Editorial: Teams prepare for battle

Published 2:31 am Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2010

The opening round of the Michigan High School Athletic Association football playoffs begins around the state tonight.

For a trio of local teams, the road to Ford Field will start with the district semifinals.

Two of our teams have the good fortune to host the first round of the playoffs as both Buchanan in Division 5 and Edwardsburg in Division 4 will entertain Olivet and Otsego respectively.

Cassopolis will hit the road for the short ride over to Lawton for its contest.

We want to encourage all area football fans to get out to one of these games on Friday night. It costs just $5 to get in and all three teams are playing within easy driving distance of its fans.

The playoffs are a special time in high school sports and the football post season is no different. Teams, coaches and fans put their best foot forward and in an attempt to reach a goal that each and every team sets at the beginning of the season.

More than 600 football teams try to go undefeated, win conference or division championship and qualify for the playoffs in order to get a shot at winning a state championship.

After nine weeks of battling, only 256 teams earn the right to continue in Week 10.

Buchanan, Edwardsburg and Cassopolis are all from the Lakeland Conference, which doesn’t always get the respect it deserves as a football conference.

The Bucks, champions of the league, are in the playoffs for the fifth time in the last five years. The Rangers have reached the post season five consecutive times, while Edwardsburg returns to the playoffs for the first time since 2005.

Two other Lakeland Conference teams, Brandywine and Berrien Springs, just missed qualifying with records of 5-4.

Now is not the time to be timid. It’s win or go home from this point forward, so the Bucks, Rangers and Eddies better strap it up and get ready to do battle.

We want to wish all three teams the best of luck on Friday night and throughout their playoff run.