Columbia at Middleton
Columbias 43-33 loss to Middleton in the final regular-season game of 2011 was the difference between the Wildcats finishing third in the 4A SIC and second. Middleton went on to win its state quarterfinal at Lakeland, while Columbia lost 53-14 at Hillcrest. Although it is the league opener for both teams, this game will likely have playoff implications.
Mountain Home at Emmett
New-look Emmett started the season strong with a 25-22 victory over 3A power Weiser, while Mountain Home is reeling after its 10th consecutive loss. Emmett was creative in its win, scoring twice on halfback passes. Mountain Home gave up 330 passing yards to quarterback Zach Thibault and Jeromes no-huddle spread offense in last weeks 40-6 loss.
Nampa at Kuna
This 4A SIC opener will give fans a hint of what is to come for these programs. Both feature new coaches and revamped offenses and defenses. Kuna dropped its opener at Minico 47-27, but scored more points than it did in all but one game in 2011. Defense should be strong for Nampa, which hired former Meridian defensive coordinator Jon Choate.
Ontario, Ore., at Fruitland
Senior QB Joe Martarano couldnt be contained last week in 3A Fruitlands 30-15 win over 4A Middleton, accounting for 102 of his teams 255 rushing yards and two touchdowns. The Boise State football recruit will lead the Grizzlies against Ontario, Ore., which is playing its first game of 2012.
Nampa Christian at Homedale
Homedale suffered a heart-breaking overtime loss to 4A Caldwell last week, and now the 3A program sets its sights on 2A Nampa Christian, a 34-8 winner over Glenns Ferry. Nampa Christian will be looking for revenge after getting hammered 48-3 last year at Homedale.
Parma at Vale, Ore.
This is the season opener for Vale, Ore., but the second game of the season for Parma, which lost 15-7 last week to Marsing. These two teams have not played in recent years, but Vale did play one Idaho school last season, falling 56-0 against Homedale, which also plays in the 3A SRV with Parma.
Weiser at Baker City, Ore.
The most recent series between these schools started in 2005, and the advantage has changed hands on multiple occasions. Weiser currently owns a 4-3 edge over Baker City after its 35-0 win last season.
Cole Valley at Glenns Ferry
Cole Valley Christian hopes to emulate the success of 2A WIC foe Nampa Christian, which opened its season last week with a win over Glenns Ferry. The Chargers went 4-4 last season and narrowly missed out on a postseason berth. With 15 two-way lettermen back, this could be a breakout year for a Cole Valley program that reinstated its varsity team in 2010.
McCall-Donnelly at Asotin, Wash.
McCall-Donnelly responded to the 2A WIC preseason coaches poll in which it was picked to finish last by earning a 26-22 season-opening win over Orofino last week. The Vandals could build on that success against Asotin, Wash., which has yet to play a game this season and went 4-5 in 2011.
Notus at Wilder
This has been a conference rivalry in past seasons, but will not count toward league play in 2012 because Wilder dropped down to 1A Division II. Notus won last years game 36-22 and is coming off a win last week over Horseshoe Bend.
Greenleaf at Tri-Valley
Greenleaf matched its win total from 2011 with a victory over Council last week and now travels to Cambridge to face the Titans, who are playing their first game under new head coach Ed Schumacher.
Idaho City at Challis
Idaho City got thumped 56-6 by 1A Division II defending state champion Lighthouse Christian in its opener, and it doesnt get any easier this week. Challis scored a confidence-boosting overtime victory against Mackay last week led by senior quarterback Craig Olsons three touchdowns.
Dietrich at Rimrock
The preseason favorite to win the 1A Division I regular-season title, Rimrock was upset 24-12 in its opener against nonconference foe Garden Valley. The Raiders hope to get back on track against Dietrich, which rolled Shoshone 56-6 last week and is ranked third in the Idaho media poll in 1A Division II.
Horseshoe Bend at Garden Valley
Garden Valley is riding high after a victory over Rimrock, while Horseshoe Bend is coming off a 32-8 loss to Notus. Although these teams both play 1A Division II football, this game will not count toward the league standings. That game is Oct. 26 at Horseshoe Bend.
Troy at Council
Council welcomes a Troy team that won its opener 38-12 over Kendrick and is ranked No. 4 in the Idaho media poll in 1A Division I. The Lumberjacks a 1A Division II program are looking for their first victory after an 18-12 loss at Greenleaf to start the season.
Prairie at Salmon River
Salmon River struggled last week against Kamiah, which played 11-man football at the 2A level last season but dropped down to 1A Division I eight-man this year. The playing field should level this week against 1A Division I Prairie. It will be the first game of the season for the Pirates.