A look at Thursday’s junior college football openers

08/27/2014 3:44 PM

08/27/2014 7:58 PM

Independence (0-0) at No. 6 Butler (0-0), 7 p.m. — This is Butler’s one tuneup before a two-game stretch that defines the trajectory of its season.

The Grizzlies, after Thursday’s game against the lowly Pirates, travel to No. 2 Iowa Western and then return home to face No. 11 Hutchinson, two other teams with NJCAA title aspirations.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the Grizzlies had yet to finalize their 63-man roster.

Bethany JV (0-0) at No. 11 Hutchinson (0-0), 7 p.m. — The Blue Dragons seem to have found their next star in former Alabama running back Alvin Kamara, who was ranked as the nation’s No. 2 all-purpose running back by Rivals.com for the class of 2013. Kamara (5-foot-10, 195 pounds) led Norcross (Ga.) High to the Class 6A championship as a senior, rushing for 2,264 yards and 26 touchdowns.

Kamara, however, comes with some baggage. He was suspended twice while redshirting at Alabama last season — once for behavioral reasons, another for an undisclosed violation — and was granted a release in mid-January. He was then arrested in his hometown of Norcross, Ga., in February for driving on a suspended license, no driver’s license, no seatbelt and a failure to appear.

Kamara committed to play for Tennessee in June and will be eligible to play for the Volunteers in 2015.

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