As we reach the end of the season, teams that still have reasonable chances are jockeying for playoff positioning. For the home team in this matchup, the McKinley Bulldogs, anything but a playoff bid would be a disappointment. They come into the week projected to finish 6th in the Region 1 playoff standings. For the visiting GlenOak Eagles, it's a battle to stay in contention. They are currently expected to finish the season 1-9, which would put them around 18th in Region 1. The Bulldogs are the favorites on Friday, projected to win the game by a score of 29-21. McKinley looks to be the superior team on paper, coming into the game ranked 41st in the state while the Eagles rank 370th in the state and 60th in Division 1. The Eagles come into the game with little regard for pregame statistical breakdowns - while the Bulldogs believe they are the superior team, the road team will not consider it an upset if they come away with the victory. One of the more familiar matchups of week 8, both teams know what to expect. McKinley will hope to continue the recent trend, in which they've won 3 of the last 5 matchups. In last year's installment, the Bulldogs came out on top by a score of 34-0.
GlenOak has dropped each of their most recent 6 games and will look to reverse the negative momentum on Friday. They are currently 1-6 and come off of a 38-7 loss against the St. Vincent-St. Mary Fighting Irish. The Eagles have struggled on offense, scoring only 5.33 points per game over their last 3 games. On the year, they rank 56th in Division 1, scoring an average of 17 points per game over the course of the season. They rank similarly on defense, coming in at 69th in their division, allowing 39.3 points per game. That number has generally gone up in recent weeks as they've given up an average of 34 points in their last 3 games.
McKinley will look to continue the momentum of their 4-game winning streak, the most recent addition to which was a 20-6 win against the Jackson Polar Bears last week, bringing their record to 6-1. The Bulldogs rank 6th in Division 1 on offense, scoring an average of 36. However, over the last 2 weeks, their average is down to 20 points per game. Their defense gives up an average of 22.7 points per game, which ranks 40th in their division - in their last 2 games, they've improved, giving up an average of 12.5 points.
Prediction: McKinley to win (99.94% chance of victory)