Both Oneida and Scott will host home openers tonight at 7:30 p.m. The Indians will host Hampton and the Highlanders will host Cumberland County.
Friday’s meeting will be the ninth between the Indians and the Bulldogs, dating back to 1982. Scott and Cumberland County will be meeting for the first time.
• Oneida holds the series advantage with Hampton, 5-3, and has won the last two meetings. In the two teams’ last meeting, the Indians upset the Bulldogs 20-16 in the second round of the Class 2A state playoffs in 2011.
• While Oneida and Hampton are typically two of the toughest 2A teams to beat in 2013, both entered the 2013 season with young roster. The Indians have only six seniors, the Bulldogs only eight. Hampton’s young offense includes a sophomore at quarterback, a sophomore and freshman at runningback, a freshman starting wide receiver, and three sophomores in the starting offensive line.
• The Bulldogs are coming off a 42-41 loss to Class 3A Unicoi County on Aug. 23. The Indians are coming off a 13-12 overtime win over Rockwood.
• Oneida is ranked No. 2 in the East Tennessee Sportswriters Class 2A poll and No. 10 in the Associated Press statewide Class 2A poll. Hampton is ranked No. 4 in the East Tennessee Sportswriters Class 2A poll and is unranked in the AP Class 2A poll.
• Hampton senior DL Trey Brown (5-10, 230) was preseason all-state selection. (So was Oneida senior DB Cole West.)
• Hampton is coached by Mike Lunsford (173-48). Oneida is coached by Tony Lambert (34-14).
• According to Oneida coach Tony Lambert, his team has no major injury problems — except for the preseason injuries — heading into tonight’s home opener.
• Scott and Cumberland County are meeting for the first time tonight. However, the Highlanders are 4-2 against teams from Crossville, defeating Stone Memorial 4 times and losing twice between 2007 and 2012.
• The Jets (colors: light blue, white) bring an experience-laden team to Huntsville, with 24 seniors and returning starters at nearly every position.
• Cumberland County is coming off a 13-6 loss to Bledsoe County on Aug. 23. Scott is coming off a 61-0 win over McCreary Central.
• Scott received votes in this week’s East Tennessee Sportswriters Class 4A poll, the first time since the poll’s inception in August 2012.
• Cumberland County is coached by Ted McCaslin (0-11). Scott is coached by Keith Shannon (13-21 at SHS).
• The Highlanders will try for their first 2-0 start since 2010, when they defeated Sequoyah and York Institute before losing to Kingston.
• Cumberland County’s last win was Sept. 2, 2011, a 34-16 win over Warren County.
• Former University of Tennessee football player Inky Johnson will be a special guest at tonight’s game. He will join the team for its pregame meal and talk prior to kickoff. At halftime, he will sign autographs for fans. He will rejoin Scott coaches after the game.