ESPN will hold a 10-game GEICO ESPN High School Football Kickoff on Aug. 26-28, including six teams that ended the season in the Super 25 football rankings, including Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas), the two-time defending Super 25 champion.
Word of many of the games had already leaked out, including two where the respective teams have been fighting it out on Twitter for months: IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.) vs. Grayson (Loganville, Fla.) and Bishop Gorman at Cedar Hill, Texas, on on Aug. 27.
“I’m really excited to play them,” Grayson defensive back Deangelo Gibbs texted USA TODAY Sports of the IMG Academy game.
Bishop Gorman quarterback Tate Martell, who recently committed to Ohio State, said by Twitter direct message that the chance to play a team in Texas is motivating.
“I’m really excited just because it’s my first game playing against a Texas team in Texas as well. I want to show everyone what my team is capable of.”
Bishop Gorman coach Kenny Sanchez said playing in front of a likely large hostile crowd will be a good experience for his team.
“I don’t think you have to worry about anybody getting up for this game,” Sanchez said. “The fact you have to go into Texas and play one of the top teams in Texas speaks for itself. It’s a good way to start the season. We haven’t played in front of a crowd like they’ll have in Texas. Hopefully, we can feed off of it.”
Besides Bishop Gorman and IMG Academy, which was No. 4 at the end of last season in the Super 25 rankings, other ranked teams include: No. 2 Colquitt County (Moultrie, Ga.), No. 6 St. Edward (Lakewood, Ohio), No. 11 St. John Bosco (Bellflower, Calif.) and No. 24 Trinity Christian Academy (Jacksonville, Fla.).
GEICO ESPN High School Kickoff Schedule:
|OPPONENTS||DATE||LOCATION||TIME (EST) and Network||NOTES|
|Hilllsboro (Nashville, Tenn.) vs. Oakland (Murfreesboro, Tenn).||Aug. 26||Grayson||8 p.m., ESPNU||Oakland won last year’s game 36-28.|
|Basha (Chandler, Ariz.) vs. Pinnacle (Phoenix)||Aug. 26||Pinnacle||11 p.m., ESPNU||Led by QB Spencer Rattler, Pinnacle has eight D-1 senior prospects.|
|Pine-Richland (Gibsonia, Pa.) vs. St. Edward (Lakewood, Ohio).||Aug. 27||St. Edward||Noon, ESPN||St. Edward was the Ohio Div. I champion, Pine-Richland a Pa. 4A semifinalist|
|Heritage (Frisco, Texas) vs. Lone Star (Frisco, Texas)||Aug. 27||The Ford Center at the Star in Frisco||1:30 p.m., ESPNU||Lone Star was the 5A D2 runner-up|
|Saguaro (Scottsdale, Ariz.) vs. Valor Christian (Highlands Ranch, Colo.)||Aug. 27||Valor Christian||3:30 p.m., ESPN||Both teams are defending state champions|
|St. John Bosco (Bellflower, Calif.) vs. St. Xavier (Cincinnati).||Aug. 27||Nippert Stadium, Cincinnati||5 p.m., ESPNU||One of St. John Bosco’s key playes is OG Wyatt Davis, an Ohio State commit|
|IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.) vs. Grayson (Loganville, Ga.).||Aug. 27||Grayson||6 p.m., ESPN2||Both teams are loaded with ESPN 300 players|
|American Heritage (Plantation, Fla.) vs. Colquitt County (Moultrie, Ga.)||Aug. 27||Colquitt County||8 p.m., ESPNU||Colquitt County has won back-to-back state titles.|
|Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas) vs. Cedar Hill, Texas||Aug. 27||Cedar Hill||9 p.m., ESPN2||Bishop Gorman has a 39-game winning streak|
|Trinity Christian (Jacksonville, Fla.) vs. Cocoa, Fla.||Aug. 28||Cocoa||2 p.m., ESPN2||Trinity was the 3A state champion, Cocoa was a 4A semifinalist|
Kickoff times and locations are subject to change.