OHSAA Football Playoff Preview

Region 1

Region 1 is arguably the hardest football region in Ohio and I would even go as far as to call it one of the hardest football regions in the Midwest.  Teams like Mentor and St. Edward have always been ranked in the Top 5 teams of Ohio, and every year for the past 5 years, each team, including St. Ignatius, has broken the MaxPreps Top 25 poll in the United States.

The Matchups

  1. Mentor (10-0) vs. 8. Cleveland Heights (8-1)
  2. St. Edward (9-1) vs. 7. Medina (7-3)
  3. Euclid (8-2) vs. 6. Jackson (8-2)
  4. McKinley (8-2) vs. 5. Solon (8-2)


Mentor 42 vs. Cleveland Heights 7

St. Edward 38 vs. Medina 13

Euclid 31 vs. Jackson 17

McKinley 24 vs. Solon 28


The only upset I have in region 1 is Solon over McKinley.  Solon is on a 4 game win streak, while McKinley is coming off a 24-14 loss to Massillon Washington.  In the regional final, I believe it will be a rematch of last year’s instant classic between Mentor and St. Edward.  St. Edward will come out victorious just as they did last year in a 24-14 victory.     


Region 2

Region 2 includes a few talented Toledo, Dayton and Columbus teams, which are often overlooked because region 2 is “easiest” out of all division 1 regions for football this year.

The Matchups 

  1. Springfield (9-1) vs. 8. Marysville (6-4)
  2. Toledo Whitmer (9-1) vs. 7. Clayton Northmont (6-4)
  3. Dublin Coffman (8-2) vs. 6. Perrysburg (8-2)
  4. Dublin Jerome (8-2) vs. 5. Springboro (9-1)


Springfield 48 vs. Marysville 6

Toledo Whitmer 34 vs. Clayton Northmont 7

Dublin Coffman 31 vs. Perrysburg 10

Dublin Jerome 13 vs. Springboro 21


Again, I believe the 5 seed in this region will prevail against Dublin Jerome in a lower scoring game.  For the regional final, I am predicting Toledo Whitmer vs. Springfield in which Toledo Whitmer will prevail.  


Region 3

Out of all 4 divisions 1 regions, region 3 is the most interesting and I believe anything can happen in it this year.  Last year, we saw a 5 loss Olentangy Liberty win the region to advance to play the St. Edward Eagles in the state semifinal.  I don’t expect less this year, as I can realistically see a Cinderella coming out of this region.  

The Matchups

  1. Olentangy Liberty (9-1) vs. 2. Westerville Central (7-3)
  2. Pickerington Central (9-1) vs. 7. Reynoldsburg (7-3)
  3. Olentangy Orange (9-1) vs. 6. Pickerington North (6-4)
  4. Groveport Madison (8-2) vs. 5. Hilliard Davidson (7-3)


Olentangy Liberty 35 vs. Westerville Central 3

Pickerington Central 28 vs. Reynoldsburg 0

Olentangy Orange 17 vs. Pickerington North 24

Groveport Madison 31 vs. Hilliard Davidson 21


The major upsets I have in this region is Pickerington North over Olentangy Orange and ultimately, I have Pickerington North vs. Olentangy Liberty in the region 3 final.  However, I believe Olentangy Liberty will go on to capture their 4th consecutive region 3 title


Region 4

Region 4 is the second best region in Ohio, especially with traditional Cincinnati powerhouses like Elder and St. Xavier.  Let’s also not forget about Colerain, who were the division 1 runner ups last year. Realistically, I can see any of the top 4 seeds having a really good chance at winning the region 4 title.  Another interesting thing to point out about this region is that Archbishop Moeller missed out on the playoffs for the first time in 33 years.  

 The Matchups

  1. St. Xavier (8-2) vs. 8. Mason (5-5)
  2. Fairfield (9-1) vs. 7. Hamilton (5-5)
  3. Colerain (9-1) vs. 6. Princeton (6-4)
  4. Elder (8-2) vs. 5. Lakota West (7-3)


St. Xavier 45  vs. Mason 7

Fairfield 34 vs. Hamilton 3

Colerain 42 vs. Princeton 14

Elder 17 vs. Lakota West 7



Despite Moeller being out of the playoffs, this might be one of the best region 4 playoff draws in the past 5 years.  The top 4 teams in this year’s region are all separated by a very thin margin and honestly, it is very hard to tell who will pull through.  I believe Colerain will beat St. Xavier in the regional final to advance to their 2nd consecutive state semifinal. I also believe there will be a rematch of last year’s state championship game: St. Edward vs. Cincinnati Colerain.  In the meantime, there will be lots of football to watch in the next 4-5 weeks as teams begin to make their playoff push to etch their names in OHSAA history.    


– Diego Palko ’20