To paraphrase Shakespeare’s Hamlet: To play or not to play? That is the question.
Will East Lincoln QB Garrett Young see action tonight in the Southern Piedmont 1A/2A Conference championship showdown against undefeated Lake Norman Charter in Huntersville?
It has been reported that Young is practicing again after suffering a dislocated kneecap a couple of weeks ago against Lincolnton. The record-breaking signal caller missed most of that game and all of last week’s game at West Lincoln.
The Mustangs won both of them with Young sidelined, although it was not easy. However, coach Mike Byus appeared to find a solid backup in freshman Chas Surratt, who led the Ponies to a 40-20 win over the Rebels.
The decision has been made to defer further treatment on Young’s knee until after the season. That turn of events tells me he will play in the biggest game of the year even though Surratt may start.
Anyway, the East Lincoln-Lake Norman Charter game is the spotlight game in week nine of the area high school season.
In the college ranks, Saturday’s schedule does not come close to last weekend’s matchups of heavyweights throughout the country. There are still a few choice matchups, however, including the Red River Rivalry between Oklahoma and Texas in Dallas.
Let us look into the crystal ball for this weekend:
East Lincoln at Lake Norman Charter: If Young does make it onto the field, you will see the league’s two top players in action. The other is Lake Norman Charter tight end Alex Scearce, who does it all for the Knights on offense. The point is, the Mustangs are better across the board … East Lincoln 35-21.
Bessemer City at Lincolnton: The Yellow Jackets have been more productive on offense since they switched to a Wildcat formation a few weeks ago. BC’s best player, Damian Scott, handles the ball ninety percent of the time, and he has some speed to the outside along with good balance. Still, the improving Wolves are looking to close the regular season on a strong note … Lincolnton 28-13.
Cherryville at Highland Tech: The Ironmen have been pummeled in their last two games, and the question is whether winless Tech can make a game of it at home. Could be interesting … Cherryville 21-14.
North Lincoln at West Lincoln: Rebels gave East Lincoln a lively battle for nearly three quarters last week, and they should be psyched up to beat another county rival … West Lincoln 28-14.
Ashbrook at Forestview: Could be one of the best games of the night in the Big South … Ashbrook 35-27.
Hunter Huss at Crest: Chargers survived a scare last week at North Gaston, so look for them to play well against the Huskies … Crest 41-24.
Kings Mountain at North Gaston: Both teams are winless in the Big South … North Gaston 30-21.
Maiden at East Burke: The Blue Devils are 2-3 on the road, 3-0 at home, so this is a challenge … Maiden 21-17.
Duke at Virginia Tech: Duke needs one more win to gain bowl eligibility, but the remaining schedule is daunting. Although VTech has struggled to a 3-3 record, this game is in Blacksburg … Virginia Tech 35-30.
North Carolina at Miami: Miami has been pounded in its big road games (by Kansas State and Notre Dame), and even though this one is at home, UNC has the look of a team on the rise … UNC 27-24.
Maryland at Virginia: Don’t look now, but the Terps are 3-2 overall and 1-0 in the ACC … Maryland 20-17.
Boston College at Florida State: You don’t want to be the team to play the ‘Noles after the late-game collapse at N.C. State … Florida State 42-10.
Alabama at Missouri: Don’t see the Tide having much a problem against an average Missouri team … ‘Bama 30-10.
South Carolina at LSU: If the Gamecocks can win on a Saturday night at Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, an environment Bear Bryant once called “downright hellacious,” they become serious contenders for the BCS … South Carolina 17-14.
West Virginia at Texas Tech: Mountaineers continue to light up the scoreboard in their first Big 12 season. Did anybody mention defense? … West Virginia 52-35.
Stanford at Notre Dame: I thought the Irish would be upset last week by Miami, and they won 41-3. I am finally a believer; ND is for real … Notre Dame 21-10.
Kansas State at Iowa State: Trap game of the week. K-State must be on upset alert … K-State 35-24.
Texas vs. Oklahoma at Dallas: Sooners seemed to regain some of their mojo last week with a win against Texas Tech in Lubbock. On the other hand, Texas appears to be on its way back to the top in the Big 12. Mild upset special! Texas 35-31.
Ohio State at Indiana: Buckeyes are the Big Ten’s lone unbeaten team at 6-0. Of course, they will not represent the league in any bowl game (probation from Tatoogate) … Ohio State 40-17.
Last week’s record: 14-6. The season’s record: 90-24.