1. Rio Rancho at Mayfield, Field of Dreams: Oh, how I wish I could be there for this one. It’s a showdown royale between two bluebloods featuring stellar RBs Isaac Vance of the Trojans and Josh Foley of the Rams. But this game is loaded with playmakers on both sides of the ball.
2. Las Cruces at Eldorado, Wilson Stadium: The Mark Lopez era begins for the Bulldawgs, who would very much like to get a little payback for the way the Eagles shipped them out of last year’s playoffs. Lots of interesting players in this game, like Eldorado’s Dominic Sandoval and Elias Baker, and Las Cruces’ Payton Ball and Brandon Baeza.
3. Cleveland at Oñate, 1 p.m. Saturday, Field of Dreams: The Knights are one of 6A’s most experienced teams, and they might have the personnel to make this more than a little interesting. Oñate has some D-1 talent on defense; it makes for a fun matchup against Cleveland’s potent offense and new QB Angelo Trujillo.
4. Clovis at Hobbs: For the first time in years, these two schools meet as non-district partners. It appears as though 1956 was the last time this happened. Also, they have never met in a season opener before. It’s sort of going to make for a strange atmosphere, yes?
5. Piedra Vista vs. Farmington, Hutchison Stadium: Like Clovis-Hobbs, the state’s realignment for 2016-17 and 2017-18 has split up these two as district rivals, since the Panthers have been bumped up to 6A. However, still plenty of animosity here — good natured and otherwise.