Three football teams from the Ohio Valley Publishing area opted not to participate in the free Ohio playoffs ride this fall.
Three other gridiron programs, however, now know what their postseason roads look like.
Southern, South Gallia and River Valley elected not to be part of the coronavirus-themed Week 7 playoff format that the Buckeye State has produced for 2020, but Gallia Academy earned a bye, Eastern got a home game and Meigs will make a short drive to its postseason affair starting next weekend.
The Ohio High School Athletic Association released the playoff brackets for all seven divisions on Thursday, providing some insight on a lot of next week’s gridiron schedule.
Similar to sectional tournaments in basketball, soccer, baseball and softball, this year’s revised format has a majority of the top eight teams in each region receiving byes for Week 7, while a lot of play-in games will decide who faces those higher seeds in Week 8.
The Blue Devils were the only local program to earn a bye for Week 7 after grabbing the five seed in the Division IV, Region 15 bracket.
Gallia Academy — which does not plan to play a game in Week 7 — will host the winner of the No. 21 Belmont Union Local at No. 12 Vinton County contest at 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 17.
The Eagles drew the 11th seed in the Division VII, Region 27 bracket and will host No. 22 Sciotoville East at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 9, at East Shade River Stadium.
The winner travels to face sixth seeded Caldwell the following Friday at 7 p.m.
The Marauders picked up the 18th seed in Division V, Region 19 and will travel to No. 15 Oak Hill for a 7 p.m. kickoff on Saturday, Oct. 10.
The winner travels to face second seeded West Lafayette Ridgewood the following Saturday at 7 p.m.
Visit ohsaa.org to see all of the Ohio high school playoff brackets for the 2020 season.
Despite skipping the Week 7 playoff run, Southern, South Gallia and River Valley are still eligible to play regular season contests over any of those remaining four weeks of the 2020 season.
Any playoff team eliminated before Week 10 can continue playing regular season games until the end of the 10-week regular season.
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Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.