Prairie View (2-0) at Wilkinson County Christian (0-2), Friday, 7 p.m.
Two of Prairie View's four losses over the past two seasons have come at the hands of Wilkinson County Christian. Prairie View gets another shot at the Rams Friday at 7:30 p.m. in Woodville, Mississippi.
WCCA overcame an early 14-0 deficit to edge the homestanding Spartans 20-14 en route to capturing the 2015 state championship. Last year, the Rams cruised to a 34-14 decision in Woodville.
In contrast to the previous two meetings, the Spartans (2-0) comes into Friday night's game as the favorite. A young WCCA squad is off to a slow start with losses to Centreville (36-6) and Glenbrook (24-14).
Though both teams are under new head coaches this season, Prairie View's Bo Barton is well-versed in the recent history between the two schools.
"The advantage they have is they have beaten Prairie View the last two years," Barton said. "We're trying to erase that WCCA curse they have on us. I talked to their coach (Wednesday). He wasn't cocky, but he was confident. I'm sure he feels like they have an edge there."
Barton says the Ramsalso have the size advantage over the Spartans.
"I know this, they are bigger than us, and they have some good athletes" Barton said. "They were a lot better in Week 2 than they were in Week 1. I'm sure they are grinding every day. It's going to be a battle."
Barton is interested in seeing how his team responds to its first long road trip of the season.
"We have a three-hour bus trip," Barton said. "Throw in the weather, and there are a lot of things we are going to have to handle properly to be in the right frame of mind to play. The biggest thing we have to be concerned about is ourselves. We don't need to give them too much credit, but we have to make sure we respect them. Those are the things that concern us."
Both teams are short on numbers. Prairie View carries 20 players, while the Ramslist only 17 on their roster.
"One thing I have learned about the MAIS is until September 19 (the cutoff date for adding transfer players to the roster), you may see one team one week, and one team the next," Barton said. "You never know who anybody is going to have from week to week."
Prairie View has yet to be seriously tested in wins over Union Christian (36-12) and Christian Home Educators Fellowship (42-6) in last week's home opener.
Sophomore quarterback Hayes Crockett is coming off perhaps the best game of his young career after completing 10-of-14 passes for 220 yards and five touchdowns against CHEF. Layton Woodard and Kentrell Spencer caught two touchdown passes apiece for the Spartans, and Tanner Caldwell added added a receiving and a rushing TD.
Prairie View's starting defense has yet to be scored upon through the first two games. UCA's scores came off of a fumble recovery in the end zone and a kickoff return, while CHEF hit a long pass against the reserves.
Linebackers Austin Carroll, Jacob Farrar and Blake Ray lead the Spartans defensively.
Returning home for the next two, the Spartans face Acadiana Home School on Friday, Sept. 8, and Riverfield on Sept. 15.