Cal-Hi Sports Insider Blog

Quick-hitting, behind-the-scenes news and notes from the CalHiSports.com staff, including previews of upcoming content and events.

Top 5 Football Coaching Changes

Here’s a quick look at the most significant coaching changes in California high school football since the end of the 2018 season, ranked in order.
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Top tips for MLB betting


Major League Baseball (MLB) is the professional baseball league that many fans of the sport fervently follow and often even place bets on. If you also wish to learn how to bet on MLB games and bask in a lucrative experience, then you should take a look at the latest SportingPedia’s MLB tips.

When you are new to sports betting, you may not be sure where to begin. This is why the experts of SportingPedia has prepared a list of the things you should consider when you wish to enjoy a successful MLB betting exprience. Keep on reading to learn about all of the key factors that can turn any baseball fan into a professional bettor.

Avoid Betting on Favorites

One of the rookie mistakes that many new bettors tend to make is betting on their favorites. If you base your betting decisions on which is your favorite MLB team is, you might often miss great opportunities. Oddsmakers know which teams are popular among MLB fans and this is why their odds are often overpriced.

If you follow the mass and you place your money on well-known players like the Red Sox, Yankees, Cubs and Dodgers, you will usually enjoy a very small payout provided they win. However, if they end up losing, you will suffer quite the loss. In such cases, often the risk is not worth the reward, which is why it is advised to avoid betting on everyone’s favorites. Even if you want to place your money on the team you have always supported, make sure to bet a small amount.

Give Your Attention the Underdogs

The next piece of advice that SportingPedia has for new bettors is to pay attention to the odds on underdogs. This may be a common practice for seasoned players, but many beginners may not be aware of the benefits that come with betting on the team determined as the underdog. One thing that is specific for baseball betting is that this is the sport with the most parity, compared to other sports. This means that your bet on the underdog may end up being very successful.

If you decide to bet on the underdog and that team wins the game, you will revel in quite the generous payouts. Even if the team that is considered to have smaller chances of winning really ends up losing the game, this will cost you only the size of your stake.

Even though favorites win most of the time, this does not compensate for their worse odds which may cost you bigger losses. While betting on the underdog is often a great move in sports betting, it is even more true for MLB betting as the sport has a huge parity. This means that baseball bettors may benefit a lot if they stick to this betting strategy.

Take Into Consideration
Both Player and Team Factors

If you wish to enjoy successful MLB betting from the beginning of your betting endeavors, there are several things to consider. When you are choosing the team to bet on, you should first do some research to help you make the right decision. When you are analyzing the potential winner of an upcoming game, you should pay attention to several player and team factors.

When it comes to the players on a team, there are features such as streaks and slumps, pitching depth, pitching matchups, young roosters vs. old players. These components are important to get a picture of the players in a team and their potential. According to SportingPedia you can base your betting decision on the knowledge of the best player being in a slump or on a winning streak, visit their site to learn more about the player and team factors when betting on MLB. There is an unwritten rule in baseball that strong pitching may beat the best hitting which is where the pitching depth plays an important role. It is also essential to compare whether there are more rookies or veterans in each team as veterans are easier to predict but they can also often feel pressured by the numerous expectations.

Make Use of Different Online Sportsbooks

It is always a great idea to compare the odds that different virtual sportsbooks are offering. As there are numerous online bookmakers, it is always a great idea for MLB bettors to compare the odds and shop for lines. One of the main advantages of online sports betting is the fact that you will be able to find numerous MLB betting markets and place your money on the best odds. In addition to good odds, however, you must make sure that you are about to bet your money at a trustworthy sportsbook.

If you need help to choose the best betting sites rated by experts, you can read the sportsbook reviews that SportingPedia provides. This way, you will have the chance to learn which websites offer the best odds on MLB games. In addition to that, many virtual bookies also offer bonuses and enhanced odds to their members. If you find the best odds online and claim a generous bonus, you might improve your winning chances significantly.


CIF Participation Ticks Up Again

SACRAMENTO, CALIF. – High school sports participation continues to increase in California and is at an all-time high for the seventh consecutive year according to the 2018-19 California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) Sports Participation Survey. Up by 0.67% since the previous survey in 2017-18, 814,004 student-athletes are competing in education-based athletic programs in California.

“It’s reassuring to see the overall participation increase in education-based athletics,” states CIF Executive Director Ron Nocetti. “Over the past seven years, the 14% increase in girls participating is especially encouraging. As an organization, we must continue to provide new opportunities for all students at our member schools.”

Along with the overall participation increase in high school athletics, there were a few sports that saw noticeable increases across both genders. Of the top 10 sports, soccer saw the largest percentage increase, a combined 3.87% or 3,890 more participants, followed by volleyball with a 3.47% increase or 2,292 more participants and basketball with a 2.18% increase or 1,798 more participants.

Football (11-player) continues to lead the top 10 boys’ sports with 91,305 participant, but it decreased, by 3.16% or 2,981 participants. Track and field (55,335) is the second most popular sport, followed by soccer (54,996), which increased by 3.25%; basketball (48,111), which increased by 1.1% and baseball (44,347) rounding out the top five boys’ sports. Additionally, boys’ volleyball participation increased by 6.89%, as well as boys’ golf, which increased by 3.28%.

