Southwestern Conference Member Schools
The Southwestern Football Conference of Illinois is a eight team conference of Class 6A and Class 7A teams that includes the Alton Redbirds, Belleville East Lancers, Belleville West Maroons, Collinsville Kahoks, East St. Louis Flyers, Edwardsville Tigers, Granite City Warriors, and the O'Fallon Panthers.
Member schools have the first two weeks as non-conference, with the last seven weeks as league play. East St. Louis plays its first game near Atlanta against Suwanee in the Progressive National Football Challenge, then come home to host the second annual City of Champions Classic with East St. Louis playing Gardner-Edgerton of Kansas. Most of the other teams match up against smaller school South Seven opponents with some MVC added in. Edwardsville plays Lincoln-Way East and Chicago Bogan, with the Lincoln-Way East game being played at ISU Hancock Stadium. Two league games will be moved to an interesting venue with a doubleheader scheduled for the Rams' Edward Jones Dome - on Sept 9th at 5:45 pm Belleville East will play Granite City and following that Belleville West will play O'Fallon.
New Conference Coaches
The Southwestern Conference will have two new faces at head coach this year when Dwight Tungett (53) takes over for Nat Albaugh at Alton and Cameron Pettus (37) moves from DC to head coach at Belleville West. Pettus has big shoes to fill in replacing Hall of Famer Ric Johns. Speaking of Ric John assistants, the new Alton head coach was previously an assistant at Belleville West. Tungett is not a newcomer to Alton, having spent 10 years under former Alton head coach Joe Hook. He was once a head coach in the area, back in the eighties at Southwestern High.
2011 Conference Outlook
Because of six forfeits, East St. Louis has a 4-6 record on the books for 2010 but on the field, they didn't lose. If they can stay off the IHSA's radar this year they will have a great season lead by Lamontiez Ivy at QB. Belleville East was the surprise team last year advancing to the fourth round of the playoffs and losing to Wheaton Warrenville South. The Lancers lost talented players to graduation, but still have a change to provide another upset late in the year. O'Fallon and Edwardsville are both going to try to challenge East St. Louis for the conference title. They both have quality players such as Edwardsville's Vincent Valentine (DL - 6'4 315 lbs) and O'Fallon's Mike Cotton LB 6'3 215 lbs (Cotton commits to Indiana). However, even with the quality players both of these teams possess, we don't think they can march past East St. Louis.