In a season like no other, the Nashville Scrappers find themselves in a position like no other.
They have back-to-back open dates for the second time of the 2020 campaign.
The Scrappers were to have been open Friday, Nov. 13, because of play-in games on the Arkansas Activities Association Class 4A post-season bracket. Then, Waldron canceled the first-round playoff game scheduled for Scrapper Stadium Nov. 20 because of coronavirus concerns.
That means that Nashville won’t play again until Nov. 27, the day after Thanksgiving – a three-week gap since beating Bauxite Nov. 6.
The Scrappers faced a similar situation earlier in the season. They were open Sept. 18 and were to play Arkadelphia the 25th. The Badgers canceled because of Covid-19 and canceled two other games as well.
With that being said, Nashville will play
the winner of this week’s game between Bald Knob and Elkins next Friday, Nov. 27.
The Scrappers are 7-2 overall, 5-1 in District 7-4A. They’re ranked number two behind Shiloh Christian in Class 4A by the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. They’re third in 4A in Rex Nelson’s Road to the Rock Rankings, with Shiloh one and Stuttgart two.
Coach Mike Volarvich said both Bald Knob and Elkins are “teams that have won a bunch of games. We’ll have to wait and see who our opponent is” after Friday night.
Bald Knob is 9-4 overall, 4-3 in conference. Elkins is 7-2, 4-2.
Having the extra time off means the Scrappers “should get some guys healthy. Turner Futrell and Eric Grigsby should be back. They’re two guys who played really well when they were able to play. That’s a positive for us.”
Volarvich said his concern about the open dates “is just the level of conditioning. We’re looking to play a team coming off a game or two while you sat at the house. You can always practice and run sprints to condition, but it doesn’t take the place of conditioning in a game. I hope we have a certain level to carry to the playoffs and maintain that level.”
There is a “fine line between maintaining conditioning and keeping kids healthy and legs fresh,” according to Volarvich. “In a normal week, you have a good feel for that. Add two bye weeks and it becomes even more unknown.”
In typical fashion, the 2020 season will be longer than usual.
Play-in games added an extra week to the playoff schedule in Class 4A. The state championship game has been moved to Dec. 19 at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock.