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Welcome to the Cal-Hi Sports Bay Area Top 25 compiled in conjunction with the award-winning Cal-Hi Sports Bay Area TV show that is aired every Sunday night on KOFY, Channel 20, San Francisco and during the week on CSN Bay Area throughout Northern California. These rankings are after games played through Saturday, November 23. We have more than 35 years of compiling high school football rankings in Northern California.
With the Cal-Hi Sports Caravan motoring around Southern California this weekend for practice visits to some of the state’s top girls basketball teams, the statewide web site was still in attendance for the CIF Central Coast Section Open Division playoff game on Friday in Pacifica between host Terra Nova and Valley Christian of San Jose.
It was beautiful day on the coast with views up and down the peninsula, but not a beautiful night for Terra Nova. The Tigers gave it a good shot against their private school visitors from the powerful West Catholic Athletic League, but Valley Christian’s size up front and its running backs – both Mark Quimby and Tre McCloud along with fullbacks Jesse Osuna and Travis Tuitele – were just too much to overcome.
The 26-7 win by the Warriors gives them another crack to beat Archbishop Mitty of San Jose in this week’s Open Division semifinals. In the other semi, Serra of San Mateo will play Bellarmine. For the record, the scores of the previous matchups between those teams were 14-13 in favor of Mitty and 17-7 in favor of Serra.
The winner of the CCS Open Division is just about a guarantee that it will play the winner of the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division II playoffs in the CIF Northern California Division I bowl game. It’s just about a guarantee because the odds of either De La Salle or Folsom losing in the section playoffs are around 100-1.
Here are this week’s new rankings:
(Through games of November 22) (Previous ranking in parentheses)
1. (1) De La Salle (Concord) 11-0
Unlike what happened in the CCS, had No. 8 seed Livermore Granada stopped top-seeded Sparta, it would have been the greatest upset ever in California high school football. Instead, it was 46-0 at halftime and in traditional De La Salle style, that’s how it ended. Next up is a Deer Valley team that almost will certainly make the Spartans break a sweat.
2. (2) Serra (San Mateo) 9-2
The final was 59-7 over San Jose Pioneer. Enough said. Next up is a Bellarmine team at San Jose Independence the Padres defeated 17-7 in league.
3. (4) Archbishop Mitty (San Jose) 10-1
Another example of the utter dominance of the West Catholic Athletic League in the CCS Open Division playoffs was that co-champion Mitty only got a No. 5 seed and had to travel to Salinas but still blanked host Palma 28-0. With the dominance of the WCAL and Mitty’s resume, the Monarchs get to go back in front of Marin Catholic in these rankings pending a re-match against Valley Christian in the semifinals.
4. (3) Marin Catholic (Kentfield) 11-0
The Wildcats were up 42-7 at the half and coasted to 49-14 victory over visiting Eureka. Next up for the NCS D3 top seed is an Analy team they’ve handled easily in past playoffs, but this year’s Analy team is the best in school history and is coming off an exciting win over Cardinal Newman.
5. (5) Pittsburg 10-2
Harris Ross came back after missing three weeks to play on a fractured leg and rushed for 184 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Pirates to a come-from-behind 27-21 victory over Freedom of Oakley in a game they trailed 21-13 and were very lucky to win.
6. (6) California (San Ramon) 10-2
The NCS Division I third-seeded Grizzlies beat San Ramon Valley in a 31-24 victory that was closer than the 35-21 win in league. Now, they face a Pittsburg team that edged them 35-33 on the road. Because of that loss, the game is at Pittsburg.
7. (7) Deer Valley (Antioch) 11-1
The Wolverines and visiting Logan lit up the scoreboard in a 67-44 Deer Valley victory. Now Nsimba Webster and his twin Nzuzi, and former De La Salle basketball player turned Wolverine monster D1-recruited linebacker, Malik Hutchings, get a shot at Malik’s former school and where his brother, 2013 Mr. Football State Player of the Year Michael Hutchings, starred. “When I transferred to Deer Valley I never planned on playing football and I definitely didn’t plan on playing De La Salle,” Hutchings texted Cal-Hi Sports. “Our goal at the beginning of the season was to play De La Salle in the playoffs and now that it’s actually here it’s crazy. My brother is excited for me and I’m even more excited to put on a show in front of my old school.” That might be tough since Hutchings added he won’t be at full strength after dislocating his shoulder twice against Logan.
8. (10) Valley Christian (San Jose) 8-3
The reward for the Warriors’ 26-7 victory over Terra Nova is an obvious bump past Logan, but they also get to jump D2 Clayton Valley for now. Up next is a Mitty team they lost to 14-13 while shorthanded. They may still be shorthanded but this could be quite a game.
9. (8) Clayton Valley (Concord) 10-1*
The Ugly Eagles have to drop to make room for Valley Christian despite a 59-13 thrashing of Las Lomas.
