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‘Battle of the Bulldogs’ Thursday features ranked teams

The “Battle of the Bulldogs” between 9th-ranked Navarro and 15th-ranked Georgia Military here Thursday, August 23, kicks off the 2016 NJCAA Football season.

Navarro and GMC will renew their non-conference rivalry for the 18th time. Georgia Military broke a 10-game Navarro winning streak in the series last year when it rallied for a 35-34 victory at Davenport Field in Milledgeville. Eight matchups have been decided by 7 points or less.

Navarro, with a 12-5 lead overall, began its 10-game win streak over GMC with consecutive overtime wins (21-14 at Corsicana’s Tiger Field in 2004 and 17-14 at Milledgeville in 2005).

Two of Navarro’s wins occurred in post-season bowl games – a 24-21 win in the 2007 Pilgrims Pride Bowl at Mount Pleasant, Tx., and a 30-23 win in the 2012 Heart Of Texas Bowl at Copperas Cove, Tx.

NJCAA’s short opening weekend schedule continues Saturday with a pair of games featuring preseason ranked teams.

One of those pairings is a non-conference encounter between long-time Southwest Junior College Football Conference rivals Tyler (No. 13) and Kilgore (No. 17) at Trinity Mother Frances-Rose Stadium in Tyler. The other matchup pits sixth-ranked Iowa Western and No. 12 Arizona Western in a crossover clash at Grand Junction, Col.

Posted below is the NJCAA D-I Preseason Football Poll with opening-weekend games.  Due to the Labor Day holiday, the first NJCAA football rankings of the regular season will be released Tuesday, Sept. 6.

1st GAMES:  NJCAA PRESEASON TOP 20 MATCHUPS

1. EAST MISSISSIPPI plays at Jones County on Thursday, Sept. 1.
2. SNOW hosts Utah Shock on Saturday, Aug. 27.
3. TRINITY VALLEY hosts Cisco on Saturday, Aug. 27.
4. MISSISSIPPI GULF COAST plays at Itawamba on Thursday, Sept. 1.
5. BUTLER plays at Fort Scott on Saturday, Aug. 27.
6. IOWA WESTERN meets No. 12 Arizona Western at Grand Junction, Col., on Saturday, Aug. 27.
7. COPIAH-LINCOLN hosts Mississippi Delta on Thursday, Sept. 1
8. DODGE CITY plays at Highland on Saturday, Aug. 27.
9. NAVARRO hosts No. 15 Georgia Military on Thursday, Aug. 25.
10. NORTHWEST MISSISSIPPI plays at No. 19 Hinds on Thursday, Sept. 1
11. LACKAWANNA plays at Montclair State on Sunday, Aug. 28.
12. ARIZONA WESTERN meets No. 6 Iowa Western at Grand Junction, Col., on Saturday, Aug. 27.
13. TYLER hosts No. 17 Kilgore on Saturday, Aug. 27.
14. COLLEGE OF DuPage hosts Iowa Central on Saturday, Aug. 27.
15. GEORGIA MILITARY plays at No. 9 Navarro on Thursday, Aug. 25.
16. HUTCHINSON plays at No. 18 Coffeyville on Saturday, Aug. 27.
17. KILGORE plays at No. 13 Tyler on Saturday, Aug. 27.
18. COFFEYVILLE hosts No. 16 Hutchinson on Saturday, Aug. 27.
19. HINDS hosts No. 10 Northwest Mississippi on Thursday, Sept. 1.
20. CENTRAL LAKES hosts Dakota College-Bottineau on Saturday, Aug. 27.

Others Receiving Votes:

East Central hosts Holmes on Thursday, Sept. 1
Eastern Arizona hosts Arizona Prep on Saturday, Aug. 27.
Ellsworth hosts Garden City on Saturday, Aug. 27.
North Dakota SCS hosts Rochester on Saturday, Aug. 27.
Pima plays at Air Force Prep on Friday, Sept. 2.