It’s the final preseason tests tonight for the Logan Wildcats, the Man Hillbillies and the Chapmanville Tigers.
All three county high school football teams are slated to scrimmage ahead of next week’s regular season openers.
Class AAA Logan is set to travel to Falling Rock to take on Herbert Hoover and Warren Local (Ohio) in a preseason scrimmage at Herbert Hoover High School beginning at 6 p.m.
Class AA Chapmanville Regional host 3A Lincoln County tonight at 7 p.m. at Chapmanville Tiger Stadium.
Class A Man heads to Midland Trail tonight for its final scrimmage.
Man opens up the 2012 regular season next Friday night, Aug. 24 at Logan in a 7:30 p.m. kickoff at Logan Stadium. Chapmanville opens next Friday night at Sissonville in a Cardinal Conference clash which also has a 7:30 p.m. kickoff.
Logan is coming off last year’s 8-3 season in which the Wildcats hosted a first-round Class AAA playoff game for the first time since 1990.
Wildcats’ ninth-year head coach Gary Mullins said last year’s success went a long way in restoring confidence and swagger to the Logan football program. Logan is the defending county champions after the Cats knocked off the Tigers and the Billies last season.
“Our guys believe that they are going to win now,” Mullins said. “But, as we talked in the preseason, when you are trying to obtain a 5-5 or 6-4 record and get into the playoffs that’s not that hard to do. Last year’s team set the bar high with an 8-2 record. We didn’t win that playoff game. We so badly wanted to win. But you have to work really hard to be at that level. to be an 8-2 football team with our schedule you have to be really good every day at practice and work really hard. They have up until this point. But they understand that it’s not going to come easy and they understand that a lot of those games last year could have gone either way. I think that experience, though, will help us when they get into those types of close football games.”
Mullins lists his skilled positions as his team’s strengths.
“This is the most skilleds that we’ve ever had since I’ve been coaching here,” he said. “We may have had individual players who may have been better than some of the players that we have now but we have so much depth with our skilled players on offense and defense. We can run 10, 12 or even 15 guys in. We have two freshmen who are tremendous that in normal years would start for us. We’re really deep.”
Chapmanville made its deepest run ever in the Class AA playoffs last season, finishing 9-4 and falling at Point Pleasant in the state semifinals. The Tigers beat Lincoln and Braxton County in the post-season.
Chapmanville is looking for its seventh straight winning season this fall and its sixth playoff appearance in a row.
“The kids see it in a situation to where they know that they can win,” Tigers’ coach George Barker said. “A lot of times we had gone into games guessing but you’ve got to have that good, positive attitude before you go into any contest. I think all of this has changed our mindset. They expect to win.”
Man hopes to bounce back from back-to-back losing seasons after reaching the Wheeling Super Six in 2009 when Man was 12-2.
“Were trying to get everyone in the right positions on the field and we’re trying to build some depth,” Man coach Harvey Arms said.