NWA playoff picture takes shape

A first-round bye or not? A playoff game at home or one on the road? The right to play again or season completed?
That’s the questions that will be answered when Week 10 of the 7A-West Conference games transpire Friday night.
Many of the playoff pictures became clearer after Friday’s game, and now many teams know what they must do during their regular-season finales.
Here’s how things shape up for Northwest Arkansas’ football teams heading into Friday’s games:
7A-West Conference
Springdale Har-Ber — Has clinched the No. 1 seed and a first-round bye.
Bentonville/Fayetteville — The winner of Friday’s game earns the No. 2 seed and a first-round bye, while the loser takes to the No. 3 seed and will host a first-round playoff game.
Fort Smith Northside/Fort Smith Southside — The winner of Friday’s game earns the No. 4 seed and will host a first-round playoff game, while the loser falls to the No. 5 seed and will travel for a first-round playoff game.
Springdale High/Rogers High — The winner gets the No. 6 seed and a playoff berth, while the loser is eliminated from playoffs.

7A-Central
Van Buren — Clinches the No. 3 seed with a win over Little Rock Catholic, or will be eliminated with a loss.

6A-Central
Greenwood
— Earns top seed with win over Alma, or falls to No.2 seed with a loss.
Alma — Earns a top seed with win over Greenwood and a Siloam Springs loss to Russellville OR a win over Greenwood and a Russellville win over Siloam Springs if it finishes with more tiebreaker points than the Cyclones. Takes the No. 3 seed with a loss if Siloam Springs loses to Russellville OR Siloam Springs beats Russellville by less than 13 points.
Siloam Springs — Needs a 13-point win over Russellville OR a win over Russellville and an Alma win over Greenwood to earn a No. 3 seed.

5A-West
Harrison
— Can clinch the No. 4 seed with a win over Farmington and a Vilonia loss to Greenbrier.
Farmington — Can clinch the No. 4 seed if the following things happen: the Cardinals have to beat Harrison by 3 or more points, then Greenbrier defeats Vilonia and Maumelle beats Little Rock Christian by 8 or more points. That would cause a four-way tie for fourth place, and Farmington would wind up with the tie-breaker advantage.

4A-1 Conference
Prairie Grove
— has clinched the No. 1 seedand will host a first-round playoff game against the No. 5 seed from the 4A-3 Conference.
Shiloh Christian — Can clinch the No. 2 seed with a win over Pea Ridge or if Gravette finishes with more tiebreaker points than Pea Ridge does in the event of a three-way tie. Will fall to the No. 3 seed with a loss to Pea Ridge if the Blackhawks have more tie-breaker points than Gravette.
Pea Ridge — Can clinch the No. 2 seed with a win over Shiloh Christian and finishes with more tiebreaker points than Gravette OR if Gravette loses to Gentry. Will drop to the No. 4 seed with a loss to Shiloh Christian or in any circumstance where it has less points than Gravette.
Gravette — Will take the No. 3 seed with a win over Gentry or a Shiloh Christian win over Pea Ridge OR a Pea Ridge win over Shiloh Christian if the Lions finish with more tiebreaker points than the Blackhawks. Will take the No. 4 seed with a loss to Gentry OR if Pea Ridge defeats Shiloh Christian and the Blackhawks gave more tiebreaker points than the Lions.
Lincoln — Has clinched the No. 5 seed and will play a first-round playoff game at 4A-4 Conference champion Dardanelle.

3A-1 Conference
Greenland/West Fork
— The winner of Friday’s game gets the No. 1 seed and a first-round bye, while the loser takes the No. 2 seed.
Elkins — has clinched the No. 3 seed regardless of what happens Friday night vs. Green Forest and will host a first-round playoff game.
Cedarville — Clinches the No. 4 seed with a win Friday over Mountain View. Can be eliminated with a loss if Green Forest defeats Elkins OR Elkins beats Green Forest and Marshall defeats Yellville-Summit by 7 or more points.
Green Forest — Can clinch the No. 5 seed with a win over Elkins AND a Mountain View win over Cedarville.

Henry Apple

Henry Apple

Henry Apple is a veteran sports reporter for the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. His primary beat is Bentonville and Bentonville West, as well as topics that include state schools and the Arkansas Activities Association. During the spring, he handles high school track in Northwest Arkansas. He is a lifelong Arkansas resident.
Henry Apple

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