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Friday, September 11, 2009
Bragging rights on the line for Jenks, Union

By Mark Tennis

Darius Jennings
Darius Jennings accounted for 330 yards and four touchdowns in Gilman's win over Bear Creek (Colo.).
Game of the Week
Jenks (Jenks, Okla.) 1-0 vs. Union (Tulsa, Okla.) 1-0
Sept. 11, 7 p.m. CST at University of Tulsa's Chapman Stadium
When it comes to Oklahoma football, these two teams are always at the top and they play each other every season in what is arguably the nation's best rivalry. The two have also combined to win the last 13 Class 6A state titles. Dubbed the Backyard Bowl, this year's regular-season matchup brings together the No. 13 (Union) and No. 25 (Jenks) teams in the ESPN RISE FAB 50. Union beat Jenks twice last year, earning a 24-17 overtime victory in the regular season and then besting the Trojans, 34-20, in the Class 6A state final. Jenks will need a strong game from junior quarterback Sawyer Kollmorgen to come out on top in this year's tilt. His counterpart at Union, senior signal-caller Chase Boyce, passed for 230 yards and two touchdowns in the Redskins' 17-6 victory over Broken Arrow last weekend.

Player to Watch
Steele Divitto
Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.)
Linebacker/Defensive End, Class of 2010
This 6-foot-2, 215-pounder led a second-half defensive surge that pushed his past De La Salle (Concord, Calif.), 23-21, last year in a matchup of nationally ranked squads. Divitto ended the season with 77 tackles and eight sacks and has committed Boston College. He is regarded as one of the top linebackers in the East and should be very tough for the De La Salle offense to deal with in this Saturday's rematch back in the Garden State. Don Bosco Prep (0-0) is No. 15 in the ESPN RISE FAB 50, while De La Salle (1-0) is No. 20.

Upset Alert
Gilman (Baltimore, Md.) vs. DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.)
Everything seems rosy these days at DeMatha. The Stags are coming off a championship season, they're No. 19 in the ESPN RISE FAB 50 and seven former players have made the cut and are on current NFL rosters, including Eagles star running back Brian Westbrook. This is when Gilman could come along and ruin everything. One of DeMatha's losses last year was to Gilman, which has beaten DeMatha four times in the last nine years. Last week, DeMatha opened with a 38-0 win over Riverdale Baptist (Upper Marlboro, Md.), while Gilman improved to 2-0 by edging Bear Creek (Lakewood, Colo.), 43-36. Friday's game also should be of interest to University of Iowa fans. Future Hawkeye running back Marcus Coker is a standout for DeMatha, while future Hawkeye linebacker Jim Poggi, son of Gilman head coach Biff Poggi, will no doubt be trying to corral him.

Team on the Rise?
Manatee (Bradenton, Fla.)
The Hurricanes displayed the flash and dash of a high-octane offense during a "preseason" game two weeks ago against defending Class 4A state champ Plant (Tampa, Fla.). They won that game, which doesn't count in official record-keeping, 49-33, and then opened the season last week with a 45-0 romp past Bayshore (Bradenton, Fla.). Manatee features one of Florida's top pass-catch combos in senior quarterback Brion Carnes (South Florida recruit) and senior receiver Ace Sanders, who is also highly recruited. Manatee plays at Palmetto (Palmetto, Fla.) on Friday.