Here’s a quick look at the playoff scenarios for Wyoming high school football teams entering Week 8 of the 2021 season:

Class 4A
Week 8 games affecting playoff seeding: Campbell County at Kelly Walsh; Cheyenne South at Natrona; Laramie at Cheyenne Central; Rock Springs at Cheyenne East; Sheridan at Thunder Basin.
Cheyenne East: In. No. 1 seed with victory. No. 3 seed with loss.
Rock Springs: In. No. 1 seed with victory and Thunder Basin victory. No. 2 seed with victory and Sheridan victory. No. 3 seed with loss and Sheridan victory. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential to break) with loss and Thunder Basin victory.
Sheridan: In. No. 1 seed with victory and Rock Springs victory. No. 2 seed with victory and East victory. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential to break) with loss and East victory. No. 4 seed with loss and Rock Springs victory.
Thunder Basin: In. No. 2 seed with victory and Rock Springs victory. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential to break) with victory and East victory. No. 4 seed with loss and South victory. No. 5 seed with loss and Natrona victory.
Natrona: In. No. 4 seed with victory and Sheridan victory. No. 5 seed with victory and Thunder Basin victory. No. 5 seed with loss.
Campbell County, Kelly Walsh: In. No. 6 seed with victory. No. 7 seed with loss.
Cheyenne Central, Laramie: Neither in nor out. No. 8 seed with victory. Out with loss.
Cheyenne South: Out.

Here’s a breakdown of how the seeding would go for the top five seeds with the three games in play:

If Natrona beats South
TeamsEastRock SpringsSheridanThunder BasinNatrona
Rock Springs, Sheridan win32154
Rock Springs, Thunder Basin win31425
East, Sheridan win13254
East, Thunder Basin win14325
If South beats Natrona
TeamsEastRock SpringsSheridanThunder BasinNatrona
Rock Springs, Sheridan win32145
Rock Springs, Thunder Basin win31425
East, Sheridan win13245
East, Thunder Basin win14325

Score differential tiebreaker (updated 10-21): If Thunder Basin, Sheridan and Rock Springs tied for the 2-3-4 seeds… Thunder Basin would have the victory against the highest-ranking non-tied team (East), so would be the No. 2 seed. Sheridan then is the No. 3 seed due to head-to-head victory over Rock Springs, which would be seeded fourth. Thanks to Nash in the comments for correcting the error I had previously listed in this scenario.

Class 3A East
Week 8 games affecting playoff seeding: Douglas at Worland; Lander at Buffalo.
Douglas: In. No. 1 seed with victory. No. 2 seed with loss and Lander victory. Tie for 1-2-3 seeds (score differential/coin flip to break) with loss and Buffalo victory.
Buffalo: In. Tie for 1-2-3 seeds (score differential/coin flip to break) with victory and Worland victory. No. 2 seed with victory and Douglas victory. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential/coin flip to break) with loss and Douglas victory. No. 4 seed with loss and Worland victory.
Worland: In. No. 1 seed with victory and Lander victory. Tie for 1-2-3 seeds (score differential/coin flip to break) with victory and Buffalo victory. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential/coin flip to break) with loss and Lander victory. No. 3 seed with loss and Buffalo victory.
Lander: In. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential/coin flip to break) with victory and Douglas victory. No. 3 seed with victory and Worland victory. No. 4 seed with loss.
Rawlins, Riverton: Out.
Score differential tiebreakers:
Scenario 1: If Buffalo, Worland and Lander tied for the 2-3-4 seeds… Lander would have to defeat Buffalo by 10 or more points to win the No. 2 seed (Lander +3, Buffalo +2, Worland -5). Buffalo would be the No. 3 seed by virtue of its head-to-head victory over Worland, which would be the fourth seed. … If Lander won by nine or fewer points, Buffalo would be the No. 2 seed. Worland would be the No. 3 seed with a head-to-head victory over Lander, which would be the No. 4 seed.
Scenario 2: If Douglas, Buffalo and Worland tied for the 1-2-3 seeds… Worland would have to beat Douglas by at least 12 points to force a coin flip for the 1-2-3 seeds. A Worland victory by 11 or fewer points would give Douglas the point differential tiebreaker and the No. 1 seed. Buffalo would then be the No. 2 seed due to its victory against Worland.

