Here’s a look at all of the Week 8 area high school football predictions. I was 37-9 (80.4 percent) last week to improve my season record to 239-62 (79.4 percent). All games are 7 p.m. Friday unless noted:
Warren Central (5-2) at Carmel (5-2): Center Grove can wrap up the Metropolitan Interscholastic Conference title outright with a win over Lawrence North on Friday.
But that doesn’t make the Warren Central-Carmel showdown any less enticing. The Class 6A second-ranked Greyhounds (5-2) are riding a four-game winning streak, while sixth-ranked Warren Central (5-2) has won five in a row after a 0-2 start.
The rivalry dates to 1959 with Carmel holding a 36-24-3 overall series lead. That advantage is built largely on a 10-game winning streak from 1974-83. Otherwise, it’s been back-and-forth.
Since 2007, Carmel is 7-5 against Warren Central. Only two of those 12 games have been decided by more than a touchdown – a 31-17 Carmel win in 2008 and a 37-27 Warren Central win in 2010.
This year’s game would appear to be another closely-contested matchup. Warren Central has cranked up its offense, averaging 42.4 points and 375 yards per game. Senior Jay Coe has rushed for at least 124 yards in all of his last four games and quarterback Zach Summeier is completing 66 percent of his passes for 1,258 yards and nine touchdowns.
Carmel’s only losses are to Cincinnati LaSalle, which is ranked No. 20 this week by USA Today, and to unbeaten Center Grove. Those losses came by a combined 10 points. The Greyhounds are led by senior quarterback Michael Viktrup (979 passing yards, 382 rushing yards), senior running back Tobias Watkins (647 rushing yards) and junior receiver Jalen Walker (425 yards, six TDs).
This seems like the toss-up of toss-ups. I like Carmel’s defense to make a play late. Carmel 27, Warren Central 24.
Ben Davis (3-4) at Lawrence Central (3-4): Ben Davis was poised for a big win last week against Carmel before the Greyhounds rallied in the fourth quarter for a 35-21 win. Getting one here won’t be easy. Lawrence Central quarterback Andre Randolph (653 passing yards, 490 rushing yards) is one of the more explosive quarterbacks in the area. Randolph and Gerrid Doaks (1,240 yards, 15 TDs) make for a tough combination. Ben Davis 35, Lawrence Central 31.
Fishers (4-3) at Westfield (4-3): Fishers played tight with Cathedral for a half last week at Victory Field before things fell apart a bit in a 35-6 loss. The Tigers need to get the offense going. Westfield may be the right opponent. The Shamrocks have allowed 34, 59 and 35 points in three consecutive losses to Hamilton Southeastern, Brownsburg and Avon. Fishers 27, Westfield 21.
Heritage Christian (6-1) at Howe (4-3): Class 2A sixth-ranked Heritage Christian survived a 28-27 win over Lapel last week. Now it gets a matchup against another tough 2A opponent, a team it defeated 25-24 last season. Heritage Christian quarterback Jackson Heath (1,956 yards, 22 TDs) continues to put up big numbers. Heritage Christian 28, Howe 27.
Bishop Chatard (5-2) at Guerin Catholic (5-2): This is a potential matchup in Class 3A Sectional 29. Chatard is coming off a 27-23 loss last week to Cincinnati Winton Woods, while Guerin lost 21-16 to Brebeuf Jesuit. Chatard has won all five games in the series and none have been particularly close. Bishop Chatard 34, Guerin Catholic 16.
Roncalli (3-4) at Decatur Central (6-1): The Hawks have been on a roll since a Week 3 loss to Whiteland. Roncalli, a Class 4A program, hasn’t played another 4A program through eight weeks. Odd. Decatur Central 28, Roncalli 20.
Avon (5-2) at Zionsville (3-4): Avon has won four in a row. Zionsville has lost three in a row and allowed 66 points last week to Brownsburg. Avon 42, Zionsville 17.
Brebeuf Jesuit (5-2) vs. Cathedral (5-2), at Lawrence North: Cathedral is a legit state title contender in Class 6A. These teams haven’t met since 2002. Cathedral 35, Brebeuf Jesuit 14.
Brownsburg (3-4) at Noblesville (3-4): Brownsburg won two in a row, defeating Westfield and Zionsville. Noblesville is coming off hard-fought losses to Bishop Chatard and Hamilton Southeastern. Brownsburg 34, Noblesville 33.
Columbus Hartley, Ohio (4-2) at Hamilton Southeastern (6-1): The Royals have won six in a row. Hamilton Southeastern 21, Columbus Hartley 14.
Crawfordsville (2-5) at Tri-West (4-3): Tough game looming next week for Tri-West, against North Montgomery. Tri-West 48, Crawfordsville 6.
Delta (5-2) at Greenfield-Central (3-4), 7:30 p.m.: Nice win last week for Greenfield-Central, 14-13 over Yorktown. Beating Delta would be even bigger. Delta 35, Greenfield-Central 21.
Eastern Hancock (7-0) at Shenandoah (6-1): This should be a great game. Eastern Hancock won 24-20 last year. Eastern Hancock 28, Shenandoah 26.
