There's always a week.
Usually the week is Week 9, but if Week 9 proves to be crazier than Week 4, high school football fans better invest in protective helmets.
Chaos was introduced from all sides. Teams that entered the week undefeated lost to teams that were winless. Twenty teams were paired from the undefeated list. Three defending state champions lost (GCMS, Cary-Grove, Loyola) and another (IC Catholic) scored in the last 30 seconds of the game to avoid the same fate.
• Locked conferences usually produce five playoff entrants. (Although rarely the math allows six teams and sometimes four). The Fox Valley currently has five teams sharing the conference lead after a crazy night where two favorites were upset causing a log jam. McHenry and Huntley both pulled off massive victories to put them squarely in the middle of this mess along side Cary-Grove, Jacobs and Prairie Ridge. And there's no guarantee that those five teams will hold their positions with others knocking on the door. The only thing that's clear is that there's not a clear favorite here.
• I'm not sure if there's going to be a crazier conference than the DuPage Valley this season. The DeKalb-Neuqua Valley game was a roller coaster ride, while a talented Naperville Central team got its first win. Lost in the shuffle a bit was Naperville North's win over Waubonsie Valley. Wondering if that's a fluke? We'll get a rare chance to find out as the two teams play one another again in Week 9.
• The DuKane Conference lost its only undefeated team when Wheaton Warrenville South dropped a game to St. Charles East. The Saints looked to be boxing themselves into a corner after last week's loss to Glenbard North, but this win puts them firmly back in the mix again. Speaking of Glenbard North, the Panthers ability to push Batavia to the hilt shows they aren't going to be a walkover for any of the teams in the league. Wheaton North also took a loss that could really turn out to sting later on as it fell to Lake Park.
• Mount Carmel is one of just four CCL/ESCC teams to emerge from the first four weeks of the season without a loss. This on the surface isn't stunning. But the list is short of people who believed who the other three might be at this point: Marmion, Niles Notre Dame and Benet. Another strong move was made by St. Viator, although the four team divisions will not produce an automatic playoff bid, the Lions win over Marian Central Catholic put them in the driver's seat in the league race. That may not mean anything in the long run, considering two of their crossover games are against undefeated teams (Marmion, Mount Carmel). Marian Catholic also won its first league game in over a decade by defeating St. Joseph.
• The Southwest Prairie Conference mercifully ended the crossover portion of its schedule with the West Division winning 22 of the 24 games over the East. Plainfield East and Plainfield South are the only teams that enter the divisional portion of play in the East with one win, while any loss by any of the other teams in the division will effectively eliminate them from playoff consideration.
• One of the better small school rivalry games certainly lived up to its advance billing. The top-ranked team in Class 3A, Wiiilamsville, edged Class 2A powerhouse, Maroa-Forsyth, 43-41. The win should put Williamsville in good position for a high seed in their classification. The loss could actually hamper Maroa seed wise more than most. While most undefeated teams are dropping like flies around the other classifications, Class 2A, has an substantially larger contingent of teams that are still without a loss.
• There's a massive list of teams that have already been saddled with three losses, notable among them are Naperville Central, Evanston, New Trier and Oak-Park River Forest. There's a difficult path for each of them to earn playoff berths, requiring four wins in their last five just to get a shot at an at-large berth. But at least they aren't one of the 67 teams that already find themselves with an 0-4 record (15 more teams have 0-3 records and play on Saturday.)