(12-8-19) Clyde (11-4) became only the second #8 seed to win an OHSAA state football title when they beat undefeated Licking Valley 42-14 on Saturday in the D IV title game.
The Fliers, who were 2-3 and in 4th place in the Sandusky Bay Conference Lake Division, qualified for the playoffs after a 6-4 regular season that included four losses to playoff teams in higher divisions and losing three in a row (week 7, 8 and 9). They needed to beat Bellevue (28-20) in Week 10, plus other teams in their region to lose to jump from the 11 seed into the eighth seed in Region 14. That all happened…
In those six regular season wins only Bellevue (playoff qualifier) finished above .500 at 6-4, the rest of the wins included three 4-6 teams and two 3-7 teams.
The one factor that the computer rankings does not consider is the strength of schedule and the won-lost record of the team who beats a team during the regular season. The Fliers dropped games to 1-D II and 3-D III playoff qualifiers. That also applies to the weekly AP polls as Clyde was not ranked in D IV after week 10.
Clyde 2019 Football (11-4) 8/30 H St Francis de Sales(D II)(6-5) L 23-25 9/6 H Ashland (D III) (4-6) W 28-14 9/13 A Start (D I) (4-6) W 42-12 9/20 H Thurgood Marshall(D IV) (3-7) W 51-8 9/27 A Belmont (D III) (4-6) W 42-17 10/4 H Perkins (D IV) (3-7) W 38-7 10/11 A Columbian (D III) (9-2) L 42-49 10/18 A Sandusky (D III) (9-4) L 21-34 10/25 H Norwalk (D III) (9-3) L 40-41 OT 11/1 H Bellevue (D IV) (6-5) W 28-20 Playoffs 11/9 A # Keystone (#1 seed) (9-2) W 28-20 11/16 N # Shelby (#4 seed) (8-4) W 35-21 11/23 N # Ottawa-Glandorf(#6 seed)(9-4) W 17-10 11/30 N # Wyoming (#1 seed) (13-1) W 35-14 12/7 N # Licking Valley(#1 seed)(14-1) W 42-14 # - Ohio playoff game
Making the playoff run by Clyde even more impressive, they had to knock off three #1 seeds, two of them in the Final Four entered the games undefeated, including Licking Valley in the title game 42-14. They won their first playoff game on the road as the lower seed. They earned the title on Saturday…it wasn’t won on luck.
The OHSFCA is working on a new playoff format to submit to the OHSAA for the future that might include expansion of the number of teams that qualify for the playoffs. #8 seeds, who almost didn’t qualify, might be one of the reasons to consider a change.