In golf tournaments, the third round is often referred to as moving day, the last real opportunity for a player to make a run at the top of the leaderboard.
There’s no real equivalent in football, but if one were to look at the statewide schedule, the Week 6 slate is about as close as you might get to one.
After the conclusion of this weekend’s games, the regular season will officially be two-thirds over (that sure went quick didn’t it?) and the opportunities to get signature wins, make a statement or right an early season wrong are quickly disappearing.
But Week 6 has a little bit for everyone. There’s six games statewide that feature 5-0 teams squaring off, and another 10 games where the class of undefeated teams face an opponent that currently stands at 4-1. And there’s an absolute laundry list of games where 4-1 teams are facing either another 4-1 squad or a very good 3-2 team.
Based on all that, there’s a very real possibility that the list of undefeated teams could dip below 50 simply due to the number of high quality opponents most of them are facing this week.
The phrase “when the dust clears” gets used a lot in sports, but with this schedule the proverbial dust might take a little bit longer to clear.
Here’s a look at some of the top games in Week 6:
Batavia (4-1) at Geneva (5-0), 7 p.m. Friday: It’s the 105th meeting between the two schools in a rivalry that began in 1913. The stakes are high and while Batavia has dominated the rivalry recently, they haven’t lost the game since 2010, this might be one of the best teams Geneva has sent into this contest in quite some time.
Loyola (5-0) at St. Rita (4-1), 7:30 p.m. Friday: If it feels like both of these teams are running a gauntlet, its because they have. But as always those CCL/ESCC Blue Division games seem to cut a little bit deeper on both sidelines.
Richmond-Burton (5-0) at Morris (5-0), 7 p.m. Friday: Both of these programs have been sign posts for regular season dominance over the past few seasons. However, the meetings between the two have been controlled by Richmond-Burton, who have lost a grand total of one regular season game since head coach Mike Noll took over the program in 2018.
York (5-0) at Downers Grove North (5-0), 7:30 p.m. Friday: York is trying to pull of something one wouldn’t have thought possible for the Dukes as recently as few years ago, back-to-back undefeated seasons in the West Suburban Silver Conference. A resurgent Downers Grove North team stands directly in that path.
IC Catholic (5-0) at Wheaton St. Francis (3-2), 7:30 p.m. Friday: The two “newbies” in the CCL/ESCC seem to be fitting in just fine in the powerhouse league, particularly IC Catholic. But St. Francis is also in a good place after rallying to knock of one of the league’s inner circle teams, Joliet Catholic in Week 5.
Other games of note: Mt. Carmel at Brother Rice; Montini at Providence, Mount Zion at Mahomet-Seymour; Hope Academy at Marian Central Catholic; Bloomington Central Catholic at St. Joseph Ogden; Prospect at Hersey; Naperville North at Naperville Central; Hononegah at Boylan; Antioch at Wauconda; Lena-Winslow at Durand-Pecatonica; Lincoln-Way Central at Bolingbrook; Kewanee at Princeton; Salt Fork at Momence.