CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- It's been an awfully long time since either Martinsburg quarterback Justin "Cookie" Clinton or Wayne running back Brandon Spurlock have lost a football game.
That's going to change for one of them tonight.
Clinton will lead the North against Spurlock and the South at the North-South Football Classic at Laidley Field this evening with kickoff set for 7 p.m. Admission is $8 and the gates will open at 5:30 p.m.
Clinton ended his prep career winning 41 of his last 42 games, including three-consecutive Class AAA state championships, while Spurlock won his last 23 games as a Pioneer, including two Class AA state titles.
But Clinton and Spurlock, who finished second and third, respectively, in the Kennedy Award voting last year, are just two of a seemingly endless list of story lines heading into tonight's game.
"It's been a heck of a week," Clinton said at the conclusion of the North's final practice at West Virginia State in Institute on Friday. "Especially getting to know teammates from other schools, playing with the whole state of West Virginia - it's a good opportunity. You wouldn't be here if you weren't an athlete or couldn't make a difference in the game."
While each has the ability to lead his team to a win tonight, more might depend on just how well North coach Jodi Mote and South coach Joe Dean installed their systems and how polished each team is in terms of executing them.
"It's a challenge," Dean said of cramming schemes and alignments into five days of practice. "But they're great football players so they pick it up pretty quick, you just don't get a lot of repetition. We do what we can."
It won't hurt to have Spurlock in the backfield.
The speedy back racked up 2,003 yards and 28 touchdowns in 2012 and said he's ready to go no matter what kind of offense the South puts out on the field tonight.
"I'm doing what I usually do," Spurlock said. "It's a little different. The plays of course are a little different than what I've been running, but it's cool. It's gonna work out. I like it.''