Phenix City, Al (WRBL) – The Central Red Devils football team will have tough match ups throughout their season. Every week is a potential top-10 match up in the AHSAA ranks. This week the Red Devils will take on a national power house as well in IMG Academy.


This Friday there will be a lot of changes to the Devils usual gameday routine. Central’s home game against the Ascenders will be moved up to a 6 p.m. Eastern Time compared to their usual 8 p.m. Eastern match up. Then there’s a much bigger spotlight on the game since it will be nationally televised on ESPN U. With all those changes the Red Devils aren’t doing any major changes to their preparation for this match up.


“We don’t change anything about how we do things. If we have to change this week then we’ve been doing everything wrong to begin with. So we won’t change anything that we’re doing. We’ll practice the same way pretty much and prepare the same way,” said Central head coach Patrick Nix.


IMG Academy has a reputation for producing elite high school athletes. Nine of the “ESPN Top 300” high school football athletes play for the Ascenders right now. Central isn’t just a team without notable athletes either. The Red Devils have 3 athletes on the same list in senior defensive back AJ Harris, defensive lineman Tomarrion Parker and wide receiver Karmello English. This is a game with nation wide interest, but the Devils also know that this game won’t distract them from the ultimate goal.


“You know at the end of the day, our biggest goal is not to beat IMG. At the end of the day our biggest goal is to win a State Championship. This is just part of that process,” said Nix.


IMG Academy and Central’s game is set to start at 6 p.m. Eastern at Garrett Harrison Stadium.