Believe what you have heard … the hype is real.
Friday night holds a buffet of delicious district delicacies, as four district championship match-ups will be held in the area.
Pine Forest (6-2, 2-0) heads into Tate (7-1, 1-0) for the District 1-6A title.
In 1-1A, the winner of Northview and Baker will be crowned district kings.
In 1-5A, West Florida will host Pensacola High in a district with a handful of possible outcomes.
And in District 2-6A, the unbeaten Navarre Raiders will try to hang on to first place when they travel to take on the Gulf Breeze Dolphins.
Don’t forget about the classic rivalry in the battle for the bronze helmet as Pace hosts Milton in a 2-6A clash.
With a Pace win, the Patriots would grab a playoff berth. If the Panthers are victorious, they will keep their playoff hopes alive depending the outcome of Gulf Breeze and Navarre.
Now, let’s get down to picking:
Pine Forest at Tate: Here it is, the district title between two of the PNJ’s top power poll teams. Both teams possess sensational dual-threat quarterbacks, offensive playmakers and cohesive defenses. I’ll give Tate an edge in consistency, special teams and home-field advantage.
Tate over Pine Forest
PHS at West Florida: This was likely the toughest pick. Both teams are hot right now and have something to play for. Once again, tough to find an edge.
West Florida over PHS
Milton at Pace: Fans, be ready for some run-heavy, physical football. Both teams are alive in the playoff chase and will meet in one of the area’s oldest rivalries. Whoever can win the battle at the line of scrimmage can win this game.
Milton over Pace
Gulf Breeze at Navarre: The Raiders have conducted a spectacular unbeaten season this point, and I don’t see it stopping here. Another spicy rivalry, both teams should have no problem getting hyped up for this game.
Navarre over Gulf Breeze
Baker at Northview: This one is for the District 1-1A title, loser gets runner up. I think Baker’s offense will be far too much for the Chiefs to contain.
Baker over Northview
Washington at Escambia: Washington comes in off a win and Escambia enters off a bye. Though both teams are eliminated from the postseason, this will be a pride battle for third place in 1-6A.
Escambia over Washington