SBLive’s Missouri Top 25: Postseason begins this week with first-round district matchups; many ranked teams have byes

By Chris Geinosky

Our Week 10 power rankings for Missouri high school football

1. Christian Brothers College (8-1)

Since suffering a season-opening loss against East St. Louis (Ill.), the Cadets won eight consecutive games to close out the regular season. CBC has earned the No. 1 seed in the Class 6 District 1 tournament, which features two other one-loss teams (No. 2 seed Marquette and No. 3 Lindbergh), and the best two-loss team in the state (No. 4 De Smet).

2. Jackson (9-0)

One of the most dominant teams in the state, Jackson outscored its opponents 426-71 for the season. However, keep this in mind. The Indians won their first seven games of the year by an average of 52-7, but the last two weeks those numbers have shrunk to 29-9. Jackson has won a state-best 24 straight games and is a heavy favorite in Class 5 District 1.

3. Liberty North (7-1)

Despite going undefeated in the state’s most talented league – the Greater Kansas City Suburban Gold Conference – the Eagles have to settle for the No. 2 seed in Class 6 District 4 behind Park Hill South. Liberty North has not lost since the opening week of the season at Bentonville (Ark.) and has surrendered 14 points or less in six of the last seven games.

4. Lee’s Summit North (8-1)

Few teams have been as consistent as the Broncos this season. Lee’s Summit North has scored at least 28 points in every contest, while the defense has held seven of nine to 14 points or less. The Broncos have earned the No. 1 seed on the loaded Class 6 District 3 bracket, ahead of No. 2 Joplin, No. 3 Nixa and No. 4 Raymore-Peculiar.

5. De Smet Jesuit (7-2)

Winners of six straight, the Spartans are as hot as anyone. That’s good because they find themselves in the toughest district in the state: Class 6 District 1, where seven of the eight teams have winning records. As the No. 4 seed, De Smet will play host to No. 5 Kirkwood (6-2) this week with top-ranked Christian Brothers likely waiting in the semifinals.

6. Carthage (9-0)

Champions of the Central Ozark Conference, the Tigers have been rewarded with the No. 1 seed and first-round bye in the Class 5 District 6 tournament. Carthage senior running back/linebacker Luke Gall, who has rushed for more than 1,500 yards this season, should be both the COC Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year.

7. Smithville (8-0)

Undefeated champs of the Greater Kansas City Blue Conference, the Warriors have been dominant all season, winning their eight games by an average score of 41-6. Smithville’s suffocating defense has surrendered a grand total of 46 points in eight games, making this club the hands-down favorite to win Class 4 District 8.

8. Holt (9-0)

After playing a few tightly contested games in the middle of the year, the Indians looked like their dominant selves in the final weeks of the season, winning the last two games by a combined 103-13. As the No. 1 seed in Class 5 District 4, Holt is set up for a deep postseason run, but No. 2 seed Helias is looming.

9. MICDS (9-0)

For the second year in a row, the Rams have finished the regular season undefeated, albeit last year’s campaign was cut short because of COVID-19. As the No. 1 seed in Class 4 District 3, reigning Class 4 state runner-up MICDS finds itself in prime position for another deep postseason run.

10. Francis Howell (8-1)

One of the highest-scoring teams in the state, the Vikings have scored at least 32 points in every game this season, piling up 414 points in nine contests – an average of 46 per outing. Francis Howell owns the No. 1 seed in Class 6 District 2, but Troy Buchanan, Hazelwood Central and Timberland all pose threats in the bracket.

11. Joplin (8-1)

After coming back to Earth the past couple weeks, the Eagles’ high-flying offense exploded for 63 points in the final game of the season. Led by quarterback Always Wright, Joplin will need to build off that effort as the No. 2 seed in the tough Class 6 District 3 tournament.

12. Hannibal (9-0)

Can anyone slow down the Pirates? Hannibal has scored 446 points on the season – just shy of 50 points per game – tops in the state. The No. 1 seed in Class 4 District 5 has already defeated No. 2 seed Jefferson City (40-13) and No. 3 seed Kirksville (41-0).

13. West Plains (8-1)

Since losing to Lebanon in Week 6, the Zizzers have won three in a row by a combined score of 169-19. West Plains has earned the No. 1 seed and a first-round bye in Class 4 District 6.

14. Lamar (9-0)

Missouri’s premier small-class program continues to chug along without any issues. Lamar has outscored its opposition 418-73 this season, one of the widest margins in the state. The Tigers are the No. 1 seed in Class 2 District 4.

15. St. Mary’s (St. Louis) (7-1)

The Dragons have been extremely impressive against in-state competition, winning their six games against Missouri teams by a cumulative score of 274-40, an average of 46-7 per contest.

16. Park Hill South (9-0)

The Panthers captured the championship in the Greater Kansas City Red Conference, a league that featured only one team with a winning record. However, the undefeated regular season was enough to earn the top seed in Class 6 District 4.

17. Nixa (7-2)

A Week 9 loss against Carthage snapped the Eagles’ six-game winning streak. Nixa has a tough Class 6 District 3 first-round matchup against Lee’s Summit West, and then a rematch with Joplin could be waiting in the semifinals.

18. Lebanon (8-1)

The Yellowjackets rebounded from their only loss of the season with a win against Parkview that clinched a share of the Ozark Conference title. Lebanon receives a first-round bye as the top seed in Class 5 District 5 tournament.

19. Valle Catholic (9-0)

No team in the state of Missouri has scored as many points as the Warriors, who have registered 470 in nine games, an average of 52 per contest. However, Valle Catholic has to settle for the No. 2 seed in Class 3 District 2 behind St. Mary’s (St. Louis).

20. Raymore-Peculiar (7-2)

Is there a more dangerous No. 4 district seed in the state than Raymore-Peculiar? The reigning Class 6 state champions have won five games in a row and will be a factor in the Class 6 District 3 tourney.

21. Helias Catholic (8-1)

Remember when Helias lost the season-opener to Hannibal? In the past two months since then, the Crusaders have won eight consecutive games, and they’ve done it outscoring their opponents 323-60.

22. Lindbergh (8-1)

Momentum is on the Flyers’ side as they carry a six-game win streak into Class 6 District 1 play. That said, Lindbergh faces a tough first-round opponent in St. Louis University High this week.

23. Rockwood Summit (9-0)

The first undefeated season in program history has resulted in a No. 1 seed in Class 5 District 2 for the Falcons. Rockwood Summit has allowed a mere 31 points the entire season, holding every opponent to single digits.

24. Marquette (8-1)

After winning seven game in a row – the last a noteworthy 35-26 victory at previously ranked Hazelwood Central – the Mustangs break into the SBLive Missouri Top 25 for the first time this season.

25. Platte County (7-2)

For the third separate time this year, the Pirates join the Top 25. Platte County, the No. 2 seed in the Class 5 District 8 bracket, has won four games in a row by a combined score of 180-11.

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