The spotlight will shine brightest in Sayville, Dix Hills and Lindenhurst this week. Three terrific high school football games will feature some of Long Island's best quarterbacks.
They may not be all air-it-out affairs. Sayville's record-breaking junior quarterback Jack Coan showed he was more than a pure passer when he rushed for four touchdowns in a season-opening win over Westhampton. Memo to opposing coaches -- 'if you take away Coan's passing lanes, he can run all over you.'
The Golden Flashes (1-0) will host Miller Place (1-0) in a Suffolk III game at 2 p.m. Saturday. Miller Place quarterback Stephen Farrell is ready for an aerial show. He threw for four scores in a 49-35 win over Kings Park. Farrell threw three early TD passes as the Panthers opened a 35-6 halftime lead. Coan, who has 62 career TD passes, threw for a Long Island record 40 TDs last year.
Beautiful weather is also expected for Friday night's Suffolk I clash between Connetquot and Lindenhurst, the defending Suffolk D-I champion. Bulldogs quarterback Ryan Hofmann found Steven Ramirez for three touchdowns in a win over Ward Melville. The running of Joe Barber and the hard-hitting of Gino Bonagura will make it tough on the visiting T-Birds.
Connetquot quarterback Jack Cassidy, who threw for four scores and ran for another in a win over Patchogue-Medford, also has a talented backfield led by halfbacks Jack Richardson and Jack Spataro.
Hofmann and Cassidy could throw as many as 40 passes each Friday night.
MacArthur (1-0) at Westbury (0-1), Friday, 7 p.m.: The Generals are coming off a big 38-21 opening-day win over Wantagh. Quarterback Jimmy Kelleher threw for two scores and Vin Martino ran for 184 yards in a balanced attack. Westbury will have its hands full unless the Green Dragons can get halfback Shalike Merchant untracked.
Syosset (1-0) at Massapequa (1-0), Saturday, 2 p.m.: Massapequa ran all over Herricks in its opener. But Syosset is the defending Long Island Class I champion and the Braves had a big opening day win over Baldwin. Syosset quarterback Will Hogan will air it out to wide receiver Mike Elardo to try and offset the Chiefs' high-powered running game.
Carey (1-0) at Garden City (1-0), Saturday, 2 p.m.: Carey is on a 25-game win streak and the two-time Long Island Class II champions have all the motivation in the world when they play at traditionally strong Garden City. The Seahawks and quarterback Mike Catanese, who threw for four scores and ran for another, will go head-to-head with speedy Garden City signal caller Tim Schmelzinger and halfback Brian Haeffner.
Newfield (1-0) at Half Hollow Hills West (1-0), Saturday, 1:30 p.m.: The talk is all about Hills West and its three-headed offensive monster in quarterback Anthony Lucarelli, halfback Alex Filacouris and fullback Lucas DiGiorgi -- three of Long Island's top players. But Newfield is gritty and quarterback Ryan Klemm, who threw for three touchdowns last week, is out to prove the Wolverines are for real with wide receiver Elijah Riley and transfer Jelani Greene. This could be entertaining and a high-scoring affair.
Shoreham-Wading River at Babylon, Saturday at Islip, 2 p.m.: Babylon was the talk of Suffolk IV for a decade. Now the Panthers find themselves as a big underdog against Long Island's defending Class IV champion from Shoreham-Wading River and its vaunted defense led by end Ethan Wiederkehr.
Plainedge at Bethpage, Saturday, 2 p.m.: Both teams lit up the scoreboard in the opener in convincing wins. This is one of Long Island's hard-hitting backyard brawls for street corner bragging rights. This game is usually decided by turnovers.