Class 1A Football Week 8 League Breakdown
We move into the third week of the league season. We should have a little clearer picture on what league will look like heading into the backend of the season. Also, the RPI should start showing which teams are legit playoff contenders.
Two teams sit atop the Foothills League standings and they are Platte Canyon and Sheridan. Platte Canyon beat Jefferson last week to push them out of first place and Sheridan kept pace beating Clear Creek. One thing I am guessing with the Foothills League is they will only get one team into the playoffs this year. Three games inside the Foothills League this week Manual at Jefferson, Sheridan at Platte Canyon, and Lake County at Clear Creek. Manual at Jefferson will help eliminate a team from the league title chase. Manual sits at #38 in the RPI and basically eliminated from the Playoff chase. Manual still can win the league title but must win out including a big upset of Platte Canyon. Jefferson had a tough loss to Platte Canyon and now need help to win the league title. Jefferson also dropped to #29 in the RPI and must win out and still would need a lot of help. For Jefferson to win the league title they must have Platte Canyon loss to Sheridan and then Jefferson beat Sheridan. Platte Canyon hosting Sheridan is a massive game in the Foothills League. Sheridan is sitting at 3-3 and 2-0 in league. They picked up a huge OT win over Clear Creek to stay tied for the league title. Sheridan now has a chance to control their own destiny. Sheridan defensively will look to stop the run and force Platte Canyon to throw. Sheridan also must be able to run the ball offensively. Platte Canyon is now on a 2-game winning streak and are 2-4 on the season. Platte Canyon with a win locks up a league title with a Manual loss. Platte Canyon does control their own destiny with a win. Platte Canyon defensively has improved since the non-league season and offensively they continue to run the ball with success. We could have are league champion after this week.
Playoff Contenders: Platte Canyon, Sheridan, Jefferson
RPI: Platte Canyon (23), Sheridan (26), Jefferson (29), Clear Creek (34), Manual (38), Lake County (39)
North Central League
The North Central League continues to have excellent games week in and week out. All 6 teams are still alive to make the playoffs with the lowest RPI belonging to Wiggins at #20. The North Central league cannot give a league title out this week, but 3 very good games are on tap this week. Burlington at Limon, Holyoke at Wray, and Yuma at Wiggins are the league games this week. Yuma at Wiggins features two 0-2 teams and could be the last chance for one of them to claim a victory. Yuma sits at #16 in the RPI and a win should help keep them in the Top 16. More than likely teams will need a top 15 seed to get an at-large berth. Wiggins sits at #20 in the RPI and a win should help them possibly leap Yuma. A loss for Wiggins could be the blow to knock them out of the playoffs or Wiggins will need an upset win to get in. Burlington vs Limon has two teams on different paths Limon has won two straight games and Burlington has lost two straight games. Burlington is 2-4 overall and 0-2 in league. Burlington is in desperate need of a quality win. Burlington will have a shot to end the season with back to back wins but a upset of Limon would be a huge boost for their RPI. Burlington has played tough this season but can’t seem to get over the top. We will see how they perform this week against Limon. Limon comes into the matchup at 5-1 and 2-0 overall. Limon has victories over Yuma and Wiggins but now hit the tough part of the league schedule with Wray and Holyoke coming up. This is a big game for Limon to gain some extra momentum heading into massive games in the coming weeks. Limon is sitting at #3 in the RPI and basically a lock for the playoffs. Wray vs Holyoke goes a long way to determining a league champion. Wray comes in a 5-1 overall and 2-0 in league. Wray escaped a close call against Wiggins and now control their own destiny. Wray offensively have been powered by their rushing attack. QB Tyler Collins leads all rushers with 487 yards and Emmanuel Huerta is #2 in rushing 479 yards. Wray defensively have given up just 64 points this year and must be on top of their game this week. This will be a great test for Wray’s defense, and they must be able to stop a balanced offensive attack. Holyoke comes in at 6-0 overall and 2-0 in league. Holyoke picked up a quality win over Burlington 35-18 last week. Holyoke offensively has been balanced in their offensive attack. QB Miles Sprague has been off to a great start throwing for 1077 yards and 4 TDs. RB Blake Mosenteen leads all rushers with 497 yards and 8 TDs. Holyoke defensively have given up just 51 points this season and they must be able to stop the run this week. Holyoke has faced a tough schedule and are battle tested. Neither team can win the league title this week, but the winner controls their own fate and give them the best chance to win a league title. RPI wise both sit in the Top 5 and are nearly locks for the playoffs.
