CHAPMANVILLE — It’s the Chapmanville Tigers and the Wayne Pioneers at this year’s Cardinal Conference Gridorama.
The two teams are set to play in one of the four preseason games on Saturday, Aug. 16 at Scott High School.
This is the second year the Cardinal Conference Gridorama will be held. Last year, all eight league teams took part in the inaugural gridorama, which was held at Mingo Central High School’s Buck Harless Stadium.
This year’s grid is scheduled to be held on Scott’s Field Turf in Madison.
Chapmanville went 5-5 last year and missed the Class AA playoffs.
Wayne, which beat the Tigers 64-36 last season, went on to play in the Super Six at a snowy Wheeling Island Stadium on Dec. 6 but lost 14-13 to Bridgeport in the Class AA state championship game. The Pioneers closed out 13-1.
After defeating Chapmanville last season, Wayne downed Bluefield 29-27 in the regular season finale at Bluefield’s Mitchell Stadium.
The Pioneers then won over Phillip Barbour (52-25), Cardinal Conference foe Sissonville (48-7) and Robert C. Byrd (44-20) in the playoffs en route to the Super Six.
Wayne is a perennial state powerhouse in football and was going for a third straight state title last year after taking crowns in 2011 and 2012.
Other than the Chapmanville-Wayne scrimmage, other Cardinal Conference teams Mingo Central, Scott, Sissonville, Poca, Tolsia and Herbert Hoover will then play each other.
Last year, Chapmanville scrimmaged the Poca Dots.
This year, it’s Wayne.
“We’re going to scrimmage Wayne,” Tigers’ coach Georg Barker said. “We get to have eyes on all seven opponents in one evening, so it makes scouting easier. We have a conference agreement to trade films but you also need to get your eyes on a team in live action, too. It makes it a little bit better. It gets everything off to a good start. I like having it the first scrimmage. We can control it and you know that the competition is going to be good. We just put everyone’s name in a hat and pull it out. Wayne’s been so good that nobody wanted to play them. Maybe that will be good for our kids to start off that way. We always end it with them, so this year we are going to start it with them.”
Some critics of the conference gridorama format don’t like that you have to scrimmage a team that you will play during the regular season as all eight league squads are required to play the seven conference foes.
Barker said, however, that he hasn’t heard any complaints about that.
“We did it last year and nobody really had anything negative to say about that issue in the meetings. I think everyone liked what we are doing,” Barker said. “I think that it’s a good thing.”
Barker said each of the four gridorama scrimmages will be given an allotted amount of time. It will be controlled scrimmages with each offense getting to run a series of 10-play drives. There will also be a 10-play series for the JV teams.
“We will run a series of 10-play drives and then 10 plays with the JV. Then we will have some controlled down and distance,” Barker said. “There will be an allotted time for each scrimmage and when that time is up you are done.”
After taking on Wayne, Chapmanville is scheduled to have a second preseason game on Aug. 22 at home against Class AAA Lincoln County.
The regular season opener is Aug. 29 at Sissonville.
The Tigers are set to take to the field for the first time on June 16 with the start of the three-week summer practice period.
Barker said Chapmanville will take part in three 7-on-7 events in June.
The first day of regular practices are set for Aug. 4.