Waterloo Columbus (5-2, 2-1)
at North Fayette Valley (3-4, 2-1)
- When: Friday, 7:30 p.m.
- Where: NFV High School, West Union
- Last week: Columbus suffered its first district loss at No. 4 Waukon, 38-12. North Fayette Valley recovered from a district loss to Monticello with a win over Oelwein, 24-6.
- Last meeting: North Fayette Valley dominated Columbus, 56-6, during a Week 7 game last year in West Union.
- What to watch: These teams are part of a three-way tie with Monticello for second place behind Waukon in the Class 2A, District 4 standings. Columbus finishes against Monticello and NFV closes out its season against Waukon. Currently 16th in the RPI, Columbus likely needs to win out to secure a playoff spot. ... Four interceptions -- including an early turnover at the opposition's goal line -- along with a muffed punt cost Columbus during last week's top 10 showdown at Waukon. The Sailors' defense did record two interceptions, while the Columbus offensive line has continued to protect well, and hasn't surrendered a sack all season. ... North Fayette Valley will provide a different challenge after Waukon passed for 268 yards and four touchdowns against the Sailors last week. Mac Whelan leads the TigerHawks' Wing-T stable with 570 rushing yards and five touchdowns on 109 attempts. Liam McIntyre has 96 carries for 470 yards and eight scores. Quarterback Brooks Hovden has thrown for 518 yards, and NFV has gouged the Sailors with the run setting up big pass plays in previous meetings.
- Columbus coach Brad Schmit: On North Fayette Valley: "We have been better against the run than we have against the pass this season. You have a pretty good taste in your mouth in what we're preparing for, but at the same time this is isn't just your run of the mill offensive system. These guys have been running this for a long time. They execute at a very high level. It's tough to simulate in practice."
On playing for a playoff spot: "The guys do know it is win or go home. Being in this position is great. You've got to fight tooth and nail for your playoff life. These kids are looking forward to having the opportunity to compete, and playing meaningful games in October is something that hasn't occurred in Columbus in a long while."
— Compiled by Sports Writer Nick Petaros