The Bureau Valley Storm will play football in Week 1.
Bureau Valley athletic director Brad Bickett said the Storm will travel to Villa Grove on Aug. 26 for a 7 p.m. kickoff. The Storm were to play Riverdale, but the Rams dropped their varsity schedule this season because of a lack of players.
Villa Grove was to play Fisher and already had officials lined up that night, Bickett said. Fisher also was unable to field a varsity team this fall.
“With the officials shortages and some other dynamics, Saturday just wasn’t a real good fit. So, we’re going to make it happen Friday night,” Bickett said. “They had officials hired, so it just made sense to have us travel and play Friday evening down there at Villa Grove.
“We just saw it being a good fit. Kids get to play. Coaches get to coach. And that was important to both schools. We’re glad we could make it work.”
BV coach Mat Pistole said the Storm are excited to experience a new adventure like this.
“Our kids haven’t had the playoff experience of playing someone new, that you know nothing about and travel to a field we have never been to. It will be a great experience for all,” he said.
Villa Grove, which is located south of Champaign, is a Class 1A school with 191 students and is a member of the Lincoln Prairie Conference. The Blue Devils went 5-5 last year, losing in the first round of the playoffs.
The trip will be about 2 hours, 45 minutes for the Storm.
Bickett said the schools already have exchanged game film.