Who's Playing?: Oxford (7-2 [5-0 in Region 1-5A], #3 AP, #5 CL/MP, #1 in 5A [All polls]) @ Center Hill (5-4 [3-2], NR)
What?: Sixth Region 2-5A Game
Where?: Center Hill High School Football Field
When?: Friday, October 30th @ 7:00 PM
How can you keep yourself updated?: 95.5 FM Radio with Don Brooks and Denny Tosh on the call, Bullseye955.com, @OxChargerSports Twitter account (Link: HERE), thru the iScore Gamecast HERE (use ID 5038B9B22A for entry if needed) and the iScore Central App on Apple devices HERE (download the app for free using that link, which will send you to the Apple App Store, after downloading and starting the app, search Oxford and/or Center Hill for the game)
The Lowdown: Region 1-5A is shaping into its final form. Oxford with a win - aided with a Lake Cormorant loss to Clarksdale - can clinch the one-seed Friday. Oxford can clinch a home game with a win by 12 or more tonight and can be no worse than a two-seed in any tiebreaker situation. Center Hill is in the midst of the playoff hunt, but really can't do anything in terms of clinching a playoff spot or moving up in the standings (having lost to Lake Cormorant last week).
Center Hill has one dangerous player at quarterback with Danterius Ellington. He is their "do-it-all" guy. He'll run it, he'll throw it. The Miustangs just has 7 of the 9 games they've played listed on Maxpreps (Which never does us media guys any good - frustrating when it is a rule and never gets enforced, yet Oxford follows it to a T) but it has been a two-to-one ratio in running to passing.
The Oxford defense will have a tall task to defend the quarterback. Their offense averages a respectable 29.2 PPG in large part because of Ellington. However, that is a modest number when up against Oxford's offense averaging north of 50 per game in 1-5A play. Oxford with multiple weapons and Center Hill with just one big weapon will play a role in the difference in this game. Center Hill's D - while improved and older than the past couple years - still has to stop DK Metcalf AND be able to cover the likes of Ken Presley, Jimmy Greaser, and Zach Cousar who are all capable of having big games. Oxford's run game is not to be forgotten either.
Jack Abraham is closing in on 10,000 career passing yards and if he has a big game could pass it by the 3rd/4th quarter. No one in region play - save for some success with Clarksdale - has been able to stop this offense this season or the past two seasons.
For Oxford to Win, They Must: Execute on Offense - That's a bland thing to say, but it is still true. If Oxford doesn't execute on offense, this will be a war. This should be routine.
Stop Ellington from Causing Havoc - The defense might install a "spy" on Ellington if he runs the ball. He has made 20 rushing attempts per game so far. No doubt that will likely happen in this game.
Get A Flow On Special Teams - Last week was the best week Oxford's had in that department. Both Connell Yoste and Liam Cooper made Field Goals last week, something that has been VERY inconsistent to that point. Improving Extra Points like they matter is the next step as another PAT was blocked last week.
For Center Hill to Win, They Must: Score A Lot of Points - The Mustangs must find a way (or have Ellington have a career day) to keep up with Oxford scoring. The last time Oxford was here, Center Hill did nothing to stop the Chargers. Oxford has been scoring 50 or more points in every region game save for New Hope - and that had a running clock to prevent Oxford from scoring 50.
Make Some Stops - At some point to beat Oxford, they must keep them out of the end zone and force a field goal try or punt. There hasn't been one defensive coordinator yet in this region that has figured that out in three seasons.
Make Plays on Special Teams - The Mustangs have done some onside kicks themselves. Whoever winds up teeing the ball up first will likely try to do that to start the game.
Other Notes: Abraham Tracker - He needs 369 passing yards to reach 10,000 career passing yards. Oxford is the only current region opponent Center Hill has never defeated in football in their school history.