SUPER 16 – It’s a battle of North vs South in the Super 16’s Week 12 Game of the Week as the AF#15 Birds of Prey (8-3-0) who have already clinched the South Division Championship take on The Dawg Pound (7-4-0) who are chasing their own Division Championship in the North. The stakes are high in this game between AF Registered Coaches, as Roger Tripp’s Birds are still looking to lock down a first round playoff bye and with just two games left, and one of the only teams in the league that can challenge them for it is none other than meigzoh’s Dawgs. A BoP win, and a loss by the Northern Fins (6-5-0) this week would clinch a first round bye for the League’s Atlanta franchise. It would also help out Motor City (6-4-0) who’s one game behind the Dawgs in the race for the North. Conversely, a Dawg Pound win and a Motor City loss would give the Cleveland Dawgs the North Division Title and take the drama out of the Week 13 head to head finale between the two. A Dawg Pound victory would also give them a route to a first round bye should they follow with another win next week combined with a Birds loss. Motor City is facing BIGDOGINTEX (4-7-0) this week in a game that kicked off on Thursday with the Super 16’s annual Thanksgiving Day Classic. They lead right now, going into the weekend, and can pull abreast with Dawg Pound with a win and a Dawgs loss.
These two yearly league powerhouses, both of them charter members of the league, are two of the winningest franchises in the Super 16, and have accounted for a combined 100 wins over the past 6 seasons. They have, however, only faced each other twice, once in 2012 and again in 2014, splitting the two meetings with one win each. In 2013 they came within a point and a half of facing each other in Super Bowl II when The Dawg Pound lost a heartbreaker, 132.50-134.00, to Arizona. The Dawg Pound has an all-time record of 2 wins and 3 losses in Week 12 matches, while Birds of Prey are 4-1 all-time in Week 12 games, including their 140-106 victory over the Dawgs in Week 12 of 2014. The lone loss in their Week 12 run of wins was by just 3 points in last season’s Week 12 bout – also against Arizona. The oddsmakers in Vegas have this one listed close with the Dawgs installed as two touchdown favorites, despite the Birds coming in with a higher per game average (191). The Dawgs are coming off a franchise record performance, scoring 253 points last week in a win against the Birds’ rival Saints, so this looks like it might be one of the most exciting games of the season.
Elsewhere in the League this week, the AF#3 Arizona Firebirds (9-2-0) can win the West Division Championship this week with a win against the defending Champion Northern Fins (6-5-0). Not only would a victory secure the Division, but it would also secure a first round bye in the playoffs for the Firebirds. The timing for Arizona to win the division title couldn’t be any more perfect as they’ll also be playing, this week, for the franchise’s historic 50th win and the Association’s Gold Star Award. The Firebirds could back into the Division Championship with a loss, if both AF#13 SF BowMen (7-4-0) and AF#25 1 Eye Til I Die (7-4-0) lose as well.
The BowMen face Steel Curtain (5-6-0) this week and 1 Eye gets Dem Bucking Broncos (4-7-0), and both opponents had record breaking scoring performances last week, however the two western challengers are still the most likely franchises to grab the Wild Cards at this point. The East Division is in a free for all, and much of what happens will be determined by those games against the West Division teams. The other two East teams – Geno’s Jaw Breakers (5-6-0) and Eagle has landed (5-6-0) – are facing each other head to head in an absolute must-win situation for each of them. With a single game lead on the rest, the Fins are in the best position, but they cannot clinch this week even with a win, but for the other 3 Eastern clubs, a loss will eliminate them from contention for the division and for the Wild Card.