10. (9) James Logan (Union City) 9-3**
The Colts put a lot of points on the board against a D1 team ranked ahead of them.
11. (11) San Ramon Valley (Danville) 7-5**
The Wolverines only lost by a touchdown to a D1 team ranked ahead of them. There is no drop below Campolindo for now until that team beats an opponent ranked above them.
12. (12) Campolindo (Moraga) 11-0
Right now the resume of Campo is light other than a win over an El Cerrito team ranked below them. They face El Cerrito again at home, just like in the earlier 42-27 victory. The winner then plays either Marin Catholic or Analy in the NCS D3 championship.
13. (13) St. Francis (Mountain View) 8-3
The Lancers rolled in a 41-6 win over San Jose Andrew Hill. Next up for the CCS D2 top seed is a semifinal with visiting Palo Alto in what could be an interesting matchup if Paly comes to play.
14. (14) Bellarmine (San Jose) 8-3
The No. 6 seeded Bells tuned up for their re-match with Serra with a 31-19 win over No. 3 seed Wilcox.
15. (15) Casa Grande (Petaluma) 12-0
The NCS Division II top-seeded Gauchos continue on a collision course with Clayton Valley after a rocking chair 42-7 win over Windsor.
16. (17) El Cerrito 9-2
The resume of the Gauchos moves them right behind the other Gauchos in these rankings.
17. (19) Miramonte (Orinda) 10-2
With a 66-48 shootout win over a pretty good Northgate, the Mats get to move past losing teams in the CCS playoffs.
18. (20) Analy (Sebastopol) 11-1
After a thrilling 33-30 home victory over Cardinal Newman, the Tigers get dragged along and up two spots and remain behind the team that dealt them their lone loss. Next up is Marin Catholic in a Saturday afternoon contest in Kentfield the Cal-Hi Sports Caravan plans on attending to help celebrate the Caravan turning 60.
19. (18) Wilcox (Santa Clara) 9-2**
A CCS Open Division loss to Bellarmine means a drop but the Chargers have a win over Los Gatos and Wilcox. They also still have that win over 11-1 Manteca of the Sac-Joaquin Section.
20. (21) Los Gatos 8-3
A 59-34 victory over North Salinas in the CCS D2 playoffs for the CCS D2 No. 2 seed is strong, but this team also has a 42-7 home loss to Wilcox.
21. (22) Milpitas 9-2
The CCS Division I No. 2 seed was a 62-28 winner over Cupertino Homestead. With top seed Alvarez losing, the Trojans are in a good spot to win that divisional title.
22. (25) Freedom (Oakley) 6-6**
PRIMETIME Joe Mixon wishes he could have back his last high school carry. He rushed for 188 yards and three touchdowns, however with his team in position to take the lead, Mixon fumbled at the Pittsburg 2-yard line with 2:11 left to play and the Pirates recovered in the end zone. Pittsburg then ran out the clock in a 27-21 Falcons’ loss. All their losses are to D1 schools and most were early in the season with a sophomore quarterback.
23. (23) Carmel 11-0
After a 54-26 victory over Scotts Valley, the No. 3 seed in the CCS D4 playoffs meet a neighboring Pacific Grove team that disposed of top-seeded Live Oak, 42-20. The Padres beat the Breakers 40-35 in league on the road just two weeks ago.
24. (16) Terra Nova (Pacifica) 10-1**
The big loss to Valley Christian and a light resume other than a win over St. Ignatius means a drop down to No. 24 for this week.
25. (24) Sacred Heart Prep (Atherton) 10-1
The CCS Division IV top seed was a 35-12 winner over Seaside. Next up is Monterey. The bracket’s sleeper was a 30-12 winner over Menlo.
Dropped Out: None
Teams On The Bubble
Acalanes (Lafayette) 8-4**, Alvarez (Salinas) 11-0, Amador Valley (Pleasanton) 5-6**, Aptos 9-2, Burlingame 11-0, Cardinal Newman (Santa Rosa) 8-4**, Concord 7-3* **, Encinal (Alameda) 8-3**, Foothill (Pleasanton) 8-3 Granada (Livermore) 6-6, Las Lomas (Walnut Creek) 7-5, Liberty (Brentwood) 5-4* **, McClymonds (Oakland) 9-2, Menlo (Atherton) 6-4**, Menlo-Atherton (Atherton) 8-3, Montgomery (Santa Rosa) 10-2, Northgate (Walnut Creek) 9-3, Palma (Salinas) 7-4, Palo Alto 6-5, Rancho Cotate (Rohnert Park) 6-5**, St. Ignatius (San Francisco) 3-8, San Leandro 6-5**, San Marin (Novato) 9-2, Windsor 6-6.
(*Not including forfeits) (**Season complete)
Harold Abend is the associate editor of CalHiSports.com and the vice president of the California Prep Sportswriters Association. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Don’t forget to follow him on Twitter: @HaroldAbend