The tireless repetition of August two-a-day practices.

The tireless repetition of August two-a-day practices.

The hours spent sweating in the weight room.

The Saturday scrapes and bruises following a Friday night of competition.

All of that will come down to one night for many area high school football teams. That night either will be Friday, Oct. 28, or Saturday, Oct. 29, with their version of Christmas following on Sunday, Oct. 30.

The playoff pairings will be announced Sunday, with some teams needing final-week victories to get one of eight invitations to the ball in each region.

But how much attention do coaches pay to the all important Harbin computer ratings from the OHSAA?

Don't they have other things to worry about?

"I don't need to pay attention to (the computer ratings) because everyone always brings them up to me," said Westerville Central coach John Magistro, whose team dropped from second in Division I, Region 3 to fourth after a 24-19 loss to Olentangy Liberty on Oct. 21. "The coaches show them to me, the kids, the parents ... everyone.

"It's not like it used to be when you had to wait for them to come out in the paper or they were mailed to you. Now the kids get them on the Internet right away, so you have to address it. But the biggest thing is just going out there and taking care of business on Friday (Oct. 28 at Dublin Jerome.)"

Central is one team playing for its playoff life, as is Olentangy Orange. The Pioneers jumped from ninth in Region 3 to seventh following a 33-14 win Oct. 21 over Hilliard Bradley, knocking the Jaguars from the playoffs.

Bradley is a good story at 6-3 overall under first-year coach Mike LoParo. The third-year program had a combined five victories in its first two seasons and only one OCC-Capital Division win.

Now, the Jaguars will have an opportunity to go four times better than that in league play and finish with seven victories when they close at home Friday, Oct. 28, against Watkins Memorial.

"It hurts and we don't like it, but we can't dwell on it," LoParo said after the loss to Orange. "But we still have a great opportunity to do something, which is win seven games. That's a pretty good season from where we came from."

Orange coach Brian Cross is never one to mince words. He has kept an eye on the playoff picture, as was the case in his previous stints at Grove City and Canton McKinley.

"I pay a little bit of attention to it, and I know we have a shot to get in, but there isn't much you can do about it," Cross said. "If we go out and win (Friday, Oct. 28, at Delaware) that's the only thing we have control over."

Expect a victory to send the Pioneers to the playoffs, especially if Dublin Coffman defeats Upper Arlington.

Upper Arlington is eighth in the region but would gain a ton of points with a win over the Shamrocks, who are third in the region and already assured of a postseason spot. A win would have the Golden Bears in a golden position, possibly with an outside shot at a home game. With a loss, they likely would hibernate for the winter.

Gahanna is in the same boat, needing a victory over Groveport to punch its postseason ticket. The Lions have guaranteed their first winning season since 2007, which also was the program's last playoff appearance.

"I don't personally get into calculating it because if you win the conference or come close to that, you should make it in and that's where we're at," said Gahanna coach John Snoad, whose team is 7-2 overall and 5-1 in the OCC-Ohio, one game behind first-place Pickerington Central. "After the ninth week, it's interesting to look at to see where you are at and what other games will have an impact on your chances. That's when it's interesting, but I don't sit around and worry about (the computer ratings) all year."

Grandview also is in need of a win to ensure its first trip to the Division V postseason since 2005. The Bobcats will be looking to complete the program's first 10-0 regular season - and first unbeaten regular season since going 9-0 in 1955 - when they play at home against Liberty Union.

"We look at the (computer ratings), but some of those things are out of our control," coach Jason Peters said. "All we can really control is what we do on the field. We can't control what the other teams do. We know Centennial and Whitehall got wins last week to help us, and no matter what happens we can only get three wins a week from the league teams. We just have to go out and win."

Winning, obviously, is the most important thing any team can do this weekend.

Whether you're trying to reach the postseason or just enter offseason workouts on a high note, a victory in the 10th week always makes everyone happy.