2018 High School Football Playoff Picture: Week 9

posted by Jimmie Kaska - 

It's the final week of the regular season, and area teams battle for one of the 224 playoff spots available across the state of Wisconsin. This week, we add WisSports.net's projected teams in to the playoff field to our list of Week 9 playoff-clinching scenarios for every area team and conference.

Each week leading up to the games in the final half of the regular season in high school football, we'll take a look at area teams that can clinch a playoff spot, become playoff-eligible, or risk elimination from the postseason field.

In the past two years, teams with 4-5 and 3-4 conference records have made the playoff field; therefore, we won't consider a team eliminated unless they can no longer get to those marks in the Big 8, Badger, and Rock Valley conferences. With 224 playoff spots and around 395 teams competing for those spots, it's expected several teams that finish with records under .500 will again make the postseason.

The division listed with a team is based on the projections at WisSports.net for divisional placement at the beginning of the season (not from their Week 9 projected field). The final determination of football divisions is made when the full postseason field is announced after Week 9.

Area Teams Clinched

Here are the area teams that have clinched a playoff spot with WSN's projected division. Schools within five of the divisional cut lines are noted below with an asterisk (*), but placed into their predicted divisions.

Division 1: Madison Memorial (7-1), Big 8; Sun Prairie (7-1), Big 8; Janesville Craig (6-2), Big 8; Middleton (5-3), Big 8; Verona (6-2), Big 8.

*Watertown is borderline D1/D2

Division 2Waunakee (8-0, 6-0), Badger North; Monona Grove (8-0, 6-0), Badger South; Watertown* (7-1, 5-1), Badger South; DeForest (6-2, 5-1), Badger North; Oregon (6-2, 5-1), Badger South.

*Mount Horeb/Barneveld is borderline D2/D3

Division 3McFarland (8-0), Rock Valley; East Troy* (6-2), Rock Valley; Jefferson (5-3), Rock Valley; Mount Horeb/Barneveld* (6-2, 4-2), Badger North.

*East Troy and Edgerton are borderline D3/D4

Division 4Edgerton* (7-1), Rock Valley; Lodi (7-1, 3-1), Capitol North; Lakeside Lutheran* (7-1, 4-0), Capitol North; Mauston (7-1, 4-0), South Central; Lake Mills (6-2, 3-1), Capitol North; River Valley (6-2, 3-1), Southwestern; Wautoma* (5-3, 3-1), South Central.

*Lakeside Lutheran, Wautoma, and Horicon/Hustisford are borderline D4/D5

Division 5: Horicon/Hustisford* (7-1, 5-0), Trailways-Large; Prairie du Chien (7-1, 4-0), Southwestern.

*Cambridge is borderline D5/D6

Division 6: Markesan (6-2, 4-1), Trailways-Large; Fennimore (7-1, 5-1), Southwestern; Mineral Point* (7-1, 5-0), SWAL; Pecatonica/Argyle (7-1, 6-1), Six Rivers; Cambridge* (8-0, 3-0), Capitol South.

*Lourdes Academy, Wauzeka-Steuben/Seneca, Mineral Point, and Potosi/Cassville are borderline D6/D7

Division 7: Wauzeka-Steuben/Seneca* (8-0, 5-0), Ridge & Valley; Lourdes Academy* (7-1, 5-1), Trailways-Small; Johnson Creek (7-1, 5-1) Trailways-Small; Fall River (7-1, 5-1), Trailways-Small; Black Hawk (7-0, 6-0), Six Rivers; Potosi/Cassville* (6-2, 5-2), Six Rivers; Ithaca (5-3, 4-1), Ridge & Valley.

Area Teams Eligible: Marshall (3-5, 2-1), Capitol South/D5; New Glarus/Monticello (4-4, 2-1), Capitol South/D5; Palmyra-Eagle (5-2, 3-2), Trailways-Large/D5; Dodgeland (5-3, 3-2), Trailways-Large/D6; Cuba City (4-4, 3-2), SWAL/D6.

8-Player: Oakfield (7-1) is currently in the Top 8 of Overall Record and Top 4 of Overall Record in the East Division, so with a win this week over McDonell, they'd likely be in to the playoffs.

WisSports.net Projected Teams In (Other Than Teams Listed Above)

Madison La Follette (Big 8-D1), Milton (Badger South-D2), Stoughton (Badger South-D2/D3), Turner (Rock Valley-D4), Adams-Friendship (South Central-D4); Belleville (Capitol South-D5/D6), Lancaster (Southwestern-D6/D5), Cambria-Friesland (Trailways Small-D7); Randolph (Trailways Small-D7); Highland (Six Rivers-D7); Benton/Scales Mound (Six Rivers-D7).

(Note: WSN Projections below include ALL teams in the conference that are projected to make the playoffs based on their predictions; this can change greatly as ~400 games will be played between now and the time the playoff field is set. The WSN Cut Line lists all schools within five schools of the projected divisional cut lines).

Baraboo (Badger North-D3/D2) was the first team out in WSN's projection.

