(10-22-21) Samuel Houseworth’s latest looks at the OHSAA football rankings heading into week 10.
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COMPLETE: Houseworth’s OHSAA Football Rankings
St. X lost. St. Eds lost. Springfield lost. D-I is a mess after the minefield that was Week 9. Going into Week 10, there’s plenty of games to keep an eye on, but none more important than the cross county rivalry of Lakota East and Lakota West. A top 4 seed is on the line as the Lakotas square off with the hopes staying at home for the first two rounds.
Yet again, Avon and Toledo Central Catholic flip-flop for the honor of being the top team in D-II in the Projection Index. What’s frustrating is that the latest they can meet in the postseason is the regional final as both are in Region 6. To make matters worse, Highland, out of the Suburban League, is in line for the #1 seed. That means Avon and TCC could meet as early as the third round!
Badin, currently ranked 3rd in D-III in the Projection Index, has the game of the week as they head to McNicholas for their season finale. Regardless of what happens in that game, the Rams have a relatively easy path to the state semifinals compared to teams in the eastern half of the state.
Unlike every other division in the state, the top 4 teams in D-IV are all in different regions. Bellevue, Clinton-Massie, West Branch, and Bloom-Carroll are all heavily favored in Week 10, making for the perfect warmup before the playoffs start next week.
One of the best small school games in this regular season finale will be Eastwood at Otsego. Both teams have clinched a playoff opener at home. However, seeding will be important in Region 18, as it is the deepest region with Elmwood, Ottawa-Glandorf, and Elyria Catholic waiting for both teams.
Staying in northwest Ohio, Region 22 is packed with 6 of the Projection Index’s top 10 teams residing there. Archbold will be the heavy favorite beginning next week. But, with Carey, Columbus Grove, Colonel Crawford, Tinora, and Ashland Crestview all waiting, it won’t be an easy trip to the state semifinals.
If you’re a regular reader, you know who the top three teams are. So no point in repeating any of that. Though D-VII will be home to some great regular season finales like Hopewell-Loudon at Gibsonburg, Dalton at Norwayne, McComb at Liberty-Benton, and Lucas at Mogadore.
Midwest Athletic Conference
After Marion Local’s last second win over Coldwater, the top 3 are pretty much locked in. The biggest question is can St. John’s pull off the senior night upset against St. Henry and squeeze into the playoffs? I would ask the same about Fort Recovery, but I highly doubt they will win at New Bremen.
Western Buckeye League
According to Joe Eitel, Bath, despite being 5-4 against a mostly D-III schedule, has not clinched a spot in the expanded playoff format. They should make it anyway, but they will probably back in as they are heavy underdogs at Van Wert. Elida and Defiance are also on the outside looking in. Elida could pull the upset at Shawnee. Defiance has no chance against Wapak.
It looks like that Delphos Jefferson at Spencerville could act as a play-in game for the playoffs this Friday. Jefferson sits at 12th in Region 24, the highest rated team below .500 in the region. Spencerville is 15th in Region 26, and the Bearcats should be in with a win, but there are no guarantees heading into the final week.