JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - High school football fans in northeast Florida, sit back and relax. Friday night's semifinal matchup between Bolles and Yulee has just about everything you could ask for.
Derrick Henry, the national all-time career rushing leader, will lead his Hornets against the defending state champ Bulldogs in a class 4A state semifinal at Yulee at 7:30 p.m.
For Bolles, the game plan is simple: Try to stop Henry, a 6-foot-3, 243-pound running back and Alabama commit.
The bulldogs have a guy on their side who's also tough to stop: Head coach Corky Rogers, who has 10 state championships and is 12-0 in state semifinal games.
Yulee coaches and players say they like the idea of playing this game at home. Head coach Bobby Ramsay admitted that if he had to play against Bolles, he wanted to do it at his team's stadium. His hornets will now get that chance.
"(They're) extremely well-coached, extremely disciplined football team," Ramsay said of Bolles. "You know what you're going to get, you know what you're going to have to do. You got to be a fundamental, disciplined team if you're going to win."
Expect a healthy dose of Henry, who has 104 carries in his two playoff games this season.
"We need to play well," Rogers said. "You make a tackle on (Henry), just think about it, you tackled a guy that made more yards than anybody in history. Use it as a motivation that way."
Several other local teams will also be in action as the playoffs continue.
Fletcher hosts Apopka in an 8A regional final. Columbia travels to Navarre and Gainesville hosts Armwood, both 6A regional finals.
In 5A, Bishop Kenny hosts Godby, also a regional final. And University Christian heads to Warner Christian in a class 2A state semifinal game. UC (11-1) is seeking its first state title since 1994.
In Georgia, Camden County and Ware County will play in third-round playoff games as they look to advance to the state semifinals.
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