BUCKEYE BONANZA The Kirk Herbstreit Ohio vs. USA
Challenge this weekend pits the state's best teams against national powers in
nine games over two days. The event was the brainchild of Herbstreit- ESPN
analyst, former Ohio State quarterback and 1988 Ohio Player of the Year at
Centerville High-and includes five teams ranked in SI's preseason top 20. On
Saturday, in the marquee matchup, second-ranked Lakeland ( Fla.) takes on No. 10
St. Xavier of Cincinnati.
INDEPENDENCE STREAK Not every top team will be in
Ohio: Sixth-ranked Independence of Charlotte will travel crosstown to face
Class 4A rival Vance this Friday. Independence (3-0) has a 95-game winning
streak and is led by senior quarterback Darryl McFadden (below), who threw for
295 yards in a 55-14 win over Olympic on Sept. 1. But the Patriots will be
tested by Vance (3-1), which two weeks ago upset Butler, then ranked No. 2 in
the state by The Charlotte Observer, 21-20.