Fastest Football: a look inside the Vikings’ five-game 2021 season

Image source: 8to18

Image source: 8to18

232 minutes. 20 quarters. Five fleeting nights under the lights. This is the only playing time the Niles North football team will get all year.

Due to the pandemic pushing kickoff from fall to spring, all teams in the CSL North will play roughly half their normal season for 2021. It is a quick burst of scrimmages, tackles, and touchdowns all crammed into roughly a month.

“It’s a weird time to play football, period,” commented sophomore Jayden Isaccs. “We have practice for longer every day. Zero breaks.”

The Vikings were scheduled to play only one home game the whole season–a 37-13 victory against Maine West. The following week, North lost to Highland Park for the sixth time this decade–this time falling by 28 points.

The Purple Rain defense subsequently bounced back for their second home game of the season, limiting a winless Maine East offense to just three points.

“We get cocky,” continued Isaccs. “The score should have been way higher, like 50 to zero.”

QB Caleb Swanson and WR Jalean Butler have energized the offense at Chuck Paus Stadium, which has averaged 17 more points per game than last season. In an outstanding athletic accomplishment, Butler had passed a thousand career points on the Niles North basketball team just a few weeks earlier. He declined to comment for this article.

North had planned to put the cherry on top of their fun-sized helping of football on April 24 against Vernon Hills. Instead, that game was canceled due to virus concerns.