After a two-year run in the eastern part of the state, the Emerald City Kickoff
Classic returns to Western Washington and will make be played in the
newly-renovated Husky Stadium, the first high school games to be held in the
The ECKC features three state champions from a year ago,
Skyline, who won the WIAA 4A state title, Bellevue, who won the WIAA 3A state
championship and Lynden, winners of the WIAA 2A state crown. It also
features Idaho's 5A runner-up Coeur d'Alene.
The final game, between Bellevue and Skyline, will be
televised on ROOT Sports and can be heard on 950 KJR.
Fox Sports takes a look at the weekend's games.
Seattle Prep vs. Seattle Roosevelt at 10:00 a.m.
Seattle Prep was hit hard by graduation but brings back some talent in the secondary behind cornerback Kevin Kocher and safety Jack Henning. Both will also play receiver for Prep.
Roosevelt surprised many a year ago in their run to a 4A state playoff berth.
The two Seattle schools will meet in the first-ever high school football game in
Husky Stadium, game one of the Emerald City Kickoff Classic.
Seattle King's vs. Lynden at 1:00 p.m.
King's lost Billy Green to graduation (he's now at BYU) so they'll turn over the reins to a rising sophomore, Koa Wilkins, a strong-armed passer who will try to maintain the success the Knights had under Green.
Chris Yand figures to carry the load for the Knights and Zach Jacobson anchors the offensive and defensive line.
Lynden rolled to the 2A state title last year, but four of their top players are now at D-I programs.
Senior 6-4, 180-pound receiver Jalani Phelps is Lynden's top returner.
Coeur d'Alene vs. Bothell at 4:00 p.m.
Coeur d'Alene comes across the state borders from Idaho as the lone out-of-state
team in the ECKC.
And while they're from Idaho, they have two players that
will be spending their future in Seattle in tight end Chase Blakley and
offensive tackle Matt James, both commits to Washington, and who will get their
chance to play in Husky Stadium a year early.
Quarterback Gunnar Amos leads CDA's offense and junior Drew Berger plays both
running back and linebacker.
Bothell is led by 2015 quarterback Ross Bowers, who has some ties to Washington
Sammamish Skyline vs. Bellevue at 7:00 p.m. live on KJR- tape delayed on ROOT
Sports at 9:30 p.m.
The game that everyone in Washington wanted a year ago comes in the opener in
Bellevue won the 3A state title at 14-0 last fall while Skyline won the 4A state
title with an identical 14-0 record.
Their stars from a year ago are gone
(the state's offensive and defensive players of the year in fact, quarterback
Max Browne and linebacker Myles Jack for Skyline and Bellevue respectively), but
both teams return talent.
Skyline will feature Kilton Anderson,who
moved to Washington from Florida, at quarterback, where he'll fill the shoes of
Max Browne. Defensively, 2015 linebacker Cameron Saffle
leads the Spartans.
Bellevue, on the other hand, returns several elite prospects, including the
arguably the top player in the state in Budda Baker, who'll play safety, running back and
receiver for the Wolverines.
The Wolverines also feature a pair of star defensive linemen in Marcus Griffin (Washington State) and Shane Bowman (Oregon State).
Offensively, Tim Haehl, who's headed to Harvard,
starts at quarterback and will play behind an offensive line that includes
2014 lineman Morgan Richey, and 2015 tackle Henry Roberts.
-Emerald City Kickoff Classic Preview-