It’s been a long time since we called the Dunlap Eagles Class 5A state football championship game on 95.5, GLO, last Thanksgiving weekend. This Friday, it’s time to fire up the Friday night lights with the start of our 8th season of the Super Nutrition Red Zone Game of the Week between Route 9 rivals Tremont and Dee Mack.
Opening night of the high school football season is always exciting for the players, coaches, students, parents and us. And this year, we’ll be on hand in Mackinaw for the debut of the multi-million dollar Jim McDonald Field, the new turf field and stadium that will serve as the new home of the Dee Mack Chiefs.
Once the game gets going at 7 pm, the Chiefs football team will look to keep their recent dominance over their rebuilding, down-the-road rival from Tremont, coached by former Dee Mack player, Zach Zehr. The Turks return 18 starters and expect to be stronger and better this year, coming off a 2-7 season in Zehr’s first year as HFC.
Job Linboom’s Chiefs won it all, 2A state champions, in 2016, but lost in the first round of the IHSA playoffs a year ago to finish 5-5. Dee Mack figures to improve on that outcome with 19 seniors suiting up, a good number for a smallish school.
Pregame show begins at 6:30 pm, featuring my interviews with both head coaches, Linboom and Zehr. Former Illini starting lineman and Peoria Pirates coach Tony Johnson and I call the Heart of Illinois conference opener, with stats guy Tyler Busch. Tom Meredith will be at Dunlap, where the runner up Eagles will be favored against visiting Galesburg. Jason Glick rounds out the Red Zone team, producing from the studio and tracking down the scores of all the area games.
This Friday night, it’s the 2018 debut of the Super Nutrition (on Willow Knolls in Peoria) Red Zone Game of the Week on 95.5, GLO, your home for football and classic rock this fall.