Why hasn’t there been divisional boys and girls basketball rankings so far this season on Cal-Hi Sports?
One reason is the amount of time it takes for us finish up all of the various all-state football teams without having the resources to do too many other content tasks at the same time.
Another reason is that it’s become increasingly more difficult to place teams in various divisions due to Open Division section playoffs in the Southern, San Diego and Central Coast sections. The sections that don’t have Open Divisions also seem to add wrinkles to their own playoff formats each season, such as in the Sac-Joaquin where teams now are moved up a division if they win a league title. If those teams don’t, they stay where listed.
Bottom line is because of all-state football projects and division uncertainty we’re now just going to wait until the section playoff pairings around the state are actually released next week until doing our own state divisional rankings.
One major shift that hasn’t gotten too much attention that we’ve seen around the state is that in the Southern Section this year the teams (both boys and girls) that play in that section’s Open Division will no longer be bounced down into their CIF state enrollment divisions for the regional playoffs.
According to the Southern Section’s own basketball handbook, projected regional/state divisions for teams in its Open Division go like this: semifinalists to the SoCal Open Division, quarterfinalists to SoCal Division I, first four consolation round teams to SoCal Division I, second four consolation teams to SoCal Division II. If you’re wondering, the CIFSS Division IAA finalists and the CIFSS Division IA finalists also will now no longer be in Division I for the SoCal regional/state playoffs. Those teams instead are projected to be in D2.
So how big of a shift is this? Well, last year on the boys side, Damien of La Verne won the D3 state title after losing in the CIFSS Open Division and Sierra Canyon of Chatsworth won the D5 state title after losing in the CIFSS Open Division. Also, eventual D4 state boys champion Crespi of Encino narrowly missed getting into the CIFSS Open Division. For the girls, the only state champion from the CIFSS Open Division was Sierra Canyon in D4 although Mark Keppel of Alhambra in D2 and Serra of Gardena in D3 made it to state finals after losing in the CIFSS Open Division.
Crespi’s boys also are a good example of how confusing it would be to do divisional state rankings right now. The Celts are currently shown ranked No. 1 in the CIFSS 3A Division, but if we put them in Division III for the state that wouldn’t make sense at all because they’re certain to be in the CIFSS Open Division and therefore wouldn’t be D3 for the state in any way shape or form. Instead, if Crespi doesn’t make it to the CIFSS Open Division semifinals, it would likely bounce back to D1 for the state.
Once we know which teams are all in for the CIFSS Open Divisions (boys & girls), which teams are all in for the other Open Divisions and which teams are in which brackets in the Sac-Joaquin, only then will it make it worthwhile to take the time to compile state divisional rankings.