The State of Football: Week 9
It's unlikely that the NHIAA has ever encountered a situation like that one that's unfolding in Division VI, where six teams are still in playoff contention entering the regular season's final weekend -- and all six are playing each other.
Mascoma Valley 6-2
Bishop Brady 5-3
This weekend's schedule:
Newfound at Campbell
Bishop Brady at Franklin
Mascoma at Winnisquam
Newport at Gilford
Raymond at Farmington-Nute
It's possible, perhaps even likely, that one team will secure the No. 1 seed with a 7-2 record, and there will be a tie for second between five teams that are 6-3. The plan for this column was to take you through all of the playoff possibilities, but after speaking with Campbell coach Marc Prindiville, that plan was scrapped.
"I think you better just let it play out," Prindiville said. "There are a lot of scenarios, and a lot of tiebreakers could come into play. At this point all you'd do is confuse people."
Things will be wrapped up in a neat package if Franklin and Mascoma win this weekend. That would leave both Bishop Brady and Winnisquam with four losses, and eliminate each team. However, this has proven to be a division where you have to expect the unexpected. Take last weekend, for example. Campbell and Newfound entered the weekend tied for first, each with one loss, but Campbell allowed 56 points in the mud against Mascoma, and Newfound failed to score in a lopsided loss to Franklin (28-0).
"I think we all have an idea what might happen, but we're all just gonna have to wait and see how it plays out," Prindeville said.
Sounds like a plan.
At any rate, with the utmost confidence ... this week's selections:
Concord needs to win here, and hope Manchester Central loses its last two.
Nashua North 7
Victory against North would secure No. 1 seed for the Blue Hawks.
Nashua South 26
Pretty sure we'll all be typing "third-seeded South" in the near future.
Manchester Memorial 28
Manchester West 26
This could turn out to be Friday night's most entertaining game.
Bulldogs remain in the hunt for the top seed in Division II.
A victory here would give the Green Wave back-to-back wins on the road.
Warriors will be seeded No. 1 if they beat the Tomahawks and then defeat BG next weekend.
L, W, L, W, L, W, L ... the Spartans continue their pattern.
Cougars are playing their best football of the season.
Merrimack Valley 13
Make it eight straight for the Sabers.
Clippers are one of three teams that could still finish at the top of the Division III standings.
St. Thomas 26
Winner will be the No. 4 seed in Division IV, and will play at Plymouth in the semifinals.
Kennett has failed to score more than seven points in six of its eight games, but should generate enough offense to finish the season with a victory
Not an easy one to pick. Game could go either way.
Winner gets No. 2 seed, loser will be No. 3. Teams will meet again next weekend.
Still not sure which team will be seeded where in Division V.
Cougars still have an outside shot of earning top seed in Division V. Stevens appears to be a notch below the best teams in the division.
Toppers will be playing the rest of their games at home.
Campbell is bringing in portable lights, so this one will be played Friday night
Cavaliers are renting light as well, so this game has also been moved to Friday night.
Manchester Central 13
Both teams have sights set on the No. 2 seed.
Bishop Guertin 13
Blackbirds always seem to play well in Nashua.
John Stark 6
Record-setting victory (No. 343) for Plymouth's Chuck Lenahan.
Falcons finish on a positive note
Bishop Brady 13
Dangerous game for Franklin. Green Giants have won three in a row and have lots of momentum.
Last chance for the Rams to pick up a victory
A Newport vicory would mean seven of the 10 teams in Division VI will finish the regular season above 500.
Mascoma could earn the No 1 seed with a victory here. At least that's what everybody seems to think.
Last week: 16-10
Record to date: 170-49
The State of Football, a commentary on New Hampshire high school football, appears each Friday throughout the season.