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MHSAA releases football playoff format for this fall, with field doubled for both 11- and 8-player postseason

By: MATTHEW B. MOWERY, September 25, 2020, 2:11 pm

The Michigan High School Athletic Association announced the football playoff format changes on Friday, adding another round to district play to double the field for both 11-and 8-player postseasons this fall.

The 11-player field will consist of all 507 teams currently playing football, with five teams receiving first-round byes. Teams will play three district rounds, rather than two, and the postseason bracket will be according to the pre-arranged enrollment divisions — with 20 teams between the pre-established divisions to compensate for the small number of programs that chose not to play this fall.

Those district groupings are available on the MHSAA website. 

Districts will be seeded 1-through-8 based on playoff points, and the top seeded teams will host at both the district and regional levels. Host sites for semifinals and finals will be announced at a later date. 

The 8-player field will include 64 of the 78 teams currently playing in the two divisions, with the remaining 14 teams eligible to schedule one more game against another of the non-qualifiers. The top 32 teams in each of the pre-determined enrollment divisions will qualify for the postseason, which will include three regional rounds, and the finals will be the weekend of Nov. 27-28 at a site to be determined.