NEW BRITAIN - With most high school football teams only having one game left on the schedule, it means the outlook for the playoffs are becoming clearer.
But there are also a number of teams still trying to either improve their standing or just make it into the postseason. And that’s where things start to get interesting.
Here is a breakdown the playoff picture for the local football teams by class:
Southington finds itself in the unique position of being on the cusp of the Class LL tournament after its overtime loss to South Windsor on Saturday. So in order for the Blue Knights to avoid missing their first playoff appearance since 2011, they would need to beat Cheshire on Thanksgiving Day and receive some help along the way.
Southington (7-2) currently occupies the No. 8 spot in the Class LL rankings with 930 points with Fairfield Prep (7-2) sitting right behind the Blue Knights at 920 points and Cheshire (6-3) at No. 10 with 880 points.
Should both Southington and Fairfield Prep with their final games, the Blue Knights would need to finish with 20 more bonus points to hold onto the final spot. If the Jesuits finish with just 10 less bonus points than Southington, if both win, then the Blue Knights would be eliminated based off tie-breaking points. Fairfield Prep owns 92 tie-breaking points, while Southington has 90. If the Jesuits finish with the same amount of bonus points or more, again after both teams win, then the Blue Knights are eliminated.
If Southington loses its final game of the season to Cheshire, the Blue Knights are out. If Fairfield Prep loses and Southington wins, Southington is in.
But it is possible for Southington to climb higher in the rankings. If East Hartford loses to Manchester and Newington beats Wethersfield, then the Blue Knights would take over the seventh seed, while the highest they could go based off total points is fifth.
At 4-5 entering the Wishbone Bowl against Berlin this Friday, New Britain is out of the playoffs. But a win would help Southington enhance its playoff push should the Blue Knights win as well and hurt the Redcoats in the Class M standings despite Berlin already securing a playoff spot.
None of the three local teams - Bristol Central, Bristol Eastern or Newington - remain in the race to make the playoffs.
The Rams were officially eliminated last week despite routing East Catholic to up their record to 6-3. But the maximum amount of points Bristol Central can get is 910, 60 below East Lyme.
With just two wins apiece, both the Lancers and the Indians have been out of contention since Week 6.
Berlin secured its playoff spot after a Week-8 win against Bloomfield.
The Redcoats currently sit in the three spot with 1080 points as they prepare for the Wishbone Bowl against New Britain this Friday, but that could change based on some different scenarios.
If Berlin (8-1) were to beat the Hurricanes (4-5), a Class LL school, and get all of its bonus points should top-seeded Killingly (8-0, 1120 points) and second-seeded Coventry co-op (9-0, 1220 points) lose their remaining games, the Redcoats could take over the top spot in the Class M.
There is also the possibility Berlin could fall in the rankings. If the Redcoats lose to New Britain, and don’t get any of their bonus points, they could fall down to No. 6 in the rankings. If Berlin beats New Britain and doesn’t get any of its bonus points, it would fall to No. 4 should Sheehan get all of its 1280 points.
Neither St. Paul nor Plainville is still able to compete for a postseason berth.
A three-game losing streak for the Falcons in Weeks 6-8 ended their chances with only a three-win Oxford team remaining on the schedule that would give them a possible maximum of 1010 points.
The Blue Devils (5-4), meanwhile, have won four straight going into their Thanksgiving Day game against Farmington with a chance to secure a winning season after going 0-10 last year. But the 1-4 start eliminated Plainville from a chance to contend early.
David Glovach can be reached at (860) 801-5085 or firstname.lastname@example.org
On Twitter: @DavidGlovach