Vital football games remain

Pry yourself away from Oktoberfest tonight and get out to a ball game.

It’s Week 8, and all three Jackson County football programs are hosting their final home games of the season.

While the sectional draws are decided, there are still two important games left on the schedule for both Seymour and Brownstown Central.

Make no mistake that tonight’s game for Seymour against New Albany is a big one.

The Owls (3-4) bounced back from a tough Jackson Bowl loss to Brownstown (6-1) by trouncing Jennings County 41-7 last week.

In last week’s column, I iterated the importance of finding consistence right before the postseason.

Tonight, the Owls can prove they’ve found it.

Seymour hasn’t won back-to-back games yet this season.

Against Jennings County, the Owls connected on all levels on both sides of the ball.

On offense, the Owls found a nice balance.

Alan Perry threw for 225 yards and a pair of touchdowns on top of running for 96 yards and two TDs.

Ezra Barr had a career game — thrown into the starting running back position due to injuries — rushing for an impressive 91 yards and two touchdowns.

Devin Hill doubled his receiving TD total for the season by catching a pair in the back of the end zone.

The Owls’ defense virtually put the Panthers in a stranglehold outside of the one score given up.

On top of keeping the Panthers out of scoring position, the Owls recorded four sacks while also snagging an interception.

New Albany is 4-3 this season with wins over Providence, Jennings County, Madison and Jeffersonville.

They’re an athletic team, averaging 39.9 points per game while giving up 32 on average.

They have 2,037 rushing yards this season, led by senior Darquan Richardson’s 1,443. Richardson has all seven of the rushing TDs for the Bulldogs.

Richardson, 5-9 and 162 pounds, is averaging 206 yards per game.

Last year’s game was a 64-49 shootout that went to the Owls.

Seymour ran for an outlandish 425 yards and seven touchdowns in the win. Perry also threw for 109 yards.

While it would be hard to replicate last year’s game, don’t be surprised if tonight turns into another offensive showcase.

If you’ve followed my columns this season, you know I’ve been looking forward to Brownstown’s matchup with Silver Creek.

I will go on record saying I was wrong with my early predictions. Tonight’s game won’t decide the Mid-Southern Conference.

Undefeated North Harrison defeated Silver Creek 6-0 last week and just has to beat Clarksville tonight to be the sole owner of the MSC.

Those Panthers are having a very special season. They’re grinders that have done nothing but find ways to win week in and week out this season.

While the MSC is out of reach, that won’t dampen the Braves’ excitement that the Dragons are coming to down.

In almost every sport, Brownstown and Silver Creek find themselves toward the front of the pack. Across multiple athletics, the two schools have developed a nice rivalry.

The Dragons will try to run the ball down Brownstown’s throat.

Silver Creek is averaging 287.1 yards per game and has 24 touchdowns.

Senior Jacob Garrett, who missed last year’s game due to injury, is the workhorse with 101 carries for 689 yards and five TDs.

In the summer, Garrett committed to play NCAA Division I football at Southern Illinois University. He’s the first DI player to come out of the Dragons’ program.

While the Dragons’ potent offense (30.7 points per game) has gained notoriety, the defense is even better.

The Dragons are giving up 3.9 points per game, posting shutouts in their first four games.

In the other three games, the Dragons gave up seven points or less twice. The most they’ve allowed is 14 against Clarksville.

Like Brownstown’s game against North Harrison, I expect this one to go fast.

There’s going to be a lot of running, and field positioning and clock management will prove key.

Coming off of a game where Brownstown played its junior varsity and freshmen most of the game, expect the Braves to be fresh against the Dragons.

Grab a bratwurst and a cone of pommes frites and make your way over to a high school.