We’re about a week away from truly diving into the math of the state playoff possibilities.
Given the fact that you need an advanced mathematics degree and/or a LOT of time to kill, and that this year’s odd schedule makes the process even tougher since you have to account for 10 and 11-game point averages, it’s crazy to start a full breakdown (which is what you’ll have) of the state playoff possibilities with three games to go.
But there are those who are embrace crazy. Hal Levy, the keeper of the points in years past, certainly did. His reincarnation is apparently Kyle Brennan of NVL Football blog, who moonlights for Republican-American and WATR radio. (Or is it that he moonlights for the NVL Blog?)
Whatever. He’s done the work, so here are his playoff breakdowns heading into Week 8. Mind you, even the most hardened playoff point veterans among us are capable of a slip up or two. Even Kyle admits that.
But that only means he may be off a game or two. Since we’re still three weeks away, it’s a great feel for who needs to do what to get into the state playoffs.
First off, here are the actual playoff point totals right now:
Here’s the short, short version (i.e. who’s in line to clinch this week), according to Kyle. Click on the class links for his mighty, mathematical breakdown.
Then, without doing any math, I took a cursory glance at the points and gave my take.
Here we go:
Class LL: Kyle sez: Newtown will clinch with a victory over Stratford.
SPB’s take: Realistically, this division is shaping up to be a race for three spots. Newtown, NFA, Southington, Glastonbury and Hall are virtual locks to get in based on their performance this season and their remaining schedules.
West Haven (huge games vs. Hand, Shelton, Prep), McMahon (vs. Ridgefield, St. Joseph, Norwalk and 10 game schedule) have destiny in their hands, but are by no means a lock just yet. Then it’s an epic fight between 2-loss teams Xavier, Shelton, Prep, Ridgefield, Staples, Trumbull. A few of those teams, namely Xavier, Prep and Shelton, have a shot to directly influence how this playoff division looks.
Class L: Kyle sez: Nobody’s in line to clinch this week.
SPB’s take: New Canaan is a lock. Middletown and Platt are basically locks. That leaves five spots open and an utter mess of 1- and 2-loss teams to fill them.
Naugatuck, Bristol Eastern, Farmington, Darien, Hand, North Haven, Windsor and even Cheney Tech have a good chance to fill one of those five spots. The good news is the picture is muddled because many contenders play each other (Bristol Eastern plays Farmington, North Haven plays Darien and Windsor plays Middletown, etc.) and because they all face other tough games down the stretch.
This division will clear up a bit more after Friday night.
Class M: Kyle Sez: Barlow, St. Joseph, Valley Regional/Old Lyme can all clinch this week with wins an some bonus help. That basically means they’re in with two more wins, anyway.
SPB’s take: If you though Class L was a mess, try predicting Class M. This division could feature a 3-loss team (or two!) if things get crazy enough.
So Barlow, St. Joseph and Valley will fill three spots. Gilbert/Northwestern and Ledyard are virtual locks.
That leaves three up for grabs.
Brookfield (7-1) controls its destiny, though it still has a pair of toughies vs. Barlow and Bethel left. Win one of those and the Bobcats are dancing.
That leaves two. Bethel will join the field if it wins out, including beating Brookfield. Foran will be in good shape if it takes down North Haven.
Stonington has both Ledyard and NFA left so it’s up against a wall. Quinnebaug (aka Putnam/Tourtellotte/Ellis Tech) needs to win out and hope a few contenders lose. Wolcott and New Fairfield also need to win out and hope.
Class S: Kyle sez: Ansonia’s won nine games, so they’re just bonuses away from returning to the Class S playoffs. Capital Prep and Prince Tech are in with wins and a bunch of bonus help
SPB’s take: Ansonia, Capital Prep and Prince Tech are locks.
Woodland’s a virtual lock, unless Seymour and Derby pull off upsets. Morgan’s a virtual lock.
That leaves three spots up for grabs.
Rocky Hill has Berlin and fellow S contender Northwest Catholic left on its schedule. Win one and they’re probably in. Bloomfield should win out and get in.
That leaves just one measly spot. Northwest Catholic has destiny in its hands but, with games vs Rocky Hill and Platt left it’s a precarious position.
Either Canton or Coginchaug will usurp NWC should the Indians falter. If not, it’s going to be a mess of 3-loss teams vying for the No. 8 seed and the right to play Capital Prep/Classical or Ansonia in the quarterfinals.