Peyton Manning's "Peyback Classic" is happening on Friday at Lucas Oil Stadium. However, the real payback may be happening a short distance away at Warren Central.
Last season, Merrillville, lead by quarterback Dolapo Macarthy knocked off the Warriors in the opener, ending their record setting win streak. Macarthy is back, but the Warriors also return an impressive crew.
Recruiting wise, we'll be looking to see if the Warriors backfield duo of Eric Williams and George Cheeseborough are ready for the big senior seasons they will need to earn more offers. Other players to watch are Warren Central's 6'8 tight end Ed Hazelett, who already holds several offers and junior safety James Manuel, who has a Cincinnati offer.
On the Merrillville side, we'll have an eye on Central Michigan commitment Aaron Kaczmerski and their outstanding kicker Ryan Stokes.
We will be at several games this weekend which feature top recruits from the state:
Friday night, we will at Indianapolis Broad Ripple, where they take on Bishop Chatard and Notre Dame commitment Zach Martin. This will be my first time seeing the athletic tackle in person, so I'll get a first hand look at what the Domers are getting.
Saturday morning, it's over to Carmel, where newest Kentucky Wildcat Morgan Newton leads his team into battle. The Greyhounds also feature several other FBS recruits: Minnesota commitment Brooks Michel, fullback Kurt Freytag and safety Joe Rippe.
They will take on Indianapolis Cathedral, who has highly regarded offensive lineman Kyle Koehne and havoc wreaking defensive end Kakpindi Jamiru.
Saturday night, it is over to Lucas Oil for a chance to see one of the best athlets in the midwest: Avon DE Montez Robinson. The 6'4, 235-lb Robinson ran a 4.43 forty at our Cincinnati combine and after watching his film, I know he translates it to the field. We'll see if Hamilton Southeastern, who has a couple of nice prospects on offense, can handle the state's top pass rusher.