An 8-3 record in 2011 for Aurora resets itself to 0-0 at the start of 2012, but the rivalries of years past are always extra motivation for the Huskies as they kick off their season
Head Coach Randy Huebert said, "Well, specifically, we are focusing on McCook."
Senior Wide Receiver/Safety Ben McQuiston agreed, "McCook."
As did Senior Tackle/Defensive Tackle Ehren Schwarz, "McCook."
Huebert added, "That's our first opponent."
Does the focus come from the traditional rivalry or the importance of beginning the season with a win?
"It's a little bit of both," said Schwarz. "We want to start out good, we want to have a great start. We want to win our first game, but it also has to do with the fact that it is, as well, McCook. And we want to beat them."
A tight 16-13 win for McCook over Aurora last season taught the Huskies that they can take hold of this rivalry. All they have to do is want it more.
"I know that it's always been close every time we've played. We're kind of an evenly matched team and it's pretty much whoever is going to show up and do their best and work hardest," said Schwarz.
"We're both ranked and people are looking at it as a big game," said McQuiston. "We'll have to play flawless football, one hundred percent, no turnovers, not just play both sides of the ball, offense and defense, but special teams is what I think it's going to come down to at the end of the game."
As for the seniors, they know this is their last shot to put this rivalry back where they want it.
Schwarz said, "This is our last year, we're going to have to make it worth it. We're going to have to let everyone know that we don't just come here to mess around and play around with each other. We come here to hit, we come here to work hard, and we come here to get better."