Class 2A Football Week 9 League Breakdown
With most teams having two games remaining it time to really figure out who can make a run for the playoffs. I probably won’t do a full scenario chart until next week, but I can assume a few things and have a good feeling about teams making the playoffs.
Two teams remain at the top of the Colorado League. Machebeuf and Kent Denver both sit at 3-0 and a tie at the top. The Colorado League won’t be decided until next week when Kent Denver plays Machebeuf. Kent Denver this week faces Alameda and Kent Denver should remain undefeated in league and await the results of the Machebeuf vs Englewood game. Englewood vs Machebeuf is not just a big game in terms of the league race but also in terms of getting into the playoffs. Englewood currently sits at #27 in the RPI and Machebeuf at #25 and the winner will receive a huge boost. The winner should move up to #21 or #22 but still not in the Top 20. The winner will probably need to win out and then hope for a few things to go their way. For Englewood to win they must continue to be balanced on offense and play solid defense. For Machebeuf to win they need their rushing attack to get going and play solid defense. If Englewood loses to Machebeuf they will be eliminated from the playoffs and if Machebeuf loses they still will have a shot if they can upset Kent Denver in the final week. Ridge View Academy, Alameda, and Riverdale Ridge are all eliminated from playoff contention. Kent Denver is a near lock but that final game could determine a ton in terms of seeding.
RPI: #9 Kent Denver, #25 Machebeuf, #27 Englewood, #31 Ridge View Academy, #39 Alameda, #40 Riverdale Ridge
The Flatirons league remains a tie at the Top with D’Evelyn and Faith Christian remaining atop the league standings. Faith Christian last week blasted Bennett 44-8 and D’Evelyn cruised past Arvada 42-0. This week both teams are in tough games. Faith Christian hosts Middle Park and D’Evelyn hosts Bennett. Faith Christian is hoping to continue their improvement and are facing a balanced offense. Faith Christian offensively seems to have woken up and are playing good football. Middle Park broke their losing streak last week beating Denver West 29-0. Middle Park will need their defense to play their best game this season. Middle Park offensively also must come alive to get something going against a very good defense. Faith Christian is my pick in this game. D’Evelyn vs Bennett should be a very good game with two different styles of football. Bennett is a run heavy team with their passing attack used for big plays. Bennett must be able to run the ball effectively or will be in huge trouble this week. Bennett defensively also must improve from last week and be ready for a high-flying offense. D’Evelyn is more of a passing team but their running game has come alive as of late. D’Evelyn offensively will hope to stay balanced and keep Bennett defense off balance. If D’Evelyn can stop the run, they will be in control in this game. I am going with D’Evelyn in this game as well. In terms of RPI Denver West and Arvada are eliminated from the playoff hunt. Bennett and Middle Park both sit in the Top 20 but outside the Top 16. If we assume both lose this week their OWP will increase but that makes their final games of the season must wins. I will take a much deeper look after the results of this week and see what their shots of making the playoffs are.
RPI: #15 Faith Christian, #16 D’Evelyn, #19 Bennett, #20 Middle Park, #35 Denver West, #34 Arvada
The Intermountain League remains at a tie atop the standings as both Salida and Bayfield picked up wins last week. Bayfield cruised past Montezuma-Cortez 39-3 and Salida bounced Alamosa 28-6. Both are in action again this week, but the league championship won’t be decided until the final week of the season. Salida this week travels to face Montezuma-Cortez and Bayfield make the short trip to Pagosa Springs. Salida has played great defense all year giving up just 49 points. Salida did have to rebound last week after trailing 6-0 after the first quarter. Salida this week is facing a much more explosive offense and their offense also must come to play. Salida has relied on their rushing attack much more this year and it must produce. Montezuma-Cortez must play desperate this week and they will need their defense to play their best game. Cortez offensively will be challenged, and this game will come down to their defense keeping them in this game. I am going with Salida in this game. Bayfield at Pagosa Springs is one of the best rivalry games and will be a hard-fought game. Bayfield is a team that is improving weekly and will be at full strength. Bayfield defensively excels at stopping the run, but their discipline will be tested by the double win options attack Pagosa Springs uses. Bayfield offensively has also improved but their success going forward into the playoffs will be on the shoulders of Hayden Farmer. Pagosa Springs has played a tough schedule and have the #1 SOS. Pagosa Springs offensively must have success and must be able to keep Bayfield guessing. Pagosa Springs defensively must stop the run and force Bayfield to throw the ball. I am going with Bayfield in this game. RPI wise all 5 teams are in the hunt still. I am going to put Bayfield as a lock and if Salida wins this week I will lock them in as well. Pagosa Springs is #11 and still on the bubble. IF Pagosa Springs loses their RPI won’t drop much but their final game against Alamosa could be for their right to get into the playoffs. Montezuma-Cortez is #17 in the RPI. This is their final league game and then they play an out of state game next week. If Cortez goes 1-1 in their final two games, they may need some help from teams they played this year. Alamosa is #21 in the RPI and have 1 game left. They are not in the best shape and will need a win over Pagosa Springs to get into the playoffs. I will look in much more depth next week when I am only assuming 1 game instead of two games.
RPI: #3 Bayfield, #6 Salida, #11 Pagosa Springs, #17 Montezuma-Cortez, #21 Alamosa
Patriot East League
The Patriot East has 1 team atop the league standings and that is Platte Valley. Last week they held on late to beat Sterling 31 to 28. Platte Valley also received a forfeit this week and now have two weeks to prepare for their league championship game against Brush next week. Sterling and Brush currently are tied at 2-1 but Sterling has the tiebreaker. Sterling this week faces Fort Lupton and should improve to 4-4 on the season. Brush hosts Weld Central and is a must win game to make next week’s game a league championship game. RPI wise things are not looking very good in the Patriot East. Weld Central, Fort Lupton, and Valley are all eliminated from making the playoffs. Brush is #32 and are eliminated from making the playoffs as an at-large team. Brush only shot at making the playoffs will be a league title and that requires a win over Weld Central this week and an upset win over Platte Valley in their final game. Sterling sits at #18 and a win this week will improve their RPI slightly. They still have a shot at an at-large berth but a loss to Fort Lupton will eliminate them. #4 Platte Valley is a lock for the playoffs they probably won’t move up much more in terms of RPI. I see them finishing #4 or #5 in the RPI.
RPI: #4 Platte Valley, #18 Sterling, #32 Brush, #33 Weld Central, #37 Fort Lupton, #41 Valley,
Patriot West League
The Patriot West League has a clear leader in Resurrection Christian. Resurrection Christian picked up an important 26-7 win over Eaton and control their own destiny this week. Resurrection Christian hosts The Academy this week. The Academy is 3-4 and are on a 2 game losing streak. Last week The Academy lost to Berthoud 46-14. I am expecting a similar result this week and if Resurrection Christian win this game they also lock up the Patriot West League Title. Eaton and Berthoud are in second place and usually that does not matter but with the new seeding rules finishing second means being seeded higher than the 3rd place team. Eaton this week faces Prospect Ridge Academy and I expect Eaton to snag the win and move to 3-1 and set up the 2nd place match against Berthoud. Berthoud has a tougher opponent this week when they host University. University is 3-4 and are better than their record indicates. University has played teams all season and have come up short against teams. University could use an upset to give them a shot at the playoffs but won’t be easy against a tough Berthoud team. Berthoud must continue to get solid QB play Brennen Garvin or Sam Baird. Berthoud offensively will be tested but their defense also must play well. I am going with Berthoud in this game and it should set up a huge game next week between Eaton and Berthoud. RPI wise only Prospect Ridge is eliminated from the playoff hunt. University is also close to elimination and the same goes for The Academy. Berthoud is #13 and a win this week should improve their RPI but I won’t know if they are locks till next week’s RPI comes out. Eaton is #7 and a win this week should lock them up as well. Resurrection Christian is a lock for the playoffs and is 1 win away from being crowned League Champion.
