For high school football fans, you might as well call today Christmas. It's the day you've been waiting for since last November when the 2011 season ended.
It's time to play a little football.
The schedule makers even have a special present for you, and that's a slate full of big-time games with major implications, even though it's only the first week of the season.
Last season, the winner of the week 1 tussle between Bishop Carroll and Wichita Heights was in the drivers seat for the rest of the season. Heights won the game, and went on to win the league as well. A similar situation may be in the works this year, with the two top teams of the past couple seasons again meeting in week 1. This year, the game was moved up to Thursday to kick-off the season with a bang.
Wichita Heights struck first on a long run from Chris Reed, but that would be the only highlight for the Falcons in the first half, as 5A #1 Bishop Carroll reeled off 35 points to take a 35-6 halftime lead and went on to win 47-16.Last season Rose Hill rode a 13-game winning streak all the way to a state championship, but they didn't start that streak until after a week 1 home loss to Buhler. The Rockets responded by marching all the way through the playoffs to a title. For both teams, questions this season revolve around who will step up after taking hits from graduation. For Rose Hill, the Rockets went as quarterback Derrick Decker went. With his graduation, returning senior tailback Johnny Pearson will be asked to shoulder a bigger load.
The Crusaders have their own questions, having lost one of the best backs in the state in Tanner Fischer. Top receiver JP Lohrentz also finished up his prep career, and starting quarterback Chandler Schantz transferred to Derby. Normally replacing Fischer would be a coaches biggest concern, but Riley Allen steps in as a junior, having taken 2nd in the 100m dash at 4A State Track in May.
Both teams have built strong programs, meaning younger players are waiting in the wings, prepared to step up and fill the holes. Which team has players step up could also be the team that wins this week 1 AVCTL D3 battle.
U Pick 'Em will once again be the game to play this season. Everyone is invited to sign up and compete against the Eyewitness Sports team. Anyone who beats KWCH Sports Director Bruce Haertl in a given week will be eligible to win a prize, plus you can compete against your friends to see who is the king or queen of high school football.
A new addition to the line-up this season is the Catch It Kansas Tailgate Party. The Crew from KSCW and Bruce Haertl will be at a different game each week, and will be live in newscasts at 4:00, 5:00 & 6:00. If you're going to be at the game in Buhler this week, be sure to come early for the chance to win prizes and eat a brat to support the Buhler booster club.
CatchItKansas.com and KWCH 12 Eyewitness Sports will be across the state on Thursday and Friday, bringing the most complete coverage of high school football in the state of Kansas. Below are all the game you can expect coverage fromon KWCH 12 Eyewitness Sports, and the Catch It Kansas Show on KSCW 33, Cable 5 at 11:00 pm on Friday night.