See The Full WisSports.net Projected Field Here

Big 8

*Five wins clinches a playoff spot... four wins is usually enough to get in

Clinched: Madison Memorial (7-1), D1; Sun Prairie (7-1), D1; Janesville Craig (6-2), D1; Verona (6-2), D1; Middleton (5-3), D1.

Can Clinch: Madison La Follette (4-4) can clinch with a win over Middleton (5-3).

Eliminated: Janesville Parker (0-8), Madison East (1-7), Beloit Memorial (1-7).

Risk of Elimination: Madison West (3-5) is eliminated with a loss to Sun Prairie (7-1).

"Four Wins Gets You In": Madison La Follette (4-4) has four wins and is almost certainly in to the postseason. Madison West (3-5) needs to beat Sun Prairie (7-1) to get to four wins.

WSN Projections: D1: Madison Memorial, Sun Prairie, Janesville Craig, Middleton, Verona, Madison La Follette. 

WSN Cut Line: None.

Badger North

*Four wins clinches a playoff spot... three wins is right about the cut line for the postseason

Clinched: Waunakee (8-0, 6-0), D2; DeForest (6-2, 5-1), D2; Mount Horeb/Barneveld (6-2, 4-2), D3.

Can Clinch: The winner of Reedsburg (5-3, 3-3) and Baraboo (3-5, 3-3) clinches a playoff spot.

Eliminated: Portage (0-8, 0-6) and Beaver Dam (2-6, 1-5).

Risk of Elimination: The losing team between Baraboo (3-5, 3-3) and Reedsburg (5-3, 3-3) can no longer clinch a playoff spot and is at risk of missing the playoffs. Sauk Prairie (2-6, 2-4) is eliminated with a loss to Mount Horeb/Barneveld (6-2, 4-2), and even a win, it offers only slim hope for a postseason bid.

"Three Wins Gets You In": Baraboo (3-5, 3-3) and Reedsburg (5-3, 3-3) both have three wins, and with a loss, Reedsburg would have enough advantages in tiebreakers to still get in. Baraboo may not have that advantage, and in fact misses the playoffs by a single spot in WisSports.net's latest projection. If Sauk Prairie (2-6, 2-4) wins, they would be in the same boat as Baraboo.

WSN Projections: D2: Waunakee, DeForest. D3: Mount Horeb/Barneveld, Reedsburg. 

**While Baraboo is not in the projected field, they would slot in as the second-largest D3 school if they made it**

**While Sauk Prairie is not in the projected field, they would slot in to D3 if they made it**

WSN Cut Line: Mount Horeb/Barneveld (D3) is the fifth school from the D2/D3 cut line.

Badger South

*Four wins clinches a playoff spot... three wins is right about the cut line for the postseason

Clinched: Monona Grove (7-0, 5-0), D2; Watertown (6-1, 5-0), D2; Oregon (5-2, 4-1), D2.

Can Clinch: Stoughton (5-3, 3-3) can clinch a playoff spot with a win over Fort Atkinson (0-8, 0-6).

Eliminated: Fort Atkinson (0-8, 0-6) and Edgewood (2-6, 1-5).

Risk of Elimination: Milton (3-5, 2-4) is eliminated with a loss to Edgewood (2-6, 1-5). Monroe (2-6, 2-4) is eliminated with a loss to Oregon (6-2, 5-1). Stoughton (5-3, 3-3) can no longer clinch a playoff spot with a loss to Fort Atkinson (0-8, 0-6), but could get into the playoffs on tiebreakers.

"Three Wins Gets You In": Stoughton (5-3, 3-3) is at three wins in the conference, while Milton (3-5, 2-4) and Monroe (2-6, 2-4) need one more win to get there. A 3-4 record puts teams squarely into a tiebreaker scenario with about a dozen other schools for the final playoff spots, and at last check, Milton narrowly made the field under the latest WSN projection.

WSN Projections: D2: Watertown, Oregon, Monona Grove, Stoughton, Milton.

WSN Cut Line: Watertown (D2) is the fifth school from the D1/D2 cut line. Stoughton (D2) is the second school from the D2/D3 cut line.

Rock Valley

*Five wins clinches a playoff spot... four wins is usually enough to get in

Clinched: McFarland (8-0), D3; Edgerton (7-1), D4; East Troy (6-2), D3; Jefferson (5-3), D3.

Can Clinch: Turner (4-4) clinches a spot with a win over East Troy (6-2).

Eliminated: Evansville/Albany (0-8), Clinton (2-6), Whitewater (2-6).

Risk of Elimination: Brodhead/Juda (3-5) is eliminated with a loss to McFarland (8-0). Big Foot (3-5) is eliminated with a loss to Edgerton (7-1).

"Four Wins Gets You In": Turner (4-4) has four wins and is almost certainly in the playoff field. Brodhead/Juda (3-5) and Big Foot (3-5) each need to upset one of the top two teams in the conference this season, this week, in order to make the playoffs.

WSN Projections: D3: McFarland, Jefferson, East Troy. D4: Edgerton, Turner.

