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The Birdie is a mascot fanatic

| Thursday, Oct. 10, 2013, 1:03 p.m.

Mascots always have fascinated the Birdie. From the time he resembled one of those bee-bopping wind-up peeps, he's always watched the costumed cheerleaders.

“No, not those cheerleaders,” said the Birdie, wearing a Marlon Byrd jersey in the office (“Because Hurdle calls him “Birdie”). “Mascots are underrated. Every football game needs them.”

The Birdie considers himself the Alle-Kiski Valley's football mascot.

“Have been for decades,” he said. “I was even on bumper stickers for a while. Props to any of you who still have one on your rusty backsides.”

The Birdie recently picked his favorite football student section, and this week wants to recognize the best mascot.

“Send photos and thoughts to me on Twitter,” he said. “Tell me why your mascot should make my ballot.”

The Birdie longs for the day when a team will bring real, live animals onto the field (he's aware that the chances of finding a real Viking, Buccaneer, Cavalier or Raider are slim).

Friday

Penn-Trafford (4-2, 4-1) at Kiski Area (3-3, 3-2)

Kiski Area has the offense, but is lacking on D.

Penn-Trafford, 24-13

Plum (0-6, 0-6) at Penn Hills (4-2, 3-2)

Hasn't been a rivalry for years.

Penn Hills, 26-7

Greensburg Salem (2-4, 2-4) at Highlands (5-1, 5-1)

Highlands' defense is back from vacation.

Highlands, 20-6

Mars (5-1, 4-1) at Knoch (3-3, 2-3)

The Planets get the edge for their defense.

Mars, 26-16

Deer Lakes (0-6, 0-5) at Kittanning (6-0, 5-0)

Kittanning's offense: too fast, too furious.

Kittanning, 30-10

East Allegheny (2-4, 2-4) at Freeport (2-4, 2-4)

Freeport doesn't have the shutdown defenders.

East Allegheny, 20-12

Ford City (2-4, 1-4) at Burrell (2-4, 1-4)

Burrell has played well at home this season.

Burrell, 22-21

Avonworth (5-1, 4-1) at Springdale (2-4, 2-3)

Avonworth always gives the Dynamos fits.

Avonworth, 42-7

Northgate (1-5, 1-4) at Apollo-Ridge (4-2, 3-2)

Old-school Owens Field always likes fireworks.

Apollo-Ridge, 38-8

Riverview (1-5, 1-4) at Leechburg (1-5, 1-4)

There was a time when this wasn't a tough game to pick.

Leechburg, 15-13

Fox Chapel (1-5) at Baldwin (2-4)

Baldwin will keep stars quiet.

Baldwin, 17-9

Saturday

Valley (5-1, 4-1) at Summit Academy (3-3, 3-2)

Valley will look to keep those drums quiet.

Valley, 38-28

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