CLINTON -- One look at the schedule, then another glance at the state rankings tells the Clinton High football players what they need to know.
If they want to solidify their position in the Iowa Class 4A playoff picture, they’d better take care of business the next two weeks.
The River Kings (2-3) play Burlington and Davenport West, a combined 1-9, the next two Friday. After that are road games at state-ranked Pleasant Valley and Bettendorf to close the regular season. Four wins should get a team in the postseason, so the math equation isn’t too difficult to compute.
“Definitely, we’ve kind of gone with approach this is our playoffs,” Clinton coach Lee Camp said Friday night. “If we want to keep playing, we’ve got to come up and play good now.”
Of course, Burlington can do math, too, as it approaches Friday’s home game with the Kings at Bracewell Stadium. The playoff picture is bleaker for the Grayhounds (1-4) -- since they also have games with Pleasant Valley and Bettendorf remaining -- so their hopes might rely on beating Clinton and Davenport North and hoping three wins are good enough.
“I’m sure they’re looking at it as a definite need situation for them and looking at it as incentive on their side,” Camp said.
Statistically, Friday’s matchup seems about as opposite as can be compared with last Friday’s foe, Davenport Assumption, which improved to 4-1 with a 35-0 win in Clinton.
Whereas the Knights went into that matchup leading the Mississippi Athletic Conference in total offense and defense, the Grayhounds rank last in both categories.
“They haven’t shown that much offense, but they’ve had issues with eligibility early on and have been saying they will get people back,” Camp said. “I don’t know if they were back last week or this week.”