Friday’s Division IV regional final: Central Catholic (Modesto) vs. McClymonds of Oakland at Alex G. Spanos Stadium (Lincoln of Stockton).
Controversial choice? According to a source who was in the room during Sunday’s meeting, the debate between McClymonds and Ferndale in this division took the longest of the day. This one definitely could have gone the other way.
Bowl History: Central Catholic is playing in its second bowl game (lost in 2007 State Division III to St. Bonaventure). McClymonds has a tremendous history with CIF state title in boys basketball, but this will be football team’s first bowl game.
Early Prediction: Central Catholic 41, McClymonds 20. The Warriors will present some different challenges for the Raiders, but they look like a big favorite not only for NorCal but for state the following week as well.
Here are the Week 15 CIF Division IV North bowl game rankings (completed before this year’s bowl selections were made; after games of Saturday, Dec. 1; previous rank in parentheses):
DIVISION IV NORTH
1. (1) Central Catholic (Modesto) 12-2*
2. (2) McClymonds (Oakland) 9-3*
3. (3) Ferndale 12-1*
4. (4) Brookside Christian (Stockton) 10-2*
5. (5) Capital Christian (Sacramento) 10-2
6. (6) Le Grand 11-2*
7. (7) St. Vincent de Paul (Petaluma) 10-3
8. (8) California School for the Deaf (Fremont) 10-2
9. (9) Portola 10-1**
10. (10) Willows 9-4*
*Indicates season complete, section champ and eligible for CIF bowl game.
**Indicates season complete, section champ, eligible for bowl game and has one default win not included.
Bubble Teams: Chester 9-2, Foresthill 10-2, Hamilton (Hamilton City) 9-4, Maxwell 8-3, Pierce (Arbuckle) 11-1, Ripon Christian 9-3, St. Bernard’s (Eureka) 7-5, Tomales 6-5, Valley Christian (Dublin) 8-3, Waterford 9-3.
Case for Central Catholic: The Raiders won the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV title over Escalon 52-10 on Saturday and just about every one of the teams in that division was D3 for the bowl games. They lost once to Placer of Auburn (which lost earlier in the SJS D3 playoffs) with the only other loss coming to Downey of Modesto (D1 team that went 9-1 in regular season). Among Central Catholic’s wins, one came against St. Mary’s of Stockton (D1 team that lost by just eight points to De La Salle in its next game). Also note that Ferndale’s only loss was to an SJS D3 team (Argonaut of Jackson) and it was not a close game. Raiders’ running backs Rey Vega and Ray Lomas both ran wild in the mercy-rule win against Escalon. Vega had TD runs of 26, 55 and 83 yards.
Case for McClymonds: The Warriors won their third straight Oakland Section title two weekends ago by topping Oakland Tech 38-17. Oakland Tech also was good enough to get a win over Benicia (SJS D3 playoff team). While the team has three losses, all three were to schools from higher divisions. One was by seven points to Bishop O’Dowd (NCS), one was by just two points to West Valley of Cottonwood (same team that lost in overtime to 13-0 Sutter in Northern Section D2 final) and the other was by seven to Oak Grove of San Jose (which was 10-0 in regular season and competed in CCS Open Division).
Case for Ferndale: Coach Kim Jorgensen’s team clobbered St. Vincent of Petaluma in the NCS D5 final 53-14 to gain eligibility for this season. In previous seasons, the Wildcats would always move up to NCS D4 and have struggled to win titles and become eligible for the bowl games. Ferndale’s only loss this year was to Argonaut of Jackson, which was a Sac-Joaquin Section D4 team (D3 for the bowl games) that went 11-0 before it lost. Ferndale also has a win over McClymonds from last season (if that matters) but McClymonds won between the two in 2010.
Why Not Brookside Christian? This was a team that came on strong in the playoffs in winning the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section D6 title. One loss was lopsided to Central Catholic, but the other one was 49-12 to Summerville, which is too much compared to Ferndale’s lone loss.
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