So who the heck is Bartlett?
Bartlett High School is located in the northwest suburb of the same name. Founded in 1997, its football team has qualified for the playoffs in 12 of the last 13 years. (Not bad.) During that time the Hawks only failed to make the postseason in 2009 with a record of 3-6.
Here's a quick thumbnail sketch of Bartlett's program since 2004:
2012: 7-4, lost to Loyola in the second round of the playoffs.
2011: 7-3, lost to Lyons in the first round.
2010: 8-3, lost to Maine South in the second round.
2008: 12-1, lost to Maine South in the 8A semifinal.
2007: 6-4, lost to Glenbard South in the first round.
2006: 5-5, lost to Wheaton Warrenville South in the first round.
2005: 7-3, lost to Hinsdale Central in the first round.
2004: 7-4, lost to Naperville Central in the second round.
As you can see, the Upstate Eight-Valley school usually makes the playoffs but, with the exception of 2008, has trouble getting beyond the first or second round.
While Bartlett Coach Tom Meaney, above, has junior Jordan Flint returning at quarterback and a slew of talented running backs, including seniors
Titus Ayomidele and Hurshel Ross III, junior Matt Callahan and
sophomore Nolan Bernat, only one starter is back from last year's defense.
And that could be a problem. Can an inexperienced defensive squad contain a Division I prospect like Chris James? We'll just have to wait and see, won't we?
Oh, and I know what you're thinking: Have the two teams ever played each other? Only once as far as I can tell. In the first round of the playoffs in 2008, the Hawks bested the Dons, 10-7.
Could be a good game this weekend. And remember, I'll be live tweeting it @BoringOldWhtGuy.