High school football's regular season is about 80% over.

Still, so much has yet to be decided. 

Teams still have league titles to play for and division placement for the playoffs is still up in the air. 

Let's take a look at the league title and playoff pictures as most teams prep for their final two games.

CIF Central Section playoffs

If teams want a playoff spot in the Central Section, they just need to win a few games.

The Central Section hopes to have six full divisions with a total of 88 teams. Those six brackets will be filled by using the CalPreps rankings once the regular season is complete.

What will that look like? Well, luckily, the CIF Central Section has been compiling weekly updates on divisional rankings.

No Central Coast Athletic Association teams are in Division 1 as of now. The highest ranked team in the CCAA? That would be Mission Prep at No. 18.

The Royals would be punished for their perfect 8-0 record as they'd be a middle-of-the-pack Division 2 team. Mission Prep is the No. 18 team in the section according to CalPreps' formula, earning them the No. 10 seed and a road game in Division 2. There will be eight teams in Division 1.

Let's take a look at St. Joseph's standing. The Knights are No. 24, which would make them the last seed, No. 16, in Division 2. 

Frankly, the Knights would much rather be ranked No. 25. That's where Wasco currently is. If the Knights were dropped down just one spot in the rankings, they'd be the No. 1 seed in Division 3. 

St. Joseph plays at Pioneer Valley (0-7, 0-3 Mountain League) in a league game Friday night. They close the regular season with the home game against rival Righetti on Oct. 29. Those are two games the Knights should win. Depending on how other teams ranked near them do, the Knights would likely stay in Division 2 if they win out. 

If St. Joseph's only goal this season was the win a CIF title, it would behoove them to lose their last two games and drop down to Division 3.

Will that happen? No way, according to coach Pepe Villaseñor.

"At the end of the day, we're going to play the best we can, week in and week out, and we'll play the hand we are dealt," Villaseñor said when discussing this new playoff format in August, before the season started. 

When asked if he was a fan of this system before the season, Villaseñor said, "No comment on that."

St. Joseph and Mission Prep are the only teams in the area in Division 2. 

There are three CCAA teams in Division 3. Paso Robles is ranked No. 32 overall, putting the Bearcats in the middle of the division. Paso Robles (5-2, 3-0 Mountain) hosts Righetti (1-6, 1-2 Mountain) Friday night. 

Paso Robles is the Mountain League leader, with wins over St. Joseph, Nipomo and Pioneer Valley. 

Nipomo (6-2, 2-2 Mountain) is No. 38 and Arroyo Grande (5-3, 2-1) is No. 39. Arroyo Grande hosts Nipomo in a Mountain League game on Saturday morning. The Eagles then close out the regular season with a game against Paso Robles. Nipomo surely wouldn't mind falling to No. 41 to become the No. 1 seed in Division 4. 

Saturday's game will be Nipomo's last of the regular season. 

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Pioneer Valley (0-6, 0-4) is the lowest-ranked Mountain League team, though the Panthers could still make the playoffs. Pioneer Valley is No. 79 in the section, putting the Panthers as the No. 7 seed in Division 6. 

Teams can opt out of the postseason, but the Central Section is willing to accept most teams to fill out the brackets. 

Mission Prep (7-0, 3-0 Ocean League) closes out the regular season with league games against Templeton (4-4, 1-2) and San Luis Obispo (5-2, 3-0). That Mission Prep-San Luis Obispo game will decide the Ocean League champion.

San Luis Obispo is in a good spot currently in the rankings. As the No. 58 team in the section, the Tigers are the No. 2 seed in Division 5.

Who's right behind SLO? That would be the Righetti Warriors (1-6, 1-2 Mountain), who find themselves in a decent playoff division. The Warriors have just one win, but have played a tough schedule, resulting in a ranking that puts them in a good position come playoff time. The Warriors, though, lost their starting quarterback, Braden Claborn, for the season to a torn ACL last week, hampering any hopes of a deep playoff run. 

No area teams are currently in Division 4. Area teams in Division 5 are Templeton (No. 69) and Atascadero (No. 72). Morro Bay (3-5, 1-2 Ocean) is currently the No. 5 seed in Division 6, two spots in front of Pioneer Valley. Santa Maria (2-6, 0-3 Ocean) is No. 81, the No. 9 seed in Division 6.

Santa Maria plays Morro Bay Friday night on the road before closing out the regular season at Templeton. 

Remember, with most teams having two games to play, these rankings will surely change over the next two weeks. (For example, St. Joseph was the No. 3 team in Division 3 last week, before the cancellation win against Nipomo bumped the Knights up to Division 2). 

The final brackets will be released Oct. 31. 

CIF Southern Section playoffs

This is the final time Lompoc, Cabrillo and Santa Ynez have to worry about the CIF Southern Section playoff format, which is a bit more complicated than the Central Section's format. Those three schools are moving to the Central Section for the 2022-23 school year.

The Southern Section has more schools vying for limited playoff spots. All three area teams in the Southern Section are in six-team leagues, which are guaranteed three playoff spots.

The Southern Section will use a similar system to place the highest-ranking teams in the toughest divisions, though qualified teams will be placed in divisions at first.

The CIF-SS bluebook rule 3319.7 states that "seeding of all playoff brackets in each division will follow the final power rankings in that division, regardless of league affiliation or league finish."

For example, in the first round, the No. 1 seed, determined by the final power rankings for that division, will play No. 16 and the No. 2 seed will play No. 15, etc.

Then there are at-large entries. 

"Once Automatic Qualifiers have been placed into a division, any remaining spots will go to the highest ranked .500 teams in that grouping," the CIF-SS rulebook states. "If there are not enough .500 teams, then the highest rated sub .500 team(s), will be taken."

Santa Ynez is currently tied for second in the Pacific View League at 2-1, with games remaining against Channel Islands and San Marcos. Santa Ynez should win those games and earn a playoff spot.

Lompoc is currently 3-5 and 0-3 in the Channel League. With no shot at cracking the top three in the league, Lompoc's best chance at making the playoffs would be to beat Oxnard and Dos Pueblos in its final two games to get to .500 and hope for an at-large berth. Lompoc has played a tough schedule and has had a decent ranking for much of the season, meaning they may have a shot at an at-large berth. 

Oxnard is 3-5 overall and 1-2 in the Channel League. 

Cabrillo is 0-8 on the season and has no chance at the playoffs. 


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