The Week 6 Wendy’s Game of the Week will be a district showdown between the two undefeated teams left in 5A District 4, the Bishop Kelley Comets and the Claremore Zebras, who've turned things around this season.
"We know we're the underdogs,” said Claremore defensive end Gus Espinosa. “I think we kind of like that. We like playing from behind."
Going into Friday night's matchup with Bishop Kelley, the Zebras are right in the thick of the 5A-4 race. And if they can knock off the perennial power, it would put them in the driver’s seat.
"It's going to be a very physical game on both sides of the ball, probably going to be won in the trenches like most games are," said Zebras’ head coach Jarrett Hurt.
Espinosa says the win would give his team momentum going into next week.
The Zebras know what they're up against, but it’s their first year back in 5A and the team is 4-1 and rolling.
"We got a great team chemistry right now,” said Hurt. “Our kids play hard, they play for each other, and they really get after it on Friday night."
Some of the success this year is thanks to a change in leadership. Hurt is in his first year as head coach of the Zebras and brings with him a faster tempo and lessons that extend beyond the football field.
“It's pretty awesome. He makes sure he definitely turns us into men,” stated Espinosa. “It's not all about football; he makes sure we're on top of it in school. We're not allowed to be late. He treats it like a job. It's not just football.”
Hurt added, "We teach them how to be a man. We teach them how to be accountable, how to be responsible, about how a man would act and react."
But the Zebras do like winning football games, and there’s no question what kind of game they have Friday night.
"They like to line up, foot to foot, and run it down your throat," stated Espinosa.