With so many games on the horizon that pique the interest of area fans, the buzz for this week's football action can be heard from miles away.
Whether it be on the high school, college or professional level, many of the contests this weekend could set the tone for the remainder of the season.
The first big game for locals will come on Thursday night, when Elkins entertains rival Philip Barbour at Wimer Stadium.
As if any extra motivation was needed for this game, both the Tigers and Colts are hungry for a victory after dropping contests last week.
Philip Barbour would benefit more from a win, however, so expect the visitors to give EHS?their best shot. Nothing could propel the Colts more in the Class AA rankings than an upset win over the Tigers, who are ranked fifth in Class AAA.
The second mammoth prep game of the weekend will come on Friday night, when No. 1 Tucker County plays host to No. 6 East Hardy.
Both teams enter the Potomac Valley Conference matchup with unblemished records. The Mountain Lions are 6-0 on the season, while the Cougars are a perfect 5-0.
Tucker County likely will seek some revenge on its home field after East Hardy blanked the Mountain Lions, 20-0, in Baker last season.
Then comes Saturday, when West Virginia will face its biggest test to date, a contest against No. 11 Texas in Austin.
It's hard to imagine that the No. 8-ranked Mountaineers could survive another game like last week, when their defense was torched for 64 points and 700 yards of offense.
But with Geno Smith in control of that warship known as the WVU?offense, you just never know.
Nonetheless, it's guaranteed that Mountaineer fans across the state will join forces to cheer on the Gold and Blue in its first Big 12 Conference road tilt.
There are also several key NFL?games slated for Sunday. And even though there seems to be an over abundance of Dallas Cowboy fans in the area, most locals in these parts cheer on the Pittsburgh Steelers, who will play a crucial game against Philadelphia at Heinz Field on Sunday.
With the Ravens and Bengals both sporting 3-1 marks in the AFC North Division, the Steelers can ill afford another setback, which would drop them to 1-3 on the season.
So forget about the candy apples, funnel cakes, carnival rides and everything else that goes hand-in-hand with the Mountain State Forest Festival, and take in some great football matchups this weekend, whether on the television or in person.