Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Hillcrest to host first playoff football game since the 2000 season

Hillcrest High School football fans will have a rare treat Friday night when the Jaguars host a second-round playoff game against American Christian at Brooks Memorial Stadium.

Tomorrow night’s game will mark the first time that Hillcrest has hosted a playoff game in Evergreen since the 2000 season. That year, Hillcrest played Eufaula in Evergreen in the opening round of the playoffs and won, 28-20. The following week, Hillcrest went on the road and lost, 49-6, to Briarwood Christian.

Prior to the 2000 season, Hillcrest hosted four other state playoff games in Evergreen – one in 1999, two in 1995 and one in 1990. In other words, tomorrow night’s game will be the sixth state playoff game that Hillcrest has hosted in Evergreen.

I think it’s also worth mentioning that Hillcrest stands to make a little school history tomorrow night. Hillcrest has only been to the second round twice before this season, and they’ve never been able to get beyond the second round. If the Jags can get by American Christian tomorrow night, it will mark Hillcrest’s first ever trip to the third round, which is the quarterfinal round of the state playoffs.

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The tenth weekend of the college football season is now in the history books, and last weekend’s slate of games gave Alabama and Auburn fans something to smile about. Alabama handed LSU their first loss of the season, beating the Bayou Bengals, 30-16, in Tuscaloosa, and Auburn upset Texas A&M, 26-10, in College Station.

Alabama and Auburn will return to action this coming Saturday with another pair of big conference games. Alabama will travel to Starkville to take on Mississippi State, and Auburn will host the Georgia Bulldogs. The Auburn game is scheduled to kick off at 11 a.m., and the Alabama game is set to start at 2:30 p.m.

In addition to those games, three other games will feature head-to-head match ups between SEC teams. Florida will play South Carolina in Columbia. Kentucky will play Vandy in Nashville, and Arkansas will play LSU in Baton Rouge. In non-conference action, Western Carolina will play Texas A&M in College Station, BYU will play Missouri in Kansas City, and North Texas will face Tennessee in Knoxville. Ole Miss is off this week.

With that said, here are my predictions for this week’s slate of games. I like Alabama over Mississippi State, Auburn over Georgia, LSU over Arkansas, Florida over South Carolina, Vanderbilt over Kentucky, BYU over Missouri, Tennessee over North Texas and Texas A&M over Western Carolina. Last week: 5-2. So far this season: 69-15.

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This past weekend also marked the tenth weekend of our local ESPN College Football Pick ‘Em Contest. Sharon Peacock remained in first place for the seventh week in a row, and Ricky Taylor remained in second place for the fourth straight week. Hunter Norris remained in third place for the second week in a row, and Ricky Powell maintained his hold on fourth place for the second straight week.

Casey Grant remained in fifth place for the second straight week, and I jumped from seventh place to sixth place. Mike Dailey dropped from sixth place to seventh place, and his son, Deagan Dailey, remained in eighth place for the second straight week.

Sam Rowell remained in ninth place for the third straight week. Jonathan Tuberville and Jeremy Matheny were tied for the No. 10 spot.

If you’re one of the contestants in the contest and didn’t do well over the weekend, don’t sweat it. We’ve got three more weeks to go before the end of the season, and the Top 10 could change over the course of the next month.

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