3 Key Matchups for High School Football, Week 7

It might be hard to get excited about the Vols' impending trip to Athens, Georgia...

But at least you can get revved up about Week 7 action here in East Tennessee.

Here are three such games; the last two on this list will be featured on Friday night on Varsity All Access (11 p.m., WVLT).

Campbell County vs. Powell
Rivalry Thursday
TV: 7:00 p.m. on myVLT

Why it matters: Campbell County hasn't been as on point as the school usually is to start football season, but there's still a ton to play for with region play heating up. The team's only wins have come against two scuffling teams with a combined 2-10 record.

The Cougars (2-3) have run into some bad luck up to this point, too. Who had David Crockett starting the season 6-0, or Campbell County running into a revitalized Gibbs team at the wrong time?

Region rival Powell (5-1) continues to climb the ranks of elite football programs in the area, led by head coach Matt Lowe, who's now in his second stint with the team. Lowe has relied on strong line play on both offense and defense, and has the skill players to make a deep postseason run this year.

Hardin Valley vs. Jefferson County
Friday, 7:30 p.m.
Why it matters:
Jefferson County seems destined for postseason success this season; they've just run into two region powerhouses this year (Bearden and Farragut) en route to a 4-2 record (0-2 in Region 1-6A).

Enter Hardin Valley, a team against whom the Pats might stack up better.

The Hawks (3-2) already have their first region win under the belt, a 51-10 shellacking of Morristown West two weeks ago.

Wes Jones' team is coming off a bye week; and hopefully the starting back seven on defense are well-rested for what should be a great game. Jefferson County has established play-makers in the air and on the ground, and if they're not held in check early, it could be a long night for HVA.

Halls vs. Central
Friday, 7:30 p.m.
Why it matters:
I blinked, and Knox Central became one of the hottest teams in the Knoxville area.

Yes, Bryson Rosser's Bobcats have won four games in a row, averaging a tick more than 36 points per game in that span. The defense hasn't given up more than 20 points this season.

Remember when the Bobcats held Fulton to 18 points on Rivalry Thursday? This team is going places.

Conversely, this doesn't seem like a great time for the Halls Red Devils (2-3) to visit.

Halls has one region win so far (vs. Carter), but sports a hot-and-cold offense that hasn't fared well against other Class 5A teams like West and Powell. Not to mention, senior captain and defensive back Caden Tollett transferred to Alcoa and was ruled eligible to play immediately this week.

A win would be a huge momentum boost for a team that's trying to reach the postseason in Jeremy Bosken's first season as its head coach. Best of luck to them.