Here is an inside look at the top high school football games across the state of Idaho in Week 7 (Oct. 9):
NO. 9 TIMBERLINE WOLVES (2-0) at NO. 6 CAPITAL EAGLES (2-0)
7 p.m (MST) Friday at Capital High School, Boise
Game nugget: Capital running backs coach Bob Clark (also former longtime Boise head coach) was the former offensive coordinator at Timberline for six seasons (1997-2002). His son, Max, is the Eagles’ starting quarterback.
About the Wolves: Yes, Timberline has lost 17 consecutive games to its Boise city rival. But the Wolves’ time is coming – and soon, especially after losing a close game last season. They will rely heavily on an active defensive line, led by DE Dylan Pike, to create pressure (19 tackles for loss) – and hope that second-team all-state RB Taylor Marcum (163 rushing yards, three TDs) can break off enough big plays.
About the Eagles: Capital knows it won’t win the war in the trenches, so watch for QB Max Clark (536 passing yards, nine TDs) to target his talented set of pass catchers – TE Kody Walk and WRs Jackson Reed (four TDs) and Ethan Castillo (three TDs) out in space for big plays. Much like counterpart Max Spielman, Smith has essentially played error-free – but both are taking huge steps up in what level of defenses they will face.
SBLive Idaho pick: Capital, 36-30.
NO. 10 JEROME TIGERS (4-2) at MINICO SPARTANS (2-2)
7 p.m (MST) Friday at Minico High School, Rupert
Game nugget: One of the largest-attended state playoff games in Idaho history was between these two schools in 2008. Dubbed “The Ruckus in Rupert,” the Tigers upset Minico, 41-38, on a Hail Mary pass in the 4A semifinals.
About the Tigers: About the time of that big playoff win in 2008, the team shifted to the spread attack – and has been chucking it around ever since. QB Dalan Thompson (1,353 yards, 18 TDs, seven INT) has two big targets to throw to in TE Gavin Capps (26 catches, 427 yards, six TDs) and WR Shayler Bingham (25 catches, 419 yards, seven TDs), but will face a Minico back seven on defense with five seniors playing in it, led by FS Nick Sorenson (four interceptions).
About the Spartans: With COVID-19 game cancellations, and a smaller league realignment, this odd year leaves Minico no margin for error. A win would give the Spartans a huge boost in their 4A Great Basin title chase (after playing for the league crown the past two years in an expanded league). Power running is what they are about – and they have two reliable weapons in RBs Karter Zampedri (352 rushing yards, two TDs) and Klayton Wilson (276 rushing yards, two TDs).
SBLive Idaho pick: Minico, 34-26.
NO. 7 MIDDLETON VIKINGS (3-2) at NO. 8 EMMETT HUSKIES (4-2)
7 p.m (MST) Friday at Emmett High School
Game nugget: Coach Bill Brock led Glenns Ferry to four consecutive 2A championship games, including back-to-back titles in 1994 and 1995. He has guided Middleton to three 4A/3A championship games, but finished as the runner-up each time (2003, 2011, 2012)
About the Vikings: It is pretty clear when QB Ky McClure (1,221 passing yards, 14 TDs) can throw in rhythm in Middleton’s “Air Raid” offense, it makes for a long night for opposing defenses. But Bishop Kelly disrupted that in a big comeback victory last week over the Vikings. The Huskies’ secondary is not as formidable, so plenty of rebound opportunities should be available in a game with 4A SIC title implications.
About the Huskies: Before Emmett’s game last week at Caldwell was cancelled late in the first half, the Huskies’ offense had put 35 points up. QB Caden Young (1,034 passing yards, 12 TDs, one INT; 613 rushing yards, seven TDs) just hasn’t made many mistakes (committed two turnovers, taken one sack), but will need to be prepared for Middleton’s blitz pressure from all angles. He struggled against those looks in last year’s loss.
SBLive Idaho pick: Emmett, 34-31.
LAKELAND HAWKS (3-2) at MOSCOW BEARS (2-0)
7 p.m (PST) Friday at Kibbie Dome, Moscow
Game nugget: Bears coach Phil Heibling never went to the state playoffs as a running back at Moscow High School (2004-06), but did for the first time as a coach last season (lost to Middleton in first round of 4A playoffs).
About the Hawks: This team was just finding its stride in mid-September before 15 varsity players contracted COVID-19, immediately shutting down all team activities. Lakeland retuned last week to win at Timberlake, but the offense’s timing is still off. QB Devon Suko (538 passing yards, 10 total TDs) will look for TE Ammon Munyer (26 catches, 254 yards, two TDs) and WR Aiden Waddington (17 catches, 259 yards, four TDs) often.
About the Bears: First, the season was cancelled. Now, it is back on. Can Moscow take advantage of its new lease and be a factor in the 4A Inland Empire? A win Friday would be a huge lift to its league title hopes, and dual-threat QB Chad Redinger (238 passing yards, 86 rushing yards, two TDs against Lewiston) is playing like a third-year starter. The Bears are also moving Utah commit Jonah Elliss (TE) all over the field in pass game.
SBLive Idaho pick: Moscow, 27-21.
NO. 3 NORTH FREMONT HUSKIES (4-0) at NO. 5 ABERDEEN TIGERS (4-1)
7 p.m (MST) Friday at Aberdeen High School
Game nugget: These schools met twice last season – once early in 2A South East Idaho play (Huskies won, 44-8) and in the first round of the state playoffs (Huskies won, 58-18).
About the Huskies: It just seems like with this group of athletes, led by RB Jordan Lenz (team-high 469 rushing yards) and QB Luke Hill (311 rushing yards – North Fremont could post at least 300-yard rushing games in its sleep in this high-powered Wing-T attack. A win Friday would be a good boost with key Nuclear Conference games ahead down the stretch, including at Firth in the season finale.
About the Tigers: This is one of the games annually that Aberdeen coach Jeff Duffin challenges his players to really take on that “physicality” mentality. Both teams will want to run the football right at the other, so the Tigers need their front seven, led by hard-hitting MLB Carlos Medel, to hold up at the point of attack. That did not play out in either of the lopsided losses a season ago.
SBLive Idaho pick: North Fremont, 30-20.