— Shaw Media file photo

One of my earliest, and best memories of Friday night football was not at an actual football field.

It had everything to do with a football team.

I was a wet behind the ears, fresh out of college kid learning how to keep a box score and write on deadline. At the end of every football Friday, our sports team at Shaw Media's Dixon Telegraph would stick around, catch our breath and swap stories from our games over a couple Cokes. It was a collection of guys and gals who loved their craft, and football, and could talk about it until the presses were ready to roll in the next room (this was before Twitter and message boards, mind you, which allowed for immediate reaction and analysis).

Fast forward 23 years.

I've come full circle, back at Shaw Media with the Kendall County newspapers, Kane County Chronicle and the Suburban Life newspaper. Our group of newspapers keeps growing, with a talented lineup of writers who can't wait to share their communities' stories. And high school football, yes, keeps growing too.

Nobody covers it better than our team that stretches from Cook County to the Iowa border.

And now, with Friday Night Drive, it only gets better.

The latest effort from Shaw Media, the site is focused on high school football. All high school football content produced by Shaw papers, including the Kane County Chronicle, Kendall County newspapers and Suburban Life, will be featured exclusively there. And much more than that.

Already, you can read Kyle Nabors' deep dive on the history of the IHSA's mapping program. , J.T. Pedelty's piece on how declining participation numbers are giving rise to 8-man football in Illinois., and Nazareth quarterback J.J. McCarthy's favorite play in my profile of the recent Michigan commit.

There's also videos (don't miss Steve Soucie breaking down the decisions the IHSA is facing with the district model), podcasts, rankings, playoff brackets (yes, brackets in June) and more. Check out Soucie and Nabors discussing their thoughts on the IHSA's district mock in our first podcast.

Are we missing something? Let us know. You can e-mail me at jwelge@shawmedia.com, or send me a DM on Twitter (@jwelge96).

Are you already a Shaw Media print or digital subscriber? We have great news: you get free access to FridayNightDrive.com. Just sign in with your current digital credentials and you'll get unlimited access. If you're a print subscriber and need to activate your digital account, go to one of our local sites and click login to get started.

Not a current subscriber? You can sign up for Friday Night Drive for a limited-time subscription rate of just $2.49 per month (billed annually), a 40% savings.

So sign up for the Kane County Chronicle, Kendall County newspapers, or Suburban Life, or just sign up for this great FND deal. Either way, this will be the place to go for all your high school football news and analysis.

Are you ready to talk some football? We are. Come join us.