The Desert Vista football team was scrounging for a 10th opponent at this time last year before getting Maryvale to agree.

This year the Division I defending state champions still don’t know who it will open the year with, but chances are the opponent is going to put up a little more resistance than the 63-0 drubbing the Thunder laid on Maryvale, which did the Thunder a favor in scheduling an 11th game.

Desert Vista will open the year again in mid-August by playing in the Barry Sollenberger Classic against a yet to be determined opponent from Nevada.

This will be the seventh year the Kickoff Classic will be contested with a game signifying the start of the year by matching one of the top programs from each state.

“We are excited about it and think it will be a chance to showcase our program a little bit,” Desert Vista coach Dan Hinds said.

The Nevada representative in recent years has been Bishop Gorman, but it appears the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association wants a different program after concerns about Bishop Gorman’s future in the NIAA, according to the Las Vegas News Journal.

Hinds hopes it can work out that the opponent is Gorman.

“They came down and played Chaparral tough (in Bishop Gorman’s 42-22 win),” Hinds said. “We have a lot of top players coming back, but you never know. You want to test yourself against the best, but we are willing to play anyone.”

• Contact writer: (480) 898-7915 or jskoda@ahwatukee.com. Follow him on Twitter @JSKodaAFN.

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