Week 4 Football Primer: Rebels travel to Spain Park

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Here’s a quick look at local high school football games this week, as covered by Starnes Media’s Under the Lights team.


The Under the Lights podcast is back with a new episode! Watch and listen to this week’s episode, as sportswriter Kyle Parmley and Gary Lloyd break down all things high school football.


Mountain Brook (4-0) at Jackson-Olin (2-2)

  • Date: Thursday 15 Sept.
  • Time: 7 p.m.
  • Location: PD Jackson-Olin High School

Last week: Mountain Brook passed Woodlawn 56-6; Jackson-Olin lost to Minor 30-0.

What to watch: Mountain Brook looked like one of the best teams in class 6A in the first weeks of the season, pushing the teams into submission with a murderous running attack and an effective passing attack, to accompany a still stingy defense . The Spartans will play another Thursday night game this week against a Jackson-Olin team that has had its ups and downs this fall.

Last meeting: Mountain Brook defeated Jackson-Olin 45-14 on Nov. 12, 2021, in the second round of the Class 6A playoffs. It was the first meeting between the two schools.


Chelsea (1-3) v Thompson (2-2)

  • Date: Friday, Sept. 16
  • Time: 7 p.m.
  • Location: Chelsea High School

Last week: Chelsea won 21-14 against Oak Mountain; Thompson pulled away from Spain Park to win 35-14.

What to watch: Chelsea are quick to bask in the glow of their first win of the season last week, as the Hornets host three-time defending state champion Thompson. If there’s any positive news for the Hornets, it’s that Vestavia and Spain Park have each given Thompson first-half games over the past two weeks. If Chelsea can start strong, that could potentially make things interesting.

Last meeting: Thompson edged Chelsea 56-21 on October 29, 2015. Thompson leads the series 11-3.


Hoover (3-1) at Hewitt-Trussville (3-1)

  • Date: Friday, Sept. 16
  • Time: 7 p.m.
  • Location: Hewitt Trussville Stadium

Last week: Hoover rallied ahead of Vestavia Hills 20-14; Hewitt-Trussville ran out Tuscaloosa County 35-14.

What to watch: Hoover had a very encouraging fourth quarter last Thursday, putting together two impressive drives to eliminate rival Vestavia Hills. The Bucs are going to need all four of them this week to steal a road win over Hewitt-Trussville, which is showing signs of fitness with a young offense. The Huskies rebounded from an early season loss at Central-Phenix City and are averaging 49 points per game over their last three games, all wins.

Last meeting: Hoover survived to beat Hewitt-Trussville 24-23 on Nov. 12, 2021, in the second round of the Class 7A playoffs. Hoover has won the last four meetings and holds a 20-4 series lead.


Homewood (3-1) vs Benjamin Russell (3-0)

  • Date: Friday, Sept. 16
  • Time: 7 p.m.
  • Location: Waldrop Stadium

Last week: Homewood outlasted Calera 48-38; Benjamin Russell had an open date.

What to watch: Homewood has won games in different ways this season. The Patriots won a high-scoring affair last week against Calera, but won a defensive slugfest against Helena the week before. It’s hard to say how this game will play out, but the signs point more towards the defensive end of the spectrum. Ben Russell is giving up 9 ppg in the first three games under new coach Smitty Grider.

Last meeting: Benjamin Russell knocked out Homewood 28-7 on Nov. 1, 2013. Homewood holds a 6-4 series advantage. Four of the matchups were in the state playoffs, including the 2000 and 2001 state championship games.


John Carroll (1-3) at Carver-Birmingham (2-2)

  • Date: Friday, Sept. 16
  • Time: 7 p.m.
  • Location: Carver High School

Last week: John Carroll fell to Hayden 33-19 on the homecoming; Carver dropped a heartbreaker to Wenonah, 35-34.

What to watch: This is a game John Carroll must win if he has any playoff aspirations. Carver is off to an 0-2 start in regional play and the Cavs appear to be the favorites for this one. Last week’s game against Hayden was much closer than the scoreline shows, and if a few plays had gone differently, the game could have tipped in favor of John Carroll.

Last meeting: John Carroll defeated Carver 14-6 on September 3, 2021. John Carroll holds a slim 4-3 series advantage.


Oak Mountain (2-2) at Tuscaloosa County (3-1)

  • Date: Friday, Sept. 16
  • Time: 7 p.m.
  • Location: Tuscaloosa County High School

Last week: Oak Mountain suffered a 21-14 loss to Chelsea; Tuscaloosa County was soundly beaten by Hewitt-Trussville 35-7.

What to watch: Both teams are looking to pick themselves up from the mat after heavy defeats last week. Oak Mountain had a rocky start to regional play, struggling to get the attacking side of the ball forward. The Eagles kept Chelsea off the scoreboard in the second half last week, so maybe they can use that as momentum moving forward. Tuscaloosa County has been a slight surprise so far, looking good and starting 3-0.

Last meeting: Oak Mountain edged Tuscaloosa County 47-3 on Oct. 8, 2021. Oak Mountain has won six of eight meetings between the schools.


Vestavia Hills (1-3) at Spain Park (1-3)

  • Date: Friday, Sept. 16
  • Time: 7 p.m.
  • Location: Jaguar Stadium

Last week: Vestavia Hills suffered a 20-14 loss at Hoover; Spain Park fell to Thompson 35-14.

What to watch: As Vestavia Hills head coach Robert Evans said after last week’s loss, this game against Spain Park is crucial for both teams in terms of finding a playoff spot. The loser will definitely be “on the outside looking in” after this game. Both teams have had positive signs recently, with the Rebels controlling Hoover for three quarters and Spain Park suspended with Thompson for a half last week, but neither has been able to put it all together consistently so far. .

Last meeting: Vestavia Hills overtook Spain Park 37-6 on October 15, 2021. Vestavia won the last four in the series, the previous three in a splash.


Clay-Chalkville (4-0) vs. Center Point (4-0)

  • Date: Friday, Sept. 16
  • Time: 7 p.m.
  • Location: Cougar Stadium

Last week: Clay-Chalkville survived a Pinson Valley test, 14-12; Center Point edged Pell City 56-10.

What to watch: Clay-Chalkville met its first blow last Friday at rival Pinson Valley, as the Indians took the lead. But the Cougars will now face the undefeated Eagles, a team that got off to a good start but took a big step up in its class this week.

Last meeting: Clay-Chalkville shut out Center Point 45-0 on Sept. 22, 2017. Clay holds a 6-2 series lead.


Pinson Valley (1-2) at Oxford (3-1)

  • Date: Friday, Sept. 16
  • Time: 7 p.m.
  • Location: Lamar Field – Oxford High School

Last week: Pinson Valley suffered a narrow 14-12 loss to Clay-Chalkville; Oxford edged out Huffman 47-8.

What to watch: Pinson Valley nearly upset Clay-Chalkville last week but must now bounce back and continue to play in the region at Oxford, a team that is steadily improving under second-year coach Sam Adams.

Last meeting: Pinson Valley beat Oxford 20-0 on November 12, 2021, in the second round of Class 6A playoffs.

Some information is provided courtesy of AHSFHS.org.

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