By Ben Enos
Sunday, August 30th, 2009 at 11:20 am in East Bay Football.
Today, I’ll take a look at the upcoming Battle at the Capital and the effect it may (or may not) have on future Sac vs. Bay showcases.
With the Battle at the Capital kicking off this year, will it be able to gain enough momentum to become as highly regarded as the Herbstreit Challenge and other showcases throughout the country in years to come?
I really enjoy the idea of a day full of good football games, because I think it lets fans get a chance to see a good number of teams that they wouldn’t normally get to see. For instance, I’ve never seen Granite Bay or Del Oro play, and I’m excited that I get to see them take on quality opponents on Sept. 12 at Folsom High.
That said, I know that event organizers (and even organizers for the now-cancelled West Coast Classic) are working on getting some even bigger-name schools into next year’s event. I think that attendance will be pretty good at the inaugural edition in two weeks, so I’m thinking that should give big name teams more incentive to come and play.
I think the Sac vs. Bay rivalries are a good start. I think ultimately, as someone who’s been to the last two state championship weekends, I’d love to start seeing teams from Southern California come up to play NorCal teams. I think both Sac schools and Bay Area schools would benefit greatly from that kind of competition.
Say what you want about De La Salle, but I’ve always appreciated that it has always pursued an aggressive schedule. We’ve seen the Spartans take on a Mark Sanchez-led Mission Viejo squad, an Evangel Christian team led by Chargers RB Jacob Hester, and now a Lakeland team that has multiple athletes headed to Division I schools. I like that big-game atmosphere and I know that fans do too.
So, I hope the Battle at the Capital is successful. I hope it stimulates enough interest to keep it going for several years to come. I’ll be interested to see who signs up for next year, because I’d be willing to bet that this event will keep growing as it rolls along.