While it might seem too hot to think about football, the 2010 season is here. Several area teams kick off the new campaign on Friday. As always there are some interesting matchups and rivalry games to keep an eye on.
Here is a look at some of the dates you might want to save this season:
- Aug. 20: Grovetown vs. Greenbrier
Grovetown's first game against a county foe makes this one interesting enough. Then you throw in Greenbrier standout D.J. Tyson transferring to Grovetown this summer, and you have a rivalry in the making.
- Aug. 27: Lakeside vs. Glenn Hills and Evans at Richmond Academy
These games are the openers for the Panthers and the Knights. Plus, they are facing two of the better teams in Richmond County in recent years. Remember, ARC upset Evans last year in the final regular-season game, forcing the Knights to go on the road to open the playoffs.
- Sept. 3: Evans vs. Grovetown
Grovetown head coach Rodney Holder takes on a team where he was a star in his playing days. Holder was quarterback for the Knights in the early 1990s and he helped lead Evans to three state championships in baseball. Also, he cannot be pleased that one of his best athletes, Myles McDavid, bolted to Evans last month.
- Sept. 10: Lakeside at North Augusta
This is a game many fans clamored for last year. The Jackets and Panthers were the area's top two teams in 2009. North Augusta lost seven players who signed college scholarships, but are expected to be even better this season. They are led by quarterback Loranzo Hammonds. Last season, Hammonds threw for more than 2,000 yards and ran for more than 1,000. He also threw for 30 TDs.
- Sept. 17: Lakeside vs. Northside Warner Robins and Greenbrier at Lincoln County
What a tough stretch of games for the Panthers -- North Augusta, Northside, then Statesboro on Sept. 24.
This, however, is the toughest of the three. Northside is arguably the top program in the state during the past 15 years. The 'Pack face off with one of the more storied programs in Georgia history.
Legendary coach Larry Campbell is enough of a draw here.
- Sept. 24: Evans vs. North Augusta
For fans who don't make the trip to see Lakeside play North Augusta on Sept. 10, this time the Jackets come to Columbia County.
Trust me, you should see Hammonds play.
The kid has tons of talent and athleticism. He had one of the best statistical years of any quarterback in CSRA history last year.
- Oct. 1: Lakeside vs. Greenbrier and Grovetown vs. Harlem
Any time you have county teams squaring off it is heated. Harlem lost a lot of athletes when Grovetown opened its doors. You can bet Jimmie Lewis wants this one bad.
- Oct. 8: Evans at Greenbrier
Two schools that just do not like each other.
- Oct. 22: Evans vs. Effingham County
It has been 23 years since their controversial playoff game in 1987. However, no Evans fan has forgotten the "headphone" game, and all the off-the-field antics that ensued after Evans' hard-fought victory. Effingham got to move on in the playoffs after a heavily debated forfeit was forced on Evans by the Georgia High School Association. You can bet Marty Jackson and his staff will have a few reminders for their players prior to this game.
- Oct. 29: Lakeside at Evans
A lot could be riding on this game. Lakeside is expecting to be solid despite several key losses on the defensive side. Evans lost its starting quarterback and tailback, but it has some talent, too. The playoffs might be hanging in the balance by the time this game rolls around.
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