Class 3A West
Week 8 games affecting playoff seeding: Evanston at Powell; Jackson at Cody.
Cody, Jackson: In. No. 1 seed with victory. No. 2 seed with loss.
Star Valley: In. No. 3 seed.
Evanston, Powell: Neither in nor out. No. 4 seed with victory. Out with loss.
Green River: Out.

Class 2A East
Week 8 games potentially affecting playoff seeding: Burns at Torrington; Tongue River at Glenrock; Upton-Sundance at Big Horn; Wheatland at Newcastle.
Torrington: In. No. 1 seed.
Wheatland: Neither in nor out. No. 2 seed with victory. No. 4 seed with loss and Upton-Sundance victory. Get in a messy tie with loss and Big Horn victory (see below).
Upton-Sundance: Neither in nor out. No. 2 seed with victory and Newcastle victory. No. 3 seed with victory and Wheatland victory. No. 4 seed with loss and Wheatland victory. Get in a messy tie with loss and Newcastle victory (see below).
Big Horn: Neither in nor out. No. 3 seed with victory and Wheatland victory. Get in a messy tie with victory and Newcastle victory (see below). Get in a messy tie with loss and Wheatland victory (see below). Either out or in a messy tie (see below) with loss and Wheatland victory.
Newcastle: Neither in nor out. No. 3 seed with victory and Upton-Sundance victory. Get in a messy tie with victory and Big Horn victory (see below). Get in a messy tie or out with loss and Upton-Sundance victory (see below). Out with loss and Big Horn victory.
Burns: Neither in nor out. Need a victory, a Tongue River victory, an Upton-Sundance victory and a Wheatland victory to get in a messy tie (see below). Out in all other scenarios.
Tongue River: Neither in nor out. Need a victory, a Burns victory, an Upton-Sundance victory and a Wheatland victory to get in a messy tie (see below). Out in all other scenarios.
Glenrock: Out.
Here are the 2A East scenarios for Week 8. They involve the potential for two four-way tiebreakers, which would be broken with a method TBD, as well as a three-way tiebreaker to be broken by either point differential or coin flip:

If Tongue River beats Glenrock…WheatlandUpton-SundanceBig HornNewcastleBurnsTongue River
Burns, U-S, Wheatland win23tie 4-out-out-outtie 4-out-out-outout (even in tie)tie 4-out-out-outScenario 1
Burns, U-S, Newcastle win42out3outout
Burns, Big Horn, Wheatland win243outoutout
Burns, Big Horn, Newcastle win243outoutoutScenario 2
Torrington, U-S, Wheatland win234outoutoutScenario 3
Torrington, U-S, Newcastle win42out3outout
Torrington, Big Horn, Wheatland win243outoutout
Torrington, Big Horn, Newcastle win243outoutoutScenario 2
If Glenrock beats Tongue River…WheatlandUpton-SundanceBig HornNewcastleBurnsTongue River
Burns, U-S, Wheatland win234outoutoutScenario 4
Burns, U-S, Newcastle win42out3outout
Burns, Big Horn, Wheatland win243outoutout
Burns, Big Horn, Newcastle win243outoutoutScenario 2
Torrington, U-S, Wheatland win234outoutout
Torrington, U-S, Newcastle win42out3outout
Torrington, Big Horn, Wheatland win243outoutout
Torrington, Big Horn, Newcastle win243outoutoutScenario 2

Tiebreaker scenarios:
Scenario 1: Where Big Horn, Burns, Newcastle and Tongue River tie for the fourth and final spot, Burns would be 0-3 against the other three teams and would be eliminated from the tiebreaker. The remaining three teams would have their tie broken by a coin flip, with the odd team out and the head-to-head winner of the remaining teams taking the spot in the playoffs. (Four-way ties do not revert to three-way ties in cases like this.) Thanks to WHSAA Associate Commissioner Trevor Wilson for clarification on this tiebreaker.

Scenario 2 (updated 10-21): Where Wheatland, Upton-Sundance, Big Horn and Newcastle tie for the 2-3-4 spots and one team finishing out, the four-way tiebreaking instructions would be used. In a case where two teams are 2-1 and the other two are 1-2 against each other, the two 2-1 teams would take the top two seeds, with the head-to-head result determining the higher seed. In this situation, Wheatland and Big Horn would be seeded 2 and 3, as both are 2-1 and Wheatland will have defeated Big Horn. Then Upton-Sundance and Newcastle, the two 1-2 teams, would have Upton-Sundance seeded fourth and Newcastle out due to the head-to-head victory. Thanks to WHSAA Associate Commissioner Trevor Wilson for further clarification on this tiebreaker.
Scenario 3: Where Big Horn, Newcastle and Tongue River tie for the fourth and final spot, Big Horn would win a score differential tiebreaker (Big Horn +11, Tongue River -2, Newcastle -9).
Scenario 4: Where Big Horn, Newcastle and Burns tie for the fourth and final spot, Big Horn gains the No. 4 seed with head-to-head victories over both.

