The bye week that came in the form of Carson's 61-8 win over South Tahoe ends on Saturday when the Senators play Wooster at 1 p.m. in Reno.
The Colts, who lost to Carson for the first time since 1977 last year, don't appear to be the whooping boys they were in 2001. Wooster's record isn't impressive at 1-4 overall and 1-1 in the Sierra League, but Carson coach Shane Quilling isn't fooled.
"Besides that McQueen game, they've been in every game," Quilling said of the Colts, who lost to first-place Douglas 21-14 last week. "And I can't think of any team that will give McQueen a game this season. They have a solid team. It's going to be a good test. They've been in every game so we're going to have to play well and not turn over the ball."
That wasn't a problem last week against the Vikings as Carson racked up more than 400 yards of offense and led 47-0 halftime. The win snapped a two-game skid that saw the Senators give up 77 points in losses to Hug and Reno. Not having starting quarterback Frankie Bleuss was probably a big reason Carson lost those two games but that can't be an excuse if its loses again.
Bleuss, who has basically missed the last three games with a concussion, got medical clearance this week to play on Saturday. Mike Dittenber, who threw for 175 yards on 5-of-8 passing against South Tahoe, did a good job filling in for Bleuss but he isn't the runner Bleuss is. And that's what Carson's offense needs to ensure success.
"Dittenber played well but he's not an option quarterback," Quilling said. "We have Frankie back, which gives us another dimension. I like to throw the ball but in this offense you need someone back there who can be a threat (running the ball). If you don't have that, it makes it easy for the defense."
Hopefully Bleuss' return isn't overshadowed by Colt quarterback Zac Bryson, who has thrown for more than 500 yards. He's attempted almost 100 passes this season, second most in the Northern 4A behind Reed.
"Their quarterback is a stud. He can really hurt you," Quilling said. "And they got some big guys. They play hard. They don't have a lot of kids. They have eight, nine guys who play both ways but they still play hard."
Carson's Chris Kotter comes into the game averaging 6.7 yards per carry and has rushed for almost 500 yards this season. The senior back caught two passes for 101 yards last season, including a 76-yard TD, and rushed for 73 yards and a touchdown against Wooster.
Carson's playoff hopes will again be on the line on Saturday. The Senators are 2-3 overall and 1-2 in league and a loss to the Colts would move Carson into fifth place in the league, while Wooster would win its second league game.
The Colts, who missed the playoffs last year for the first time in three decades, don't appear prepared to miss a second straight postseason appearance without a fight.