at Zion Chr. (0-2): If a 25-point loss can be impressive, then the Eagles were that last week at Fayetteville. Against the Tigers – ranked fifth in the Associated Press Class 1A statewide poll for the second straight week – Zion scored first and was tied 8-8 at the half before depth issues became a factor in an eventual 41-16 defeat. Look for the Eagles to get up and probably stay up against a Nighthawks squad that dropped its only outing by a 49-0 margin against Trinity Christian. The Nighthawks allowed all seven scores before halftime and trailed 42-0 before the end of the opening quarter. This bodes well for Friday’s hosts. Zion Chr. 23, Memphis Nighthawks 13.
Richland (1-1, 0-0) at Mt. Pleasant (0-1, 0-0): Expect both these teams to enter play Friday with significant chips on their respective shoulders. Four of the six Region 5-1A squads are earning consideration in the AP poll, with Cornersville ranked No. 2 and both Moore County and Huntland receiving votes in addition to the aforementioned Fayetteville. This winner should be similarly considered, with the visiting Raiders coming off a 26-10 victory over Collinwood behind Austin Seals’ 17-carry, 193-yard effort. Mt. Pleasant had an open date following its 13-12 loss at Summertown (No. 10, AP-2A) in Week 1. Expect the Tiger offense to be sharper behind junior QB Te’Varius Strayhorn and sophomore TB Xavior Davidson. Mt. Pleasant 24, Richland 18.
Spring Hill (0-2, 0-0) at Nolensville (1-1, 0-0): The Raiders’ offensive struggles can be summed up in one statistic: 25 possessions, two scores. Despite the explosive potential of TB Landen Secrest, WR Remone Kelley and the multitalented Dante Prowell, Spring Hill hasn’t been able to put it together yet – albeit that inefficiency has been against a couple of tough defensive units in Columbia Central and Summit. Still, heading into Region 4-4A play would be a good time for the Raiders to show some consistency on that side of the ball – particularly against a Knights team that advanced to the state semifinals a year ago. After a 47-12 defeat against visiting Brentwood and a 24-20 win at perennial Class 2A toughie Watertown, this contest should be more of a measuring stick for the hosts. Nolensville 28, Spring Hill 17.
Summit (2-0, 0-0) at Columbia Central (2-0, 0-0): As early as it is, this clash could decide the Region 5-5A championship. The visiting Spartans, ranked No. 2 in the AP poll and coming off a state runner-up finish, have averaged 34 points in wins over Independence and Spring Hill – scoring all their 28 points in the opening half last week. Junior QB Destin Wade has a bevy of weapons at his disposal while throwing and running for 773 yards and eight total TDs. Keeping him in check will be by far the greatest challenge the Lions defense has faced thus far this season, following decisive wins over Spring Hill and Dickson County. But the unit has been opportunistic at times – witness the two safeties and Nick Butler’s pick-6 in last week’s 23-7 victory over the visiting Cougars. If the hosts can force a break or two on that side of the ball and the offense can capitalize with junior RB Christian Biggers and senior QB Brady McCanless, this one could be interesting late. Summit 34, Columbia Central 21.
Last week: 6-0 (1.000)
Season: 9-3 (.750)