Last October, Concord football coach Craig Koehler used the bye week to reset his team's mindset before heading into the IHSAA state tournament.
This season the Minutemen have been strong from start to finish, with only a tough loss to Plymouth marring a 7-1 start.
And once again, Concord will get a bye in the local Class 5A sectional, as the IHSAA announced its draw for the state tournament on Sunday night.
For the second straight season, Elkhart Centrall will play the sectional opener without a bye, this time against a winless South Bend Adams team. The Blue Blazers (6-2) cruised past Adams 40-0 earlier this month and will play at School Field in South Bend on Oct. 25.
A win by the Blazers would set-up a home game at Rice Field against Concord in a rematch of last season's sectional title game won by the Minutemen, 17-14, on a late touchdown by Carter Neveraski.
For Elkhart Central, it means two more games on turf fields. The Blazers will play all nine regular-season games on turf, as well as their first two tournament games.
On the other side of the bracket, a dangerous Elkhart Memorial team will go to Mishawaka to face the 6-2 Cavemen after both received a first round bye.
So, if Central were to beat both Adams and Concord, they will play on a grass field in the sectional finals, as both Memorial and Mishawaka play on grass.
The Jimtown Jimmies will open Class 3A play at Sharpe Stadium against Garrett, a team that beat the Jimmies in the sectional title game in 2016. The Railroaders are just 2-6 this season.
Tippecanoe Valley will go to South Bend Washington on the Jimmies' side of the bracket, with both teams standing 6-2 on the year. If Washington wins, the Jimmies would host the second round game against the Panthers. A win by Tippecanoe Valley will have Jimtown on the road in round two.
The other side of the bracket has Lakeland playing at 7-1 Marian and unbeaten West Noble traveling to Glenn.
Angola has won the local 4A sectional the last two years under head coach Andy Thomas, beating Northern Lakes champion NorthWood in the title game last year in a rainstorm.
This year the Hornets are 4-4 and will travel to Leo to face the 7-1 Lions. Leo's only loss this year was to unbeaten East Noble, 35-7.
Speaking of the East Noble, the Knights will open sectional play at Northridge to face the Raiders, while Columbia City will travel to DeKalb on that side of the bracket. Like Leo, DeKalb's only loss was to East Noble by the same 35-7 score
The 5-3 NorthWood Panthers will open at home against a familiar foe, Northern Lakes Conference rival Wawasee. Coach Nate Andrews' Panthers beat Wawasee 40-10 in September and will be favored to do it again.
If NorthWood wins, they'll get the Leo-Angola winner. With the way the bracket is set up, the Panthers will likely travel no matter which team wins.
Angola has ended NorthWood's season the last two years.
Fairfield is back in Class 2A and are currently 4-4 on the year, after suffering through a winless 2018.
The Falcons drew a tough assignment for their opener, as they will travel to face a 6-2 Bluffton team in their opener. Whitko (0-8) travels to Prairie Heights (1-7) in the other first-round matchup on Fairfield's side of the bracket.
If coach Matt Thacker's team can beat Bluffton, they will likely host in the second round.
In another 5A sectional, Goshen will host Fort Wayne Northrup at Foreman Field, while defending state champion Fort Wayne Dwenger will travel to Forth Wayne North.
The winners will play for the sectional title.
In 6A, Portage will play at an improving Penn team at TCU Freed Field, while Warsaw will go to Chesterton for an interesting game against the high scoring Trojans (6-2).
That sectional will have a new champion, as Valparaiso has moved down to Class 5A.
IHSAA FOOTBALL SECTIOINALS
Portage at Penn
Warsaw at Chesterton
Elkhart Central at SB Adams
Concord at Winner Game 1
Elkhart Memorial at Mishawaka
FW Northrup at Goshen
FW Dwenger at FW North
East Noble at Northridge
Columbia City at DeKalb
Wawasee at NorthWood
Angola at Leo
Tippecanoe Valley at SB Washington
Garrett at Jimtown
Lakeland at Marian
West Noble at Glenn
Whitko at Prairie Heights
Fairfield at Bluffton
Central Noble at FW Luers
Eastside at Woodland