It could be billed as the “Battle of Bayou des Cannes,” the body of water between Basile and Eunice.
For years, St. Edmund and Basile fought in the same district; now it is for bragging rights.
Heading into this week’s game, the Blue Jays are 3-0 and the Bearcats are 0-3.
But St. Edmund head coach Tom Andrus wants his team to play as if they are the underdogs when they travel to Basile for Friday’s rivalry contest.
“We are taking this game as if we don’t have any wins,” Andrus said of his third-ranked Blue Jays. “We are going into the game as if we are the underdogs and take it to them picking up where we left off the last two weeks.”
The poll position does not mean much heading into the heated showdown with the Bearcats, however.
“They will come after us because it is the Super Bowl for them if they can beat St. Eds,” Andrus continued. “We are not taking them lightly. They are coming to play, this is one game they want to win.”
The Bearcats have dropped close decisions to Montgomery (14-12), South Beauregard (21-14) and Sacred Heart (28-21), while the Blue Jays have rolled to wins over East Beauregard (22-6), Iota (47-21) and Elton (43-14).
Andrus said the Bearcats are battling injuries including running back Derrick Thomas who gained over 1,200 yards and scored 15 touchdowns in 2007.
“He is something else,” Andrus said of Thomas. “If he gets to the outside, we don’t have anybody who can catch him.”
“Fabian Bellard is a shifty little player,” Andrus said of the Bearcat quarterback. “He may not be an exceptional thrower but his receivers get open and he gets the ball to them.”
Against Elton, the Blue Jays performed well on both sides of the ball, according to the coach.
“We had a gameplan, stuck with it and it worked,” Andrus said of the offense that rolled up 447 yards against Elton along with a defense that only allowed a touchdown in each half.
“When you do what you are supposed to do, everything works out.”
Marshall Arabie was a perfect 8-for-8 for 197 yards including touchdown strikes of 50- and 47-yards to Trevor Hargroder.
“We didn’t know if he could be a good quarterback until we got him into game situations,” the coach commented. “He has all the tools.”
While Arabie and Hargroder (3 catches for 112 yards, 2 TDs) had great performances, Adam Wimberly grabbed the team’s player of the week honors as he gained 80 yards on seven carries with a 17-yard touchdown run to go with a 7-yard touchdown reception.
St. Eds defeated Basile 36-0 last season and the Blue Jays earned a 10-0 win in 2006.
“It doesn’t matter if we win by one or 20,” Andrus said. “It is a win.”