The next 72 hours will decide whether the Lions make a run at the playoffs or if they are more in the mood to go on to the house.
As we discussed last week, Durant football still has a chance to get into the 5A playoffs, even with a district record of 1-3 and a season mark of 1-6. How is this possible?
Lions fans can thank the top three district schools for this anomaly. McAlester, Tulsa Memorial and Bishop Kelley are a combined 12-0 going into the season’s final three weeks. What’s more: All three powers are behind the Lions on the schedule.
So, there are four teams locked at 1-3, including the Lions. One of them will make the playoffs.
This Thursday, Durant hosts Shawnee, in about as evenly a matched game as the Lions will have all season. The other two 1-3 teams, Noble and Tulsa Hale, face each other this week.
Here’s the shakedown: Two of these four teams will win and move on to 2-3 district records; the other two will fall to a dismal 1-4. If Durant and Noble get those wins, it sets up a virtual playoff showdown on Oct. 26 when the Lions travel to Noble.
There are four teams in play, so the scenarios branch out, especially since these four teams all play each other over the next three weeks in a sort of round-robin joust for that final playoff spot.
But there’s a lesson for the struggling Lions, who have won a single game through seven weeks but still have postseason opportunities. Like the motivational poster says: “Never give up.”