West Alabama High School Football: Week 7 Preview
Last Week’s Picks: 4-2*
This Season’s Picks: 23-7*
*- Last week’s game between Brookwood and Sipsey Valley was canceled. Since Sipsey Valley was the team to call for it, Brookwood was awarded a 1-0 win.
After several teams took the week off last week to prepare for the second half of the schedule, most of Tuscaloosa county is back and ready for more area play. Three different 6A Region 4 matchups might be the difference makers for teams to make a playoff run. In addition, several surprise teams have matchups that could affect their comeback seasons.
Hillcrest Patriots (4-1, 1-1) @ Northridge Jaguars (6-0, 3-0)-
After escaping a close game last week, the undefeated Northridge Jaguars will come home for a huge region matchup for first place in the area. For many in the Druid City, this was supposed to be the battle of the undefeated, but a Hillcrest loss two weeks ago in Hueytown spoiled the Patriots’ perfect record.
Still, this game will definitely not disappoint. Last year’s matchup was a Hillcrest victory with a score of 14-7. In fact, all-time the Patriots lead the Jags 14-2.
Bryant’s Pick: While Hillcrest has been on fire recently, Northridge has picked up too much momentum. The Jaguars’ defense was stout in last week’s win at Gordo, and if they can remain aggressive, then Northridge will win this important area game.
Paul Bryant Stampede (2-4, 0-2) @ Bessemer City Purple Tigers (1-5, 1-2)-
In this second of the 6A Region 4 matchups, the Stampede will be traveling to Bessemer to take on a struggling Purple Tigers team. Bryant recently got their second win of the season against Central-Tuscaloosa, and it finally looked like they found their stride. In the 30-0 blowout, the Stampede’s defense looked dominant.
Bessemer City is sitting at only one win. Unfortunately for the Purple Tigers, their sole win is a forfeit from Hueytown after COVID-19 complications.
Bryant’s Pick: So far this season, Bessemer City has only scored 19 points. Their defense hasn’t looked much better, allowing 174 points. Now that the Stampede has found their mojo, Paul Bryant will win this game in what could be another shutout.
McAdory Yellow Jackets (3-3, 2-0) @ Brookwood Panthers (1-5, 0-3)-
Region 4 of 6A has had its trouble with coronavirus quarantines- four of its seven teams have one more game that has been a forfeit win or loss. This is even more evident at Brookwood High. The Panthers have had a tough go at it, losing several players and coaches to self-isolation. Last week’s Brookwood-Sipsey Valley game got canceled, and while coaches have stated that they would like to make up the game, it is unclear whether the AHSAA will allow it.
Brookwood has potential, but after a slow start, McAdory has reentered the playoff picture. Their 2-0 area record is the best in the region, but the Yellow Jackets have a tough four games remaining.
Bryant’s Pick: Brookwood had a chance to get their first win of the season last week, but that doesn’t seem to be the case this week. McAdory has turned their season around, and the Yellow Jackets will walk away Friday night with a big win.
Hale County Wildcats (4-1, 2-1) @ Monroe County Tigers (2-3, 0-2)-
After only winning one game last year, Hale County has become one of the best teams in 3A. The Wildcats only loss, to the hands of region foe Montgomery Academy, was by 26 points, but still, Hale County is looking at its best start since 2010, and they are looking like they will be getting a playoff spot.
This is the first year that both teams have been in Region 3, and the Tigers and Wildcats have yet to play each other in their combined 211 years of playing.
Bryant’s Pick: While Monroe County has a long way to go in making a playoff run, they still know how to put up points. In their first five games, the Tigers have averaged 34 points a game. Hale Count; however, is too good to be stopped. The Wildcats will be riding home to Moundville with a win.
Pickens County Tornadoes (4-1, 3-0) @ Brilliant Tigers (4-1, 3-0)-
Pickens County, much like their neighbor Gordo, has been pretty good in recent years. In fact, this is the Tornadoes’ fourth straight year going 4-1 to start the year. Brilliant on the other hand hasn’t had a great history of winning. Both of these 1A teams; however, are in the running, along with Berry Fayette to win Region 6.
Brilliant, who is having their best season since 2013, has had three games so far this season where an opponent has scored less than 10 points. The Tigers’ offense has struggled out of the gate- only getting past 21 points twice.
Bryant’s Pick: Brilliant is looking talented this year, but like years past, the Tornadoes will win big. Still Brilliant is well within reach of a playoff spot.
Holt Ironmen (2-3, 2-1) @ American Christian Patriots (5-0, 3-0)-
American Christian Academy is continuously one of the best football programs in Tuscaloosa. This year is no different with their third consecutive 5-0 start to the year. The lowest scoring offensive performance by the Patriots has been a 33-12 victory over Greensboro. The most points scored this year came from a road trip to Montevallo where the Patriots hung 63 on the Bulldogs.
Holt, on the other hand, is a different story. While they do have the athletic skills and potential, the Ironmen haven’t won an actual game yet. Their two victories come from forfeit- Wilcox Central and Sumter Central.
Bryant’s Pick: While there are definitely a few matchups that Holt can win, the Ironmen’s time isn’t against ACA. The Patriots will win a very one-sided affair.
In addition to these big matchups, four other big games are happening around west Alabama:
The Central Falcons are traveling to Shelby County in a region game.
The Tuscaloosa Academy Knights are hosting region opponent Pike Liberal Art Academy.
Tuscaloosa County High is hosting region newcomer Gadsden City.
And finally, the Northside Rams are traveling to Fayette County in a fight for second place in the region.