Class 2A West
Week 8 games affecting playoff seeding: Big Piney at Kemmerer; Lovell at Cokeville.
Lyman: In. No. 1 seed.
Lovell: In. No. 2 seed with victory. No. 3 seed with loss and Kemmerer victory. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential to break) with loss and Big Piney victory.
Cokeville: In. No. 2 seed with victory and Kemmerer victory. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential to break) with victory and Big Piney victory. No. 4 seed with loss.
Big Piney: In. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential to break) with victory and Cokeville victory. No. 3 seed with Lovell victory, regardless of win or loss. No. 4 seed with loss and Cokeville victory.
Thermopolis, Kemmerer, Mountain View, Pinedale: Out.
Score differential tiebreaker: If Lovell, Cokeville and Big Piney all tie for the 2-3-4 seeds… Cokeville would have to defeat Lovell by 10 or more points to secure the No. 2 seed. If that happens, Cokeville will be 2, and Lovell will be No. 3 by virtue of the head-to-head victory against Big Piney, which will be fourth. … If Cokeville wins by nine or fewer, Lovell will win the score differential tiebreaker, with Big Piney getting the No. 3 seed with the head-to-head victory over Cokeville, which would be the fourth seed. A coin flip wouldn’t be used, since it’s mathematically impossible to finish with a tied score differential given the two existing final scores.

Class 1A nine-man East
Week 8 games affecting playoff seeding: Wright at Southeast.
Pine Bluffs: In. No. 1 seed.
Lusk: In. No. 2 seed.
Southeast, Wright: In. No. 3 seed with victory. No. 4 seed with loss.
Lingle, Saratoga: Out.
Moorcroft: Ineligible.

Class 1A nine-man West
Week 8 games affecting playoff seeding: Shoshoni at Riverside; Wind River at Wyoming Indian (both Thursday).
Shoshoni: In. No. 1 seed.
Rocky Mountain: In. No. 2 seed.
Wind River: In. No. 3 seed with victory. No. 3 seed with loss and Shoshoni victory. No. 4 seed with loss and Riverside victory.
Riverside: In. No. 3 seed with victory and Wyoming Indian victory. No. 4 seed with victory and Wind River victory. No. 4 seed with loss.
Greybull, St. Stephens, Wyoming Indian: Out.

Class 1A six-man East
Week 8 games affecting playoff seeding: Midwest at Guernsey; Kaycee at Hanna (Saturday).
Hulett: In. No. 1 seed.
Guernsey: In. No. 2 seed with victory. No. 3 seed with loss and Hanna victory. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential/coin flip to break) with loss and Kaycee victory.
Midwest: Neither in nor out. No. 2 seed with victory and Hanna victory. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential/coin flip to break) with victory and Kaycee victory. No. 3 seed with loss and Hanna victory. No. 4 seed with loss and Kaycee victory.
Kaycee: Neither in nor out. Tie for 2-3-4 seeds (score differential/coin flip to break) with victory and Midwest victory. No. 3 seed with victory and Guernsey victory. Out with loss.
Hanna: Neither in nor out. No. 4 seed with victory. Out with loss.
Score differential tiebreakers:
Scenario 1: If Midwest, Kaycee and Guernsey tied for the 2-3-4 seeds… Midwest would have to defeat Guernsey by six or more points to win the No. 2 seed (Midwest 1, Guernsey 1, Kaycee -2, with Midwest winning the head-to-head tie for the second seed; Midwest wins the differential outright by winning by seven or more). Guernsey would be the No. 3 seed by virtue of its head-to-head victory over Kaycee, which would be fourth. … If Midwest won by five or fewer points, Guernsey would win the score differential and be the No. 2 seed. Kaycee would be No. 3 with its head-to-head victory over Midwest, and Midwest would be seeded No. 4.
Scenario 2: If Midwest, Hanna and Kaycee tied for the final two seeds… Midwest would win the score differential tiebreaker in all scenarios. Hanna can’t catch Midwest (current score differential Midwest +7, Kaycee +5, Hanna -12). Midwest would win the score differential tiebreaker, and Hanna would be the No. 4 seed by virtue of the head-to-head victory over Kaycee, no matter the margin.

