Game preview: Northwest Classen at John Marshall
Northwest Classen at John Marshall
When: 7:30 p.m. Friday
Where: Taft Stadium
Why NW Classen could win: The Knights are a team trying to make the turnaround after an 0-10 season last year, and there’s always a sense of unknown in the opening game. John Marshall is replacing some key players from last year, when it defeated Northwest 39-19, so expect the Knights to make this one more competitive.
Why John Marshall could win: Coach Bruce Troxell has been pleased with the way his new starters have come along, and the defensive front seven is a talented bunch. As long as the new quarterback doesn’t turn the ball over too much, the Bears should be able to put up enough points to come away with the ‘W’.
Key matchup: Northwest run game vs. John Marshall run-stoppers. Breaking through that JM front seven will be the biggest key for Northwest pulling this one off. Northwest has some playmakers with guys like Marvin Kerbo — who averaged more than nine yards per carry on 43 attempts and also caught 20 passes last season. But they’ll have to make a dent in that front seven to give themselves a chance to win it.
The pick: John Marshall 17, NW Classen 10. I don’t see this being a blowout, and I don’t see it being a big-time offensive slugfest. But in the end, I see the Bears’ defense containing the Knights.
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