Co-Host of WWL's "SportsTalk with Bobby Hebert & Deke Bellavia," Weekdays 4-8PM
Deke's prep preview - Week 1
by Deke Bellavia,posted Sep 6 2013 1:04PM
The first week of the 2013 prep football season is here. The long summer workout sessions, the seven on seven competitions and all of those weights that were lifted will now be tested. This season we down here in Louisiana embark on a new format as all the teams that face each other in the regular season may not see each other in the post season.
Yes, for the first time ever, there will be a split after the regular season among member schools in the LHSAA. So let's enjoy the regular season with some nice match-ups in week one of the season.
Holy Cross @ Covington – Coach Barry Wilson’s Tigers have rebounded in a very big way. Just a few seasons ago the Tigers were battling to make the playoffs. Now Coach Wilson has his Tigers ranked #9 in Class 5A.
Holy Cross has a big season in 2012 advancing all the way to the 4A semifinals before losing to eventual state champion Karr. The Covington Lions have a new familiar name on the sidelines this season. Legendary Coach Jack Salter will see his grandson coach the Lions this season.
Gregory Salter takes over as head coach of the Lions as he opens the season with a huge test against a very good Holy Cross Team. Salter will have the luxury of playing his first game at home at the historic Cow Palace.
Hahnville @ Salmen: The Tigers are taking on one of the best teams in the state in the #3 ranked Class 4A Salmen Spartans. Led by RB Chris Thomas, the Spartans will be in the hunt for the 4A title this season.
Thomas has been a great player for the Spartans since his freshman season. But the talented RB is coming off foot surgery and he did not partake in spring drills. He has rushed for 3,081 yards combined the last two seasons, and is one of the nation’s top RB recruits this season as well.
Coach Lou Valdin is once again at the helm leading the Hahnville Tigers. The Tigers look to be a solid team this season with hopes of contending for the District 7-5A title in 2013. A win over Salmen would be a great start for Hahnville. The Tigers have a tough non district slate that also features defending 5A champion Rummel and Landry/Walker in week three of the season.
Parkview Baptist vs Catholic High, BR – This is a huge battle in the Capitol City. Coach Kenny Gulliot and his Eagles of Parkview are as solid of a program in the state as you can find.
The Eagles dominated Class 3A last season en-route to the 3A title with a blowout win over Notre Dame in last year’s state finals. Parkview figures to be a power in Class 3A this season along with John Curtis and Evangel. Parkview has won four state titles since 2001.
The Catholic High School Bears once again figure to be one the best teams from the Baton Rouge Area. Coach Dale Weiner has two of his best players back this season in QB Nick Croomes and RB Derrius Guice.
Expect both of these teams to do well this season. Parkview enters the season as the #3 ranked team in 3A while the Catholic Bears are at #5 in Class 5A.
Edna Karr @ St. Paul's – As far as week one high profile games are concerned, it doesn’t get much better than this. The defending Class 4A state champion Karr Cougars battle 5A power St. Paul’s.
Karr has at least a dozen Division I-A Prospects this season including the dazzling Devante “Speedy” Noil. Noil has become one of the country’s most sought after players as his playmaking skills are second to none.
St. Paul’s has been the most dominant program on the Northshore under Coach Ken Sears the last decade.
Although Karr is a 4A Team, the Wove know if they can beat the Cougars they can beat anyone in the state!
Evangel @ Riverside – A battle of powers in smaller classification football takes place in Reserve as the Rebels host the Evangel Eagles. Evangel is in Class 3A this season while many, including myself think that the Rebels will challenge for the state title in the select division playoffs. Riverside opens the season ranked #5 in Class 2A while Evangel is at #2 in Class 3A.