By Frank Vajcner
Time to head over to Herr Road for a look at Monroe. The Trojans appeared to take several steps forward before petering out at the end to finish 4-3. Will the schedule allow for progress to continue?
Aug 26: Roseville
Sept 3: Ypsilanti Lincoln
Sept 10: Ann Arbor Skyline
Sept 17: @ Saline
Sept 24: @ Ann Arbor Huron
Oct 1: Bedford
Oct 8: @ Dexter
Oct 15: Ann Arbor Pioneer
Oct 22: Riverview
Gut-Check Game: at Saline. I’ve said it before in this series, but it bears repeating: the Hornets have had a stranglehold on the SEC-Red since 2014, winning seven straight conference championships, and 38 consecutive conference games. They have also beaten the Trojans 11 straight times since 2012. If Nick Notario and company want to get over the hump, pulling off an upset of the Hornets would be a great place to start. Plus it’s not inconceivable that both teams could be 3-0 when they meet in Week 4.
Trap Game: at Ann Arbor Huron. Since the River Rats have gotten out of the SEC Red basement, they get to move up on the blog. They went 3-3 last season, and gave Saline a fight in the playoffs. This game also falls a week after the Trojans visit Saline, and a week before a rivalry game with Bedford.
Snoozer: Ann Arbor Pioneer went 0-6 last season, and was outscored 194-43. Enough said.
Non-Conference Challenge: The Trojans will open the season with Roseville, and close with Riverview. The Panthers went 4-3 last season, while the Pirates went 7-1. Both opponents will come to Bunkelman Field.
Notable: Ypsi Lincoln and Dexter are new members of the SEC Red this season, after being in the SEC White. The last time the Trojans faced the Dreadnaughts was 2017, when they defeated them 56-14. The last time the Trojans faced the Railsplitters was in 2014, when the Trojans won 33-28…The meeting with Riverview is the first since 1979, when both schools were members of the now-defunct Great Lakes 8 Conference…This will be the first-ever meeting with Roseville on the gridiron.
Thoughts from Frank: Even with the SEC-Red getting much tougher, the Trojans did not shy away from scheduling tougher opponents. If they can get through the first three weeks unbeaten, the showdown with Saline will be the first huge test. The October slate features a road trip to Dexter, as well as a visit from Riverview. On paper, the Trojans should be able to make the playoffs based on their strength of schedule.
Thoughts from Gary: LOVE the week 9 matchup vs Riverview. This game could mean a lot as far as making the playoffs and/or playing home playoff games. Unless the MHSAA site is incorrect, the schedule shows only 3 road games. Given the SEC and the distance from school to school, this is no small thing. Herr Rd suits the Trojans just fine.
Thoughts from Chris: Weeks 4 and 5 jump off of the schedule to me. Going to Saline and then to the ever-improving Ann Arbor Huron in back-to-back weeks could determine whether the Trojans play post-season games this year.