Two local players to participate; Kickoff 7 p.m. Saturday
For football fans, it’s that time again.
Bayou Bowl time.
At 7 p.m. Saturday, the 17th edition of the anticipated Greater Houston Football Coaches Association Bayou Bowl game featuring dozens of Houston-area graduates from local high school programs, will kick off at Challenger Stadium in League City.
The East, winners of a 37-36 nail biter last year, will aim for two wins in a row after the West ran off four straight triumphs to kickstart the latest version of the bowl.
Local graduates – Robert E. Lee’s Montrel Motton and Goose Creek Memorial’s Greg Edwards III – will play for the East and both are looking for the ideal swan song to their high school careers before moving on to the college game.
Edwards is set to play for Lamar University and Motton is McMurry University bound.
Motton will play wide receiver and potentially some safety for this squad and leaves Lee following a pivotal 4-6 season that may have helped head coach Tim Finn’s program turn the corner.
“I feel that the seniors left the upperclassmen on a good note,” Motton said. “We tried to play up to the hype and I had a great time and enjoyed these guys. That’s one for the books and I wish I could play with them again.
“It feels good to be recognized as an outstanding receiver. I have been watching the Bayou Bowl since I was younger.”
Edwards moves on after GCM went through a 2-8 season and will use the bowl game as a way to put a positive wrap on his prep career.
“I feel very blessed and honored to play in the game,” Edwards said. “The coaches pick players from a lot of teams in the area and I was picked to be one of those players. I know some of the players. This gives me closure and I hope to go out with a win this week.
Edwards will play inside linebacker for the East – which he is expecting to play at Lamar – after being on the outside for the Patriots.
“It won’t be that hard,” Edwards said. “I don’t think it will be a challenge since I played it before in junior high and my freshman year. I want to start and then my goal is to lead in sacks and get 10 tackles.”
Dick Olin, the organizer of the bowl and one who has been around since the inception of the game, is proud of the path the event has taken.
“We think it’s a first-class operation,” Olin said. “We are all volunteers and the money that we generate goes toward scholarships.”
This past school year, the GHFCA gave out 16 awards, each valued at $1,500 to male and female athletes in the greater Houston area that did not receive an athletic scholarship.
The East team will be coached by the staffs at Clear Falls and Clear Lake high schools while leading the West will be staffs from Richmond Foster and Alief Taylor.
Olin expects another good game after last year’s “controversial ending” where the West missed a two-point conversion that would have won the game.
“There are a lot of good players in Houston. Who’s going to win? I have no idea,” Olin said.
The game will be televised on ABC Channel 13 and streamed live on the channel’s website at https://abc13.com/sports/.