Editor’s note: This is a continuation of Kevin Green’s ranking of Claremore’s 2021 football schedule. Part 1 ran in the July 17/18 Weekend Edition.
No. 4 | Pryor
When: Game 10 | Nov. 5
The Tigers finally got over the proverbial hump last season, ending a five-game losing streak to Claremore in an overtime thriller.
We could be in for another exciting game in the regular season finale, for both teams return seven starters on both sides of the ball. Pryor will have the home-field advantage, but Jarrett Hurt’s program has shown the ability to win big games late in the season with a playoff spot on the line.
I wouldn’t be surprised if this one goes into overtime once again.
Last time: Pryor 22, Claremore 21 (2020)
No. 3 | Sapulpa
When: Game 9 | Oct. 29
The Zebras want this one bad.
The Chieftains have been a thorn in Claremore’s side in recent years, owning a three-game winning streak in the series. In 2018 and 2019, the most-recent matchups, Sapulpa outscored the Zebras 76-31.
The Chieftains stumbled down the stretch last season, dropping their final three contests, and if not for a COVID-19 cancellation, Claremore might’ve made that four-consecutive losses.
Sapulpa has six starters back on both sides of the ball this time around, so winning their first game of the series since 2014 won’t be an easy task for the Zebras.
Last time: Sapulpa 49, Claremore 24 (2019)
No. 2 | Tahlequah
When: Game 7 | Oct. 14
The Tigers probably aren’t the second-best team on the Claremore schedule, but the teams seem to always play each other tough (with the exception of last year).
Four of the past five meetings have been decided by no more than 10 points each, with the average margin of victory being 6.8 points per game.
Not to mention neither program has strung together two-consecutive wins in the series since the Zebras’ seven-game streak from 2007-2013. They’ve been alternating victories ever since.
The winner of this game could find itself in contention for a home playoff game.
Last time: Tahlequah 37, Claremore 7 (2020)
No. 1 | Collinsville
When: Game 6 | Oct. 8
The Cardinals are more than just a threat to win District 5A-4 — they could win the whole shebang.
With a changing of the guard at Carl Albert, the winner of five-consecutive Class 5A state titles, Collinsville could swoop in and secure the top spot for itself. With the return of star quarterback Andrew Carney and a host of other talented players, the Cardinals will probably be the best team Claremore sees all season.
Head-to-head, Collinsville has defeated the Zebras by double digits in four of the past five seasons. The Cardinals have the capability of doing that again if Claremore’s offense can’t keep up with Carney and company early.
Last time: Collinsville 34, Claremore 6 (2020)