Much like a pair of prizefighters, Dublin Coffman High School football coach Mark Crabtree and Hilliard Davidson coach Brian White size each other up before their annual OCC-Central Division showdown.
Both coaches, however, pretty much know what to expect from their longtime rival entering this year's matchup on Friday, Oct. 12, at Coffman.
The Wildcats and Shamrocks have earned at least a share of the last 14 OCC-Central titles since becoming league rivals in 2004.
Davidson has won eight outright titles and Coffman has won four, with the programs sharing the title in 2012. The Wildcats also shared the championship with Upper Arlington in 2008.
Since 1997, Davidson holds a 17-11 edge in the series, but Coffman won 17-14 last year and has a 4-3 advantage in postseason meetings.
"They look similar to me from what they have had in the past," said White, whose team is 6-1 overall and 2-0 in the OCC-Central.
"They have a pretty dynamic quarterback (Ethan Brown) who not only can throw the ball, but he can run with power. We're not big up front defensively, so we'll struggle get him down."
Coffman, which is 7-0 overall and 2-0 in the league, is one of four undefeated teams in the state in Division I. The others are Canton McKinley and Mentor in Region 1 and Cincinnati Colerain in Region 4.
The Shamrocks, who are in Region 2, were ranked sixth in last week's state poll.
"They are the same, typical Davidson team schematically," Crabtree said. "It's all run heavy, but on the other hand, they have attempted to do things a little differently.
"They do some things in a shotgun (formation) sometimes, but by no means are they a spread team. The threat of a pass is there more than in the last couple years, but the fact that they are able to jump into a shotgun (formation) is a new wrinkle."
The Wildcats are coming off a 17-7 league win over Upper Arlington on Oct. 5.
Christian Sweet leads Davidson's rushing attack with 406 yards and two touchdowns on 95 carries. Jordan Hicks has 372 yards rushing and nine touchdowns on 96 carries, and Kalib O'Connor has 311 yards rushing and one score on 93 carries.
"We're doing OK, rolling along trying to stay healthy," White said. "We want to let our defense carry us and just let the offense do enough to keep from putting the defense in tough situations."
The Shamrocks defeated Central Crossing 27-9 on Oct. 5 in league play as Brown completed 11 of 21 passes for 119 yards with two touchdowns and an interception. He also rushed for 43 yards on five carries.
Junior running back Mike Drennen rushed for 93 yards and one score on 16 carries. Craig Smith added 53 yards rushing on nine carries, and Bryce Hostetler had four receptions for 48 yards and a touchdown.
"I certainly don't think we're where we should be just yet," Crabtree said. "We're seven weeks into the season and I don't think we have played a complete game in all three areas of the game."