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Football season hits the stretch run as teams race to qualify for playoffs

High School Sports Weekly
Good morning,
We’ve hit the stretch run of the season. It’s all about the playoffs now with teams desperate to qualify for the postseason. 
Traditionally it has required five wins to get in. And even some five-win teams have missed out, depending on playoff points (basically the number of wins your opponents have). 
This season is shaping up to be different. Steve Soucie from the Joliet Herald-News, who is regularly crunching the playoff numbers, says that there will be some four-win teams in the playoffs this season. Playoff points will be important, though. 
It’s also officially just four weeks until basketball practice starts across the state. That means it is time to start the Twitter previews. Coaches and/or athletic directors, please send info on your team to mobrien@suntimes.com. I’ll tweet out a preview on every team that sends in the information. All Illinois schools are eligible, not just schools in the Sun-Times coverage area.
Michael O'Brien, High School Sports Editor

Super 25 rankings
Joliet Catholic’s Vinny Iannantone (28) runs the ball against Brother Rice. | Kirsten Stickney/For the Sun-Times
Joliet Catholic’s Vinny Iannantone (28) runs the ball against Brother Rice. | Kirsten Stickney/For the Sun-Times
This was the first calm week in the rankings in awhile. There was very little movement overall, other than Brother Rice taking a bit of a tumble after losing at home to Joliet Catholic and Bolingbrook dropping a bit after losing in overtime to Lockport.
Week 8’s schedule doesn’t provide much in the way of marquee match ups. I’ll likely head to Lockport to see the unbeaten Porters host Lincoln-Way East. It’s time to do some research on the last time Lockport won that game.
Oswego East spent a good chunk of the year ranked. The Wolves have a huge rivalry game against Oswego (a team that could easily be in the 20-25 range) on Friday. That’s the other big game of the week. It’s possible the winner of that squeaks into the Super 25 next week.
1. Loyola (7-0) 1
2. Joliet Catholic (7-0) 3
3. Neuqua Valley (7-0) 4
4. Brother Rice (5-2) 2
5. Cary-Grove (7-0) 5
How the Super 25 fared in Week 7
Four Downs: News and notes from Week 7 in high school football
Dynamic Aaron Warren leads Morgan Park to its first win against Simeon in 12 years
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Team of the week: Bishop McNamara Fightin' Irish
Bishop McNamara's logo
Bishop McNamara's logo
Bishop McNamara (4-3) kept its playoff hopes alive in coach Rich Zinanni’s last season. The Fighting Irish knocked off St. Francis 36-15. 
Running back Tony Phillips had 16 carries for 221 yards and two touchdowns. The junior has offers from Tennessee and Syracuse. 
The Irish won four state titles in the 1980s under Zinanni and another in 2015. They also had three runner-up finishes and 36 IHSA playoff berths.
Want your school featured in Team of the Week? Send us an update on your team’s season, your name and hometown, and (if possible) a photo to newsletters@suntimes.com. Some answers may be lightly edited for clarity.
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