Class 1A six-man West
Week 8 games affecting playoff seeding: none.
Snake River: In. No. 1 seed.
Encampment: In. No. 2 seed.
Meeteetse: In. No. 3 seed.
Dubois: In. No. 4 seed.
Burlington, Farson: Out.
Even with two conference games this weekend, seeds are set. Snake River, even with a loss, wins all tiebreakers with Encampment; Encampment, even with a loss, wins all tiebreakers with Meeteetse; Farson, even with a victory, loses all tiebreakers with Dubois. There are no potential three-way ties that could happen in the conference standings.

–patrick

Note: Post updated 3:27 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 16, to update 1A six-man East scenarios. Post updated 4:32 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 16, to update 1A six-man West scenarios. Post updated 9:44 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 16, to update 2A East scenarios. Post updated 3:06 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 19, with updated 2A East four-way tiebreaker scenarios. Post updated 4:51 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 19, with updated 2A West tiebreakers after result of Thermopolis/Big Piney game. Post updated 2:15 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 21, to reflect correction to error in 4A tiebreaker and additional guidance from the WHSAA office regarding the 2A East four-way tiebreaker possibilities.

9 Thoughts on “Wyoming high school football playoff scenarios entering Week 8, 2021

  1. Travis Koehn on October 16, 2021 at 8:02 am said:

    In scenario 1 in 3A I believe that if Lander beats Buffalo by 1, Lander would be the 4 seed. Buffalo would be 2 seed +11, Worland would be 3 seed -5, Lander 4 seed -6. Agree?

  2. Travis Koehn on October 16, 2021 at 8:17 am said:

    Scratch that, Lander actually has to win by 3 or more to move up to 3 seed. Winning by 1 or 2 they still end up the 4 seed. If they win by 2 they end up at -5, which is the same as Worland who would win the head to head tiebreaker.

    I’m all fouled up, I’ve had the wrong Lander Worland score in my head for a week and I was at the game!

  3. Travis Koehn on October 16, 2021 at 9:16 am said:

    Double scratch!! You’re right on. Stinking thinking on my part, once the 2 seed is determined in 3 way tie points don’t matter, the next 2 are determined by head to head. Sorry for the barrage of incorrect comments. In scenario 1, Lander has to win by 10 to be the 2 seed otherwise they are the 4 seed. You are correct. My mistakeS, plural. 😕

  4. Patrick on October 16, 2021 at 9:37 am said:

    Travis, no worries. Working through tiebreakers is a dangerous game — I’ve messed it up before. The score differential tiebreaker addition added another layer of complexity to it all, too. Appreciate the double-check, though! 🙂

    –patrick

  5. Michael N. Patchen on October 20, 2021 at 10:23 am said:

    Big Piney 27 Thermop 6- final

  6. Pingback: Week 8 picks: Welcome to Spreadsheet Week, nerds – THE HQ — The Wyoming high school football blog

  7. Nash Rambler on October 21, 2021 at 12:02 pm said:

    I’m having trouble understanding the 4A three-way tie breaker between RS, Sheridan and TB. I don’t see how East affects that. In any event I don’t think things get to scoring differential.

    Rules 7.7.30 2a-2c don’t break the tie because the three teams are all 1-1 against each other.

    Under Rule 7.7.30 2.d TB, being the only one of the tied schools to beat East (the highest seed not involved in the tie), would be the #2 seed. Sheridan, having beat RS, would be the #3 seed, and RS would be #4.

    I think most media outlets in the state rely on your analysis, so I think clarification is needed.

  8. Nash Rambler on October 21, 2021 at 1:12 pm said:

    Don’t know what happened to my prior post, but bottom line in 4A, a three-way tie between RS, Sheridan and TB would not go to scoring differential. Under 7.7.30 2d-2e, TB would be seeded #2 as the only team to beat East, the highest seed not involved in the tie. Sheridan would be #3 having beat RS #4.

  9. Patrick on October 21, 2021 at 2:22 pm said:

    Thanks, Nash. You are totally right. Thanks for catching my mistake, and my apologies for getting it wrong at all. The scenarios are updated to reflect everything you just said.

    –patrick

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