September 3, 2010
A new high school football season starts tonight -- and no other week this fall will have more great match-ups than Week 1.
None of the headliners is bigger than Carroll at Heights. For the fifth consecutive year the city's best kick off the season against one another.
Forgotten possibly after both teams' late-season playoff runs last year is that Carroll shut Heights out, 28-0, last year. Who's the best in the city this year? More importantly, will both win state? We might look back in November at this September match-up as the game of the year.
Remember when Wellington won back-to-back state championships at the start of the last decade? More prominent now are the Crusaders' six losses to Andale over the last four seasons. Andale is still king of 4A in these parts, right?
Speaking of 4A titans, Rose Hill travels for their opener back to Buhler, where they ended 2009 in the state quarterfinals. It wasn't pretty for the Rockets, losing 64-28 in a statement game for Buhler. Pile-on or payback?
Andover High plays its first game in Class 5A since 2001. The former 4A top team receives baptism by fire opening at McPherson. The Trojans will know immediately where they stand up a class after meeting the Bullpups.
Salina Central missed the playoffs in 2009 for the first time in 18 years, despite beating 6A sub-state team Derby in the regular season. Both Central and Derby should know if they're legitimate contenders after playing tonight.
Finally, Rockhurst at Hutchinson is the third edition of the Kansas-Missouri battle. Having split the first two, and with a fourth meeting scheduled at Rockhurst next year, this has become an important regional rivalry. Rockhurst left Hutchinson last year licking their wounds. This year? Pride is on the line.
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