Sorting out the playoff possibilities

By Wes Holtsclaw
STAR STAFF
wholtsclaw@starhq.com
With one week remaining in the regular season, the playoff picture means more this week than any other week of play. Elizabethton, Happy Valley and Cloudland are the only Carter County schools guaranteed a playoff berth.
Hampton must defeat South Greene this week or hope Cumberland Gap loses in order to retain a spot. Unaka should be fine in their contest against Jellico; however, should the Rangers lose, they will lose their playoff berth.
Johnson County is involved in a very complicated situation. If the 'Horns win, they will be in the playoffs. Should they lose, there is a slim chance that they could make it.
The possibilities are as follows.
--PLAYOFF POSSIBILITIES-
(The following information is courtesy of the TSSAA)
Region 1-4A: If Sullivan Central wins and Johnson County wins, Johnson County is third and Sullivan Central is fourth. If Sullivan Central wins, Johnson County loses, and Sullivan East wins, Sullivan Central is third and Sullivan East is fourth.
If Sullivan Central wins, Johnson County loses, and Sullivan East loses, Sullivan Central is third and Johnson County is fourth. If Sullivan Central loses and Johnson County wins, Daniel Boone is third and Johnson County is fourth.
If Sullivan Central loses and Johnson County loses, Daniel Boone is third and Sullivan Central is fourth.
Region 2-4A: Morristown West is first. Greeneville is second. Morristown East is third and Cherokee is fourth unless Morristown East loses and Cherokee wins, in which case Cherokee is third and Morristown East is fourth.
Region 1-2A: Gatlinburg-Pittman is first. Happy Valley is second. If Hampton wins, Hampton is third and Cumberland Gap is fourth. If Hampton loses and Cumberland Gap wins, Cumberland Gap is third and South Greene is fourth.
If Hampton loses and Cumberland Gap loses, South Greene is third and Hampton is fourth.
Region 2-2A: Oliver Springs is first. Alcoa is second. Rockwood is third and Sweetwater is fourth unless Rockwood loses and Sweetwater wins, in which case Sweetwater is third and Rockwood is fourth.
Region 1-1A: Cloudland is first. If North Greene wins, North Greene is second, Unaka is third, and Cosby is fourth. If North Greene loses and Unaka wins, Unaka is second, Cosby is third, and North Greene is fourth.
If North Greene loses and Unaka loses, Cosby is second, North Greene is third, and Jellico is fourth.
Region 2-1A: Greenback is first. Midway is second. Oneida vs. CAK winner is third and loser is fourth, unless CAK wins and Coalfield wins, in which case Coalfield is fourth.
--PREP NOTE--
As stated in Sunday's paper, Cloudland's Mark Byrd re-broke his TSSAA State Record for rushing yards in a regular season by a quarterback, topping his old mark (1,055) by a yard (1,056).
With one game left, Byrd should add a little padding on this year's totals.
--THE BEST--
Offensive Player: Lester Bailey, Elizabethton - 139 yards rushing and two scores in Elizabethton's 29-22 victory over Sullivan Central.
Defensive Player: Charles Peters, Elizabethton - The sophomore recorded two big interceptions and seven tackles in the Cyclones' victory over Sullivan Central.
Trench Performance: Hampton offensive line - paved the way for 245 rushing yards in win over Chuckey-Doak.
Special Teams Player: Cody Walsh, Hampton - Walsh returned a kick 96 yards to paydirt and nailed an extra point in the Bulldogs' victory over Chuckey-Doak.
Honorable Mention: Lucas Roark, Hampton.
Quote: Cloudland quarterback Mark Byrd on the Appalachia game -- "They were young and even though the score didn't show it, they whipped us in every aspect of the game. I'm kind of bummed over the whole situation."
--GAMES OF THE WEEK--
(Overall Record 163-42, Last Week 19-1)
Unicoi County at Elizabethton - The Blue Devils face a Cyclone team that is bent on winning a Mountain Lakes Conference title. Elizabethton has ran the table on the league and should grab that home playoff spot against either Cherokee or Morristown East. ELIZABETHTON 33-14
Sullivan South at Johnson County - If the Longhorns want to go to the playoffs, they must pull out a victory in this contest. Sullivan South brings a strong team to Mountain City with their sites set on pulling an upset. JOHNSON COUNTY 24-12
Happy Valley at Chuckey-Doak - One word: blowout. Look for the Warriors to have a big game all-around. HAPPY VALLEY 44-0
Hampton at South Greene - The Rebels and Bulldogs collide this Friday night in a must-win situation for Hampton if they want to make the playoffs. I look for J.C. Campbell to have his squad fired up in order to make the postseason berth. HAMPTON 16-8
J.J. Kelly at Cloudland - Cloudland faces a tougher Virginia unit in J.J. Kelly. But the 'Landers should play much better than they did against Appalachia Friday night. CLOUDLAND 54-12
Jellico at Unaka - The Rangers must win this game in order to finish third in Region 1-1A. Unaka has a lot more talent than the Blue Devils and should get revenge from the last few seasons. UNAKA 38-0
Statewide Picks
Dobyns-Bennett 14, Science Hill 13
Morristown West 44, Cherokee 6
Gatlinburg-Pittman 32, Greenback 14
Tennessee High 18, Sullivan East 8
Oliver Springs 28, Sweetwater 13
Oneida 32, CAK 19
CPA 48, FRA 16
MBA 12, Brentwood Academy 6
CBHS19, MUS 17
Knox Catholic 33, Knox Webb 13
Lawrence County 16, Overton 12
Moore County 15, Wayne County 14
Huntingdon 28, McKenzie 9
Crockett County 38, Fayette-Ware 7
--BY THE NUMBERS--
2 - straight Hampton playoff appearances
25 - straight Cloudland regular season wins
1994 - last time Unaka was in the playoffs
1997 - last time Happy Valley won in the playoffs
2000 - last Elizabethton conference title