Sep 27, 2012 - By Craig Blumenshine, Staff WriterKickoff is at 7 p.m Friday at Wolverine Field. Buffalo stands at 1-4 on the season and 0-1 in the Class 3-A East conference, while Riverton is 2-3 overall and 1-0 in the league standings.
Although Riverton Wolverine head football coach Jeremy McCormick won't say that this Friday's homecoming game at Wolverine Field against the Buffalo Bison is his team's defining game of the season, he does agree that a Wolverine win would be a huge step in accomplishing a team goal of hosting a home Class 3-A playoff game.
With the weather slated to be nearly perfect, the Wolverines (2-3,1-0 Class 3-A East) and Bison (1-4, 0-1 Class 3-A East) will kick it off at 7 p.m.
"(This game) is one more rung in the ladder that we want to climb this year," McCormick said.
It may be the first time that one of McCormick's teams may be considered a favorite entering a game with the Bison, who have stumbled early under new head coach Rob Hammond.
Hammond succeeded Pat Lynch, who had been the Bison head coach for 14 years but was asked to resign his coaching responsibilities mid-season prior to last year's high school playoffs.
Lynch is reported to have given members of his football team a "hurt feelings report," a letter that was deemed objectionable to some and put the Buffalo football program in the national news spotlight.
Riverton enters Friday's game on a two-game win streak and, for the second week, is ranked fifth in statewide media polling behind Powell, Star Valley, Douglas and Green River.
"One thing that we have seen in the film is that they turn the ball over and that is something they have not done in the past," McCormick said.
The Bison have turned the ball over eight times so far this season (five fumbles and three interceptions) compared to Riverton's five turnovers (one fumble and four interceptions).
"They are still big and still physical, and we expect them to come in and play that way," McCormick said.
The Wolverines expect the Bison, with their 200-yards-per-game rushing attack, to concentrate on moving the ball on the ground.
When Riverton has the ball, McCormick believes his team will face a 4-3 defense.
"Their defense is pretty sound.
They play a lot of cover two, and we think our passing game will be there this week," McCormick said.
As important as Riverton's game is Friday, a bigger game in Class 3-A football this season may be in Powell for a battle of the two top-ranked teams. Star Valley travels to Park County to battle the Panthers. Both Class 3-A West teams are undefeated heading into Friday's contest.
The Wolverines will be as healthy as they have been in weeks heading into the Buffalo matchup. McCormick reports no significant injuries.
"We are ready to go," McCormick said.
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