The WPIAL will announce playoff pairings Monday night, but I just grabbed a megaphone and I am ready today to announce Varsity Blog's playoff matchups right now. Is anyone listening - or reading?
But before the games, let's touch on a few things about the playoffs. The WPIAL has always kept teams away from a conference foe in the first round. But with six classifications this year, and with only two conferences in four of the classifications, WPIAL executive director Tim O'Malley said the league might do away with that practice. There is a possibility that conference foes could meet in the first round.
It's understandable, but O'Malley said the WPIAL football committee won't decide that until today.
Also, keep in mind that seedings sometimes are not "true" seedings because of teams having to play at home in the first round. For example, some might not think Fort Cherry would be a top 8 seed in Class A, but Fort Cherry will have a home game in the first round. Thus, the Rangers have to be in the top 8.
I did my brackets and matchups without conference teams meeting in the first round. Some seedings had to be adjusted slightly because of that. Others had to be adjusted because of the home games. But here goes:
(8) Norwin at (1) Central Catholic; (7) Hempfield at (2) North Allegheny; (6) Seneca Valley at (3) Mt. Lebanon; (5) Pine-Richland at (4) Bethel Park.
(8) Gateway at (1) West Allegheny; (7) North Hills at (2) Armstrong; (6) Upper St. Clair at (3) McKeesport; (5) Franklin Regional at (4) Woodland Hills.
You can definitely make the point that North Hills should be seeded eighth and Gateway seventh. But in order to stop two teams from the same conference meeting in the first round, I switched Gateway and North Hills.
(8) Montour at (1) Thomas Jefferson; (7) Ringgold at (2) South Fayette; (6) Belle Vernon at (3) Mars; (5) New Castle at (4) West Mifflin.
(8) South Park at (1) Aliquippa; (7) Apollo-Ridge at (2) Beaver Falls; (6) Mount Pleasant at (3) Keystone Oaks; (5) Central Valley at (4) Derry.
(16) South Side Beaver at (1) Steel Valley; (15) Freedom at (2) Washington; (14) Beth-Center at (3) Neshannock; (13) Serra at (4) Riverside; (12) Frazier at (5) East Allegheny; (11) Avonworth at (6) Chartiers-Houston; (10) Laurel at (7) Brentwood; (9) Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic at (8) Burgettstown.
(16) Avella at (1) Clairton; (15) Riverview at (2) Rochester; (14) Mapletown at (3) Jeannette; (13) California at (4) Northgate; (12) Shenango at (5) Bishop Canevin; (11) Springdale at (6) Our Lady of the Sacred Heart; (10) Sto-Rox at (7) Carmichaels; (9) Imani Christian at (8) Fort Cherry.