Over 700 teams participate annually in Ohio High School football.  Once the season is over, almost half qualify for the post-season playoffs, distributed among seven divisions, with each division having four regions.  At the end of four weeks of playoffs, regional championships are awarded and state champs are crowned two weeks later.  It would appear on the surface that every team has decent odds of qualifying for the playoffs in any given year, but this is not necessarily the case.  That’s because there is a group of schools that make it in nearly every year, significantly reducing the odds for the remaining schools.  Here’s a look at that group.

This is the 51st year of the playoffs and the study arbitrarily draws a line beneath the teams in each division that have qualified for the playoffs at least 20 times.  Below are some interesting facts from 1972, the inaugural year of the playoffs, through the 2021 season:

  • There are 57 teams in the overall group, which comprises just 8% of the total number of teams playing football.  Note that Akron Hoban, with 17 qualifications, has been added as the 58th team based on recent success.
  • 38 (66%) have won at least one state title.
  • 55 (95%) have won at least one regional title.
  • 49 (86%) have won more playoff games than they have lost.
  • 12 teams are still alive in the 2022 playoffs through the regional finals.

Among D1 and D2 schools:

  • Cincinnati Moeller (37), Cleveland St. Ignatius (31) and Pickerington / Pickerington Central (30) have the most playoffs appearances.
  • Cleveland St. Ignatius (11), Cincinnati Moeller (9) and Akron St. Vincent (6) have the most state titles.
  • Huber Heights Wayne, Toledo Whitmer, Mentor, Dublin Coffman, Euclid, Massillon and Dover have never won playoff state title.
  • Cincinnati Moeller (17), Cleveland St. Ignatius (15) and Massillon (14) have the most regional titles.
  • Only Euclid has never won a regional title.
  • Cleveland St. Ignatius (74), Columbus DeSales (61) and Pickerington / Pickerington Central (59) have the most playoff wins.
  • Cleveland St. Ignatius (.787), Columbus DeSales (.709) and Lake St. Edward have the highest playoff game winning percentages.
  • Euclid, Solon and Dover have lost more playoff games than they have won.
  • Massillon (14), Columbus DeSales (9), Cincinnati Moeller (8) and Pickerington / Pickerington Central (8) have the most losses in the state semifinal and state final games.

Below is the complete list of teams and their respective playoff data:

 

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