Six thoughts about Week 8, the lightest week of the regular season due to fall break for a lot of teams:
From 0 to 70 in two weeks: Hillsboro and Pearl-Cohn couldn’t score against each other in regulation when they squared off in Week 6. Turns out all they needed to fire up their engines was games against different opponents. Both teams hit the 70-point mark in Week 8, as the Burros sped away from Glencliff 75-6, while the Firebirds went all 1977 Trans Am — really showing their muscle — on Stratford in a 70-0 shellacking. These teams just need some time to truly get up to speed, but these scores suggest that both teams will hit a higher gear for the playoffs. Especially Hillsboro, who won’t be able to finish any better than third in Region 6-5A. They might be a problem for somebody in the first two rounds of the playoffs.
Crash course: In a rematch of last year’s title game, Davidson Academy rolled off 31 unanswered points and took firm control of the region with a 31-9 victory at USJ. It ended any region title hopes for USJ, and now sets up a potential showdown of unbeatens in Week 11 if both DA and Jackson Christian stay the course. The Bears would have to travel for that game for the region title.
Get defensive: Greenbrier’s defense hasn’t taken a break the last two weeks, and it’s paid off in back-to-back shutouts for the first time in 15 years. The Bobcats are now 4-2 after those goose eggs against Montgomery Central and Cheatham County, and are in a playoff position in Region 5-4A with three weeks to play. The Bobcats posted three consecutive shutouts in 2005, blanking Station Camp, Sycamore and Pearl-Cohn. Greenbrier could have a shot to repeat that feat next week, when they host struggling and injury-riddled Northwest.
They didn’t forget: Brentwood Academy remembers missing the playoffs last season, and they took some names. The Eagles have had vengeance on their minds and have checked off everyone on their target list so far that took them down in 2019. McCallie, Knoxville Catholic and MBA have all fallen at BA’s hands this season as the Eagles have plowed their way to an 8-0 start. The last time they started 8-0? That was 2017, and Brentwood Academy ended the year with a gold ball. One more name remains on the revenge list for BA, and that’s Baylor, who just got done losing to Father Ryan on Friday. Think the Eagles aren’t licking their chops over that one?
Speaking of Father Ryan: The Fighting Irish have ripped off three wins since their loss to Brentwood Academy on Sept. 18. Beating Ensworth and Baylor has them in position to return to the playoffs after missing last season. Father Ryan hosts McCallie next week, then Cane Ridge on Oct. 23. The Irish only need to beat one of McCallie or Knoxville Catholic on Oct. 30 to lock themselves into the postseason, or another Baylor loss would also do the trick.
Clarksville’s season-saver: The race for fourth in Region 7-5A took a turn on Thursday when Clarksville knocked off Kenwood 55-38. A fourth region loss would have eliminated the Wildcats from postseason contention. Now, they hold the tiebreaker over Kenwood and have the bottom two teams in the region standings — Northwest and West Creek — still to play. It puts the pressure squarely on Kenwood to defeat Dyer County and hope that Clarksville slips in one of its final two games.
(Note: This has been updated to reflect Father Ryan picking up a game against Cane Ridge on Oct. 23.)