High school football finally returned to the great state of Mississippi last week and what a week it was. We saw highs, lows, exciting games, great players being great and more.
Week two is just days away and as always the story lines and great games are endless in the Magnolia State, so let’s hit the highlights for this weekend’s slate of games.
Wayne County at Oak Grove (Thursday Night)
Todd Mangum’s Wayne County War Eagles got off to a fast start last week, defeating Warren Central 42-28, but celebration of the victory was cut short as WCWE has to regroup for a Thursday night affair at Oak Grove.
This will be Oak Grove’s first game of the season, after a busy offseason that saw now former head coach Nevil Barr retire, then new head coach Randy Butler get denied due to a technicality and Drew Causey finally getting the nod as head football coach.
Oak Grove defeated Wayne County 17-7 last year in a highly contested ball game; expect another great game down in the Pine Belt this Thursday night.
Meridian at South Panola
Two of the more tradition rich programs tie it on this Friday in Batesville as Meridian pays South Panola a visit.
Both teams were ranked right at the top in just about every preseason poll in the state of Mississippi, but both teams got off to totally different starts last week. Panola defeated Clinton 35-25, while Meridian fell to Madison Central 24-18.
For USP this is a chance to continue to show the state that they are still the team to beat; meanwhile, Meridian needs this win to show everyone they are a player in the 6A race this year. Larry Weem’s Wildcats finished a very modest 7-5 last year and a lot is expected out of this club in 2015.
Panola won this game going away last year, to the tune of 42-13 and would like a repeat performance; while Meridian looks to turn the tables on the Tigers this Friday.
Brandon at Madison Central (Saturday Night)
It’s the Peterson Bowl over off Highland Colony Parkway Saturday night as Brandon takes on Madison Central in what should be another fine ballgame between these two clubs.
Madison was king of the metro area for over a decade, but Brandon made the climb to the top a few short years ago. While Clinton and others will have a say, the Jaguars want that title back and Brandon wants to show they are going nowhere.
Both teams got off to hot starts last week and both carry tons of momentum into Saturday. The last two meetings have been decided by a touchdown and Saturday should be no different.
Tylertown at North Pike
3A powerhouse Tylertown visits Summit, MS this week to take on 4A power North Pike in what should be a fantastic ballgame down in South Mississippi.
Chris Smith’s Jaguars of North Pike got a 27-21 win last week over Purvis, while Osborne Holme’s Chiefs of Tylertown took care of business in week one against East Marion – 18-6.
OJavious Magee paced Tylertown last week with 28 carries for right at 100 yards and three touchdowns and will need to have another big night this week.
North Pike super star quarterback Juwan Adams picked right up where he left off last year, throwing for 227-yards and rushing for another 136.
Sparks should fly down in Summit this Friday night.
Columbus at Noxubee County
Year two of the Randal Montgomery rebuild in Columbus got off to a fast start last week as the Falcons defeated Kemper County 49-27. This week it’s a different kind of test as they head over to Noxubee County to take on Tyrone Shorter’s Tigers.
Noxubee got a thrilling 26-20 overtime win against Starkville and star defensive end Jeffery Simmons showed up and showed out.
This should be a competitive ballgame, but Columbus must find a way to neutralize Simmons – something very few teams will have success doing this year.
Oxford at Starkville
It’s the baby Egg Bowl on display this Friday night and it will be live on ESPNU as Oxford heads over to Starkville for a big time high school football matchup.
Starkville took it to Oxford last year 52-29, but this year Johnny Hill’s Chargers want to show they are much improved and could be the best team in the state – regardless of classification.
Starkville as referenced above, lost an overtime thriller in week one and is looking to get off the snide in week two; while Oxford took it to Southaven in week one, 35-00. Big time players galore gather off of Highway 12 Friday night as the Chargers and Yellow jackets tee it up in the baby Egg Bowl