RPI: #1 Resurrection Christian, #7 Eaton, #13 Berthoud, #24 The Academy, #26 University, #36 Prospect Ridge
The Tri-Peaks League has one team atop the standings and that is La Junta. La Junta is 3-0 in league and play for their league title this week against The Classical Academy. Classical Academy lost a heart breaker last week against Elizabeth 7-3. TCA will have to find a way to bounce back and must find a way to get their offense going. TCA defensively is playing better every game but their offense struggled last week. TCA will have to play their best game this season. La Junta last week struggled a bit with Lamar winning 34 to 21. The 21 points given up by La Junta is the most this season and makes you wonder if La Junta was overlooking Lamar. La Junta offensively got it done though scoring 34 points and Jon Nuschy had another great game. La Junta this week will look to get back to their dominate defensive ways and also keep their offense going in the right direction. I am going with La Junta in this game and they also becoming league champions. Another game to watch for is Lamar at Manitou Springs. Lamar is #28 in the RPI and Manitou Springs is #29. Both teams are not in great shape for making the playoffs, but the winner should get a boost to their RPI and the loser will be eliminated from the playoffs. RPI wise only Woodland Park is eliminated. Like I mentioned Lamar and Manitou Springs have a slim shot at the playoffs, but a win will help. TCA is #22 and win or lose their RPI will increase. I will know a ton more next week about TCA rpi and should be able to figure out if they can make the playoffs. Elizabeth is #14 in the RPI and winning out is key to them making the playoffs. La Junta is a lock for the playoffs at #5 in the RPI.
RPI: #5 La Junta, #14 Elizabeth, #22 Classical Academy, #28 Lamar, #29 Manitou Springs, #38 Woodland Park
Western Slope League
Well the Western Slope League just got very interesting and 1 team sits atop the league standing and that is Basalt at 3-0. Basalt last week picked up an important 13-0 win over Delta. Basalt defense is playing out of their minds and have given up just 19 points all season! Things get interesting when looking at second place. Aspen and Rifle are tied at 2-1 in the league standings. Rifle will play for a shot at a league title this week when they host Basalt. Rifle was upset last week by Aspen 20-19. Extra points were the difference in the game as Rifle missed two of them. Rifle is now in danger of falling to third place with a loss to Basalt but can also force a three-way tie atop the league standings. Rifle will have to have success running the ball are will be in huge trouble. They are very one dimensional and Rifle also needs their defense to play outstanding. Basalt defensively must stop the run and if they can do that they should be victorious. Basalt offensively also must be able to attack both through the air and on the ground. This should be a good game and I am going with Basalt in this game due to their defense. Basalt still cannot lock up the league title till they play Aspen next week. The other two games in the Western Slope are Aspen vs Coal Ridge and Delta at Moffat County. Aspen with a win forces a league title game next week with Basalt. Delta is facing a desperate Moffat County team who is looking for a key win. Delta is hoping to get their offense going in the right direction and should have success. Delta is hoping to win out and should be in position for a playoff spot. RPI wise only Coal Ridge is eliminated from the playoffs. Moffat County is #23 and have two very tough games remaining. The only nice thing is if Moffat County pulls an upset their RPI will increase. I do think if Moffat County loses this week they will be eliminated. Rifle is #12 and is on the bubble a win over Basalt would lock them up for a playoff spot but a lose makes things more interesting next week. Aspen and Delta with wins this week should lock up playoff spots as well. Basalt is also a lock for the playoffs with the #2 RPI.
RPI: #2 Basalt, #8 Delta, #10 Aspen, #12 Rifle, #23 Moffat County, #30 Coal Ridge