You can wake up now.
The real playoffs begin this week.
The first round gave us a full slate of snoozers, with one lopsided playoff game after another.
We’ve come to expect that with the split select and non-select playoff format.
How bad was it?
There were 95 first-round games played.
Seventy-five of those 95 were decided by double digits.
For those keeping score, that’s close to 80 percent.
Speaking of keeping score, here are some of the clunkers from the first round.
There were blowouts of 64-0, 62-0 and two 57-0 scores among the bunch, making some contests seem more like homecoming games than playoff games.
But there’s good news.
Things will likely get much better this week as we start Round 2.
Here is a look at the top five games this week.
And boy, are there plenty to choose from. So much so that we can even do an honorable mention.
Some of the more intriguing games (Holy Cross at Evangel, Landry-Walker at Byrd, Riverside at Newman and Jesuit vs. Rummel) don’t even crack the top five this week.
5.St. Charles at Madison Prep
The Comets got their fourth shutout of the season Friday night against Opelousas Catholic. Now they must travel to Baton Rouge to take on Madison Prep, the basketball powerhouse that turned into a football power as well this season. Madison Prep doesn’t have a blemish on its record this season. St. Charles would like nothing more than to win this one and get a possible rematch with Riverside, which must beat Newman again to advance.
4. Teurlings Catholic at De La Salle
The Cavaliers, who had the best regular season in school history, had a first-round bye in the Division II playoffs. It gave them time to lick their wounds from their only loss of the season to Lutcher in the regular season finale. But perhaps more importantly, it gave them an extra week to prepare for Teurlings Catholic’s 6-foot-7 quarterback Cole Kelley. Kelley has committed to play collegiately at Arkansas. Teurlings Catholic competed in Division I last season and lost 28-20 to Rummel in the playoffs, so this will be the stiffest test yet for the Cavaliers.
3. Catholic at Brother Martin
Remember last year’s playoffs? Brother Martin stopped Derrius Guice on a 2-point conversion with no time left to escape with a 25-23 victory in Baton Rouge. Now the two teams will do it all over again, this time in New Orleans with the winner moving a step closer to the Dome. Both teams can score points in bunches. Collectively, they have eclipsed the 40-point mark 14 times this season, so the scoreboard operator at Tad Gormley Stadium could be in for a busy night.
2. Plaquemine at Warren Easton
Speaking of last year and last-second wins, Plaquemine comes back to New Orleans to face Warren Easton in the playoffs. Last season, it was Tyron Johnson, now a freshman at LSU, scoring on a reverse with 28 ticks left to win the game and send the Eagles to the Dome. Now the two teams do it again (this time at Joe Brown Stadium) in the second round. Johnson and Deshawn Capers-Smith are gone from Easton, but the Eagles somehow might be even better this season.
1. John Curtis at St. Paul’s
These two teams played in a scrimmage during the preseason. The stakes are much higher this time around. St. Paul’s is on an eight-game winning streak and have been solid on both sides of the ball. Curtis is Curtis. The winner of this one gets the Rummel-Jesuit winner. Curtis would probably love a rematch with Rummel, but leaving the northshore with a win won’t be easy.
None of the wins will be easy this week. Especially compared to last week.