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WEEK ZERO COMPLETE SCHEDULE
GAMES TO WATCH IN WEEK ZERO
Dutch Fork (5A) at Independence (Charlotte)
Coach Tom Knotts takes his defending state champions to face the program he ran successfully for so long. Last season, he faced off with his old program and "walked the dog" on them in a 45-0 blow out. This year could be a similar result. While the Pats are improved from a year ago where they were going through some coaching change drama, the Foxes are also improved.
Player to Watch: I believe the player to watch in this game is Bryce Thompson; he has shined in SCISA for two seasons but is now back at the big public school gridiron and the players are bigger, stronger and faster in 5A. It will be interesting if he returns to the success he had his freshman year at Dutch Fork several seasons ago.
Prediction: Dutch Fork by a lot
Fort Dorchester(5A) at Dorman (5A)
What? A Week Zero match up between 5A Top Ten teams? The Patriots of Fort Dorchester will want to flex their muscles early in an effort to get back for their third consecutive trip to the state title game but to do it they will have to get by a very good Dorman football team. This team has a new signal caller who makes them an immediate contender and they return the core of talent on both sides of the football.
Player to Watch: If you're making the trip, DeKareon Joyner of Fort Dorchester is a fun player to watch. He is the mainstay of that Patriots football team and without him, they are mediocre.
Prediction: Call me crazy but I'm picking an upset and going with Dorman ain this game.
Northwestern (5A) at South Pointe (4A)
Cross town rivalry and it doesn't get any better than this. The Trojans return strong talent and are definitely going to be a contender in their class but this Stallion team is loaded and, in my opinion, the second best team in the state behind Dutch Fork (5A). Strong defense for South Pointe will challenge a youthful offensive team and the coaching in this game will be incredible.
Player to Watch: South Pointe quarterback Derion Kendrick, who is the state's top prospect, will be the feature in this game. He's No. 1 overall in the state and headed to Clemson, where he will more than likely play wide receiver.
Prediction: i believe we get a repeat of last season with South Pointe winning this football game.
Spring Valley (5A) at Fort Mill (5A)
The Vikings of Spring Valley showed they are a team to contend with last season and will take on a Fort Mill team who has proven to be large and scrappy in the past few seasons. The Vikings lost their size and experience on the offensive line but return solid talent in the skills department. They lost most of the linebacker and secondary corps but do return the state's top linebacker in Channing Tindell.
Player to Watch: I like Spring Valley quarterback Quincy Hill; hes' a dual threat guy who can throw over the top when he needs to; a definite difference maker.
Prediction: Spring Valley wins a physical football game on the road.
Myrtle Beach (4A) at Byrnes (5A)
Interesting matchup here. Both teams have looked good in shorts and in the preseason. I don't think Byrnes is anywhere near the program they've been the past decade but they will be improved from last season. Myrtle Beach is in a very similar place. I look for this to be a good game.
Player to Watch: Byrnes linebacker Khalid Jones is a stud and is committed to Northwestern. keep an eye on this young man now that he is playing for a defensive minded guy.
Prediction: I think this could be a very good match up but I am going to take Byrnes at home on this one.
We will be previewing more games as the week rolls on.