Prep football playoff pairings set

Citizen staff report

COLUMBUS – Following the conclusion of the football regular-season Saturday evening, the Ohio High School Athletic Association released its final computer ratings and first-round playoff pairings Sunday. There were 715 schools that played varsity football this fall and now 224 are playoff qualifiers, including nine schools that are in the playoffs for the first time and another school that is in the playoffs for a state-record 34th time.

First-round playoff games are played at the higher seed. During the playoffs, Divisions II, III, V and VII play on Fridays at 7:30 p.m., while Divisions I, IV and VI play on Saturdays at 7 p.m.

In Champaign County action, Mechanicsburg (10-0) will be the #2 seed and host #7 Williamsburg (8-2) on Saturday, Nov. 7 at 7 p.m.

“We knew that we would be in a position to host,” Mechanicsburg Coach Kurt Forrest said. “The only thing that matters is that we’re at Week 11 and we’re home. It’s all about trying to keep our family together for one more week. That’s all we’re concerned with.”

Also in Region 22, West Liberty-Salem (8-2) will be the #5 seed and will travel to #4 Cincinnati Country Day (9-1) on Saturday, Nov. 7, playing at 7 p.m.

“We kind of figured this is what would happen. We would have been pretty surprised if we’d gotten a home game,” West Liberty-Salem Coach Dan McGill said. “I think our guys are excited to take a road trip. This group seems to like playing on the road. I think we’re just excited to have an opportunity to keep playing.”

There are seven football divisions, with the largest 72 schools placed in Division I and the remaining schools placed in Divisions II through VII (approximately 108 schools in each division). There are two regions in Division I and four regions each in Divisions II through VII. The top 16 teams in both Division I regions qualified for the playoffs, while the top eight schools in each region in Divisions II through VII qualified.

Citizen staff report