rivals.com: Pioneer football's first two opponents ranked among top teams in the nation
With star running back Drake Johnson now playing down the street at the University of Michigan, the Pioneer High School football team will be hard pressed to duplicate its 9-3 record, including two playoff victories, in 2011.
Making that task even harder is the Pioneers' nationally-ranked opponents in weeks 1 and 2.
Rivals recently released its list of top 100 high school football teams in the country and ranked No. 98 and No. 74, respectively, are Pioneer's first two opponents, Warren De La Salle and Birmingham Brother Rice.
AnnArbor.com file photo
Pioneer lost to both teams last season back-to-back in the season's opening weeks, but recovered nicely to rattle off nine straight victories before bowing out in the third round of the MHSAA playoffs to Detroit Catholic Central. Helping that cause was Johnson's 2,800 rushing yards and 38 touchdowns.
Working in Pioneer's favor this season will be the fact that both games will be in Ann Arbor. Both of Pioneer's losses came on the road last year.
“The luxury it doesn’t give you is we can’t not be at our best right away. We have to be ready to go week one against the state powers,” Pioneer coach Paul Test said last year of facing the teams to start the season.
- Click here read the full write up on Warren De La Salle, here to read the full write up on Brother Rice.