Sutter will get college-like experience Friday in Eugene, Oregon
Entering his 18th season as the head coach at Sutter High, Scott Turner has taken the Huskies and their usually dominating football teams to numerous destinations in Northern California.
But never has Turner taken one of his squads out of the state to challenge an opponent.
That all changes Friday night when Sutter makes its way north into Eugene, Ore. where the Huskies will play the Central Panthers of Independence at the University of Oregon's Autzen Stadium.
Turner said he has always wanted to coach at a Div. I college stadium, and he felt now is as good a time as any to do so.
“I'm not going to be (coaching) much longer,” Turner said. “So, I wanted to do something neat and coaching high school you can do some of those things. I don't think I'm going to be a Div. I coach, so this is the chance, and I consider our guys Div. I. I love the kids, and I want to give them a chance to play in a Div. I stadium.”
Sutter senior running back Chad Moran can't wait for the opportunity to step onto the Autzen turf.
“I think it's going to be real exciting ... just walking out of that tunnel, seeing the huge building, because it's a pretty famous place,” Moran said. “I think it's going to feel like we're playing in college.”
Turner said the biggest challenge may be harnessing his players' excitement and keeping their focus on the football game.
Senior defensive lineman Jake Abbott acknowledged the extreme excitement, but also promised the Huskies will be ready come game time.
“I think during travel it will be hard to focus, but once we're in the locker room and the coaches start talking to us, it will be pretty easy (to focus),” senior defensive lineman Jake Abbott said.
Abbott also said he has heard a rumor that Oregon doesn't like California, and he took exception to that rumor.
“I think we can show that we're more serious about football down here than they think,” he said.
Turner tried getting a game for Sutter in Texas, but plans fell through. He filled the open date with River Valley, but when the Falcons dropped, it again left him scrambling to find a team to play.
Turner said he tried finding a team to play at Oregon State, but he eventually landed Central for a matchup in Eugene.
The Huskies travel to Yreka on Thursday to watch their freshman and junior varsity teams play, and after the games are completed, they will head to Grants Pass, Ore. for the night. Upon arrival in Eugene, the Huskies will hold an afternoon practice at Autzen or the Ducks' indoor practice facility.
“It's not your usual pre-game practice,” Moran said.