Playoff Contenders: Holyoke, Limon, Wray, Burlington, Yuma, Wiggins
RPI: Holyoke (1), Limon (3), Wray (5), Yuma (16), Burlington (17), Wiggins (20)
Two teams sit atop the Northern League standings Strasburg and Flatirons Academy. Strasburg picked up a massive win over Highland 35-14 and now wait for their game with Flatirons Academy to decide the league champion. Strasburg faces Pinnacle this week and should be a win for Strasburg. The other two games inside the Northern League are Flatirons Academy at Highland and Lyons at Estes park. Lyons at Estes Park has two teams heading in different directions. Lyons has not won a game this season and Estes park just ended a losing streak. Lyon is eliminated from the playoff hunt, but Estes park is sitting at #22 in the RPI and fighting for their playoff lives. This is a must win game for Estes Park and next week we will dive deeper into the #’s but Estes Park must win this game to have any shot. Highland hosting Flatirons Academy is a huge game for both teams. Highland is 3-3 overall and 1-1 in league. Highland picked up a tough loss to Strasburg and now must have some help to win a league title. Highland first must focus on the task at hand and that is beating Flatirons Academy. Defensively Highland has played tough against all opponents. Highland has played a tough schedule and have shown they can slow down high-powered offenses. Offensively QB Sam Hnizdil has played well throwing for 563 yards and 5 TDs. The Rushing attack has powered this team this year and RB Holden Morgan has been the main catalyst. Flatirons Academy is 5-1 overall and 2-0 in league. Flatirons Academy has been a big surprise this year. They have proven they are a threat this year and continue to pick up big wins. Flatirons Academy now face their biggest task of the season. Flatirons Academy will turn to QB Jacob Dube to lead their offense. Flatirons Academy defensively will be tasked with stopping a run first offense but can throw the ball as well. Flatirons Academy with a win set up a league title match with Strasburg on 11/1 but a loss by Flatirons Academy still makes the game with a Strasburg a league title but then tie breakers must be used. RPI wise Flatirons Academy sits at #11 and are not a lock yet for the playoffs. Flatirons Academy OWP is .463 and is a bit of a concern if they pick up a loss this week. Highland is sitting at #8 in the RPI and are not a lock yet either. A win over Flatirons Academy though will make them nearly a lock.
Playoff Contenders: Strasburg, Highland Flatirons Academy, Estes Park
RPI: Strasburg (2), Highland (8), Flatirons Academy (11), Estes Park (22), Pinnacle (30), Lyons (36)
Santa Fe league
The Santa Fe League has two teams sitting in first place Peyton and Rocky Ford, two teams in second place Crowley County and John Mall and theses ties can be broken this week. The games inside the Santa Fe League are Ellicott at Trinidad, John Mall at Crowley County and Rocky Ford at Peyton. Every game matters this week and will determine some playoff fates this week. Ellicott vs Trinidad features the two bottom teams in the Santa Fe. The loser will be eliminated from the playoffs with the winner keeping a slight hope alive especially if Ellicott wins. We will dive more into this next week following the results. John Mall is on the road this week to face Crowley County. John Mall picked up a tough loss to Peyton 41-8. John Mall now has their back against the wall and must snag a win. John Mall sits at #32 in the RPI and a win over Crowley County should give them a boost. John Mall with a loss will hurt their playoff hopes. John Mall must have a big game from their defense and must get big production from RB Wesley Van Matre. Crowley County kept their playoff hopes and league title hopes alive beating Trinidad last week 