- Winners are italicized
- All games are played at Detroit’s Ford Field
- Playoff pick record: 80-14
Muskegon 12-1 vs. Birmingham Brother Rice 13-0, 1 pm Friday
Muskegon is the state’s all-time winningest program. Brother Rice’s Al Fracassa is the all-time winningest coach. This, a rematch of last year’s wild D2 final won by Brother Rice, will be Fracassa’s last game on the sidelines. This version of the Warriors is stronger than 2012. But they’ll have to see Muskegon QB Deshaun Thrower the entire game this time. After platooning QBs in the 2012 final, Brother Rice is more than content with just one this time around. Alex Malzone may be the state’s top junior QB, and he has a number of D1 recruits at the skill positions to toss it to.
Grand Rapids South Christian 12-1 vs. Marine City 12-1, 7:30 pm Friday
Defending state champion South Christian has looked even stronger than a year ago. Its defensive front was dominant at times against Comstock Park in the semis. The challenge against Marine City will be to slow down two 1,000-yard rushers, who run behind 6-3, 300 junior Kenton Rivard. Marine City has seen some tough QBs in the playoffs, but their toughest test will come in the form of Sailors junior Jon Wassink.
Beal City 13-0 vs. Muskegon Catholic Central 11-2, 10 am Friday
Last year’s runner-up, most of Beal City’s key players are veterans of that experience, back to atone fo rthat 35-10 loss to Harbor Beach. Muskegon Catholic has faced the tougher path — its last two wins were over New Lothrop and Mendon.