The Bee's Joe Davidson previews five notable games (all games between 7-7:30 p.m. unless noted):
No. 7 Grant (4-2) at No. 2 Elk Grove (6-0)
Outlook: It's always a rumble when these teams play, dating back to playoff games in the 1980s. The winner could go on to take the Delta Valley Conference championship with defending champ Franklin having lost to Grant 30-20 behind two TieNeal Martin interception returns for scores. Grant has played the more challenging schedule, with losses to No. 5 Del Oro (38-35, double overtime) and then-No. 4 Oak Ridge (20-17). The Pacers' running game is led by Deandre Whittington-Grays (651 yards, eight touchdowns) and a hard-hitting defense led by defensive end Moses Moala, who has eight of his team's 22 sacks. Elk Grove will run behind Wadus Parker (893 yards, 13 TDs) and Spencer Sheff (433, seven) and pass with quarterback Tommy Arnold, who also plays on the defensive line. The Herd is fast and physical on defense with 32 sacks – 14 by three-year starters Noah Letuligasenoa and B'won Canada. Shaunard Harts has three interceptions.
No. 11 Jesuit (6-0) at No. 1 Folsom (6-0)
Outlook: Folsom has played the stronger schedule, including a 30-14 win over Granite Bay and beginning its defense of the Delta River League title with a 35-0 rout of No. 6 Oak Ridge last Friday. Jake Browning passed for 362 yards and three touchdowns to give him a state-leading 33, and despite being intercepted four times, he made two of his best throws on scoring plays. The defense was headed by end Lukas Hendricks and linebacker Eddie Flores. The Marauders are off to their best start since the 10-0 regular season in 2004 before losing a playoff opener to Nevada Union. Under second-year coach Marlon Blanton, Jesuit has the veer offense rolling with a big line, a steady quarterback in Jason Elenberger (895 yards, 14 TDs, no interceptions) and running backs Ben Parietti (793 yards, 12 TDs) and Beau Bisharat (343, five) and WR Isaiah Bailey (six TDs). Austin Gates is a two-way talent at TE/LB. Matthew Coyle has four interceptions.
No. 9 Rocklin (4-2) at No. 4 Granite Bay (5-1)
Outlook: Sierra Foothill League rivals meet with visions of a league title and more. After the Thunder opened with tough losses to No. 3 Pleasant Grove (28-14) and Oak Ridge (23-21), Rocklin has not lost since then behind a defense that has allowed seven or fewer points in each of the past four weeks under defensive coordinator Jason Adams. Quarterback Logan Webb (816 yards, 11 TDs) and running back Evyn Holtz (536, three) pace the offense. Since falling to Folsom in an opener, Granite Bay has rolled behind quarterback Josh Neal (1,184 yards, 11 TDs), WR Marc Ellis (706, eight) and TE Dylan Keeney (360, four) and running backs Ben Smith and Michael Geraghty, who have filled in for injured leading rusher Tony Ellison.
No. 17 Roseville (3-3) at No. 5 Del Oro (4-2)
Outlook: Del Oro endured the most rigorous schedule in the Sac-Joaquin Section with losses to state powers De La Salle and Notre Dame of Sherman Oaks, which were followed by wins over Grant and St. Mary's of Stockton. Running back Dylan Kainrath has chugged for 336 yards and seven TDs in his past two games. Quarterback Michael Moore (917 yards, nine TDs) works behind a strong line headed by two-way standout Tanner Woods. Roseville has quality wins over Cosumnes Oaks and Rio Linda and setbacks to Folsom, Casa Roble and last week 40-28 to Granite Bay. The Tigers are led by quarterback Kyle Downie (six TDs) and running backs Isaac Carrel (six TDs) and Matt Razzano.
No. 18 Colfax (6-0) at Center (3-3)
Outlook: Colfax, 4-6 a year ago, is rolling behind quarterback Michael Wilson (1,744 yards, 25 TDs) and receivers Chas Reisinger (616, eight TDs) and Kyle Bryant (561, seven). Center is dangerous with quarterback Tyrel Anderson, also a superb player in the secondary and on special teams. The Cougars lost last week to Lincoln 21-12.