Last week: Jackson 48, North County 21; Vianney 39, Francis Howell North 20
Last year: Did not play
Outlook: The Indians will face the challenge of stopping junior running back Markel Smith after successfully opening the Brent Eckley era with a victory last week.
The Indians had an explosive offensive performance in Week 1 with 639 yards -- 327 passing and 312 rushing -- but Vianney's Smith was just as impressive. Smith already has received a scholarship offer from Missouri and is getting interest from heavyweights such as Nebraska and Michigan, according to rivals.com. He demonstrated why against Francis Howell North with a 297-yard rushing performance on 27 carries. He amassed 180 yards in the first quarter alone, according to stltoday.com, and scored five of the Golden Griffins six touchdowns.
Smith topped 200 yards three times during his junior season and rushed for 1,498 yards total. He led the Griffins in rushing as a freshman with 710 yards.
"He's really thick and strong," Eckley said. "He's shown he can take it the distance, so it will be a huge challenge for us. If we don't do a good job tackling, we'll give him another 300 yards rushing."
Eckley, who said his team is focusing on tackling this week, said Smith combines a physical style, speed and quick feet.
"He seems like he can make you miss in a phone booth," Eckley said.
The Griffins added about 100 yards rushing to Smith's total in the opener. Freshman Ethan Staskewicz added eight carries for 82 yards. Quarterback Garrett Staskewicz only was 3 of 9 passing for 26 yards.
"If we have an opportunity to execute on offense and can get out in front of them, they're not necessarily a catch-up offense," Eckley said. "Their strength is running the football."
Eckley said the Griffins have good size on the line with one tackle at 6-foot-5 and 270 pounds and another at 6-2 and 310. "Their inside three are big as well, but their two tackles are really big," Eckley said.
Vianney's defense yielded 280 yards, allowing 14 of 23 completions and nearly five yards per rush.
Jackson did not punt in its season opener and only was stopped on offense by turnovers, committing four in the game. Junior quarterback Ty Selsor completed 9 of 14 passes for 308 yards. Senior Brannon Wright led the receivers with four catches for 145 yards and junior Colten Proffer had 119 yards on four receptions. Proffer also had 91 yards rushing on five carries.
"We've got to take care of the football," Eckley said. "We have a chance to be pretty sound and pretty efficient offensively if we take care of the ball."
Eckley expects senior receiver Lowgn Wren, who suffered an injury in June, to make his season debut.
Last week: Scott City 9, Herculaneum 6 (OT); St. Vincent 45, Sumner 22
Last year: Scott City 27, St. Vincent 6
Outlook: Scott City will be looking to win this meeting for the third consecutive year.
Both teams won their openers last week, but Scott City needed overtime to do so.
St. Vincent rolled up 436 yards of offense against Sumner in senior Trent Elder's first outing at quarterback since replacing the graduated Tim Schumer. Elder completed 16 of 20 passes for 234 yards and threw touchdown passes to three receivers.
"He had a great outing," St. Vincent coach Paul Sauer said. "He showed a lot of poise in the pocket and delivered some nice passes."
The Indians displayed a balanced offense attack, something they lacked last season, with 234 yards passing and 202 rushing.
Junior running back Alex Winkler paced the Indians with 18 rushes for 91 yards. Kevin Mattingly led the receivers with seven catches for 104 yards.
"They've got a really good running back and a quarterback who can throw it around, and they're all spread out and have some receivers who can catch the ball," Scott City coach Jim May said. "They try to spread you out, and we've got to make some tackles in the open field to have a chance."
That was one area May said his team needs to improve upon from last week's opener against Herculaneum.
"They ran about 400 counters and we missed about 300 tackles," May said. "I was not pleased with how we tackled Friday night."
The Rams allowed just six points despite the problems.
St. Vincent's first-string defense did not yield any points against Sumner, which committed six turnovers.
St. Vincent will receive a test from Scott City senior running back Travis Phillips, who rushed 31 times for 165 yards in his first game since undergoing knee surgery midway through his junior season.
"Our line did a pretty good job for their first time out," said May, about a line that starts two sophomores. "I've been focusing on them all summer because they're young. We opened some holes, and Travis just did the rest. He's really good at what he does."
St. Vincent is looking for its first 2-0 start since 2004.
