High School Football Kickoff Weekend Part 2
As promised we're back with part two of talking about "Games Of The Week" In week 0 in Alabama. So let's jump right into it.
Hoover vs Auburn (In Montgomery)
Two 7A heavyweights will face off in the state capital on Friday night. Both teams coming off of heartbreaking losses in the semifinals last year both teams look to start 2022 with a bang at the Crampton Bowl on Friday. For Hoover, it's ushering in new coach Wade Waldrop who replaces Josh Niblett. Defense is going to be the make-or-break for Hoover in this one as well as this season. Junior Linebacker Bradley Shaw who has offers from Georgia and Auburn and LB Kaleb Jackson will be huge playmakers in the linebacking core for Hoover while Jordan Norman, Andrew Parrish, and Michael Hampton anchor the tough D-Line for Hoover. On offense, they're led by running back Amari Williams and anchored by a strong O-Line including Duke commit Ethan Hubbard. Senior WR KJ Law will be the top receiving target for Hoover this season. For Auburn, they return record-breaking QB Clyde Pitman to go along with a 1,000-plus yard rusher from last year DV Williams. The Tigers also bring back Marcellus Josephson at receiver and look to have a very strong O-Line anchored by the Auburn commit Brayden Joiner who is making the move over from the defensive line. Avery Farris and Eric Patrick will also look to make an immediate impact on the OL as they played in every game last year. Coach Keith Ethridge has a hungry bunch who is ready to avenge the heartbreaking end to last season and Coach Wade Waldrop is looking to get Hoover back to the State Championship where it has spent so many years. This is going to be a great game in Montgomery. Both teams have experience and this might be the best game of the week. Hard to make a prediction here but I think Auburn has a very slight edge however, Hoover seems to play very well against 7A teams, not in the Birmingham Metro area. But Auburn still wins this one. Prediction: Auburn 35 Hoover 28
Hewitt Trussville at Central-Phenix
Hewitt-Trussville is coming off of a tough loss in last year's playoffs to Hoover while Central Phenix is coming off of a brutal loss to state champion Thompson. For the Huskies, it is going to once again be about defense. Alabama commit Hunter Osborne leads a very strong group that includes guys like Tyrell Averhart and Pinson Vally transfer Connor Knight who is committed to USF. Tennessee commit Rick Gibson will also look to make a big impact for the Huskies on Friday night and in 2022. They are replacing their starting QB from last year Cade Caruth but it seems that Peyton Floyd is up for the challenge for the Huskies. Central Phenix is also loaded on the defensive side of the ball with Tomarrion Parker and Georgia commit AJ Harris who just transferred from Glenwood. The offense has some playmakers as well with 4 star Auburn commit Karmello English. Keyone Cox will anchor the OL for Central Phenix. This is another tough one to pick but I still believe defense wins championships. Prediction: Hewitt-Trussville 24 Central Phenix 21
Other notable games and predictions
Calera at Spain Park
Coach Tim Vakakes coaching his first game at Spain Park look for the Jags to win this one against a good Calera offense. Spain Park 42 Calera 23
Thompson vs Buford (GA)
Defending state champion Thompson has a tough start as they face #2 in Georgia in Buford who is led by RB and Alabama commit Justice Haynes. Thompson is replacing a lot of key players including QB Connor Harrel. Buford will beat Thompson in a close one.
Buford 38 Thompson 28
There is no shortage of good games on opening weekend. Thankfully with apps like the NFHS network, it's possible to watch them all.
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Everyone stay safe traveling to watch your team and good luck!