Just as the start of another season of football gives teams a blank slate, Year 2 of prognosticating by Blitz offers a chance for a fresh start.
Last year, Blitz was hired out of the Appalachians to be an expert on northeast Indiana football for this new website someone started.
Blitz has to be honest, he didn’t think it would last. But almost 12 months and over 810,000 website views later, your favorite furry cartoon animal is back for more predictions.
Everyone is undefeated right now. By late Friday night, half of the teams below will be winless on the season.
Football is cutthroat.
Last year’s record: 119-34
BISHOP DWENGER AT WAYNE. The Generals have had this one circled on the schedule since the 14-13 Dwenger win last year in sectionals. But while the Saints brought back a lot of their state title-winning talent, Wayne has a lot of new faces. Coach Derrick Moore’s team wants to make a statement. If that is made, Blitz will admit he was wrong. BLITZ PICKS BISHOP DWENGER BY 12.
BISHOP LUERS AT CARROLL. Was there any team more puzzling a year ago than Carroll? The Chargers soundly beat Snider in Week 2, but won just two more games the rest of the season. Bishop Luers is already dealing with the injury bug, something that the thin roster can ill afford. Carroll has something to prove here. Sophomore quarterback Jeff Becker may be the key for the Chargers. BLITZ PICKS CARROLL BY 3.
SNIDER AT NORTH SIDE. These two programs have been feuding off the field all summer over a few transfers, now they get to take all that built-up angst out onto Chambers Field. The Legends will no doubt be improved, but Snider will be too much here. Big night for Lenny Bennett. BLITZ PICKS SNIDER BY 21.
SOUTH SIDE AT CONCORDIA. An inexperienced offensive line, a new defensive scheme and a junior QB still finding his way has Blitz considering upset here. The Archers have some playmakers, but do they have the linemen? South puts up a fight, but the Cadets make the plays to win. BLITZ PICKS CONCORDIA BY 14.
HOMESTEAD AT NORTHROP. The beauty of the new turf at Spuller Stadium is great, with the 50-yard line logo capturing Blitz’s heart. There, a massive bear for the Bruins adorns the new green surface. There will be plenty of hype out of Northrop for this game, and Homestead looks on paper the part of an SAC title contender. Hey, it is Week 1, crazy things can happen. BLITZ PICKS NORTHROP BY 2.
ADAMS CENTRAL AT BELLMONT. The Braves got abused by AC in Week 1 last year, losing 42-14. The Flying Jets are in reload mode but will likely need until midseason to truly start settling in with so much inexperience. Senior Johnathan Wilder could be in for a big night with his arm and with his legs. BLITZ PICKS BELLMONT BY 3.
ANGOLA AT DEKALB. Does Blitz go with the recent dominance of Angola or buy into the hype of the Barons? Look, this bear loves his fans up in and near Waterloo, but he needs to see some proof before he is going to up and pick a team that hasn’t lost a regular-season game since 2016 to fall in Week 1. Challenge presented Barons. Do you accept? BLITZ PICKS ANGOLA BY 8.
COLUMBIA CITY AT HAMMOND GAVIT. Gavit was gutted by graduation at the skill spots, with its QB and top two running backs gone. Meanwhile, Columbia City wants to show that DeKalb isn’t the only program ready to make a jump in the NE8. BLITZ PICKS COLUMBIA CITY BY 14.
EAST NOBLE AT PLYMOUTH. These two teams have played four times in the last three years, including a 16-6 Knights win in Week 1 last season. Near mirror images of each other in terms of program stability and community support, this is always a fun matchup. Bailey Parker makes some plays in the second half and East Noble pulls away. BLITZ PICKS EAST NOBLE BY 11.
HUNTINGTON NORTH AT WARSAW. Warsaw under Coach Bart Curtis is where Huntington North wants to be under Coach Bob Prescott. The Tigers were spinning their wheels as a program when Curtis took over last year and won seven games, the most since 2013. Prescott may need a bit longer to get the Vikings going, but the future is bright. Not yet, however. BLITZ PICKS WARSAW BY 21.
LEO AT WOODLAN. An old ACAC showdown to begin the season in a game that has become one of the most intriguing Week 1 matchups in the last few years. Both teams have something to prove, with both getting overlooked when talking about conference chances. Woodlan’s QB situation with Ben Reidy is a bit more settled, but Leo gets a few big plays from its defense late. BLITZ PICKS LEO BY 5.
NORWELL AT JAY COUNTY. Another NE8 v. ACAC matchup. Junior Eli Riley feels like a kid who could burst onto the scene in the league this year as a standout at Norwell. The Knights haven’t started 1-0 since 2014. BLITZ PICKS NORWELL BY 4.
SOUTH BEND RILEY AT NEW HAVEN. The Bulldogs must replace close to 3,000 yards of total offense from a team that went 5-6 last season, troublesome when you’re facing a squad that can score points. Quarterback Senator Brown and running back Jalen Cummings will put up enough offense for Riley. BLITZ PICKS RILEY BY 6.
BLUFFTON AT NORTHFIELD. The Tigers dropped a 40 spot on Northfield in Week 1 last season, with Everett Johnson turning some heads with 172 yards rushing and three TDs. Johnson is gone, but there is enough at Bluffton to win another one over the Norse going away. BLITZ SAYS BLUFFTON BY 18.
EASTSIDE AT HERITAGE. Todd Mason’s Blazers need this win with Adams Central, West Noble and Churubusco looming the next three weeks. Caleb Vanover rushes for over 200 yards in a winning effort here. BLITZ SAYS EASTSIDE BY 21.
SOUTH ADAMS AT WINCHESTER. Sophomore Aidan Wanner will start at QB for the Starfires in this one as James Arnold gets an extra week to settle in after coming back from an ACL. Wanner got plenty of reps with the 1s in the summer and will do enough to help South Adams to a road W. BLITZ SAYS SOUTH ADAMS BY 20.
SOUTHERN WELLS AT FREMONT. Two teams that are battling numbers issues in terms of players in uniform. Mike Roeder has over 110 wins in 22 years as a high school coach and will return the Raiders to ACAC relevancy given time. For now, Fremont has the edge. BLITZ SAYS FREMONT BY 8.
GARRETT AT PRAIRIE HEIGHTS. Last year’s two-win effort is going to be put in the rearview completely following Friday’s rout by the Railroaders on the road. BLITZ SAYS GARRETT BY 27.
GOSHEN AT FAIRFIELD. The Redhawks shut out Fairfield 49-0 to begin last season, then didn’t win another game. Who knows about the rest of the year, but Goshen gets another W over the Falcons. BLITZ SAYS GOSHEN BY 48.
LAKELAND AT WAWASEE. The Lakers have to replace the majority of their offensive production from a year ago. Wawasee has a new coach in Joe Reutebuch, who will open up his career with a home win. BLITZ SAYS WAWASEE BY 7.
WEST NOBLE AT CENTRAL NOBLE. Can either of these teams wrestle away a division in the NECC from the likes of Angola and Churubusco? Both teams have talent, but only one team has Brandon Pruitt. BLITZ SAYS WEST NOBLE BY 8.
WHITKO AT CHURUBUSCO. Pork burgers will be consumed by the hundreds, and Turtletown shall rejoice at the return of football. BLITZ SAYS CHURUBUSCO BY 41.