We're now seven games deep into the football season and three of our area teams - Big Red, Brooke and Madonna - remain undefeated. This week, all three will be tested.
For Steubenville that means a matchup at Harding Stadium with fellow unbeaten squad Poland Seminary.
For the big bad Bruins that means a showdown at Brooke Memorial with old foe Morgantown.
And for the Blue Dons that means a game at Jimmy Carey opposite Catholic Central in what has easily been the most talked about contest this week.
This game has been over 35 years in the making and it should be a good one. Madonna has solidified itself as one of the top teams in the Valley and in the state of West Virginia.
The Crusaders have a rich history all of their own. That makes for one intense matchup when the Blue Dons and the Crusaders renew their rivalry Saturday.
The Blue Dons average 45 points a game. They have rolled over, around and through opponents this season and put a 7-0 mark on the line.
Central (2-5) hasn't been nearly as successful suffering losses in its first four games, winning its next two and then falling to Wheeling Central last week.
However, Central's record is deceiving. The Crusaders a have played a tough schedule. The four opponents they lost are a combined 22-5.
In other words, don't expect the Blue Dons to breeze past Central.
The Crusaders will not allow Madonna to get anywhere close to its average. I think the Dons will post less than half of their typical 45 points.
But I also think Madonna will get the best of the Crusaders. It'll be tight, but the Dons will remain undefeated with a 14-13 final.
Poland Seminary at Big Red
The Bulldogs come into Harding undefeated and the recent winner of three-straight shutouts, including a 17-0 decision over previously unbeaten Warren Howland. Big Red comes into the game fresh from a 13-3 win over Division I Massillon.
Steubenville is No. 2 in the Associated Press and the Bulldogs are No. 3. This should be another good one at what I'm sure will be a packed Harding Stadium tonight.
But like I said last week, it's best not to bet against the Red. When in doubt go with Steubenville. I'm taking my own advice and taking Big Red, 35-20.
Morgantown at Brooke
Wheeling Park beat Morgantown in Week 1. It is the Patriots only win this season. The Bruins meanwhile beat Park, 37-15. Enough said.
Toss into the equation that whole play-give-away scandal and I think this one could get ugly tonight at Brooke Memorial.
The Bruins are going to make statement in this game which they'll win 49-6.
at Harrison Central
The Redskins have experienced some internal turmoil this week and I can only hope the Redskins' fans have the good sense to stand behind Andrew Connor.
His dedication to the Indian Creek program - sticking with his team through thick and thin - is the reason the Redskins are a playoff contender right now. But things are precarious for Indian Creek.
At 4-3, the Redskins need a win this week to stay in the postseason hunt. The last thing they need is a distraction, especially heading into Huskie country tonight.
Harrison Central is 5-2 and, like Creek, is looking for a game in Week 11. They will give the Redskins a battle tonight.
If Redskins can maintain their composure, keep their focus and play their game, they'll win this one, 28-8.
Union Local at Buckeye Local
Speaking of a playoff hunt, the Panthers at 5-2 find themselves in the same situation as Harrison Central and Indian Creek. A win tonight would boost Buckeye Local's chances of a postseason appearance greatly. They want this win. They need this win. I think they will get this win.
The Panthers, who opened up the season with four straight wins, defeated the Huskies last week to stop a two-game losing streak.
They will stop the Jets, 34-28.
Shadyside at Toronto
With a 3-4 record, this year's edition of Shadyside is not a typical Tiger team. The Red Knights have also been disappointed in 2009, coming in with a 1-6 mark.
I'd like to see Toronto win tonight's game and the Red Knights are quite capable of doing so.
However, the Tigers have been coming on lately. They've won two in a row now and I think momentum will be on Shadyside's side, as the visitors win a 22-20 squeaker.
Oak Glen at Liberty
The 4-3 Golden Bears control their own destiny. If they win out, they'll likely make the playoffs. But it won't be a cakewalk. Oak Glen ends the season with Grafton and undefeated Magnolia.
What they can't afford is to let an easy one get away from them and a matchup with a winless Liberty is what I call an easy one.
The Golden Bears should have little trouble earning a 35-13 victory.
Edison at Bellaire
At 2-5, the Wildcats' record could be better, but it could worse.
Edison has definitely shown signs of improvement and, despite its record, has been in every game. The Wildcats lost to Barnesville last week in OT. That one was a tough one to swallow and their third loss in a row.
The Big Reds have struggled in recent seasons. The woes have continued this year and enter with a 1-6 mark.
Things will look up for Edison and stay much the same for Bellaire, Saturday, when the 'Cats stop their slump at Nelson Field, Saturday, with a 42-33 victory.
(Elverd, a resident of Toronto, is a sports writer of the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times, and can be reached at email@example.com)