Fourteen games are on tap in various DI club leagues around the country. For some teams, this is a make or break time.
In the South, New Orleans travels to Charlotte. This has been an excellent season for New Orleans, newly promoted from DII, and at 5-0 they lead the South league. Charlotte has struggled and is in last place. They could really do with a nice home win to revitalize their efforts.
New Orleans, however, shut out Charlotte 67-0 in February in the Big Easy, and won't be an easy mark on the road, either.
In Texas, the top team has a big game as the Austin Blacks (6-0) face Dallas (3-3). With the Dallas Harlequins, who take on 1-5 Fort Worth, not eligible for the playoffs, Dallas is actually in line for the 2nd playoff spot from Texas. They are not favored against Austin, but are perfect capable of pulling off an upset. The two teams met Feb 4 and Austin won 51-21, but the game was a lot closer than that. If Dallas can avoid getting those yellow cards, they are in with a chance.
And then the big question-mark team is the other Austin outfit, the Huns. The Huns beat Dallas 27-25 last week, and while that only improves them to 1-4, it might well be their launching pad to a second-half surge. To prove it, they need to beat 1-3 HARC this weekend in Houston.
In Southern California, Belmont Shore should roll against a competitive Back Bay side. Las Vegas visits Los Angeles, where they will need to prove they are for real by winning on the road. The big game, of course, is Santa Monica v. OMBAC. This is the game that supposedly finished a tie in the opening weekend, but on film review proved to be a Santa Monica victory. OMBAC is still ahead of the Dolphins by a mere two points in the standings, as the two battle for second, and a more favorable position once CR1 playoffs come along.
So, yes, this means something.
In Northern California, the league opened with a bit of a whimper as the East Palo Alto Razorbacks couldn't muster a full side to play Olympic Club. O-Club gets to play this time around, against the hihly-regarded EPA Bulldogs, who crushed the deplpeted Sacramento Capitals last week.
The game to watch, though, should be SFGG at San Mateo. It's a slid SFGG side, but San Mateo came out of the blocks strong against the Bay Barbarians, and could be the sleeper in NorCal.
DI matches this weekend:
Austin Huns at HARC
Fort Worth at Dallas Harlequins
Dallas RFC at Austin Blacks
Las Vegas at Los Angeles
Back Bay at Belmont Shore
Santa Monica at OMBAC
Sac Capitals at EPA Razorbacks
Sac Lions at Barbarians
EPA Bulldogs at Olympic Club
SFGG at San Mateo
New Orleans at Charlotte