Foran coach Jeff Bevino has seen the seemingly impossible occur concerning state playoff bids.
Bevino hopes for that to happen again for his Lions (7-3), who are still mathematically alive — albeit barely — for a spot in the Class M state field.
It’s certainly an uphill climb for Foran, but before the Lions crunch playoff rating numbers, they must defeat rival Law (4-6) on Thursday. A loss would end the Lions’ season.
“We know we have to win, we have to go out and play football,” Bevino said. “(Law) has won three of their last four; they’re playing well right now.”
Foran currently sits in 11th place in the Class M ratings. For the Lions to qualify, they must beat Law and then hope teams in front of them in the ratings lose, most notably Putnam, Stonington and Wolcott.
Even then, Foran must earn enough bonus points to book a spot in the field.
The Lions are guaranteed just one bonus (Sheehan vs. Lyman Hall), worth 10 points. Foran can pick up a maximum of an additional 50 points through bonuses. The Lions need the following teams to win to earn those bonus points: East Haven (over Branford), Guilford (over Hand), Farfield Warde (over Fairfield Ludlowe), Hillhouse (over Wilbur Cross) and Trinity Catholic (over Wilton). Foran would also benefit by Bassick defeating Bullard-Havens and East Catholic defeating Cheney Tech to prevent Putnam from earning those bonus points. It’s also possible that Foran can miss a bid based on tiebreaker points depending on which teams win and lose and how much help it gets through bonuses.
Law helped Foran’s cause by defeating Plainfield this past weekend. Teams get 10 points for every defeated opponents’ victory.
When Bevino was the coach at Notre Dame-Fairfield in 2003, the Lancers entered their Thanksgiving Day contest with Immaculate at 5-4-1. The Mustangs were 9-1, but Notre Dame earned a 47-26 upset and then got some help to earn a berth in Class SS.
One of those teams that helped Notre Dame was Westerly (R.I.), which defeated Stonington that year. Foran would benefit from a Westerly win this year over Stonington since the Bears are one of those teams ahead of Foran in the Class M ratings.
“We’re hoping for some good karma again with Westerly and Stonington and some other teams,” Bevino said.
Regardless of whether Foran’s season is extended or not, it’s been a successful year for the Lions.
“I am so proud of our kids,” Bevino said. “We’ve played so well defensively the last couple of weeks. Our defensive staff and our kids have done a great job.”
Members of the SCC Division I continued their dominance over SCC D-II opponents this season, with D-I compiling a 17-1 record entering the final week of the season.
There are still three contests between D-1 and D-2 teams left to be decided: Guilford vs. Hand, North Haven vs. Amity and Hillhouse vs. Wilbur Cross.
North Haven, which beat Xavier, was the only D-2 team to earn a victory over a D-I opponent this season.
Since 2004, D-I teams have amassed a 181-37-1 record against D-II opponents.
Seven different D-II teams have won games against D-I opponents since 2004: (the number of wins by school in parentheses): Hillhouse (13), North Haven (10), Branford (4), Guilford (3 wins and 1 tie), Law (3), Foran (2), Lyman Hall (1) and Derby (1).
Of note, Derby was counted only from 2004 to 2008 when it was a member of the SCC before moving to the NVL. Shelton-Derby games from 2009-present are not included as is the Hand-Hillhouse Class M state final in 2005.
The threat of inclement weather on Wednesday has already resulted in changes to the Week 12 schedule.
Unbeaten Valley Regional/Old Lyme (10-0) will now visit Haddam-Killingworth (0-10) Tuesday at 5 p.m.
Other games moved from Wednesday to Tuesday are Platt Tech at O’Brien Tech (2 p.m.), Pomperaug at Oxford (5 p.m.), Newtown at Masuk, also 5 p.m. and Middletown at Windsor (6:30 p.m.).
Football Foundation Chapter to meet Tuesday
The New Haven County Chapter of the National Football Foundation will meet tonight at the Knights of St. Patrick (1533 State St., New Haven) at 6:30 p.m.
Coaches scheduled to speak are from West Haven, Hand, Ansonia, Fairfield Prep, Platt, Woodland and North Haven. In addition, chapter members Dr. Leroy Williams, the CIAC chairman of football, will speak about the upcoming playoffs, and Dr. Rich Diana will speak about his new book.
Tickets are $20 and a prime rib dinner will be served.