High school football: Week 6 preview


Center Grove (4-1) at Lawrence Central (2-3)

Kickoff: 7 p.m.

Recent history: The Trojans have won the last five meetings, including a 63-41 home victory last season.

Sagarin ratings: Center Grove 102.82 (second in Indiana), Lawrence Central 76.85 (33rd)

Players to watch: Center Grove — QB Tyler Cherry, RB Matthew Yoder, WR Noah Coy, LB Owen Bright, LB Kaden McConnell; Lawrence Central — QB Bryson Luter, WR Damarcus Cole, WR Nizyi Davis, DL Reid Hardin, LB Mataio Russell

What to look for: The Bears put up 112 points in their first two games but have slowed a bit in MIC play, totaling 70 points the last three weeks while allowing 86. That doesn’t bode well against a Trojan team that has increased its scoring output every week. The Cherry-to-Coy connection remains lethal, and Center Grove has gradually improved its run game as the season has gone on. This is the Trojans’ first game against another Indiana team; we should have a better feel for where they stand relative to the rest of the state after tonight.

Mooresville (2-3) at Franklin (3-2)

Kickoff: 7 p.m.

Recent history: The Grizzly Cubs snapped a four-game series drought with last year’s 28-21 road win.

Sagarin ratings: Mooresville 71.61 (56th), Franklin 69.23 (65th)

Players to watch: Mooresville — QB Hogan Denny, RB/DB Landon Clements, WR Levi Dorn, DL Elijah Phillips, DB Kaden Bruhn; Franklin — QB Clay Pinnick, RB Alex Leugers, WR Quentin Richards, DL Blake Smythe, DB Jake Dinkens

What to look for: Both teams are coming off of disappointing losses, with the turnover-prone Grizzly Cubs falling at Martinsville and the Pioneers taking a 27-21 home loss to Decatur Central. A Franklin offense that started the season strong has had difficulty finishing drives in recent weeks; can it find more red-zone success against a Mooresville D that largely bottled up Greenwood but has struggled to find consistency itself? Both of these teams could use a momentum-shifting win heading into the stretch run — who’s going to seize it?

Perry Meridian (2-3) at Greenwood (3-2)

Kickoff: 7 p.m.

Recent history: The Woodmen had won three straight before the Falcons clapped back with a 31-21 home win last fall.

Sagarin ratings: Perry Meridian 75.80 (38th), Greenwood 61.64 (99th)

Players to watch: Perry Meridian — QB Allen Zupan, RB/LB Zachary Huckaby, WR Byron Hon, LB Andy Warren, LB Isaac Williams; Greenwood — QB Brock Riddle, RB Alan Burnett, WR/DB Tanner Crouch, WR Amare Middleton, LB Cole Basey

What to look for: The Falcons have been one of the season’s great surprises, playing Franklin and Plainfield close before a surprisingly comfy 28-13 victory over Whiteland last week. Can they keep the good times rolling against a Greenwood team that seems to have lost its early-season momentum? The Woodmen aerial attack was effectively grounded in last Friday’s loss at Plainfield; Riddle and friends will need to get their groove back in order to prevent a third straight defeat. Tonight begins a stretch of three home games in four weeks to end Greenwood’s regular season.

Martinsville (3-2) at Whiteland (2-3)

Kickoff: 7 p.m.

Recent history: The Warriors’ lone regular-season setback last year came at Martinsville, 35-21; the Artesians will be trying for a third consecutive series win.

Sagarin ratings: Martinsville 71.11 (59th), Whiteland 69.56 (62nd)

Players to watch: Martinsville — QB A.J. Reynolds, RB Brayden Shrake, WR Hunter Stroud, DB Ben Field; Whiteland — QB Ollie Taylor, RB Slate Valentine, WB Gunnar Hicks, LB Jordan Palmer, DB Andrian Kolleigbo

What to look for: The banged-up Warriors are coming off of back-to-back losses for just the second time in four years, and life won’t get any easier tonight against a Martinsville squad that seems to have found its footing in victories over Decatur Central and Franklin. Valentine has carried an incredibly heavy workload of late, with 59 carries over the last two games; that doesn’t feel sustainable. Whiteland will have to find a way to create a little more offensive balance and lessen the burden on its star back.

