By DYLAN MALONE
I wasn’t even thought of in 1978. In fact, all my future mother and father were concerned with was how they would fit in the next year when they started high school.
Apparently, however, that marked the last time that Bellmont and Adams Central played football against each other.
Tomorrow night should be a festive occasion no matter what the outcome. If you’re a Bellmont fan, losing to Adams Central may not seem to be an option as the history books show the Braves with an 8-0 mark all-time against the Jets.
Why did the rivalry stop before it really got started back in the late 70’s?
Well, Bellmont fans will tell you it’s because they tired of pounding the Jets each year and needed more of a challenge. Central fans will note that they seemed to be getting too close to beating the Braves on the gridiron forcing Bellmont to schedule someone else to avoid an embarrassing loss to a smaller school.
South Adams fans probably didn’t even think it was a rivalry.
Whatever your perspective, however, the fact remains that this will not be the same football game that was played in 1978.
The first, and probably most obvious change from then to now is the enrollment of students at each school. While the scale still tilts in favor of Bellmont for school size as they boast 772 as of 2013 with Central holding 400.
The hay-days of Rick Minnich coaching the Jets to glory is over but coach Michael Mosser, a former QB under Minnich, has the program in no less of a successful state of mind winning a sectional title in his short tenure already.
Bellmont guru Larry Getts also has a crown in his time as the Braves’ head man nabbing an unlikely sectional title in his first year at the helm.
So with the coaches at a stalemate and the school sizes relatively close (compared to 1978), there seems to be more of an equality in the air.
Neither team has a senior quarterback as Jordan Amacker steps into his second full season running the offense as a junior, and AC’s Andrew Hammond has the full confidence of Mosser in his sophomore campaign.
Will we see a lot of fireworks through the pass? I don’t think so, but both teams are capable of airing it out at different points of the game.
AC loses Kyle Baker running the football, a workhorse on the line. Bellmont lost Trevor Love as well. There in lies another key similarity in the teams’ offenses as both will likely use a committee to replace big time backs rushing the ball.
I think where these two teams may differ is on the lines. Adams Central lacks the size that Bellmont returns and that could be a contributing factor towards the second half when the teams get a little fatigued, especially being the first game of the season.
If Bellmont can maintain tempo with long, extended drives down the field on offense, they will likely win this game for coach Getts. On the other side, if Adams Central has their way on offense and Hammond can get the ball out to make some plays in the air, the Jets have a solid shot of winning their first game in this series.
The Jets also have the advantage of being at home but don’t think for a minute that those bleachers on the other side will not be full.
Despite not being a conference game for either team (it should be), this has the makings of one of those games that decides a team’s direction mentally the rest of the way.
For the first time in several decades, Bellmont and Adams Central will play football on the same field Friday night under the lights.
I like this match-up especially on paper because neither team has a dominating advantage. What this game will come down to is who will show up mentally and who will be jarred enough to let this one slip.
Despite the home field, I give Bellmont the slight edge due to the front lines battle, an advantage that coach Getts will not have in very many other games on his NHC slate this season.
The Jets will make a great game out of this one but I have to go against my former high school on this one in making a prediction but let the record show I will not be surprised by any outcome!
Bellmont 27, Adams Central 20