Prep Football

Iowa high school football projected playoff pairings, with 2 weeks to go

It's not out of the question that 8-Player District 4 could end in a 4-way tie

If Ben Smith (3) and Iowa Valley can win their last two games, it could create a three- or four-way tie atop 8-Player District 4. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
If Ben Smith (3) and Iowa Valley can win their last two games, it could create a three- or four-way tie atop 8-Player District 4. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

So many possibilities.

Maybe HLV will finish its business, win the outright title in 8-Player District 4 and earn home-field advantage for the football playoffs.

Or maybe Iowa Valley will trip the Warriors in Week 9, creating a little chaos. Or a lot.

Five teams are separated by one game in that district. At 5-2 overall and 4-1 in the district, HLV still holds the inside track. The Warriors are followed by Iowa Valley, New London and Montezuma (all 5-2 overall, 3-2 district) and Lone Tree (3-4, 3-2).

Each of the contenders have at least one difficult test ahead. The defending state champion, New London has two (hosting Iowa Valley on Friday and traveling to Montezuma next week).

If HLV wins out, it’s simple; the Warriors are the champions. If not, the race could end in a two-, three- or four-way tie.

Another note ... an undefeated Independence as a No. 9 seed in Class 3A — and hitting the road for the first round — is not a miscalulcation or a misprint. Even at 9-0, a bad mark in the opponents’ record (currently 21-42) could drop the Mustangs below the other eight district champions, even a 7-2 Pella squad.

As we release our second-to-last projected playoff pairings, a reminder on a couple of changes this year:

Only one team per district earns an automatic berth. If it’s a two-team tie, the head-to-head winner gets the bid. In the case of a three-team deadlock, the best RPI gets in automatically.

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 If two teams are directly adjacent in final RPI, and if they played in the regular season, the winner gets the better seed.

With that, some other reminders in trying to assemble brackets:

 District champions get first priority in seeding and hosting in the first round. In the quarterfinals, that is thrown out the window, and higher RPI get home-field advantage regardless of district finish.

 The IHSAA will make all efforts, whenever reasonable, to avoid first-round matchups between teams from the same district. It also will try to come fairly close to true seeding (1-vs.-16, 2-vs.-15, etc.), with common sense used for geography.

 Brackets will be reseeded for the semifinals in the UNI-Dome. So don’t think of a class as a 16-team bracket. Think of it as four brackets with four teams each. As a result, like last year, East-vs.-West championship games are gone.

NOTE: All outcomes for the final two weeks are merely predictions from the BC Moore computer.

Class 4A

*-projected district champion

Cedar Falls Quadrant

#16 Davenport North (6-3) at #1 Cedar Falls* (9-0)

#9 Ankeny (6-3) at #8 Southeast Polk (7-2)

West Des Moines Valley Quadrant

#15 Urbandale (6-3) at #2 West Des Moines Valley* (9-0)

#10 Cedar Rapids Prairie (6-3) at #7 Waukee* (6-3)

West Des Moines Dowling Quadrant

#14 Des Moines Roosevelt (6-3) at #3 West Des Moines Dowling* (8-1)

#11 Bettendorf (7-2) at #6 Linn-Mar* (7-2)

Ankeny Centennial Quadrant

#12 Fort Dodge (6-3) at #4 Ankeny Centennial* (8-1)

#13 Dubuque Senior (6-3) at #5 Cedar Rapids Kennedy* (8-1)

 

Class 3A

*-projected district champion

Solon Quadrant

#15 Davenport Assumption (6-3) at #1 Solon* (9-0)

#9 Independence* (9-0) at #8 Dallas Center-Grimes* (8-1)

Western Dubuque Quadrant

#14 Washington (7-2) at #2 Western Dubuque* (9-0)

#10 Cedar Rapids Xavier (8-1) at #7 North Scott* (8-1)

Lewis Central Quadrant

#16 Storm Lake (6-3) at #3 Lewis Central* (8-1)

#11 Glenwood (7-2) at #6 Pella* (7-2)

Sergeant Bluff-Luton Quadrant

#13 Carlisle (7-2) at #4 Sergeant Bluff-Luton* (8-1)

#12 Harlan (7-2) at #5 Norwalk* (8-1)

 

Class 2A

*-projected district champion

Waukon Quadrant

#13 Camanche (7-2) at #1 Waukon* (9-0)

#9 Williamsburg* (6-3) at #6 Tipton* (7-2)

Algona Quadrant

#16 Nevada (7-2) at #2 Algona* (9-0)

#10 Waterloo Columbus (8-1) at #8 Sioux Center* (7-2)

Clear Lake Quadrant

#14 Spirit Lake (6-3) at #3 Clear Lake* (9-0)

#12 Greene County (8-1) at #5 Des Moines Christian* (9-0)

OABCIG Quadrant

#15 Iowa Falls-Alden (6-3) at #4 Ida Grove OABCIG* (9-0)

#11 Monroe PCM (7-2) at #7 Benton Community* (8-1)

 

Class 1A

*-projected district champion

Van Meter Quadrant

#15 Iowa City Regina (7-2) at #1 Van Meter* (9-0)

#9 Interstate 35* (6-3) at #8 Osage* (5-4)

West Sioux Quadrant

#13 Underwood (8-1) at #2 West Sioux (8-1)

#11 West Lyon (8-1) at #6 Treynor* (9-0)

West Branch Quadrant

#16 Mount Ayr (6-3) at #3 West Branch* (9-0)

#10 Guthrie Center ACGC (8-1) at #7 Sigourney-Keota* (9-0)

Dike-New Hartford Quadrant

#14 Panorama (7-2) at #4 Dike-New Hartford* (9-0)

#12 Western Christian (8-1) at #5 South Central Calhoun* (9-0)

 

Class A

*-projected district champion

West Hancock Quadrant

#14 South Winneshiek (7-2) at #1 West Hancock* (9-0)

#10 Central Decatur* (5-4) at #8 Belle Plaine* (7-2)

Saint Ansgar Quadrant

#16 Alta-Aurelia (6-3) at #2 Saint Ansgar* (9-0)

#9 IKM-Manning* (6-3) at #7 Hinton* (7-2)

Woodbury Central Quadrant

#15 Le Mars Gehlen (6-3) at #3 Woodbury Central* (8-1)

#12 Westwood (8-1) at #6 Earlham* (8-1)

MFL MarMac Quadrant

#13 Grundy Center (8-1) at #4 MFL MarMac* (9-0)

#11 BGM (8-1) at #5 North Tama* (9-0)

 

8-Player

*-projected district champion

CAM Quadrant

#16 East Mills (6-2) at #1 Anita CAM* (9-0)

#12 Montezuma (7-2) at #7 Lamoni* (8-1)

Turkey Valley Quadrant

#14 Harris-Lake Park (8-1) at #2 Turkey Valley* (9-0)

#9 Audubon (8-2) at #8 Gladbrook-Reinbeck* (7-2)

Don Bosco Quadrant

#15 Midland (7-2) at #3 Don Bosco* (9-0)

#10 Easton Valley (8-1) at #6 Iowa Valley* (7-2)

Remsen St. Mary’s Quadrant

#13 Northwood-Kensett (7-2) at #4 Remsen St. Mary’s* (9-0)

#11 Coon Rapids-Bayard (7-2) at #5 Fremont-Mills* (6-1)

Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com

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