Friday's matchup between the Hamilton Big Blue and the Princeton Vikings takes place between two teams that, as of now, most likely will not earn postseason bids. Currently, the Big Blue and the Vikings are projected to finish 18th and 16th in their respective regional playoff standings. Princeton enters the week as a 13-point favorite and will look to expand their playoff chances with a victory on Friday. The Big Blue come into the game with little regard for pregame statistical breakdowns - while the Vikings believe they are the superior team, the road team will not consider it an upset if they come away with the victory. There is a certain degree of familiarity between the two teams after they faced off last season. Last year, the Vikings got the better of the Big Blue, winning by a score of 31-17.
Hamilton looks to get back on track this week as they come in on a 2-game losing streak. They are currently 1-8 after a 47-14 loss against the Lakota East Thunderhawks last week. The Big Blue have struggled on offense, scoring only 12.25 points per game over their last 4 games. On the year, they rank 65th in Division 1, scoring an average of 13.7 points per game over the course of the season. On the opposite side of the ball, they rank 63rd in the division, allowing 31.2 points per game.
For Princeton, this week is a chance to flip the momentum after 2 consecutive losses. Last week was a 16-13 loss against the Mason Comets and they'll look to rebound strong on Friday. While the Vikings haven't been the most high-powered offense throughout the season, they have been improving week to week. In the last 3 weeks, they've averaged 22.67, up from their season average of 14.7, which ranks 63rd in Division 1. The defense hasn't been much better statistically, giving up an average of 16.6 points per game, which ranks 23rd in their division.
Prediction: Princeton to win (86.14% chance of victory)