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Cardinal Still Top Area Team in New Prep RPI

By Jason Van Arkel, September 17, 2018

Monday afternoon, the Iowa High School Athletic Association released the latest edition of its football RPI rankings. For the second week in a row, Cardinal–the only undefeated area prep football team–appeared as the highest-ranked area squad, staying at #2 in the Class A RPI.

The Comets, who defeated North Mahaska Friday night to finish a perfect non-district schedule, trail only Highland in Class A this week. The Comets are not ranked in this week’s Radio Iowa High School Football Poll, and Highland is only #9 in those rankings. Such discrepancies were expected in the early editions of the RPI rankings, especially since teams have not yet begun district play. Both Cardinal and Highland’s RPI are buoyed by strong numbers in their opponents’ winning percentages, and the winning percentages of their opponents’ opponents.

The area school with the second-highest RPI ranking is Pekin, who sits at #6 in Class A. The 3-1 Panthers are ranked seventh in the Radio Iowa poll. Appropriately enough, Pekin plays at Cardinal this Friday night in the district opener for both teams, in a game that will be broadcast on 101.5 Kiss FM.

The RPI formula factors in a team’s winning percentage, weighted at 37.5%, the winning percentage of its opponents, also weighted at 37.5%, and its opponents’ opponents winning percentage, weighted at 25%. The calculations for both the second and third factors include all of a team’s opponents for the season, including the ones they have yet to play.

Teams that win district championships will qualify for the playoffs automatically, with the rest of the 16-team field in each class determined by the final RPI standings. This week’s rankings for each of our area teams is listed below, as well as how far up or down they moved from last week.


Ottumwa (1-3): 29th (down 8)


Oskaloosa (3-1): 25th (up 3)

Fairfield (2-2): 30th (11)


Centerville (3-1): 8th (up 5)

EBF (2-2): 34th (down 5)

Davis County (2-2): 36th (down 6)

Albia (1-3): 44th (up 8)


Sigourney-Keota (3-1): 11th (up 6)

Van Buren (0-4): 50th (down 9)


Cardinal (4-0): 2nd (unchanged)

Pekin (3-1): 6th (up 4)


Moravia (2-2): 26th (up 10)

Twin Cedars (3-2): 42nd (up 9)