"They've gotten us the last couple of years," Sauer said. "We have to come out and play well and hopefully build on the success we started last week."
Last week: Fort Zumwalt North 14, St. Charles West 6; John Burroughs 43, Central 14
Last year: St. Charles West 31, Central 14
Outlook: The Tigers will have a more manageable task after facing one of the nation's premier high school running backs in a Week 1 loss to John Burroughs, the top-ranked team in Class 3. The Tigers will face a team that collectively mounted 100 yards rushing after dealing with the Bombers' Ezekiel Elliott in the opener. Elliott rushed for 112 yards on 15 carries and had two catches for another 68 yards.
St. Charles West mounted just 211 yards of offense in its opener. Junior quarterback Kyle Anders passed for 111 yards and was the Warriors' top rusher with six carries for 43 yards. Anders completed 6 of 16 passes, with two going to sophomore Drew Lauer for 70 yards.
Central rushed for 276 yards against John Burroughs and had 336 yards of offense. The Tigers ran on 60 of their 71 plays and averaged 4.6 yards per rush. Senior Jacob Campbell led the way with 113 yards on 14 carries. Junior quarterback Dennis Vinson completed 4 of 11 passes for 60 yards in his second varsity start.
"We did good things on both sides of the football. We just couldn't sustain it," Central coach Nathan Norman said.
Norman said his team also needs a stronger game in special teams.
"That was a weak spot of ours last year, and I felt like we spent more time on it than we had in the past, and it still wasn't very successful," Norman. "We need to do a lot better on special teams and eliminating mental mistakes, not penalties, but just mistakes that stop a drive. We just need to be more consistent."
Norman said the Warriors are a run-oriented offense that uses the option.
The Warriors handed Central its first loss last year after the Tigers won their first four games.
Central junior center and linebacker Scottie Thomas is questionable with a strained hip flexor.
Last week: McCluer South-Berkeley 52, Lift for Life 8; Perryville 41, East Prairie 0
Last year: Did not play
Outlook: Perryville recorded its first shutout since the 2004 season in its opening win over Class 2 East Prairie. The Pirates now seek their first two-game winning streak since late in the 2008 season against a team that was trounced in Week 1.
The Hawks managed just eight points in their opener and face a Pirates defense that yielded just 98 yards in Week 1. East Prairie averaged just over two yards per play against Perryville and committed four turnovers. The Pirates' defense intercepted three of the Eagles' five pass attempts and did not allow a completion.
Perryville junior tailbacks Cody Crawford Jonny Pruiett each finished with 81 yards in a rushing attack that averaged 5.5 yards per attempt. Sophomore quarterback Tyler Holligan also was effective in his varsity debut. He completed 4 of 7 passes for 100 yards.
"We're really pleased in the direction he's headed," Perryville coach Mike Wojtczuk said. "He made some really nice decisions and he commanded the troops. He stepped it up and played like a veteran quarterback."
Wojtczuk said Lift for Life relies heavily on athletic senior quarterback A.J. Robertson in a spread offense that uses a balanced attack. The Hawks try to use their speed to attack the edges. Robertson is adept at scrambling and is used a lot on boot-leg runs.
"He probably makes up 80 percent of their offense," Wojtczuk said.
Last week: Portageville 38, St. Pius 14; Chaffee 36, Grandview 14
Last year: Chaffee 39, St. Pius 7
Outlook: Chaffee rolled to victory in its season opener despite missing one of its primary weapons on offense.
Sophomore quarterback Peyton Montgomery turned in a stellar performance in his first varsity start, completing 19 of 24 passes for 342 yards. Montgomery also led the running attack with 12 carries for 45 yards. The Red Devils finished with 357 yards of offense in a new no-huddle, spread offense.
"We're no-huddle and we're trying to snap the ball as fast as we can snap it," Chaffee coach Charlie Vickery said.
Five Red Devils latched onto Montgomery passes. Senior Layton Tenkhoff led the way with seven catches for 144 yards, while Jimmy Golden had four receptions for 128 yards.
Chaffee scored 36 points despite missing junior running back/receiver Charlie Montgomery to an ankle sprain. Montgomery, who led the team in receiving as a sophomore, is expected to play tonight.
Vickery said St. Pius uses multiple formations, including power sets.
"Probably the biggest thing is their size," Vickery said. "They're big physically."
-- Jeff Breer