WSN Cut Line: East Troy (D3) is the last school from the D3/D4 cut line. Edgerton (D4) is the fourth school from the D3/D4 cut line.

Capitol North

*Three wins clinches a playoff spot

Clinched: Lodi (7-1, 3-1), D4; Lakeside Lutheran (7-1, 4-0), D4; Lake Mills (6-2, 3-1), D4.

Can Clinch: Luther Prep (5-3, 2-2) can clinch with a win over Lake Mills (6-2, 3-1).

Eliminated: Poynette (4-4, 0-4), Columbus (1-7, 0-4).

Risk of Elimination: Luther Prep (5-3, 2-2) is eliminated with a loss to Lake Mills (6-2, 3-1).

WSN Projections: D4: Lodi, Lake Mills, Lakeside Lutheran.

WSN Cut Line: Lakeside Lutheran (D4) is the second school from the D4/D5 cut line.

Capitol South

*Two wins for playoff eligibility, three wins to clinch a playoff spot

Clinched: Cambridge (8-0, 3-0), D6.

Can Clinch: Marshall (3-5, 2-1) can clinch with a win over Belleville (5-3, 1-2). New Glarus (4-4, 2-1) can clinch with a win over Cambridge (8-0, 3-0).

Eligible: Marshall (3-5, 2-1), D5; New Glarus/Monticello (4-4, 2-1), D5.

Can Become Eligible: Belleville (5-3, 1-2) can become playoff-eligible with a win over Marshall (3-5, 2-1).

Eliminated: Waterloo (0-8, 0-4).

Risk of Elimination: Belleville (5-3, 1-2) is eliminated with a loss to Marshall (3-5, 2-1).

WSN Projections: D5: New Glarus/Monticello, Marshall, Belleville. D6: Cambridge 

WSN Cut Line: Cambridge (D6) is three schools from the D5/D6 cut line. Belleville (D5) is two schools from the D5/D6 cut line.

Other Area Teams

Trailways-Large: CLINCHED: Horicon/Hustisford (D4/D5) and Markesan (D6). ELIGIBLE: Palmyra-Eagle (D5) and Dodgeland (D6). MORE: Palmyra-Eagle can clinch a playoff spot with a win over Montello/Princeton/Green Lake. Dodgeland can clinch a playoff spot with a win over Horicon/Hustisford. Pardeeville can become playoff-eligible with a win over Markesan. WSN PROJECTION: The four teams that have clinched or are eligible make it.

Trailways-Small: CLINCHED: Johnson Creek (D6/D7), Fall River (D7), Lourdes Academy (D6/D7). MORE: The winner between Randolph and Cambria-Friesland will clinch a playoff spot. Rio needs to beat Fall River to have a shot at the playoffs. WSN PROJECTION: Cambria-Friesland (D7), Randolph (D7) make the playoffs along with the teams that clinched already, regardless of who wins the head-to-head match-up.

SWC/Southwestern: CLINCHED: Prairie du Chien (D5), River Valley (D4). MORE: Platteville must defeat River Valley to make the playoffs. Lancaster must defeat Dodgeville to make the playoffs. WSN PROJECTION: Lancaster (D6/D5) makes the playoffs along with the teams that clinched already.

SWAL: CLINCHED: Fennimore (D6), Mineral Point (D6/D7). ELIGIBLE: Cuba City (D6). MORE: Cuba City clinches a playoff spot with a win over Iowa-Grant, while Iowa-Grant can become playoff-eligible with a win over Cuba City. Darlington needs to win against Boscobel to become playoff-eligible. WSN PROJECTION: Darlington (D6) and Cuba City (D6) makes the playoffs along with the teams that clinched already.

South Central: CLINCHED: Mauston (D4), Wautoma (D4/D5). MORE: Wisconsin Dells needs to defeat Mauston to get into the playoffs. Adams-Friendship must beat Nekoosa for a postseason berth. WSN PROJECTION: Adams-Friendship (D4) makes the playoffs along with the teams that clinched already.

Six Rivers: CLINCHED: Black Hawk (D7), Pecatonica/Argyle (D6), Potosi/Cassville (D7/D6). MORE: Benton/Scales Mound needs to win over River Ridge to clinch a playoff spot. Highland needs to win over Belmont to have a shot at the playoffs. River Ridge needs to win over Benton/Scales Mount to get a chance at the playoffs. WSN PROJECTION: Benton/Scales Mound (D7) and Highland (D7) make the playoffs along with the teams that clinched already.

Ridge & Valley: CLINCHED: Ithaca (D7), De Soto (D7), and Wauzeka-Steuben/Seneca (D6/D7). MORE: Riverdale can become playoff eligible with a win over Wauzeka-Steuben/Seneca. WSN PROJECTION: The teams that have clinched are the ones that make the playoffs.

Great 8: Wisconsin Heights is not eligible for the postseason (enrollment size). Oakfield is 7-1, and with a win this week over McDonell, would likely secure a playoff spot in the inaugural 8-player football playoffs.

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