Edgewood (1-4) at Indian Creek (2-3)

Kickoff: 7 p.m.

Recent history: The Braves have won all seven meetings since joining the WIC in 2016, including a 48-20 road victory a year ago.

Sagarin ratings: Edgewood 14.39 (285th), Indian Creek 56.07 (127th)

Players to watch: Edgewood — QB Michael Law, RB Gabe Drew, DL Gunnar Perry, DL Terrance Moore; Indian Creek — QB Jalen Sauer, RB/DB Malachi Mink, WR Bobby Emberton, WR/DB Levi Pappas, LB Carson Volz

What to look for: It’s been a rough year for the Mustangs, who have lost their last four by a combined score of 187-21, and it doesn’t figure to get any easier tonight against the Braves, who have scored at least four touchdowns in every game. Sauer has settled nicely into the quarterback spot, and he’s got a strong crew of receivers at his disposal. After battling Class 2A power Triton Central deep into the fourth quarter last week, this should be a welcome break for Indian Creek. A running clock in the second half would not be a surprise.

Switzerland County (3-2) at Edinburgh (0-5)

Kickoff: 7 p.m.

Recent history: The Lancers’ 19-0 road win last season was its second victory in a row after four straight losses.

Sagarin ratings: Switzerland County 19.60 (268th), Edinburgh 0.81 (304th)

Players to watch: Switzerland County — QB Alex Bailey, WR/DB Matthew Young, OL/DL Hunter Smith, LB Kolvin Beck; Edinburgh — QB/DB Connor Ramey, WR/DB Jackson Hartwell, WR/DB Gabe Bennett

What to look for: The Pacers won three straight to open the season but have hit a wall the last two weeks, starting with a 50-7 loss at Milan. Edinburgh coach Tyler DeSpain is feeling bullish about his team’s chances to get into the win column, especially after a QB change seemed to revitalize the Lancers’ offense last week at North Daviess. Young accounts for more than half of Switzerland County’s offense, leading the team in rushing and receiving. Keep him contained, and Edinburgh might be able to finish one off.

Brebeuf Jesuit (2-2) at Roncalli (3-2)

Kickoff: 7 p.m.

Recent history: The Royals have taken two in a row, including a 31-14 victory on the road last fall.

Sagarin ratings: Brebeuf 73.13 (48th), Roncalli 85.36 (21st)

Players to watch: Brebeuf — QB Maverick Geske, RB C.J. Harris, WR Leroy Lewis IV, DL Charlie Kersey, DB Parker Maiers; Roncalli — QB Collin Ash, RB Henry Adams, RB/LB Ben Brandenburg, WR Christian Swiezy, LB J.J. Prendergast

What to look for: A Royals team that looked rudderless offensively in losses at Franklin Central and Bishop Chatard found its mojo the last two weeks, totaling 73 points in wins over Columbus North and Guerin Catholic. The Braves, who didn’t play last Friday, will be getting their first taste of Class 4A competition after playing 3A foes the first four weeks. Will the success that Geske (1,112 passing yards) and his offense enjoyed in those games translate against Roncalli?

North Central (Farmersburg) (1-4) vs. Greenwood Christian (2-3)

at Center Grove Middle School North

Kickoff: 7:30 p.m.

Recent history: This is the first-ever meeting between the two schools.

Sagarin ratings: North Central 15.68 (281st), GCA 17.78 (273rd)

Players to watch: GCA — QB/DB Trey Dobson, RB/DB Nathan Goins, RB/LB Evan McIntire

What to look for: Take away a 56-0 shellacking of Irvington Prep, the state’s lowest-ranked team in the Sagarin (and Edinburgh’s Week 7 opponent), and the Thunderbirds have been outscored by a 132-34 margin this season, with just six points in each of the last two games. The Cougars, who have already steeled themselves against three of the top 14 Sagarin teams in Class A, should have a much better chance of defeating an opponent of this caliber — one more in line with the Wes-Del and Edinburgh teams that GCA has beaten.