Playoff rug pulled out from under Loveland High School football team

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LOVELAND, Colo. -- The Loveland High School football team felt jubilation on Sunday morning when the Colorado High School Athletic Association announced it had qualified for the state 4A football playoffs.

But a few hours later, CHSAA announced a "discrepancy" in its formula that cost Loveland a trip to the playoffs.

The Indians finished a 9-1 season with a 14-7 win over Greeley West. Greeley West qualified for the 4A field.

"A discrepancy in the 4A football RPI standings changed the final qualifier for the 4A football playoff field. As a result, Vista Ridge has made the field, and Loveland has not," CHSAA said in a statement.

"Here's what happened:

  • Loveland played Mountain View in Week 5. Mountain View finished 5-5, with a win over a 3A team.
  • Mountain View, a 4A team, played three 3A teams this season. The first game against a team from a lower classification is exempted.
  • Mountain View lost to Holy Family in the first game (exempted), then beat Thompson Valley in the second game (not exempted). This was reflected correctly in Mountain View's final adjusted winning percentage of 0.487.
  • Loveland was incorrectly getting credit for Mountain View having an exempted win over Thompson Valley. This resulted in Loveland's OWP being calculated as .322222222. The correct figure is .320772947.
  • As a result, Loveland's correct RPI is 0.524075.
  • Vista Ridge's RPI is 0.524495.
  • This also slightly adjusted final RPI numbers for Loveland's opponents, though it did not affect their standings in the RPI.

"We apologize for the mistake, and to the affected communities."

"Unfortunately due to things out of our control the new 4A bracket is out and we are not in the field. CHSAA had a mistake in the RPI calculation and after fixing it we end up outside the top 16," Loveland High School officials said on Facebook.

"More importantly congratulation to the Football team for finishing 9-1. This outcome does not change how great of a season you boys had and how proud our school is of you. Keep you heads up boys."

School officials later posted a second message: "Fans please keep the focus on how well our team did this year and not the anger on a system that did not work as we hoped. CHSAA will look at things in the off season and make a call on what to do next. But again please celebrate the success of our program not throw anger at something we could not control. Thank you."