Fairfield Central at Brookland-Cayce
The Griffins and their big offense challenge coach Rusty Charpia’s Bearcats on their new home turf. Brookland-Cayce’s defense, fronted by Brett Ebener, Quinten Hooks, Mandrell Benn and Dashawn Gilbert, faces a tough challenge.
Clinton at A.C. Flora
Clinton defeated A.C. Flora 55-35 in the first round of last season’s Class 3A playoffs. With one of the best defensive secondaries in the state, the Falcons hope to trip up Clinton and get this season off to a strong start.
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Spring Valley at Lower Richland
In coach Jerry Brown’s reintroduction at Spring Valley, the Vikings could put up big offense with receivers such as RJ Bacon and Jordan Foster. Lower Richland’s Larry Collins could make a splash in this non-conference opener.
Greenwood vs. Dutch Fork
In the main event of the Battle at the Bluff, new coach Dan Pippin leads Greenwood against the defending 4A Division 1 champion Silver Foxes. Dutch Fork’s most potent weapon is senior running back Matt Colburn.
Columbia at Chapin
New coach Willie Offord and the Capitals visit Chapin’s revamped stadium with a squad of two-way players led by seniors Tyran Dixon, Jamal Ferrell and Wayne Brown. The Eagles could try out several options at quarterback, including senior Jordan Day and juniors Garrett Reinhart and Logan Bailey.
Eau Claire v. Keenan
In their annual rivalry game, the Eau Claire Shamrocks take on the Keenan squad that defeated them 27-12 last year. The Raiders return many weapons on offense, including wideouts Rodrick Jones and Jalon Wilson, and running back Jonathan Cato.
Camden at Lugoff-Elgin
Former defensive ccoordinator Dave Thomas leads the Demons, as Camden looks to continue its winning streak in the rivalry. The Bulldogs, with Ross Hough or Jaylen Nelson under center, are looking to improve last year’s 5-5 finish.
Westwood at River Bluff
The area’s two newest programs go head-to-head in the final game of the Battle at the Bluff on Saturday The host Gators start their first varsity season, and the Redhawks, led by quarterback Nick Leveretter, look to give them a chilly reception.
Akilah Imani Nelson