Can football season be nearing?

It doesn’t seem possible, but football season will soon be here.

Didn’t the Philadelphia Eagles just take down the mighty New England Patriots a couple of months ago in the Super Bowl?

You know for sure that footballs will soon be filling the air when National Football League teams begin their training camps.

And college teams will soon begin their preseason drills, with the high school teams to begin not long after that.

Speaking of high schools, the newly reorganized schedule (brought on primarily by 8-man man football) will be felt in Upper Peninsula circles.

Reshuffling in leagues took away such time-honored rivalries as Iron Mountain-Kingsford and Negaunee-Marquette, which is hard to believe.

Our local schools will also have a different look schedule-wise.

Calumet will be facing Iron Mountain, Negaunee and Gwinn, although the Miners have been a familiar foe.

Hancock will also meet Iron Mountain, Negaunee and Gwinn.

Lake Linden-Hubbell’s schedule is also radically different, the Lakes opening the season with Norway and Ishpeming, and later facing West Iron County.

Speaking of the Copper Kings and Bulldogs, those two rivals return a lot of talent and likely will battle for league honors all season.

Calumet will have virtually the entire team back —- including the talented Ojala boys —- one that reached the state quarterfinals.

Hancock also is rich in returnees and will use its “fast-break” offense again with junior quarterback triggerman Colton Salani returning.

The Lakes, who surprised a lot of people last season by finishing strong and qualifying for the playoffs, face longer odds this fall after losing several key seniors.

But you can never count out a LL-H team in football and they will have promising junior quarterback Carter Crouch back.

The college season locally should also be interesting.

Michigan Tech will look to rebound after a sub-par showing in 2017 under first-year coach Steve Olson. The Huskies return a lot of lettermen, including all-GLIAC lineman Cody Goldsworthy (L’Anse).

The toughest job perhaps facing any team in Michigan belongs to interim Finlandia University coach Travis Wiltzius.

The Lions enter their first season in the tough Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association with lots of question marks.

The major question could be whether the school can come up with the numbers to compete in the MIAA, a league with lots of tradition.

And then there’s the Michigan-Michigan State rivalry, which should be very interesting again. Both teams have talented squads, but UM coach Jim Harbaugh is under the gun to win this season.

The Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers are also lurking, but the No. 1 question in the NFC North is whether Packers QB Aaron Rodgers can stay healthy.

It’s that time again folks.


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