What Are The Playoff Possibilities For Area H.S. Football Teams?
We have reached the final week of the high school football regular season. And there are a number of teams who have major aspirations for the postseason (which begins next week).
First, we have 38 high schools that play high school football in the Mid-Michigan area (33 11-man, 5 8-man). And as of now, 17 of those teams would get in to the playoffs. But there are a number of other teams on the outside looking in that are trying to make it in with victories in Week 9. Keep in mind that the top 32 teams in computer points make the playoffs in each of the eight 11-man divisions, with the top 16 teams in computer points getting in in each of the two divisions in 8-man.
Here's a look at each possibility, broken down by division:
Holt (6-2) is currently rated 23rd in Division 1. The Rams are probably in even if they lose to Grand Ledge at home on Friday. But they could host a playoff game if they beat their arch-rivals.
As for Grand Ledge (6-2), they are rated 28th in Division 1. Last week's loss to East Lansing has the Comets on thinner ice than they were a week ago. If they beat Holt, they're in. Lose, and they'll sweat it out on Selection Sunday.
East Lansing (5-3) is a lock to get in after beating Grand Ledge last week. The Trojans (rated 10th in Division 2) will lock up at least one home game in the playoffs with a win over 0-8 Okemos on Friday.
Everett (3-5) is unlikely to make it. But last week's 50-0 win over Okemos at least has them within hailing distance of a berth (rated 41st in Division 2). If the Vikings beat Waverly at home on Friday and get help, who knows?
DeWitt (7-1 and ranked #1 in Division 3) will almost certainly play at home until the semifinals. The defending state champs have the talent to get to Ford Field again.
Mason and Haslett (both 6-2) are likely to make it as well (Mason 14th, Haslett 19th in D3). But victories in Week 9 could clinch home games in Week 1 of the postseason for both of them.
Despite a 3-5 record, Ionia has a shot to get in (ranked 34th in D3). If the Bulldogs beat arch-rival Lakewood on the road, they could get in at 4-5.
Charlotte (5-3) needs a win to make it (rated 29th in D4). The good news is that they have a winnable game at 2-6 Fowlerville on Friday. Win that, and the Orioles are in.
As for 3-5 Sexton, the Big Reds have improved throughout the season. They are rated 39th in D4. An upset win at Williamston and some help could put Sexton in the postseason.
Portland (6-2 and ranked 6th) and Williamston (5-3 and ranked 8th) are locks to make it. 6-2 Olivet is likely in as well (6-2 and rated 17th). 4-4 Lakewood is unlikely to make it. The Vikings are ranked 43rd in D4. Even a win over Ionia probably won't help them.
Lansing Catholic (8-0 and rated 1st in D6) will likely play at home until the semifinals if they beat P-W on Friday. And Ovid-Elsie (6-2 and ranked 20th) could get a home playoff game if they knock off Corunna on Friday.
Unbeaten P-W hosts Lansing Catholic on Friday. The 5th ranked Pirates in D7 could be home until the semifinals even if they lose to the Cougars. 5-3 Ithaca is rated 22nd. The Yellow Jackets are probably in. And if they win over Shepherd, they'll likely get a home game in Round 1.
5-3 Laingsburg (ranked 34th in D7) has lost two straight games. They need to beat Montrose on Friday to get in.
5-3 Fowler is in. They're probably still in even if they lose at home to Saginaw Nouvel. Win, and they'll get a home game in Round 1 (rated 18th in D8). 4-4 Dansville (ranked 34th in D8) needs to beat Stockbridge to get in.
8-MAN - DIVISION 2
Portland St. Patrick (3rd) and Morrice (5th) are both 8-0 and are state title contenders. They could play each other in the playoffs. 3-5 Fulton (ranked 22nd) needs to beat Montabella at home to have a chance to get in.
Brock Palmbos and Erik "Doc" Love will have the call Friday night as the Lansing Catholic Cougars visit the Pewamo-Westphalia Pirates. Pregame coverage begins at 6:00pm. And it's brought to you by Cherry Creek Mortgage Company and Lansing Surgical Associates.