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Iowa high school football playoffs 2018: Our predictions

Defending Class 3A champion Cedar Rapids Xavier is ranked No. 1 and a big favorite to return to the UNI-Dome this season. (Rebecca F. Miller/The Gazette)
Defending Class 3A champion Cedar Rapids Xavier is ranked No. 1 and a big favorite to return to the UNI-Dome this season. (Rebecca F. Miller/The Gazette)
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The Gazette’s sportswriters pick the semifinalists and championship games for the Iowa high school football playoffs.

» 2018 Iowa high school football playoff brackets

» Area first-round playoff preview

Class 4A

 

Jeff Johnson

Semifinalists: Ankeny Centennial, West Des Moines Dowling, Cedar Falls, Bettendorf

Championship: West Des Moines Dowling over Cedar Falls

Jeff Linder

Semifinalists: Ankeny Centennial, West Des Moines Dowling, Cedar Falls, Bettendorf

Championship: West Des Moines Dowling over Cedar Falls

Douglas Miles

Semifinalists: Ankeny Centennial, Waukee, West Des Moines Valley, Iowa City West

Championship: West Des Moines Valley over Iowa City West

K.J. Pilcher

Semifinalists: Ankeny Centennial, West Des Moines Valley, Cedar Falls, Iowa City West

Championship: West Des Moines Valley over Ankeny Centennial

Class 4A feature

» Keegan Simmons flourishes in Cedar Rapids Prairie's single wing attack

Class 3A

 

Jeff Johnson

Semifinalists: Spencer, Lewis Central, Cedar Rapids Xavier, North Scott

Championship: Cedar Rapids Xavier over Lewis Central

Jeff Linder

Semifinalists: Sergeant Bluff-Luton, Lewis Central, Cedar Rapids Xavier, North Scott

Championship: Cedar Rapids Xavier over Sergeant Bluff-Luton

Douglas Miles

Semifinalists: Sergeant Bluff-Luton, Lewis Central, Cedar Rapids Xavier, North Scott

Championship: Cedar Rapids Xavier over Sergeant Bluff-Luton

K.J. Pilcher

Semifinalists: Sergeant Bluff-Luton, Lewis Central, Cedar Rapids Xavier, Solon

Championship: Cedar Rapids Xavier over Solon

Class 3A features

» Solon gears up for 14th straight playoff appearance

ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT

» Dominant Cedar Rapids Xavier faces familiar foe in first round

 

Class 2A

 

Jeff Johnson

Semifinalists: Monroe PCM, Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley, Algona, Benton Community

Championship: Monroe PCM over Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley

Jeff Linder

Semifinalists: Monroe PCM, Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley, Waukon, Benton Community

Championship: Monroe PCM over Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley

Douglas Miles

Semifinalists: Monroe PCM, Boyden Hull/Rock Valley, Waukon, Benton Community

Championship: Monroe PCM over Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley

K.J. Pilcher

Semifinalists: Monroe PCM, Boyden Hull/Rock Valley, Waukon, Benton Community

Championship: Monroe PCM over Boyden Hull/Rock Valley

Class 2A feature

» Benton Community rediscovers success under Kal Goodchild

Class 1A

 

Jeff Johnson

Semifinalists: West Sioux, Bellevue, Dike-New Hartford, West Branch

Championship: Dike-New Hartford over West Sioux

Jeff Linder

Semifinalists: West Sioux, Bellevue, Dike-New Hartford, Van Meter

Championship: West Sioux over Dike-New Hartford

Douglas Miles

Semifinalists: West Sioux, Wilton, Dike-New Hartford, West Branch

Championship: West Sioux over Dike-New Hartford

K.J. Pilcher

Semifinalists: West Sioux, Bellevue, Dike-New Hartford, West Branch

Championship: Dike-New Hartford over West Sioux

Class A

 

Jeff Johnson

Semifinalists: Hudson, Algona Garrigan, Akron-Westfield, Avoca AHSTW

Championship: Hudson over Avoca AHSTW

Jeff Linder

Semifinalists: Hudson, Algona Garrigan, Hinton, Avoca AHSTW

Championship: Avoca AHSTW over Hudson

Douglas Miles

Semifinalists: Hudson, Algona Garrigan, West Hancock, Avoca AHSTW

Championship: Hudson over Algona Garrigan

K.J. Pilcher

Semifinalists: Hudson, Algona Garrigan, Westwood, Avoca AHSTW

Championship: Hudson over Algona Garrigan

Class A feature

» North Tama's rebuilding project succeeds despite offseason uncertainty

8-Player

 

Jeff Johnson

Semifinalists: New London, Ar-We-Va, Exira-EHK, Don Bosco

Championship: Don Bosco over Ar-We-Va

Jeff Linder

Semifinalists: New London, Ar-We-Va, Fremont-Mills, Don Bosco

Championship: Don Bosco over Ar-We-Va

Douglas Miles

Semifinalists: Midland, Ae-We-Va, Exira-EHK, Don Bosco

Championship: Don Bosco over Midland

K.J. Pilcher

Semifinalists: Iowa Valley, Ar-We-Va, Fremont-Mills, Don Bosco

Championship: Don Bosco over Iowa Valley

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Give us feedback

We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.