Week 7 marquee prep football matchups in Baton Rouge include Parkview at U-High _lowres

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- Parkview Baptist quarterback Reginald Hayes hands the ball off to fullback Nelson Smith against John Curtis on Sept. 17 at Parkview.

TCB is slang abbreviation for Taking Care of Business.

Some of Baton Rouge’s top high school football teams want to TCB during the MMW this week.

What’s MMW? It stands for Marquee Matchups Week.

Top-ranked University High (5-1, 3-0) of Class 3A hosts No. 4 Parkview Baptist (4-2, 3-0) in a District 6-3A showdown set for Friday that helps top the list of key games.

The two teams have played four times over the past two seasons, including the Division II select semifinals in 2013 and the Division II title game last fall. U-High has won all four. UHS won that Division I final 46-32 in December.

“You’ve got two football programs that have been successful the last couple of years,” PBS coach Jay Mayet said. “Last year (in the title game) they went to the ground game and pounded out.

“Their personnel is different this year, but you can see (quarterback D.J.) White and the running back (Michael Hollins) get better every week. We have most of our lineup back on offense, and their defense also is similar. The expectation is that it should be like that (title) game.”

The PBS-University won’t be the only pivotal district showdown. Livonia (5-1, 1-0) is ranked 10th in Class 4A. The Wildcats host Plaquemine (3-3, 1-0) in District 6-4A.

Second-ranked Southern Lab (4-2, 2-0) hosts White Castle (4-2, 2-0) in 6-1A action at Southern’s A.W. Mumford Stadium.

And then there are the rivalry games. St. Amant (6-0, 1-0) travels to East Ascension (2-4, 0-1) in District 5-5A, while fifth-ranked Lutcher (5-1, 3-0) travels to No. 8 St. James (5-1, 3-0) to renew a longtime rivalry that is now part of District 9-3A.

There’s also a key game Thursday as Episcopal (5-1, 4-0) hosts Northeast (4-2, 2-1) in District 6-2A. Woodlawn (3-3, 1-0) hosts Tara (0-6, 0-1) in 6-4A also on Thursday.

The Plaquemine-Livonia matchup could ultimately be the most compelling.

Livonia, last year’s Class 3A state champion, moved into the 4A ranks for the first time and has won five straight. Plaquemine has won the last two 6-4A titles and played a challenging predistrict schedule that included two ranked teams. The Green Devils were a 4A semifinalist last fall.

There’s no regular-season history to speak of for Livonia and Plaquemine. But scrimmage matchups two of the past three years offer some familiarity.

“This is the one that you don’t need any motivation for,” Livonia coach Guy Mistretta said. “It’s one I think both teams have had circled on their calendar. Brew’s (former LHS coach David Brewerton now of Zachary) and my first year we scrimmaged them.

“Now we’re in 4A with Plaquemine. We know from experience how strong and physical they are.”

Seventh-ranked Zachary (5-1, 1-0) hosts Denham Springs (4-2, 0-1) in District 5-5A. Central (4-2, 1-0) at Scotlandville (5-1, 0-1) is another notable 5-5A game.


White Castle coach Lamar Thomas said his team’s game with Southern Lab takes an old-school rivalry to a new level.

“The schools played each other through the years and were in a district together years ago,” Thomas said. “We know our work is cut out for us, but it’s good to play one like this. It’s the kind of test and playoff atmosphere you want.”

U-High coach Chad Mahaffey said there are challenges when it comes to playing a familiar foe like Parkview.

“We know what the other wants to do,” Mahaffey said. “I think we both have some people playing in different roles. How do you adjust to that? That’s a big part of it.”