YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The high school football regular season will come to a close this weekend, and for those who have earned the right, the OHSAA playoffs will begin.
The Top 16 teams in each region will qualify for the postseason this year, according to the computer points they’ve acquired. Statewide high school football websites like JoeEitel.com and Fantastic50.net have done the math and according to their calculations, the following teams are in playoff position:
With 24.065 computer points, Austintown Fitch (8-1) has already punched their ticket in Region 5 and earned a first-round home game.
Boardman (4-5) is currently 17th in Region 5, just outside the Top-16 cutoff point. A win over Canfield Friday night won’t guarantee a playoff berth for the Spartans, but it would most likely get them in.
Warren Harding (2-7) is still alive and facing a must-win scenario against Austintown Fitch this week. The Raiders have wins over Akron Buchtel (4-4) and Boardman (4-5) this season, but a victory over the Falcons (8-1) should be enough to qualify in Region 5. A loss, however, would eliminate them.
Canfield (7-1), Ursuline (7-2) and Chaney (8-1) have all earned over 20 computer points through the first nine weeks. That’s good enough for a playoff spot in Region 9, and a first-round home game.
West Branch (8-1) has already clinched and is currently the Number One ranked team in Region 13. A win over rival Salem (6-3) this Saturday would lock up the Number One seed.
Beaver Local (7-2) could earn that top seed, too, with a West Branch loss and a win Friday night over undefeated Wheeling Central Catholic. But the Beavers are in, and home for the first round either way.
Girard (6-3) has also earned a spot in the Region 13 playoffs, and despite losing three of their last four games, they will be playing at home in the first round.
Four other local teams have mathematically qualified in Region 13. Poland (5-4) and Struthers (5-4) are both in and looking to earn a first-round home game with a win against each other this Friday night.
Salem (6-3) could do the same with a victory over West Branch this weekend, and Hubbard (6-3) will try to beat undefeated South Range on Friday. Win or lose, both are in the playoffs.
South Range (9-0) is averaging over 48 points per game in conference play this year. They will look to finish undefeated this Friday night with a win at Hubbard. The Raiders have already locked up the Number One seed in Region 17.
Cardinal Mooney (4-5) will look to officially clinch their playoff spot with a win over rival Ursuline (7-2) in the WKBN Game of the Week this Friday night. But even with a loss, the Cardinals are still very likely to get in.
Liberty (4-4) is currently holding the 16th and final spot in Region 17. A win at Garfield (7-2) this Friday night would most likely punch their ticket to the postseason.
Champion (3-6) has lost four in a row, and one more loss would mean elimination. But if they can beat Brookfield (8-1) this week, that would be enough to earn a spot in the Top 16.
Lakeview (3-6) needs to snap their five-game losing streak with a win at home against Jefferson (6-3) this Friday night. If the Bulldogs can do that, they’re most likely playing in Week 11.
Valley Christian (9-0) is one of the three undefeated teams in Region 21. The Eagles can’t catch the top two seeds (Kirtland and Mogadore), but they will be home for the first round of the playoffs.
Brookfield (8-1) has won eight straight by an average of 33 points per game. The Warriors have earned a first-round home game in Week 11.
United (8-1) and Mineral Ridge (7-2) have also punched their ticket to the postseason. If the Eagles can beat Southern (8-1) this Friday night, they could be home for the first round. The Rams also have a shot at the Top 8 with a win over Waterloo (3-6).
Jackson Milton (6-3) will qualify with a win over McDonald (3-6) Friday night. But even a loss won’t hurt their playoff chances much in Region 21.
Crestview (3-5) is facing a must-win scenario this week. A victory over Newton Falls (3-6) would most likely mean a playoff berth, a loss, however, would mean elimination. The Tigers, on the other hand, need a win and a lot of help to make the Top-16 in Region 21.
Warren JFK (7-1) is the Number One ranked team in the State and will be the Number One seed in Region 25.
Undefeated Lowellville (9-0) will finish the regular season against Western Reserve (3-6) this Friday night. The Blue Devils need that win to clinch their playoff spot in Region 25. The Rockets, however, are guaranteed a home game in Week 11.
Southern Local (8-1), Springfield (5-4), and Mathews (8-1) have all punched their ticket to the postseason, and all three will be fighting for home-field advantage this Friday night.
Lisbon (5-4) has also done enough to qualify in Region 25, but the Blue Devils will most likely start Week 11 on the road.
McDonald (3-6) will be fighting for their playoff lives this Friday night. A win over Jackson Milton is probably enough to get in, but a loss would most likely end their season.
Wellsville (3-6) still has an outside shot at the playoffs. The Tigers need a win over Leetonia and a lot of help from other teams to make the Top 16.