For the second straight week, Rummel will be in the national spotlight.
This time, the stage will be some 1,300 miles away.
Rummel (3-0) plays perennial power Don Bosco Prep (2-1) in Ramsey, New Jersey, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday.
Although the game won’t be televised like last week’s ESPN2 game against Wayne County (Mississippi), it’s still a game that will be monitored closely by those across the country.
MaxPreps lists the game as one of the top 10 high school football games in the country this weekend.
Rummel enters the game with lofty rankings, ranked No. 1 in The New Orleans Advocate Large School Super, No. 1 in the Louisiana Sports Writers Association Class 5A rankings, and No. 14 nationally by MaxPreps.
It’s just the third time Rummel has traveled outside of Louisiana for a game and the second time since Roth took over.
Rummel is 2-0 in those games outside of the state borders, both in Mississippi.
But this week’s game is much further away for the Raiders, who flew early Friday morning, making things a little different than just getting on a bus and taking a ride across town.
“It’s been several weeks in the making, but you had to talk about it a lot with the players just to organize it,” Rummel coach Jay Roth said. “It’s been different. I’ve never had to do anything like it.”
While it’s been different for Rummel, it’s been all too familiar for Don Bosco Prep, winners of 14 state titles. It will be the 32nd game the Ironmen, ranked No. 3 in New Jersey, have played against an out-of-state opponent. They are an impressive 27-4 in those games.
Only one of those four losses have come at home, against national power Miami Central.
Bosco is 2-0 this season against out-of-state teams this season (55-21 over St. Joseph’s (Pennsylvania) Prep and 31-14 over Archbishop Moeller, Ohio). They also have a game against a team from Nevada on the schedule this year.
“They are well coached, and they have unbelievable size,” Roth said. They average 6-3, 270 across the front. They look like just mean, physical kids, and they play a very physical brand of football. You really don’t see any weaknesses.”
Quarterback Chase Fourcade, who has thrown for 502 yards and six touchdowns, and running back Israel Tucker (234 yards, three TDs) leads Rummel offensively. Defensive lineman Briston Guidry, an Arkansas commitment, and cornerback Kristian Fulton head up the defense.
Don Bosco is led by defensive end Brandon Simon, who has committed to Iowa and cornerback Tyrone Hill, a Maryland commitment.
Senior running back Malik Bakker and quarterback Tommy DeVito lead the Ironmen offense. Bakker has rushed for more than 320 yards in the past two weeks.
It’s a challenge that Roth welcomed when he was asked to play in the national showcase.
“We felt like we had a team this year that could compete,” Roth said. “We break the season up into three seasons and this is the end of our first season. We get to put this one behind us Sunday and then get ready for the second season, the Catholic League. But we definitely want to represent the state well.”