With a spot in the semifinals awaiting the winners, here is the best regional final game in all eight divisions this weekend.
Grandville (10-1) at Novi Detroit Catholic Central, 1 Saturday. Games today last about 21/2 hours. This game could be over in 1:20. Both teams run the ball and then run it some more. Grandville employs the T-formation offense with a full-house backfield and two tight ends. This might be the only time in its history that CC has the better passing attack.
Temperance Bedford (9-2) at Detroit King (9-2), 3 Saturday. King’s defense never has seen a team run the veer offense the way the Kicking Mules run it. King will have its hands full trying to keep quarterback Joey Wiemer from running up and down the field, and the Crusaders better be sure more than one defender is there to stop him because he gains a lot of yards after contact. Bedford’s problem will be negating King’s superior speed.
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- Michigan high school football regional finals schedule
Dearborn Divine Child (9-2) at Allen Park (11-0), 7 Friday. Because the Downriver League is self-contained, meaning its 10-member schools play no nonleague opponents, it is difficult to gauge how good the Jaguars are. Allen Park has a nice blend of running and passing. The Downriver League has some good quarterbacks, but there might not be anyone as talented as Divine Child’s Theo Day. A gifted passer, Day will present the Jaguars’ secondary with its best test so far.
Adrian (7-4) at River Rouge (10-1), 7 Friday. Adrian has played the tougher schedule, but the Maples have lost four of those games. The reason this game is interesting is because River Rouge appeared to struggle against Detroit Mumford last week, winning only 34-22, its closest game of the season. (Its lone loss was a forfeit.) After the opener, Rouge posted seven consecutive shutouts against inferior opponents. Adrian was impressive last week in beating Milan, a team it lost to by 14 points in Week 1.
Frankenmuth (10-1) at Ithaca (11-0), 1 Saturday. This is how good Frankenmuth is: In a battle of Week 9 unbeatens, it lost to Freeland, 7-3. Two weeks later, it blasted Freeland, 49-14. Jared Davis does a good job of running the option for Frankenmuth, which can be a physical team. Ithaca, which won the D-6 title last season, has its lethal passing attack, keyed by junior quarterback Joey Bentley. Either way, both defenses could be in for a long afternoon.
Napoleon (9-2) at Jackson Lumen Christi (9-2), 1 Saturday. This is new territory for Napoleon, which will be playing in its first regional final in school history. The Pirates have gotten here with a high-powered offense that has scored a school-record 366 points. Lumen Christi will be playing in its 20th regional championship game. But this is an unusually young Lumen Christi team, one that relies on the running of Bo Bell to move the ball.
Pewamo-Westphalia (11-0) at Traverse City St. Francis (11-0), 1 Saturday. Behind the running of Gabe Callery and the timely passing of Danny Passinault, St. Francis is averaging more than 39 points a game. But don’t forget about the defense, which has yielded only 62 points and hasn’t allowed more than one touchdown in a game the past nine weeks. That defense will be tested by Pewamo-Westphalia’s veteran offensive line that opens gaping holes for Jared Smith, who has a state-record 119 career rushing touchdowns.
Climax-Scotts (11-0) at Ottawa Lake Whiteford (11-0), 7 Friday. Look for a more attentive Climax-Scotts team, which was unbeaten before it was drilled by Whiteford, 48-14, in the regional final last season. Whiteford has almost a point-a-minute offense, averaging 46 points a game. Jesse Kiefer seems to be touchdown machine for the Bobcats and will be the focal point for Climax-Scotts’ defensive effort.
Contact Mick McCabe: 313-223-4744 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @mickmccabe1.