RICE -- Michael Scott left the field Friday night talking about getting better -- with his eyes and passion focused on the future.

Make that focused on this week's game.

Scott's Rice Bulldogs ran into a powerhouse team from Edgewood Friday and fell on a night when nothing went right. But the folks who follow Rice know how this team and this program bounces back and that's what the 2021 season is all about as the Bulldogs head into their final two games of the regular season.

Edgewood, a talented team loaded with returning starters, was picked by Texas Football Magazine as the favorite to win the 7-3A DI title this year, and looked the part Friday at Bulldog Stadium. 

Scott and the Rice kids will put Friday's loss in the rear view mirror and point to their biggest game of the year -- a one-game showdown in Scurry-Rosser this week that could determine whether the Bulldogs reach the 3A playoffs.

Rice is now 2-2 in the district race with two games left. The Bulldogs travel to Scurry-Rosser, which is 1-3 in the district race after beating Dallas Gateway 35-0 Friday. The Dawgs finish the regular season at home against rival Blooming Grove on Nov. 5.

Blooming Grove is also 2-2 after battling first-place Palmer Friday in a close 29-22 loss. BG plays winless Gateway Friday and ends the regular season at Rice on Nov. 5

Palmer (5-0) and Edgewood (4-1 with the loss coming to Palmer) have clinched the first two playoff spots with one game left, but it's a logjam after that with Blooming Grove and Rice tied for third at 2-2 and Mildred, which had a bye Friday night, and Scurry-Rosser tied with 1-3 records.

Rice has reached the playoffs five years in a row, and Scott and his Bulldogs know the door to the playoffs is at Scurry-Rosser this Friday. Scott also knows his kids know how to bounce back, and left the field after the loss to Edgewood saying, "We will get better."

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