51-6. Crowley County now has their eyes set on John Mall. Crowley County is in must win territory this week. Crowley County sits at #24 in the RPI and a win over John Mall keeps their playoff hopes alive and league title hopes alive. Offensively look for Crowley County to turn to RB Adam Schulz and QB Tach Brewer. Defensively Crowley County must be able to stop the run and focus on stopping a talented RB. This game will go a long way to determining who gets into the playoffs. The main event in the Santa Fe League is Rocky Ford traveling to face Peyton. Rocky Ford continues to play well in the non-league part of the season and are now on a 3-game winning streak. Rocky Ford will now play their biggest game of the season and could be for a league title if they win and John Mall losses. Rocky Ford defensively has improved and this week they must be able to stop the run. If Rocky Ford can slow down the run they will have a shot in this game. Offensively RB Chance Finch must have a solid game to open the passing game for QB Isiah Garcia. Garcia must take care of the football this week and cannot have any bad interceptions. If Rocky Ford can limit their own turnovers, they will have a shot at upsetting Peyton. Peyton has won 4 straight games and like Rocky Ford can win the league title with a win and Crowley County loss. If Crowley County wins and Peyton wins then next week is for a league title. Peyton defensively has turned things up as of late giving up just 12 points to Clear Creek a few weeks ago but have not given up over 10 the past 3 games. Offensively QB Colton Murray and RB Brandon Hussey must have big games. These two are critical to the Peyton offense and must produce this week. Looking at the RPI for both teams neither are locked into the playoffs. Rocky Ford sits at #19 and a loss won’t eliminate them but then Rocky Ford probably needs to win out and need some help. Peyton sits at #14 and win gives them the front seat for the league title and would help their RPI. A loss for Peyton probably moves them out of the Top 16 and some help may be required to get in.
Playoff Contenders: Peyton, Rocky Ford, John Mall, Crowley County
RPI: Peyton (14), Rocky Ford (19), Crowley County (24), Ellicott (31), John Mall (32), Trinidad (37)
Southern Peaks League
Centauri now sits atop the league standings alone following their 56-7 victory over Monte Vista. Centauri played outstanding and are looking like a legit state title contender. Centauri cannot lock up the league title officially since Ignacio upset Center 38-21. Centauri vs Ignacio will now be for a league title at the end of the year. This week only two league games Monte Vista at Ignacio and Centauri at Dolores. Center has a huge non-league game and is a must win for Center. Monte Vista at Ignacio is big for both teams. Ignacio pulled of a stunner beating Center 38-21. Ignacio now has a shot at a league title with a won or loss to Monte Vista. Ignacio though would love to beat Monte Vista and move up even more in the RPI. Ignacio will have to be able to stop the run to have success. Ignacio offensively we don’t know a ton about, but they must take care of the football. Monte Vista is in win out mode. Monte Vista must win out and get some help to get into the playoffs, but they cannot drop a game the rest of the season. Look for Monte Vista to play with some fire this week. Kaidon Wenta must take care of the football offensively. Defensively Monte Vista will have some mistakes to fix and must be able to finish off tackles. This game will determine a lot for both teams. Centauri at Dolores should be a victory for Centauri. Centauri has a massive game next week against Florence but cannot overlook Dolores. Centauri will know how legit Ignacio is after their game with Monte Vista. Centauri is in the driver’s seat.
