Super 11 in Michigan, August Week 3 - The most recent 11 important week 1 games
The opening week of the season is one where neutral sites are plenty as organizers of the events look to put the best games in a 1-3 day span. Most times the games live up to their billing and sometimes things aren't quite how they're expected, but an effect is still created.
The Super 11 is a weekly feature done by The D Zone to highlight 11 key points throughout the week or in general related to Michigan High School Sports.
Source: Jeff Corrion / The D Zone
1. Cass Tech vs. Brother Rice - 2012
- It was probably the most hyped up game we have covered until Cass Tech and King met in 2015. Cass Tech was coming off of their first D1 title win in 2011 over Catholic Central and Brother Rice was coming of their D2 title win over Lowell. It was the first time that the D1 vs. D2 champions met in the first week of the season and an epic performance was put on display at Wayne State. Cass Tech led by Sophomore QB Jayru Campbell beat Brother Rice 25-18. Twice during the game was play stopped as standing room only fans feared someone in the crowd had a gun and ran onto the field and track. The threats unfortunately are what the game will be remembered by instead of the action.
2. Detroit King vs. De La Salle - 2015
- De La Salle entered the 2015 season with high expectations of repeating as the D2 champs with Allen Stritzinger returning for his junior season with a bulk of talent around him. King had expectations with Donnie Corley being a senior, and incoming transfers; LaVert Hill and Armani Posey. De La Salle dominated the 1st half of the game and appeared to wrap things up, but a holding call negated a long DLS rushing touchdown. King struggled for the most part using numerous QB's that game and into a few weeks of the season before Posey took over for good. King's starting QB that game was 2018 El-Julian Jordan who is now at Central and committed to Western Michigan. The turning point in that game was a quick comeback catch by Ambry Thomas who eluded a defender and streaked downfield for a touchdown and King was off and running from there as they went 14-0 and won the D2 title.
3. Clarkston at Dakota - 2015
- The Clarkston Wolves entered Dakota riding a 27 game winning streak which is the longest win streak a team ever had in Division 1. The game wasn't that hyped up as Clarkston lost a majority of their team to graduation and their expected workhorse senior RB Nolan Eriksen was injured and didn't play. Dakota won comfortably 35-10 ending a historical feat. Dakota a year later in 2016 beat the defending D3 champions Saint Mary's which was the first year a team ever beat the defending champs in back-to-back years to start the season.
4. Cass Tech vs. Farmington Hills Harrison - 2011
- To date no game was able to draw up so much pre-season conversation besides this game at Eastern Michigan's Prep Kickoff Classic. Harrison came in as one of the top programs both all-time and at the time (2011). Harrison beat Lowell in the D2 finals the year prior and Cass Tech entered after a Cinderella story of sorts the year prior in 2010. Cass Tech started the year virtually an afterthought to everyone outside of the program and would finish the season 12-1, losing in the final seconds to Lake Orion when a toss was batted down and the fumble was recovered by Lake Orion. Fast forward back to this game, it wasn't close as Harrison destroyed Cass Tech and injuring CT's QB at the time, Kevin Biscoe. His replacement was Jayru Campbell as a Freshman which was basically unheard of at the time. Campbell wow'ed the crowd with his feet and running abilities.
5. Brother Rice vs. Detroit King - 2011
- King needed a big boost after losing early in the playoffs and failing to make the playoffs since they won the D2 title in 2007. Highlighted by future Michigan Wolverine, Dennis Norfleet - King and Brother Rice put on a show in the afternoon at Eastern Michigan's Prep Kickoff Classic. The back and forth game was 21-21 with 2 minutes left and Brother Rice facing a 3rd and 22. The Warriors QB Cheyne Lacanaria bombed a 78-yard touchdown pass to Travis Ferguson for the game-winning touchdown pass. The game had seto something off in King as they reached the D2 semi-final where they lost by a point to Brother Rice that year. A few years later King won back-to-back titles.
6. Detroit Catholic Central vs. Muskegon - 2015
- The two perennial powers concluded a home & away deal with Catholic Central getting the last laugh 15-12 after Muskegon won in 2014, 21-14. DCC was led by sophomore QB Theo Day who was clutch in the win. Freshman Austin Brown took over after the game and Day switched schools to Divine Child. Brown carried CC as a freshman to the regionals in 2015 where they lost to the eventual champs and then again led CC to the state finals as a sophomore, but his season ended a game short due an injury in the semi-finals vs. Romeo.
7. West Bloomfield vs. Dearborn - 2014
- The Lakers entered this week 1 game as an average team at best while Dearborn was coming off their first losing season after a stretch of a few strong years. Trishton Jackson entered the game as a little known junior QB who went haywire this game leading West Bloomfield to a convincing 35-13 win when it was expected by mostly everyone to be much closer & even Dearborn was projected by some to win. West Bloomfield beat DHS 59-31 in their ensuing week 1 meeting and has gone 24-8 since that game, reaching the D1 playoffs each season since.
8. Oak Park vs. Saint Mary's - 2013
- Oak Park in their 2nd year under the legendary Coach Greg Carter was looking to defeat powerhouse Saint Mary's who would go on to win 3 D3 state titles. Oak Park churned out the big plays throughout the day and saw the definite emergence of future Tennessee Volunteer, John Kelly. Oak Park has reached the D2 playoffs each year since, while Saint Mary's would fail to make the playoffs in 2013, but from 2016-2014 rebounded by winning the D3 titles.
9. Brother Rice vs. St. Ignatious, Ohio - 2013
- The Warriors started off their season which would cap a run of three straight Division 2 titles by defeating a nationally ranked St. Ignatious, Ohio team in week 1. The Warriors 9 point win was a statement and Brother Rice was near flawless their next 24 wins. Rice escaped close games with DLS & CC during the 2013 season before cruising in all 5 playoff games and into 2014 before they were knocked out of the regionals by De La Salle.
10. Walled Lake Western vs. Lowell - 2015
- The 2 powerhouse Division 2 contenders have had their share of clashes in recent years. In a 2011 semi-final game Walled Lake Western kicked a 47 yard field goal as time ran out in treacherous conditions to send the game into overtime where Lowell wound up winning. The 2015 meeting was a thrilling back and forth game that WL Western won 42-40. Lowell would win a rematch in the semi-finals that year and in 2016 Walled Lake Western beat Lowell in the semi-finals.
11. Ithaca vs. Durand - 2010
- The game wasn't expected to be close and it wasn't but in terms of impact this was the first win of 69 in a row for the Yellowjackets. The season was primed to be special as it set the tone for a school record 650 points scored, which was later broken, a 14-0 record, and first state title win. Ithaca lost to SMCC in 2014 which ended their 69 game winning streak and prevented them from a 5th straight D6 title.