With several new assistant coaches on the Grandview Heights High School football staff, the scrimmages the team will participate in over the next two weeks could prove to be as important as any during coach Jason Peters' tenure.
Peters, who enters his 11th season with the goal of getting the Bobcats back to the playoffs after they went 6-4 and finished 12th in Division VI, Region 23 last season, plans to have his team practice as many in-game situations as possible during its scrimmages.
That also means Grandview isn't going to hold anything back.
"I don't buy into saving stuff for the first game," Peters said. "We're going to work on the stuff we can do in the scrimmages to see if we can do it or not. We're going to work on things and try to get better. You get some coaches that say, 'I don't show what we have,' but if you only do two things, (teams that view tapes from the scrimmages) are going to get pretty good at stopping those two things.
"In our first scrimmage, we're going to put coaches in the press box. I lost four coaches this year and we need to figure some things out."
There are a slew of scrimmages scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 8, between central Ohio teams, including Grandview's matchup at home against Worthington Christian. The Bobcats' other scrimmages will be held Aug. 11 at home against Briggs and Aug. 17 at North Robinson Colonel Crawford.
Other matchups scheduled for Aug. 8 include a four-team scrimmage at Dublin Coffman that also features Pickerington Central, St. Charles and perennial-power Toledo Central Catholic, a three-team scrimmage at Dublin Jerome that also includes Hilliard Davidson and Kettering Fairmont and Olentangy Orange at home against Pickerington North in a matchup of 2016 playoff teams.
New Hamilton Township coach Mike Savino takes a philosophical view regarding what he'll look for from his team during scrimmages.
The Rangers, who have made three consecutive Division III playoff appearances, visit Orange on Aug. 12 for a scrimmage that also will include Grove City and play host to Licking Valley on Aug. 18.
"We're asking the guys to get out fast, and once the ball carrier is down we're asking the ball carrier to get back up quickly and show that kind of toughness," Savino said. "We want them to get back and hustle into the next play. We're watching their body language to see whether they're hustling. We're going to be running through our schemes, but it's those smaller details that we're looking at. We're trying to drive home the point that the results will take care of themselves."
Another matchup Aug. 8 will pit a pair of veteran coaches when Dublin Scioto plays host to Westerville North. The Irish are coached by Karl Johnson, who is entering his 18th season, and the Warriors are led by former Buckeye Valley and Big Walnut coach Scott Wetzel, who is entering his second season.
North had gone winless in five of the previous seven seasons before finishing 3-7 a year ago.
Now used to what he expects, Wetzel is looking forward to seeing how his players respond during the team's scrimmages, which also include matchups Aug. 12 at Whetstone and Aug. 18 at Whitehall.
"The kids know a little more of where we're coming from (this year)," Wetzel said. "We've got three scrimmages this year after having two last year. We always try to go with three even if that first one is just a small set number of plays to get something on film. It lets them see themselves against an opponent. You add a few more game scenarios in each one. The first two really are about evaluating personnel. By the third scrimmage, we hope we've made a lot of the decisions and we'll try to play with who we think our starters are for a half."
Nearly every team in central Ohio has a final scrimmage Aug. 17 or 18 that most view as a dress rehearsal for the following week's regular-season opener. Teams open Aug. 24 or 25.
@UlreyThisWeekAt a glance
Below is a list of scrimmages involving high school football teams throughout the ThisWeek coverage area (info subject to change; home team listed first):
Big Walnut vs. Mount Vernon (10 a.m.); Canal Winchester vs. Zanesville (10 a.m.); Clayton Northmont vs. Hilliard Bradley (10 a.m.); Danville vs. Reigning Sports Academy (6 p.m.); Dublin Coffman vs. Pickerington Central, St. Charles and Toledo Central Catholic (10 a.m.); Dublin Jerome vs. Hilliard Davidson and Kettering Fairmont (10 a.m.); Dublin Scioto vs. Westerville North (10 a.m.); Grandview vs. Worthington Christian (9 a.m.); Granville vs. Thornville Sheridan (10 a.m.); Johnstown vs. Marion-Franklin (10 a.m.); Lancaster vs. Olentangy (10 a.m.); Linden-McKinley vs. Africentric (6 p.m.); Mansfield Senior vs. DeSales (10 a.m.); Newark vs. Zanesville Maysville and Buckeye Valley (10 a.m.); Olentangy Orange vs. Pickerington North (6 p.m.); Reynoldsburg vs. Hartley (6 p.m.); Watkins Memorial vs. Sparta Highland (10 a.m.); Worthington Kilbourne vs. Teays Valley (9 a.m.)