Playoff Contenders: Centauri, Monte Vista, Center, Ignacio
RPI: Centauri (7), Center (27), Monte Vista (28), Ignacio (35), Dolores (40)
Two teams sit atop the League standings and they are C.S Christian and Florence. Florence picked up a big win over St. Mary’s 47-6 and had their starters pulled around halftime. C.S Christian picked up a big win over Buena Vista 56-6 and dominated in the win pulling starters around halftime as well. The win by C.S Christian sent a message that they are a contender as well. This week in the Tri-Peaks we have two games Florence at Buena Vista and Rye at C.S Christian. Florence vs Buena Vista will start things off. Buena Vista is looking to bounce back after losing to C.S Christian 56-6. Buena Vista had a tough game offensively with 6 turnovers and struggling to getting things going. Buena Vista defensively was torched on the ground giving up 339 yards rushing. Buena Vista now must quickly bounce back and face another top offensively team. Defensively Buena Vista must slow down the Florence rushing attack or could be in for another long day. Offensively Buena Vista must take care of the football and establish the line of scrimmage. Florence dominated last week beating St. Mary’s 47-6. Florence defensively has been top notch giving up over 10 points just 1 to Monte Vista. Florence offensively have been powered by their rushing attack and have been near impossible to stop. RB Owen Bussetti and RB Jacob Kennedy are leading the way for the high-powered offensive attack. Florence will look to dominate on the ground again this week and stay in first place. C.S Christian vs Rye is a big game for both teams. Rye hit the road last week to play Dolores and won 33-6. Rye now faces a team who is playing good football. Offensively Rye must be able to move the ball on the ground. Defensively Rye will have their hands full with a run first offense but can also throw the ball. This will be another tough test for Rye. C.S Christian dominated last week beating Buena Vista 56-6. The win sent a message that they are a contender. C.S Christian this week will focus on stopping the run and make Rye throw the ball. Offensively look for RB Joe Dunn and RB Peyton Brones to have big games. Also, look out for QB Caleb Stockton who can thrown the ball with success. C.S Christian is hoping to stay in first place and set up a huge game with Florence on 11/1. RPI wise St. Mary’s is the only team I have eliminated from the playoffs. Florence and C.S Christian with wins this week should be locks for the playoffs. Rye and Buena Vista are still very much on the bubble. Both teams will have to see what happens with their RPI numbers after this weeks games.
Playoff Contenders: Florence, C.S Christian, Buena Vista, Rye
RPI: Florence (6), C.S Christian (7), Rye (12), Buena Vista (13), St. Mary’s (33)
Western Slope League
Three teams sit atop the Western Slope League Standings Meeker, Hotchkiss, and Olathe all sit atop the standings. After this week we could have just 2 atop the standings or just 1 depending on results. The games inside the Western Slope league this week are Meeker at Paonia, Olathe at Hotchkiss, and Grand Valley at Cedaredge. Grand Valley at Cedaredge is big for both teams. Both teams sit outside the Top 20 and a win keeps their playoff hopes alive. The loser will be in tough shape and I think possibly eliminated from the playoff barring a huge upset. Meeker traveling to Paonia is a big rivalry game. Paonia is on a 3-game losing streak and would love to break the losing streak against Meeker. Paonia will have to bounce back after two straight close losses and now are in desperate need of a win. Paonia offensively has had success running the football and this week must have that success again. Defensively Paonia must come to play against a high-powered offense. Paonia is in desperate need of a win and look for them to play with the intensity. Meeker is on a two-game winning streak and dominated both games. Meeker is hoping to keep pace with the Winner of Olathe and Hotchkiss and must beat rival Paonia. Defensively Meeker will be tested by the run and defensive responsibilities. Offensively Meeker must continue to take care of the ball and look for QB Ryan Phelan and RB Jeremy Woodward to lead the offense. The main event in the Western Slope league is Olathe vs Hotchkiss. Olathe pulled of an upset last week beating Paonia 31-27. They now face another big test this week. Olathe is a run heavy offense and they must dominate the line of scrimmage to have success. Defensively they also must be able to stop the run. Hotchkiss continues to improve and have now won 5 straight games. Hotchkiss defensively has been outstanding during the winning streak not giving up over 10 points. This week they will face a run heavy offense and must dominate the line of scrimmage. Offensively Hotchkiss will turn to RB Jace Peebles and QB Yahir Chavez. This game will go a long way to determining a league champion. RPI wise all teams in the Western Slope are still alive for a playoff shot. We will see after this week how things work and go more in depth next week.
Playoff Contenders: Meeker, Hotchkiss, Paonia, Olathe, Cedaredge
RPI: Meeker (4), Hotchkiss (10), Olathe (15), Paonia (18), Cedaredge (21), Grand Valley (25)