Last week of regular season sees teams jockeying for playoff position

Posted Monday, Nov. 04, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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There is absolutely no drama going into final week of the 2013 high school football regular season for our coverage teams. Let’s congratulate the playoff-bound – Southlake Carroll, Colleyville Heritage, Justin Northwest, Keller Central, Keller Fossil Ridge and Byron Nelson. Grapevine, Keller Timber Creek and Keller are trying to end on a positive note.

Some coaches will disagree with my first statement, because there are some seedings to be determined. That impacts Colleyville Heritage, Northwest and Fossil Ridge. So their finales are important both for seeding and to add one more win to the column.

Northwest and Fossil Ridge are going Division II in District 4-5A. Currently, Fossil Ridge has the top seed because it beat Northwest. The only way the Texans can earn the top seed is to beat Keller Central and have Fossil Ridge lose to Keller Timber Creek. Carroll has the top Division I 4-5A seed. Keller Central is the runner up. Colleyville Heritage and Hurst L.D. Bell are both heading toward Division II in 6-5A and play each other Friday. The winner gets the top seed. The loser drops into the second seed. Euless Trinity has won the district and is the top seed in Division I. Either Irving, Irving Nimitz and Irving MacArthur will wind up with the Division I runner up seed. Byron Nelson has the runner up Division I seed in 5-4A behind Denton Guyer.

Last week, we went 6-1. We got Keller Central right (yea!) and came within a field goal of calling Grapevine over Irving MacArthur. For the year, we are 52-12. So here we go for Week 10.

Keep in mind we’ll keep the picks going in the playoffs as well, until every team’s season is over.

Justin Northwest (7-2, 4-2) at Keller Central (5-4, 4-2); 7 p.m. Thursday, Keller ISD Athletic Complex: This has become a pretty good rivalry between these two over the years. Bart Helsley’s Chargers are in the playoffs for the third consecutive year. Bill Patterson’s Texans are in for the third time in five years and second straight. This grudge match comes down to the Texans taking care of the football. They have a problem with that, and can’t let the game get ugly. That’s how Central upset Fossil Ridge. Ultimately, I do think Northwest has the edge – by a little.

Prediction: Justin Northwest 20, Keller Central 17

Grapevine (1-8, 1-5) at Irving Nimitz (3-6, 2-4); 7 p.m. Thursday, Irving Schools Stadium, Irving: The Mustangs would like to play spoiler here and knock the Vikings out of the playoffs. And judging by the 31-29 loss to Irving MacArthur, Dave Henigan’s kids are giving great effort. Nimitz has scored three points in the last two weeks. I think the Mustangs can pull this out.

Prediction: Grapevine 27, Irving Nimitz 26

Keller (5-4, 2-4) at Richland (4-5, 2-5); 7:30 p.m. Friday, Birdville Fine Arts/Athletic Complex, North Richland Hills: Think there’s nothing at stake here? Not a chance. All week, Carl Stralow will talk to his team about finishing with a winning record. Richland’s Ged Cates will speak to his squad about finishing .500. It should be an intriguing game. Keller RB Dalton Mills helps bring the win home. For Keller, the thought of “What could have been” will be hard to ignore.

Prediction: Keller 27, Richland 20

Haltom (3-6, 1-5) at Carroll (8-1, 6-0); 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dragon Stadium, Southlake: It’s Senior Night for the Dragons. And last week’s major scare against Keller Fossil Ridge should have this team’s attention. Carroll will use this game to work on refining some things but maintaining its edge. Haltom will finish the season on a six-game losing streak.

Prediction: Carroll 49, Haltom 7

Keller Fossil Ridge (6-3, 4-2) vs. Keller Timber Creek (2-7, 1-5); 7:30 p.m. Friday, Keller ISD Athletic Complex, Keller: There might be a bit of an emotional hangover for the Panthers after the heartbreaker against Carroll. However, if it’s the team I think it is, it should bounce back. Timber Creek just doesn’t have the depth.

Prediction: Fossil Ridge 34, Timber Creek 9

Denton (4-5, 2-4) at Byron Nelson (7-2, 4-2); 7:00 p.m. Friday, Northwest ISD Stadium, Justin: Credit former Keller coach Kevin Atkinson for getting the max out of his Broncos. Denton was in the race until last week. While Nelson’s playoff situation is known, the Bobcats have never won eight games in a season in their history. They will this year, because sophomore Preston Haire is growing at quarterback.

Prediction: Byron Nelson 34, Denton 20

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