Central Crossing vs. Westerville South (9 a.m.); Upper Arlington vs. Beechcroft (10 a.m.); Whitehall vs. Duncan Falls Philo (7 p.m.)
Franklin Heights vs. Watkins Memorial (5:30 p.m.); Grandview vs. Briggs (6 p.m.); Northland vs. Harvest Prep (7 p.m.); Northridge vs. Millersport and Williamsport Westfall (6 p.m.); Thomas Worthington vs. Buckeye Valley (10 a.m.)
Canal Winchester vs. Dresden Tri-Valley (10 a.m.); Centerville vs. Dublin Jerome, Hamilton and Cincinnati Mount Healthy (9 a.m.); Columbus Academy vs. Heath (10 a.m.); Delaware vs. Mount Vernon (10 a.m.); DeSales vs. Dublin Coffman (10 a.m.); Dublin Scioto vs. Hilliard Davidson (9 a.m.); Gahanna vs. Westland and Worthington Kilbourne (9 a.m.); Grove City Christian vs. Centennial and Columbus South (10 a.m.); Hilliard Darby vs. Pickerington Central (10 a.m.); Independence vs. Columbus East (6 p.m.); Lakewood vs. Zanesville West Muskingum (10 a.m.); Lakewood St. Edward vs. Olentangy (11 a.m.); Lancaster vs. Johnstown (10 a.m.); Licking Heights vs. Big Walnut (10 a.m.); Licking Valley vs. Zanesville Maysville (10 a.m.); Linden-McKinley vs. Madison Plains (10 a.m.); London vs. Central Crossing, Granville and Mifflin (10 a.m.); Marysville vs. Hilliard Bradley (10 a.m.); New Albany vs. Olentangy Liberty (10 a.m.); Newark vs. Sparta Highland (10 a.m.); Newark Catholic vs. Ready and Fairfield Union (10 a.m.); Olentangy Orange vs. Grove City and Hamilton Township (10 a.m.); Reynoldsburg vs. Troy (10 a.m.); Upper Arlington vs. Pickerington North and Watterson (10 a.m.); Westerville Central vs. Groveport (10 a.m.); Whetstone vs. Westerville North (10 a.m.); Zanesville vs. Walnut Ridge (11 a.m.)
Bexley vs. Watkins Memorial (5:30 p.m.); Dresden Tri-Valley vs. Licking Heights (7 p.m.); Dublin Jerome vs. Hartley (6 p.m.); Hilliard Bradley vs. DeSales (6 p.m.); Marion-Franklin vs. Linden-McKinley (5 p.m.); New Albany vs. Olentangy Orange (7 p.m.); Reynoldsburg vs. Groveport (6 p.m.); Westerville Central at Dublin Coffman (10 a.m.); Westerville South vs. Pickerington North (7 p.m.)
Africentric vs. Mount Gilead (6 p.m.); Beechcroft vs. Columbus South (6 p.m.); Big Walnut vs. Teays Valley (7 p.m.); Centennial vs. Worthington Christian (7 p.m.); Centerburg vs. Columbus Academy (6 p.m.); Cincinnati St. Xavier vs. Gahanna (7 p.m.); Eastmoor Academy vs. Mifflin (7 p.m.); Grove City vs. Worthington Kilbourne (7 p.m.); Grove City Christian vs. Columbus Crusaders (7:30 p.m.); Hamilton Township vs. Licking Valley (7 p.m.); Harvest Prep vs. Independence (7 p.m.); Hilliard Davidson vs. Findlay (6 p.m.); Huber Heights Wayne vs. Upper Arlington (7 p.m.); Johnstown vs. Caledonia River Valley and St. Charles (3:30 p.m.); Lakewood vs. Fairbanks (7 p.m.); Lancaster vs. Central Crossing (7 p.m.); Lewistown Indian Lake vs. Reigning Sports Academy (7 p.m.); Logan vs. Canal Winchester (7 p.m.); Marion Harding vs. Delaware (7 p.m.); Marysville vs. Hilliard Darby (6 p.m.); Mount Vernon vs. Heath (6 p.m.); Nelsonville-York vs. Ready (7 p.m.); Newark Catholic vs. Granville (7 p.m.); North Robinson Colonel Crawford vs. Grandview (6 p.m.); Northland vs. Franklin Heights (7 p.m.); Northridge vs. Berne Union (7 p.m.); Olentangy Liberty vs. Dublin Scioto (7 p.m.); Pickerington Central vs. Olentangy (7 p.m.); Walnut Ridge vs. Columbus East (6 p.m.); Watterson vs. Tiffin Columbian (7 p.m.); Westland vs. Newark (7 p.m.); Whetstone vs. Thomas Worthington (7 p.m.); Whitehall vs. Westerville North (7 p.m.)