The first two rounds of the TSSAA football playoffs were pretty simple, as far as determining the home team.
The quarterfinals and semifinals can be different story, at least in Classes 1A-5A.
In the first two rounds, the team with the higher region seed has been the host team.
However, the quarterfinals and semifinals aren’t quite as simple. In odd years, the upper-bracket team will host quarterfinal and semifinal games. In even years, it’s the lower-bracket team.
The exception to that, however, is if the two teams are from the same region. Then the higher-seeded team hosts.
There are a handful of teams that, should they win second-round contests, could be quarterfinal hosts despite being the lower seed. Those include in Coalfield (No. 4) in 1A, Tyner and Douglass (both No. 3) in 2A, Chattanooga Christian and Stratford (both No. 3) in 3A, and East Hamilton and Lexington (both No. 3) in 4A.
In 6A, with seedings from 1-8, the higher seeds will host quarterfinals. The semifinals are the same rule as for the other classes.
In DII-A, the higher seeded team hosts throughout the quarterfinals, with the upper team hosting a matchup of same-seeded squads.
The DII-AA bracket is set up where the higher seeded team will play host through the first three rounds.
The toe: Most knowledgeable football fans realize the importance of special teams, especially in the postseason.
Overton is well aware of the difference special teams can make.
The Bobcats suffered a heart-breaking exit from the 6A playoffs a year ago after missing an extra point in overtime in a 28-27 setback to McGavock in the first round.
One year later, the Bobcats experienced the thrill of victory, thanks to “the toe.”
Jose Bravo’s career-long 41-yard field goal as time expired lifted Overton to a 20-17 win over Germantown in the first round of the 6A playoffs last Friday. It was Bravo’s second field goal of the game.
Overton (7-4) will play at Ravenwood (10-1) in the second round Friday.
Midstate dominance: Of the 16 teams remaining in the 6A playoffs, 12 are from the Midstate area.
A large part of that was the dominance the Midstate teams had over teams from West Tennessee and East Tennessee, winning six of the eight games in both the top and bottom half of the bracket.
Among first-round upset winners were No. 6 seeds Wilson Central (28-9 over No. 3 Cordova) and Siegel (34-17 win over No. 3 Bearden). The only four Midstate teams to lose in 6A were seeded seventh and eighth. Of the teams left, only Maryville, Science Hill, White Station and Whitehaven are not located in the Midstate.
Bull’s-eyes on their backs: It’s hard going unbeaten in any level of football. It’s been particularly hard this season in the high school ranks.
There are only 10 teams remaining with unbeaten records. There are none left in DII-AA and only one left each in 6A (Maryville), 5A (Independence), 4A (Stone Memorial) and DII-A (Franklin Road Academy).
Divisions with two left include 3A (East Ridge, Liberty Tech), 2A (Hampton, Boyd-Buchanan) and 1A (Union City, Wayne County).