Even though the 2012 high school football season officially wrapped Saturday with the playing of the annual Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas, next year is beginning to heat up.
After being forced to scramble to fill out its schedule, the Richmond Senior administration is doing a fine job of doing just that in a big way.
Earlier this month, coach Paul Hoggard announced the Raiders would open the season against Rocky River before hitting the coast to take on Myrtle Beach (S.C.) in The Derrick Law Firm Carolinas Kickoff Clash.
In addition, Jack Britt and Richmond agreed to renew their rivalry, while continuing to battle its neighbor to the west, Anson.
Richmond athletic director Kevin Mabe and Hoggard weren’t done making next year’s nonconference slate one of the toughest in recent memory.
Tuesday night, Charlotte Observer’s Langston Wertz reported Butler and Richmond have agreed to a two-year deal. In a text message Tuesday afternoon, Mabe said the agreement between the two schools was not completed. Later in the day, Mabe added a contract was sent to Butler athletic director Courtney Paschal Monday but he hasn’t received a signed copy back as of press time.
If the deal is finalized, Richmond goes from playing the likes of Sun Valley and West Forsyth to going toe-to-toe with some of the best teams in the state.
The five teams the Raiders are slated to face before the start of the Southeastern Conference play were a combined 48-18 last season, a winning percentage of 72 percent. Toss out Anson’s 3-8 mark and Rocky River, Myrtle Beach, Jack Britt and Butler went 45-10 (82 percent).
And there is still one spot left to fill on the calendar.
Even if Hoggard and Mabe were to schedule a team which failed to record a victory, the winning percentage of next year’s nonconference slate (60 percent) would top this year’s (49 percent) by a wide margin.
Despite the fact it is December and kickoff is still eight months away, the nonconference matchups should have Raider Nation excited about next year.
— Sports editor Shawn Stinson can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 14, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.