Every season, Macon Tiger football fans look forward to the annual showdown with the arch-rival Cardinals of South Shelby.
But, in 2012, the thing most people remember was the pouring rain; the product of a fading hurricane.
It may or may not have been the torrent of rain that shut the Tigers down, but the Macon offense was stymied by South Shelby in last year's game.
The Cardinals picked up their points at the end of each half, so the Tiger defense help up pretty well until then. South Shelby would win the game 14-0.
This season, one does not really know what to expect.
Both the Tigers and Cardinals lost some key players to graduation and other things, but it appears that South will be using a number of younger players to fill the gaps.
The Cardinals, under the command of Coach Rob Wilt, still possess the tough running back Trace Windsor (6' 0", 170 lb. JR), who gave the Tiger D some issues in last years' malay.
South also returns wide receiver Adam Ellyson (5' 9", 145 lb. SR), along with sizable lineman Ryan Larrick (6' 1", 265 lb. JR), who will be a tough wall for the Tigers to get through.
A new quarterback will be calling plays this year for South Shelby. Brett Threlkeld, at 5' 8" and a slim 150 lb., will have the task of replacing graduated senior David Heathman. Junior tight end Austin Durbin (6' 2", 160 lb.) will also be a threat through the air for the South Shelby Cardinals.
Also gone from the Cardinals' line is the tough lineman Hadley Roberts, who moves to Novinger following last year.
South Shelby will still have plenty of firepower in its arsenal to pick up where the departed players left off.
Running back Kenny Smithey (5' 9", 165 lb. SR) will likely split running duties with Trace Windsor, with Bryce Fifer (5' 9", 180 lb. SO) thrown in for good measure.
On the line, Larrick will be assisted by a pair of seniors: Deric Bishop (5' 11", 240 lb.) and Jacob Trivette (6' 1", 175 lb.).
Two sophomores also join the mix on the line for the Cardinals: Sidney Wear (6' 2" 205 lb.) and Nick Mayes (6' 1", 210 lb.).
On defense, Larrick will anchor the line at the nose-tackle position, with Josh Ridgely (5' 9", 170 lb. JR) and Tayler Foster (5' 9", 180 lb. SO) standing beside him.
Coach Wilt's linebacker corps. will be made up of Smithey, Windsor, Fifer, Wear and Trivette.
Ellyson and Durbin will set up as cornerbacks, with QB Threlkeld lining up at the safety position.
In Week 1 of this season, the Cardinals needed a field goal in the closing seconds to defeat a tough and resilient Louisiana team 23-20.
In this high school equivalent of the famed Border War, these two teams have a lot to prove this year.
Page 2 of 2 - They both want to prove that they are still the tough and historic programs they were in the past, and want to remain that way now.