Brief previews of Intercity and top area high school football games for Week 1 of the 2011 season.


Metamora vs. Central Catholic

Time: 7 p.m. today

Place: Bloomington

Radio: WJBC (1230-AM, 93.7-FM)

2010 records: Metamora 11-2; Central Catholic 6-4

FYI: Metamora, ranked No. 3 in the Class 5A state poll, downed the Saints, 48-24, in last year’s opener … Senior Ross Hoover takes over as Metamora’s quarterback for Michael Fay, now at Louisiana Tech … Central, rated ninth in 4A, welcomes back senior tailback Shane Powe, who had a season-ending knee injury in week 3 a year ago … The Saints will be without senior tight end Jimmy Flynn (knee).

Decatur MacArthur vs. Bloomington

Time: 7 p.m. today

Place: Bloomington

2010 records: Decatur MacArthur 2-7; Bloomington 6-4

FYI: Devon Ingram could become the first sophomore to start at quarterback for MacArthur since standout Robert Smith in 2007 … The Generals have a potentially potent running back in speedy junior Brian Jennings … Bloomington rolled to a 32-7 win over MacArthur to open last season behind Jayden Thompson’s three TD passes … BHS junior fullback/linebacker Ian Kolic (knee) is out for four weeks.

Centennial vs. Normal Community West

Time: 7 p.m. today

Place: Normal

2010 records: Champaign Centennial 6-4; Normal Community West 7-3

FYI: The Chargers rallied to edge Normal West, 31-28, in last year’s opener … The Wildcats, ranked No. 9 in Class 6A, have an experienced running back in senior Cory Ortiz (513 yards, 9 TDs) … West junior Alex Jefferson makes his first varsity start at quarterback, taking over for Big 12 Conference Offensive Player of the Year and current Georgia Tech linebacker Tyler Marcordes.

Normal Community vs. Champaign Central

Time: 7 p.m. today

Place: Champaign

2010 records: Normal Community 7-3; Champaign Central 3-6

FYI: Champaign Central’s offense is paced by senior running back Brad Wright, who ran for 831 yards and 14 touchdowns last year … The Maroons’ line is led by senior Noah Lessaris … Senior Nick Birlingmair makes his starting debut at quarterback for Normal Community, which is ranked No. 9 in Class 7A … The Ironmen opened last season with a 35-22 win over the Maroons.

University High vs. Morton

Time: 7:30 p.m. today

Place: Morton

2010 records: U High 4-5; Morton 7-3

FYI: U High seeks to avenge a 32-8 loss to the Potters in last year’s opener … Morton is led by 6-4, 240-pound defensive end/tight end Matt Hungate … Pioneers’ coach Dusty Burk considers the game a good measuring stick for his team, which is aiming for its first playoff berth since 2008 … U High’s defense has a veteran secondary led by second-team all-Corn Belt Conference pick Jordan Stralow.

Top area game

Dee-Mack vs. El Paso-Gridley

Time: 7 p.m. today

Place: El Paso

2010 records: Deer Creek-Mackinaw 12-1; El Paso-Gridley 7-3

FYI: Dee-Mack is ranked No. 4 and EPG No. 5 in the Class 2A state poll … The matchup of Heart of Illinois Conference title hopefuls features two of the area’s top running backs in Dee-Mack’s Brandon Evans (1,590 yards, 17 TDs last year) and EPG’s Mohammed Abbed (1,444, 19 TDs) … EPG seeks to avenge a 55-6 loss to the Chiefs in last year’s opener.



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