When state champs collide: Miami Central vs. Booker T. Washington is a partner of USA TODAY High School Sports

Miami Central Rockets running back Kenio Mike Jr. against DeMatha earlier this season (Photo: Derik Hamilton, USA TODAY Sports)

Miami Central Rockets running back Kenio Mike Jr. against DeMatha earlier this season (Photo: Derik Hamilton, USA TODAY Sports)

Two programs with a combined eight state championships and 10 state championship game appearances will meet once again Saturday night in Miami.

It’s the Miami Central Rockets and the Booker T. Washington Tornadoes hooking up.

Things might be slightly down for both programs coming into this year’s game, but that hasn’t changed anything for the players, coaches or fans of each team.

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If anything, this year’s matchup between two Miami-Dade County’s best programs at Traz Powell Stadium again will feel like a state championship atmosphere.

The Rockets, however, would like to reverse the trend of the past two seasons by knocking off the Tornadoes. A 21-20 loss last year and a 28-17 loss in 2013 should be all the motivation that the Rockets need in order to turn things their way.

Taking A Look Back

Things have always been tight between the two teams since the first meeting in 2008 (Booker T. Washington was reestablished as high school in 1999).

Booker T. Washington leads the series 4-3 although Miami Central leads the series 4-3 on the field. The 2011 game was won via forfeit by Booker T. Washington after Miami Central was forced to forfeit the entire 2011 season because of an ineligible player.

Series Results

2014: Booker T. Washington 21, Miami Central 20

2013: Booker T. Washington 28, Miami Central 17
2012: Miami Central 37, Booker T. Washington 26
2011: Miami Central 29, Booker T. Washington 26*

2010: Miami Central 17, Booker T. Washington 0

2009: Miami Central 18, Booker T. Washington 12
2008: Booker T. Washington 44, Miami Central 39

* – Miami Central later forfeited after the season

Looking At This Year


Never mind that this a non-district contest, but it will feel like the entire season is at stake.

Booker T. Washington enters the game with a 2-2 record, but holding on to a 2-0 record in District 4A-8. Miami Central brings a 3-1 record into the game with a 1-0 record in District 6A-16.

Both teams have shown inconsistency with their offense so far this season as Miami Central has started two different quarterbacks in the first four games, while Booker T. Washington is allowing a freshman to run the show in Daniel Richardson.

The Rockets, however, have seen its best game come from quarterback TiJuane Morten, a sophomore. He has benefited from having a big target in receiver Darnell Solomon.

Given that both teams have these inconsistency issues, the defense could certainly play a bigger role in the game, giving the series another close result for the record book.

The Predictions

The thought is that this year will be different and that Miami Central will turn the corner and avenge the losses of the last two years.  Taking a look at three different predictions that includes Joe Pinkos, USA TODAY’s High School Sports Score Predictor and, here is how all see this year’s game playing out.

Joe Pinkos’ Prediction: Miami Central
USA TODAY HSS Prediction: Miami Central 28, Booker T. Washington 14
FHSF Prediction: Miami Central

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