Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Game of the Year...

...will be this Friday, as Lincoln-Way East (5-0), arguably the best team in 7A, hosts Bolingbrook (5-0), arguably the best team in 8A. I was at the game last year, in which the Griffins spoiled the Raiders' perfect season, 20-14. This one should be every bit as good.

Let's have a look at Lincoln-Way East's schedule first (home team in CAPS):

Lincoln-Way East 20, MONTINI 14
Lincoln-Way East 35, LOCKPORT 0
LINCOLN-WAY EAST 35, Homewood-Flossmoor 20
Lincoln-Way East 28, SANDBURG 7

Those are four quality victories (with the exception of Lockport).

And now for Bolingbrook:

BOLINGBROOK 33, Plainfield South 6
Bolingbrook 46, ROMEOVILLE 10
Bolingbrook 54, JOLIET CENTRAL 6
Bolingbrook 44, JOLIET WEST 12
BOLINGBROOK 45, Homewood-Flossmoor 28

Of those five teams, only Homewood-Flossmoor has a winning record (3-2). The Brook's first four games were against teams with a combined record of 4-16. Two of them, Romeoville and Joliet Central, are still looking for their first victory. This is not an impressive schedule (especially for the defending 8A champs).

As for recent history, before last year's showdown it looks like the home team always had the advantage.

2010: LINCOLN-WAY EAST 43, Bolingbrook 7
2009: BOLINGBROOK 46, Lincoln-Way East 24
2008: BOLINGBROOK 27, Lincoln-Way East 17
2007: BOLINGBROOK 19, Lincoln-Way East 7
2006: LINCOLN-WAY EAST 22, Bolingbrook 14
2005: LINCOLN-WAY EAST 38, Bolingbrook 15

So what happens Friday night? Even though quarterback Tom Fuessel is making Griffin fans forget all about Blake Winkler, I have to go with Illinois recruit Aaron Bailey. He's still the most exciting player in the state.

BOWG prediction: Bolingbrook 24, LINCOLN-WAY EAST 21.

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