Week 4 Picks
We are now at week four of the 2021 high school football season. We have seen a lot of ups and downs over these first few weeks. We have seen teams improve, shutdown, deal with injuries, and so much more. The first few weeks have definitely been a rollercoaster ride and I for one cannot wait to see what this week brings.
I went 3-3 on my picks last week to bring my record to 16-7 for the year.
This week some old rivalries are renewed. Some of these rivalries didn’t get played last year due to the shortened season so it is really good to have those back. Let’s take a look at the games.
Byrnes at Gaffney- Spartanburg Nutrition Game of the Week-
This rivalry of course got really big during the late 90’s early 2000’s when the Rebels and the Indians were battling for state titles. We all have some kind of memory from this rivalry for sure. I was fortunate enough to attend the game at the Old Reservation that was played on Thursday night on national tv. It was for sure one of the rowdiest environments I have ever been in.
Byrnes is coming off a loss last week to Westside in which the Rebels put up 62 points. Gabe Rogers had big game and so did receiver Thomas Gregory who was our player of the week. No question the Rebels offense can put up points but the big question this week is can the defense make some stops.
Gaffney is loaded again. Two really good running backs and a very fast defense. Stop me if you’ve heard that before. Their quarterback is also really good.
I think the difference in this game this week is which defense can make stops. Gaffney has been able to do that in their limited games this year, where the Rebels really struggled with that last week. I think the Gaffney defense makes the difference this week.
Jacket Bowl XXVIII Greer at Union-
This is another game with some history, and that history really dates back to the same time as the previous game. During the late 90’s and early 2000’s it seemed like Union and Greer got together twice a year. Once in the regular season, whether region or non, and then again in the playoffs, usually late. There were some epic battles at both Union County Stadium and over at Dooley Field. This is a close rivalry in terms of the record. During this era these games became known as the Jacket Bowl.
Both Yellow Jacket teams have had their struggles this year. Greer is 1-2 with a win over Westside and losses to Byrnes and Southside Christian. Union is 0-2 after COVID erased their first two games and they lost to Laurens and York.
Greer has some really young players including on the offensive line and at running back. To me it seems like a team that has a lot of talent but just hasn’t discovered who they are yet. They have a talented experienced quarterback in Mason Crosby who will try to help them find their way.
Union has some experience. A returning quarterback that has a lot of upside. He can run and has the ability to throw the deep ball. Union wants to be a balanced team offensively but would love to be able to establish the run. The Covid shutdown really put the Jackets behind and the defense needs to step up.
Chapman at Chesnee-
This is another rivalry game that dates back many years. Chapman has of course moved up to 3A and Chesnee is back in 2A. Former region foes. This should be a good battle Friday night.
Chapman has lost two games in this early part of the season. It has been a while since that has been the case. The offense has looked good for the most part but the Panthers have been dealing with some injury issues.
Chesnee has a really good offense. Jalen Rudisill is the real deal. He can score from almost anywhere on the field and stopping him is a huge undertaking.
This game could see a lot of points scored. Chapman is the team use to winning games like that.
Landrum at SCA
The Landrum Cardinals are on a winning streak having won their last two games. They have looked really good on the defensive side of the football. They key to the Cardinals success has been takeaways. I asked Coach Farmer about he take ways and he attributed the success of his defense to hard work at practice during a segment where they focus on taking the ball away from offenses, whether that be interceptions, scoop and scores, or a number of other things. Landrum defense will have another good night Friday. Good defense will lead to good offense.
Coming off COVID shut down is tough especially when you will be doing it with a new quarterback that has never started a game. For that reason I will take BHP over Woodruff.
Ive also got Hillcrest over Boiling Springs and Broome over Emerald.