Football season officially kicks off this week with almost everybody playing on Thursday, before the Labor Day weekend. The last few years, the student-athletes have not even stepped in class for the first two weeks. We're back to normal this season, with just one game before class starts for most schools.

There will always be question marks heading into the new season, and this one is no different. Here's the top 5 (in no particular order)...

  • How will the schools involved in new conferences finish?
  • Will last year's playoff teams return to dominance?
  • Who's the starting quarterback?
  • Who's in this new conference and what is it called?
  • Do we have a new coach?

Hopefully, I can help with the lay of the land this week. We'll begin this year's broadcast schedule at CW Post Field, as the St. Philip Tigers will open with the Kingston Cardinals in 8-Man Football. The Tigers will look to reach the postseason for the third straight year in 8-Man, and look to reach another level after last season's thumping from the Lawrence Tigers in Regionals. They return several key players from last season, but it will be interesting to see who will start under center this season, with three QB's on the roster.

Kingston will play their third season in 8-Man. The Cardinals reached the postseason at 4-5 in their first year, but struggled with a 2-6 year last season. They will be rather young this season, but only lose five seniors on their 24-man roster.

Last season in Kingston, St. Philip was able to fire on cylinders after some early jitters in a 35-8 victory. We'll see what happens Thursday night for our Week 1 broadcast, with coverage at 6:35pm on WBCK!

Here's the complete Week 1 schedule (home team listed last)...

Game of the Night
Kingston vs. St. Philip
Coverage begins at 6:35pm on WBCK!

Battle Creek Central vs. Stevensville-Lakeshore
Lakeview vs. Portage Northern
Harper Creek vs. Caledonia
Pennfield vs. Olivet

Bellevue vs. Bay City All Saints
Quincy vs. Bronson
Constantine vs. Delton
Hale vs. Galesburg-Augusta
Benton Harbor vs. Gull Lake
Coldwater vs. Hastings
Pittsford vs. Homer
Maple Valley vs. Fowler
Marshall vs. Milan
Tekonsha vs. Burr Oak (8-Man)

Athens vs. Climax-Scotts