SIDELINE OBSERVATIONS: The 2013 football season is upon us

Published: Tuesday, August 13, 2013 at 04:33 PM.

It's hard to believe the 2013 high school football season is a little more than two weeks away.

Friday night, Baker School will host Meet the Gators Night and Crestview High School's Jack Foster Stadium will rock with Meet the Bulldogs Night, which is actually a night to meet all the Crestview teams from youth leagues up to Crestview varsity.

The Kickoff Classics will be played a week from Friday. If you want to see Baker, you'll have to make a trip west on Highway 4 to Jay. If you want to see the Bulldogs, get on Highway 90 and head to Pace.

The 2013 regular season opens Aug. 30 as the Bulldogs travel to Milton to take on the Panthers and the Gators are at home against Graceville.

This could be a strong season for Baker and Crestview. The Gators look to return to the playoffs for the first time since 2008. And the Bulldogs seek their first playoff appearance since 2010.

The Gators, who have won an Okaloosa County-best four state championships and 29 playoff games, haven't won a playoff game since 2001. Crestview hasn't won a playoff game since beating St. Augustine 20-10 in the Class 3A state semifinals in 2002.

Crestview plays in the new District 1-7A this year, along with Tate and Niceville. If the Bulldogs beat Tate on Oct. 18 in the district opener, they will probably make the playoffs.

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