I have my white Vans all cleaned up for my “Damn, Daniel” Halloween costume. But first, it’s my favorite week of the prep football season.
The Class 3A Southern Region playoffs begin, the Southeast League title is on the line, and all the games are Thursday for Nevada Day.
Since the season is wrapping up, let’s look back at what has happened, by the numbers:
890 — Rushing yards in the past three games by Legacy’s Samuel Turner, a total that would rank No. 10 in Southern Nevada.
0 — Interceptions thrown by Arbor View’s Hayden Bollinger and Bishop Gorman’s Tate Martell, the only two local QBs without a pick this season.
218 — Carries by Virgin Valley running back Jayden Perkins, 50 more than any other player in Class 3A.
60 — Receptions by Chaparral wide receiver Kentrell Petite, which is tops in the area, regardless of classification.
29 — Receptions by Petite last season.
87 — Total rushing yards allowed by Sierra Vista in victories over Durango and Desert Oasis the past two weeks.
2004 — The last year Eldorado made the playoffs before this season.
Let’s see if I can continue my hot streak with a few close matchups on this week’s schedule.
■ Liberty at Basic — They’ve been playing football at Basic for, like, 70 years, and I’m guessing this is the first time a nationally ranked team has visited Don Taylor Stadium. And since the Southeast League title is on the line, too, this has to be the biggest game in school history for the Wolves.
Patriots quarterback Kenyon Oblad and Basic counterpart Aaron McAllister have combined for 4,947 yards and 56 touchdowns passing this season. But if I were Liberty’s offensive coordinator, I’d pound it on the ground with Bryson Delacruz. Zig instead of zag, you feel me? … Liberty by 23.
■ Durango at Bishop Gorman — The Trailblazers’ magical 6-0 start concluded last week with a close loss to Sierra Vista, and now they’re staring at a second consecutive defeat. Is this the start of the Durango Drop?
This is a classic look-ahead spot for Gorman, which faces undefeated Sierra Vista next week for the Southwest League title. Bwahahaha! I can’t even write that and keep a straight face. … Gorman by 49½.
■ Chaparral at Cheyenne — I asked the Stats and Info Dept. to come up with some useful nuggets for this Class 3A playoff game, and they came back with jack-squat. I was going to punt them to the curb like Angelina did to Brad, but it turns out these teams haven’t played recently, and their records went back to 2004. Go figure.
Cheyenne has won five of its past six games, and the Cowboys enter on a two-game losing skid. Give me the team on a hot streak, please. … Cheyenne by 6.
■ Foothill at Green Valley — This is like the epic loser-leaves-town match between Shawn Michaels and The Undertaker at Wrestlemania XXVI. Not really, but the loser does have to sit out the playoffs.
There are all kinds of crazy postseason scenarios in the Southeast League, and the Falcons still could finish as high as the No. 2 seed depending on what happens in the other games. I didn’t see that a few weeks ago. … Foothill by 4.
■ Sunrise Mountain at Virgin Valley — This Class 3A first-round game is a rematch from Week 2 when the Bulldogs held Sunrise Mountain to a season-low 239 yards of total offense and snagged a 21-14 victory. That was one of the Miners’ five losses by seven points or fewer.
Sunrise Mountain feels like a dangerous No. 4 seed, even though it can’t stop the run. Let’s see if my upset special comes in. … Sunrise Mountain by 2.
■ Del Sol at Desert Pines — The Dragons are back in the playoffs for the first time since 2010. And with running back Taariq Flowers (1,275 yards, 10 TDs) they are able to chew up the clock and keep Desert Pines’ offense off the field.
OK, I’m just being optimistic. … Desert Pines by 14½.
■ Palo Verde at Shadow Ridge — A week ago, it appeared the Panthers would miss the postseason for the first time since the Bill Clinton administration and Shadow Ridge was a shoo-in to make it. Now? There’s actually a scenario that could see the Mustangs miss out.
I was going to make this my upset special, but the Mustangs have been tough at home and should lock up their playoff spot. … Shadow Ridge by 4.
■ Faith Lutheran at Centennial — The Crusaders clinched the No. 2 seed from the Northwest League with their win over Shadow Ridge last week. That game reminded me of the No. 1 rule of being a Fielder: Never pick against a Vernon Fox-coached team in October or November. … Faith Lutheran by 3.
Last week: 6-2, 5-3 (with points)
Season: 57-18, 49-26 (with points)
Contact Fielder at Fielder@nevadapreps.com. Follow @FielderNVP on Twitter.