Congratulations to Fowlerville for qualifying for the playoffs with a heck of a win over Corunna, 30-15 last Friday.  They've been one of the surprises this season.

East Lansing, Sexton, Olivet, Dansville, and Fowler are all 5-3 and need to win this week to automatically qualify for the upcoming playoffs.  And there are a number of 4-4 teams looking to get in as at-large selections at 5-4 with victories this Friday.

Not much change in this week's rankings, the top teams keep winning and looking impressive as they enter the final week of the regular season.

Ok, on with the rankings:

  • 1

    Pewamo-Westphalia (8-0, 7-0)

    Last Week: No. 1

    The Pirates finished off a perfect CMAC schedule with a 42-0 thrashing of arch-rival Fowler.  QB Ryan Smith has added another dimension to the offense, and the defense allowed only 7 points in conference play.

    They are a threat to reach the Division 7 finals, just as they did last year.

  • 2

    Portland (8-0, 6-0)

    Last Week: No. 2

    Another week, another excellent performance for the Red Raiders as they took care of Olivet 34-6.  Logan Lefke, Gabe Schrauben, and Austin Allison are the mainstays for this squad.

    Only 4-4 Marshall stands in the way of 9-0 for Portland.  That will be easier than what they'll face in the upcoming playoffs.

  • 3

    Grand Ledge (7-1, 6-0)

    Last Week: No. 3

    The Comets have played 6 close games this season, and have won five of them.  Some will disagree with them being this high, but they have one of the best wins in the area this season (Week 2 over DeWitt).  It's why they're still ranked ahead of the Panthers.

    They should beat arch-rival Holt to finish 8-1.  But the gauntlet of the Division 1 playoffs will make it tough for them.

  • 4

    DeWitt (7-1, 6-0)

    Last Week: No. 4

    The Panthers crushed Menominee on Friday to keep the train rolling.  They are the hottest team in the area (other than P-W)

    They go to Portage Northern this Friday to close the regular season.  They'll need to win that to clinch a home game in Round 1 of the playoffs.

  • 5

    Lansing Catholic (7-1, 5-1)

    Last Week: No. 6

    The Cougars easily defeated Ann Arbor Gabriel Richard to move to 7-1.  They have a tough game with perennial power Monroe St. Mary Catholic to end the season.

    That's a great primer for the playoffs, and you know they'd love another shot at Portland if they get the chance.

  • 6

    Ithaca (8-0, 6-0)

    Last Week: No. 7

    The Yellow Jackets clinched another outright Tri-Valley West title with a win over Hemlock.

    They play arch-rival Shepherd to finish the year.  They'll have a tough time in the postseason now that they're in Class B and probably in Division 5.

  • 7

    Mason (7-1, 5-1)

    Last Week: No. 8

    Jerry VanHeuvel is a major candidate for area Coach of the Year with the job he's done this year.  They'll be favored to beat Detroit Community to finish 8-1.

    The Bulldogs will likely be in Division 3, and there's danger for them no matter who they play in Round 1.

  • 8

    Lakewood (8-0, 5-0)

    Last Week: No. 5

    The Vikings barely survived against Charlotte, 38-36 to remain unbeaten.  A tough game at an improved Ionia team is the only obstacle to 9-0.

    It'll be tough for them in the playoffs (likely Division 5) with Portland, Lansing Catholic, and Ithaca in the same division.

  • 9

    Fowlerville (6-2, 3-2)

    Last Week: Unranked

    Brett Shrader is another candidate for area coach of the year.  Their win over 6-1 Corunna puts the Glads in the playoffs for the first time since 2010.

    A victory over Waverly could get them a home game in Round 1.  An excellent turnaround for a program that has been down since Jack Wallace left.

  • 10

    Laingsburg (7-1, 6-1)

    Last Week: No. 10

    The Wolfpack had a difficult time with Bath but they scored two late TD's to retain the County Line Trophy, 36-25.

    Laingsburg visits improved Durand in Week 9, much like Fowlerville, may need to win that to get a home playoff game.  But this group could go far in the postseason, likely Division 7.