Two of the nation’s winningest highschool football packages are set to collide at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium this yr. Three current Ohio High School Athletic Association state champions might be there, too, as a part of an enormous, one-day football occasion in Massillon.
After weeks of rumors concerning the two groups lastly taking part in one another, the Massillon Tigers will play Valdosta (Ga.) to kick off the 2023 season in the inaugural Northeast Ohio vs. America Showcase, which is ready for 7 pm, Aug. 18. The sport is at Massillon’s Paul Brown Tiger Stadium and might be a part of a four-game occasion that day.
The first sport will kick off at midday and the opposite three video games will characteristic three different Ohio powerhouses — St. Edward, Glenville and Hoban. Opponents for the opposite three Ohio faculties might be introduced in the weeks to come.
Northeast Ohio Big School High School Football is orchestrating the showcase. That group’s founder, Matt Hankins, confirmed the occasion and the Massillon-Valdosta sport.
“Our purpose is to create essentially the most particular weekend in the historical past of HSFB,” Hankins texted to the Repository.
Despite the years of dialogue between Massillon and Valdosta about scheduling one another, this would be the first time ever that the 2 elite packages might be on the identical area collectively. Valdosta is No. 1 in the nation in all-time highschool football wins, whereas Massillon is No. 4.
Hankins envisions the occasion as a approach to promote 4 of the highest groups in Northeast Ohio on an enormous stage in opposition to top-tier opponents from across the nation. Hankins’ nonprofit group is a recruiting model that gives promotional content material devoted to highschool football prospects in Northeast Ohio.
“To give you the option to shine an enormous gentle on Massillon Ohio, Northeast Ohio, (and) Ohio, in addition to all of the packages collaborating, is tremendous thrilling,” Hankins texted. “There are so many nice packages and coaches right here in Northeast Ohio, and our model of ball is particular. To give you the option to showcase the depths of expertise, youngsters that go away each ounce on the sphere, and passionate communities retains me up at evening with pleasure! This is about our previous, current and future.”
Using figures from the NFL’s Play Football web site, Valdosta’s win complete stands at 941 getting into 2023. Louisville (Ky.) Male is subsequent in all-time wins with 937, adopted by Mayfield (Ky.) at 933 and Massillon at 932.
Valdosta calls itself “Titletown USA” and owns six nationwide championships and 24 state titles. Valdosta went 8-3 final season, dropping in the primary spherical of its state playoffs. The Wildcats are guided by Shelton Felton, who was elevated to head coach after being the interim coach in the course of the 2021 season.
Massillon, proprietor of 24 state ballot titles, is coming off a 12-2 season and a visit to the Division II state semifinals. Head coach Nate Moore surpassed Paul Brown’s file for many wins in program historical past final season. Massillon has but to launch its 2023 schedule.
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Hoban defeated Massillon in that state semifinal on his approach to a second straight state runner-up end. The Knights final gained a state title in 2020 (defeating Massillon) and have gained 5 complete since 2015.
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St. Edward and Glenville gained state championships in Division I and IV, respectively, this previous December in Canton. For St. Ed’s it was his second straight state title, along with his solely lack of 2022 coming at Massillon to the Tigers throughout Week 5 of the common season.
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Hankins’ “purpose is to put successful packages vs successful packages.”
“As highschool football on the highest degree continues to development in direction of college-like football, we should proceed to development in that path with different high states,” he texted.
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