Another editorial project that we’ve started working on in the last week and plan to have completed before the start of the 2017 football season is actually not from football. That will be the selection of the 25 greatest softball teams in state history.
We have done similar all-time team rankings in baseball and football in the last three years. They’ve proven to be a great way for fans to look back at some of the best teams ever and of course it’s always fun to debate where we’ve placed teams compared to where other prep writers, coaches and fans may have it.
The most important part of the criteria in all-time team rankings is that it’s not the best teams, but the greatest. That means teams that have established historically significant achievement and those that actually won their last games. We will have teams that didn’t win their final games on the list — such as Norco for 2017 and Mission Viejo for 2015 — but those teams didn’t get it done in their last games so that costs them on the “greatness” scale.
We’re also not going to go against our own state rankings for these all-time rankings. If a team was No. 2 in the final state rankings, for example, that team will have to stay behind the No. 1 team for that season. In football, there was one example in which we ranked a No. 2 team higher, but that was because the school that was No. 1 had several other teams in its history already ranked high.
Some teams that seem to be in line for this feature exploring California prep softball history include Righetti (Santa Maria) 1980, Ocean View (Huntington Beach) 1985, Lincoln (Stockton) 1987, St. Joseph (Lakewood) 1989, Charter Oak (Covina) 1993, Mater Dei (Santa Ana) 1996, Pacifica (Garden Grove) 1997, Valley View (Moreno Valley) 1999, Bullard (Fresno) 2001, Mira Mesa (San Diego) 2002, Freedom (Oakley) 2006, Valencia 2007, Archbishop Mitty (San Jose) 2009, Norco 2012, Mission Viejo 2014, Norco 2017 and Los Alamitos 2017.
If anyone wants to weigh in on which teams should be at the top or to nominate a team we should check closely, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 209-608-1317 (cell).