It's still a few days until the Sac-Joaquin Section releases its playoff pairings, but The Bee has put together a season-ending projection of what we can expect to see next week.
We've been providing these projections the second half of the season, but the final set will draw lots of interest:
Downey, for example, has the No. 3 seed, plays in Division 2 and hosts Atwater. Downey is the bubble team, though, and could go D1 with larger schools if we see a couple of upsets by small schools.
Pitman opened its season with a 35-31 win over Enochs, and those two meet again in a D1 opener. The Pride projects as the No. 5 seed, but criteria allows the section to jump at least two teams over Pitman.
Buhach Colony is fifth in D2, and faces a potential quarterfinal at potent Elk Grove No. 2 in all of Northern California just three weeks ago.
That's just the start of it ...
We use Calpreps' projected winners for Week 10, it has an 83 percent accuracy this fall, to pick winners and losers for these regular-season finales.
That would mean Hughson beats Hilmar and Orestimba loses to Modesto Christian in Trans-Valley League games. It would eliminate Orestimba, but the other three go on.
It also would mean Del Oro, a two-time defending section champion, would lose to Rocklin and not reach the playoffs.
Of course, they'll still play that game to decide a winner.
That's why the best we can do is project matchups, reassuring some teams while perhaps making others nervous. Should Del Oro and Orestimba win, it could be enough to bump Downey up a division.
The playoff brackets will be at www.modbee.com/hsfootball Saturday about 5 p.m. A Stanislaus Football Weekly playoff bracket special follows Saturday night.For a complete list of high school football playoff projections, click on the link with this story at www.modbee.com/sports.