It’s almost fall and that means last call for summer.
Football is in the air and on the field.
The pigskin is officially back baby! And, it is taking over Florida.
The NFL will be celebrating its 100th birthday in a season-long celebration culminating with the Super Bowl right here in South Florida at the Hard Rock Stadium in February.
To kick off the football season across the board here in South Florida, the Miami Dolphins began the preseason with a game against the Atlanta Falcons back in the early part of August. They won. For their in-state battles, they lost to the Tampa Buccaneers and they won against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
For their last game of the preseason, the Dolphins hit the road to take on the New Orleans Saints.
But, for the games that really matter, they officially get things kicked off on Sunday, September 8, in a home-opener against the Baltimore Ravens. They have three of their first four games at home, including one against division rival and the former team of Dolphins’ new head-coach, Brian Flores.
Fans will get a first-hand look at the skills of their new head coach to see if he indeed brought some of that football acumen he acquired at the hands of the football guru himself, Bill Belichick. This game will undoubtedly be a litmus test for Dolphins fans’ favor, for as mediocre as the team has been in recent years, they have always played up to an obviously more-talented New England Patriots team here at home.
As college football is celebrating its 150th season, its started things off with a bang. All eyes were on Florida for the first game of the season. Figuratively and literally, the only college game in town last weekend was between intercostal rivals No. 8 ranked Florida Gators and the unranked University of Miami Hurricanes.
In a battle for territorial bragging rights, the nation looked on as the Gators and the Canes took their talents to Camping World Stadium in Orlando to settle their dispute.
The Miami Hurricanes have the swagger, the rich program history, the legendary alumni and don’t forget the turnover chain, but it was the Florida Gators that walked away with bragging rights as the top college football team in Florida with a 24 –20 victory over the Canes.
Sharing some of that national spotlight on ESPN last weekend and in battles of their own, were a few of South Florida’s high school football programs.
In the annual contest between the counties, Miami-Dade’s Carol City Chiefs took on Broward’s Deerfield Beach Bucks at Traz Powell Stadium in Miami.
The Chiefs took advantage of a poor start by the Bucks, (27 rushing yards in the first half) and they were able to capitalize off key mistakes to seal a 24-12 victory for Miami-Dade County.
And for the last game and certainly one that South Florida high school football fans would like to forget but may not be able to anytime soon because it played out on national television, was the game between Miami Central Rockets and Baltimore, Maryland’s St. Francis Academy Panthers.
Failing to rep their city, No. 9 ranked Miami Central realized that they were outmatched in size and talent, as they took a beating from No. 2 ranked St. Francis, 49-13.
Well, no matter if your favorite team won or lost last week, one thing for sure is that there is always next week. In football across the ranks, it’s any given Friday, Saturday or Sunday… and Monday and Thursday.