Edgewood (3-4) at Cascade (3-4): Cascade looks to rebound after back-to-back losses. Cascade 14, Edgewood 13.
Edinburgh (2-5) at Wes-Del (2-5): Edinburgh beat Traders Point Christian 43-0 last week. Wes-Del 28, Edinburgh 18.
Greenwood (4-3) at Franklin (1-6): After a four-game winning streak, Greenwood lost back-to-back games to Guerin Catholic and Decatur Central. Greenwood 34, Franklin 14.
Indiana Deaf (5-2) at Washington (1-5): Indiana Deaf has lost two in a row after a 5-0 start. Indiana Deaf 42, Washington 14.
Broad Ripple (1-6) at Indian Creek (4-3): Indian Creek should take a five-game winning streak into the tournament. Indian Creek 49, Broad Ripple 7.
Cardinal Ritter (3-4) at Scecina (4-3): Tough luck for Ritter, coming off back-to-back three-point losses to Triton Central and Beech Grove. Cardinal Ritter 28, Scecina 21.
Shortridge (2-5) at Northwest (4-3): Northwest hasn’t won this many games since 2006. Northwest 43, Shortridge 16.
Jay County (3-4) at Marshall (0-7): Marshall lost 47-0 to Hammond last week, its third shutout. Jay County 42, Marshall 6.
Knightstown (2-5) at Lapel (3-4): Lapel nearly knocked off Heritage Christian last week, losing 28-27. Lapel 32, Knightstown 24.
Lawrence North (2-5) at Center Grove (7-0): Center Grove can close out the outright conference title with a win here. Center Grove 42, Lawrence North 24.
Marion (0-7) at Tech (3-4): Only a one-point loss to Muncie Central has kept Tech from a four-game winning streak. Tech 41, Marion 20.
Monrovia (6-1) at Park Tudor (1-6): Monrovia is averaging 53 points a game. Monrovia 56, Park Tudor 26.
Mooresville (3-4) at Martinsville (0-7): Martinsville has a chance to break through here for its first win. Mooresville 24, Martinsville 17.
Mt. Vernon (4-3) at Shelbyville (6-1): Will be interesting to see how Shelbyville bounces back from the loss to New Palestine last week. Shelbyville 28, Mt. Vernon 23.
New Castle (1-6) at New Palestine (7-0), 7:30 p.m.: New Pal won 74-0 last year. Yikes. New Palestine 66, New Castle 13.
North Central (0-7) at Pike (2-5): Pike looks to end a four-game losing streak. North Central has lost 18 in a row, dating to Oct. 25, 2013. Pike 35, North Central 21.
Pendleton Heights (2-5) at Yorktown (3-4), 7:30 p.m.: Pendleton Heights has dropped three in a row since a good win over Greenfield-Central. Yorktown 38, Pendleton Heights 28.
Plainfield (4-3) at Whiteland (5-2): Whiteland’s only losses are to 6A Center Grove and Avon. Whiteland 31, Plainfield 21.
Southmont (2-5) at Lebanon (1-6): Lebanon was forced to forfeit two victories due to use of an ineligible player. Lebanon 31, Southmont 21.
Southport (5-2) at Bloomington North (1-6), 7:30 p.m.: Southport has been .500 or better every year since 2008. That’s meaningful considering the program had losing records every year from 1996 to 2007. Southport 34, Bloomington North 20.
Speedway (2-5) at Lutheran (3-4): Speedway is coming off back-to-back wins, while Lutheran has lost two in a row. Lutheran 28, Speedway 24.
Taylor (3-4) at Sheridan (2-5): It’s a rare down year for Sheridan, though it plays a tougher schedule than most Class A programs. Sheridan 21, Taylor 16.
Terre Haute North (3-4) at Perry Meridian (4-3), 7:30 p.m.: Perry Meridian saw its three-game winning streak snapped last week in a 24-15 loss to Columbus North. Perry Meridian 27, Terre Haute North 24.
Terre Haute South (1-6) at Franklin Central (1-6), 7:30 p.m.: Franklin Central picked up its first win last week, 27-14 over Bloomington North. Franklin Central 21, Terre Haute South 14.
Traders Point Christian (2-5) at Covenant Christian (0-4): Covenant Christian looking for its first win. Covenant Christian 35, Traders Point 14.
Triton Central (4-3) at Beech Grove (5-2): This should be one of the more competitive games of the night. Triton Central 28, Beech Grove 27.
Western (2-5) at Hamilton Heights (4-3): Hamilton Heights is coming off a 17-14 loss to Twin Lakes. Hamilton Heights 28, Western 13.
Western Boone (6-1) at Danville (1-6): Western Boone is in command to win the Sagamore Conference. Western Boone 45, Danville 17.
Arlington (4-3) at Gary Roosevelt (2-4), 2 p.m.: Arlington snapped a two-game losing streak with a win over Covenant Christian. Arlington 30, Gary Roosevelt 27.
Manual (3-4) at St. Vincent St. Mary, Ohio (5-1), 2 p.m.: Step up in competition for Manual. St. Vincent 48, Manual 6.