First, high school senior Adam Homan and his Coldwater, Ohio, teammates took on rival Maria Stein (Ohio) Marion Local in a showdown of two defending state champions. Then, about 24 hours later, older brother Ross Homan and the Ohio State Buckeyes took on No. 1 USC in a nationally televised game.
One Homan brother emerged victorious, however, as the Cavaliers snapped Marion Local's 30-game winning streak in front of a spirited home crowd Sept. 12. Last year, the Flyers handed the Cavaliers their lone loss while Coldwater was en route to a Division IV state championship. Marion Local itself captured the Division V title.
"It was intense," Adam Homan, a fullback/linebacker who is verbally committed to OSU, told BuckeyeSports.com. "They are the only team that beat us last year and we carried that with us. It wasn't so much the revenge factor as it was coming out and playing for each other, but it was definitely a huge game. With them winning state last year, we're huge rivals. It's always going to be a big week in the (Midwest Athletic Conference) and you've got to be ready every week."
Homan did his part for the team, making nine tackles from his linebacker spot and carrying the ball six times for 30 yards. The Cavaliers dug themselves into a first-quarter hole as quarterback Cory Klenke had two interceptions returned for touchdowns, but the team's defense held firm.
The Cavaliers kept the Flyer offense out of the end zone for the duration, punctuated by a last-minute goal-line stand that resulted in a forced fumble recovered by the home team.
"I have to give it up to our d-line," Homan said. "This whole year our d-line has carried us through these games. It's all won in the trenches. All those guys have been doing an awesome job for us. When you have a d-line like that, it makes it easy for us linebackers to do our jobs. We're thankful for that."
Homan is pegged as a fullback at the next level. Scout.com ranks him as a three-star prospect and the No. 9 fullback prospect in the class of 2009. Against the Flyers, he showed an ability to clear holes for the team's tailbacks that was matched by his tenacity on defense.
Given the choice between hitting players as a lead blocker or tackling them from his linebacker spot, Homan said he has no preference.
"It makes no difference to me," he said. "However I can help out the team is where I want to go. I feel comfortable going both ways, and if I can continue to do that I'd really like that."
Sporting a slightly bloody bridge of his nose courtesy of one particularly forceful hit, Homan was lacking for specific fans in the crowd for the big game. His immediate family had headed out west for the OSU-USC game. Still, an elderly couple clad in OSU No. 51 jerseys bearing the Homan last name came to the field to greet Adam Homan after the game.
"They took off early Thursday morning, but they called me (that) night to wish me good luck so I know they were thinking about me," he said. "We both knew it was a big week for both of us. My parents wished they could have been here, but I completely understand. It's a huge game."
The same day his family left, Adam Homan received his weekly phone call from OSU running backs coach Dick Tressel – a fact that surprised him given all that was on the table for the Buckeyes.
"I do find it surprising," Homan said. "Those guys, it's unbelievable the amount of time they must put in. There's just so much that they put in, just the film study and being prepared. I don't even being to understand how they know all the names they have to remember and all the phone numbers. It blows my mind, but it definitely makes a player feel good when they call you and wish you luck."