TV spotlight shines on AAA

Turkey Bowl rematch between Lincoln, Balboa to be on Comcast SportsNet

The Lincoln-Balboa football game probably had enough going for it already to make players and fans from both teams salivate.

It is a rematch of last year’s thrilling Turkey Bowl, which the Mustangs won 21-20. It is the Academic Athletic Association opener for each school. And it will be played under the lights at Kezar Stadium on Friday, with kickoff scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

But the matchup many pointed to as one of the games of the year on the AAA calendar got even juicier when it was announced Comcast SportsNet would broadcast the game live.

The game will be available for digital cable subscribers in the Bay Area on Ch. 400. Jim Kozimor and former Cal quarterback Mike Pawlawski will handle the commentary. It is one of 10 prep football games Comcast SportsNet is televising this fall.

But Lincoln coach Phil Ferrigno still isn’t biting.

“It’s fine, but it’s no big deal,” Ferrigno said of the additional coverage. “We’re going to play Balboa Friday night at 7:30 whether it’s on TV or not.”

Lincoln has had great success with Ferringo’s businesslike approach, winning the AAA title last year and going 2-1 in nonconference play this season. But it’s hard to believe the cameras won’t add extra adrenaline to both sidelines.

“Of course the kids are probably a little excited about [the TV broadcast],” Balboa coach Keith Minor said. “But we’ve had a real back-to-basics week here in preparation and are really trying to go about it as business as usual.”

For Balboa, it’s an opportunity to show that its 0-3 start is the product of a tough nonleague schedule, and the team is still championship-caliber.

“This will be a chance for us to prove we’re still a strong opponent,” Balboa fullback Gen Kurakata said. “And show people we’re still right near the top.”

Around the AAA: The Marshall varsity football team has officially come back from the dead. According to coach Mitch Oster, the Phoenix will be ready for their AAA opener against Burton on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at SOTA. The Marshall frosh-soph team will have to forfeit due to a lack of eligible players, but Oster is confident that team will also be on the field in the near-future. … There are tough losses and then there’s what the Washington football team has gone through this season. The Eagles (0-3) fell 32-27 to Fremont last week on a 27-yard touchdown pass on the final play of regulation and dropped at 12-7 decision to El Camino in their opener when Colts quarterback Gerald Maranan ran for a score with eight seconds left in the game. … AAA girls’ volleyball startsleague play today with Balboa playing at ISA at 4 p.m., Galileo traveling to Mission, 5:10 p.m., Lowell playing at Burton at 5:10 p.m. and Marshall going to Lincoln for 5:10 p.m. start.

melliser@examiner.com

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