It’s the time of the year when football season starts to get really interesting with conference races heating up at both the high school and college levels.
Hoxie hosts Corning in a battle of undefeated teams. The winner will have a leg up in the race for the 3A-3 conference championship, but both teams should be headed for postseason play. The Mustangs are presently in first place with a 3-0 conference record, followed by Corning at 2-0. East Poinsett County is in third place at 2-1, and Harrisburg is 1-1. Piggott and Brinkley bring up the rear, each at 0-3. Barton had won one conference game before canceling its season.
Walnut Ridge is only 1-5 overall, but the Bobcats are still in the thick of a playoff race in Conference 2A-3.
Marked Tree, at 5-1 overall and 2-0 in the league, appears to be the class of the conference. No one else in 2A-3 has a winning overall record.
Walnut Ridge, Cross County, Augusta and McCrory all stand at 1-1 in the conference. Walnut Ridge lost to Cross County last week, so this week’s game against McCrory and next week’s game at Augusta are crucial for the Bobcat’s playoff hopes.
On to week 7’s guesses:
1. Corning at Hoxie (Game of the Week). For the second week in a row, Hoxie faces an opponent that is undefeated in conference play. The Mustangs seize command of the conference race with a 7-point win over the “other” Bobcats.
2. Auburn at Arkansas. This may the most important game the Razorbacks have played in a long, long time. With a win, the Hogs can get back in contention for a good finish in the conference and a decent bowl game. A loss could leave Arkansas scrambling just to finish with a .500 record and a trip to a minor bowl. Darren McFadden can stay in the thick of the Heisman race with a big game. If the Hogs lose, his Heisman hopes suffer another blow. I’d love to be wrong, but I gotta pick Auburn.
3. McCrory at Walnut Ridge. Bobcats claw past the Jaguars for their second win of the season.
4. Louisiana-Lafayette at Arkansas State. Apparently I was a little too quick to put the Indians back in the New Orleans Bowl. ASU will get back on track and keep the homecoming crowd in good spirits with a win over UL-Laf.
5. Marked Tree at Rector. Marked Tree should win by 40 or so.
6. Alabama at Ole Miss. Rebels pull the upset. Ole Miss by a field goal.
7. Pocahontas at Westside. Redskins easily.
8. LSU at Kentucky. LSU will win and it won’t be as close as some may think.
9. Augusta at Cross County. Another big game in the 2A-3 playoff race. Cross Co. wins at home.
10. Boston College at Notre Dame. Notre Dame broke into the win column last week against UCLA. Boston College is a lot better than UCLA, though. BC by two touchdowns.
11. Greene County Tech at Nettleton. Raiders whip the Techsters.
12. Tennessee at Mississippi State. State will keep it close, but Vols have too much talent.
13. Harrisburg at Brinkley. The words “winless” and “Brinkley” just seem to go together nicely.
14. South Carolina at North Carolina. North Carolina beat Miami last week. I’m not sure if that says more about the Tar Heels or the Canes. Gamecocks step out of conference and pick up a road win against the Tar Heels.
15. Valley View at Highland. Outstanding match-up between perennial power Highland and up-and-coming Valley View. Rebels win this one at home.
Last week: 12-2
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