St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale), which last season won its 10th Florida state football championship and finished among the top five teams in the Super 25, has agreed to play at Peoria Centennial in late September, the schools confirmed.
“We’re very fortunate to host them,” Centennial athletic director Brett Palmer said. “We were able to drop the (Scottsdale) Chaparral game. They’re going to be playing Valencia (Calif.).”
That Chaparral game in California will be played on Sept. 8, Chaparral AD Tommy Eubanks said.
Palmer said Centennial and St. Thomas Aquinas agreed on the game, which will likely be played on Sept. 29, a Friday.
St. Thomas Aquinas has another test to open the season when it hosts St. John Bosco (Bellflower, Calif.) on Aug. 25, according to the Aquinas schedule released Tuesday. Bosco finished last season at No. 6 in the Super 25.
“This will be another great opportunity for our players to focus on the present campaign and take each practice and each game seriously,” Aquinas coach Roger Harriott told The Miami Herald. “It allows us to help them generate the focus they need each day to produce a positive result.”
Coach Richard Taylor said that Centennial was looking to host either Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei or Corona (Calif.) Centennial, before the school was able to get St. Thomas Aquinas to play them at home.
“St. Thomas said, ‘We don’t need any money, we’ll just fly out,’ ” Taylor said.
Nothing has been confirmed yet on who will be televising the game. There is a chance that it could be nationally televised by ESPN.
Taylor calls this a no-lose game.
“You don’t lose when you play a team like this,” he said. “It doesn’t do any good to play an easy schedule.”
Contributing: Richard Obert, AZCentral