Nocetti adds, “As in previous years, we have noticed a steady and continued decrease in football participants. It is imperative that we continue to partner with organizations such as USA Football and their Football Development Model which provides a road map for how we coach, play and learn the game at every level.”

For girls, soccer captured the top spot for the fourth consecutive year with 49,342 participants, which increased participation by 4.56% since 2018. Volleyball claimed the number two spot (45,997), which increased participation by 1.9%, while track and field dropped to third with 45,235 participants. Rounding out the top five girls’ sports were basketball (35,902) and softball (32,233). Additionally, girls’ wrestling participation (6,014) continues to grow, increasing by 13.77%, as well as traditional competitive cheer (10,342), which increased by 12.16%.

The CIF’s 1,606-member schools participated in the survey as part of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) nationwide survey that measures the number of students competing in sports in the country. ‘


Honorable Mention Schools of Year

To go with our annual State Schools of the Year tribute, here are some additional schools that were on our board in the various CIF state divisions and in our own five-division format that we would consider to be honorable mention.
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Mt. Rushmore for Calif prep sports for Class of 2020?

High school sports in California has produced many memorable stars across all fields, including football, baseball, basketball and more. Here are some of the names to watch among the up and coming Class of 2020, a Mt. Rushmore foursome if you will, of contenders in future PA sportsbook promos.

DJ Uiagalelei

As a football player for St John Bosco High School in Bellflower, this young quarterback is renowned as having one of the strongest arms to come up in years, with a throwing reach of over 80 yards. Big but well-proportioned, Uiagalelei also has a natural feel for the game. His touch, accuracy and sense of strategy are all exemplary for one so young, and as an all-round athlete he can run, tackle or dodge just as well as he can throw. And while he’s a definite first round NFL draft pick, Uiagalelei could equally pursue a successful baseball career if he chose to do so.

Justin Flowe

A natural-born linebacker at Upland High School, Flowe stands at 6′ 2″ and weighs in at 225 pounds. Fast, passionate and relentless, he combines a dedicated work ethic with unerring instincts and is also an inspiring leader to those around him. Put simply, Flowe already plays at a higher level than anyone around him, and it’s definitely worth keeping an eye on him.

Evan Mobley

At 6′ 11″, this 18-year-old Rancho Christian High School student literally stands head and shoulders above most of his peers. Mobley won the Gatorade Basketball Player of the Year for California back in March following a 19.2 point season average. Mobley’s older brother Isiah is now one of the country’s top freshmen players to watch at USC, but Evan is still undecided as to his collage choice, although he’s certainly not short of offers.

Jared Jones

Over at La Mirada High School near Whittier, this 6′ 2″ teenager is considered to be one of baseball’s brightest up and coming stars. Equally at home on the mound or at the plate, in 2019 Jones went 7-2 as a pitcher, allowing just eight runs in 69.2 innings, and scored three home runs, 13 doubles and 30 RBIs at bat. He’s fast, strong and determined to be the best. It looks like the whole world is going to have trouble keeping up with this Jones.

These are just a few of the excellent athletes to be continuously covered by Cal-Hi sports right now. When they graduate next year, at least seems destined to leave the state (D.J. to Clemson), though some may choose to stay. But there’s also sure to be another generation coming up fast on their heels.


The Real Costs Of Not Wearing An Ankle Brace

By Louise Jimera

Have you been playing sports for a long time?

Well, me too. I’ve been at it for 13 long years, in fact. I’m fond of team sports the most like Frisbee and soccer but I don’t mind playing solo tennis, though. Although I never really took up any sport professionally, I did play for interschool competitions back when I was a student. Now that I’m a working adult, I still participate in company events and play for leisure every now and then. I guess the “me” that loves breaking a sweat and playing with good friends is always going to be around.

And I want to keep it that way.

However, playing sports isn’t always fun and games. There are times when you have to get really serious too. If you don’t, it can cause you a finger, a limb – or more commonly, an ankle! I’m not kidding. Engaging in physical activities always come with a significant amount of risk. When you’re getting in the zone, it’s easy to get lost in the moment after all. You start playing with no regard for your safety. It is during times like these that you need something else to do the “protecting” for you.

If it’s not obvious enough, I’m talking about gear. If you are going to play rigorously, you should at least make prior arrangements to ensure your safety while you play. I have friends who would say “they don’t need this” and “they don’t need that.” They would insist that they are careful and vigilant enough to keep themselves out of trouble even without protective gear. And guess what happened? They all ended up injured in some way.

Sports injuries happen all the time. They’re normal for anyone who actively plays in the field or in court. It doesn’t matter how hard you train your body. When you reach a certain limit, some parts of you will just voluntarily give up even if you personally didn’t want them too. Training only helps you build resistance; it doesn’t make you invincible.

Unsurprisingly, the most common sports-related injury is ankle sprains (check this out). They can happen to anyone, any day, and in any sport. Heck, you can trip over something and end up with an ankle sprain even if you’re just playing chess! All kidding aside, ankle sprains are so common that I bet every athlete or sportsman in the world has experienced it at least once in their life. I bet you too have had your fair share of ankle injuries, so I hope you don’t take them too likely. If you’re into sports that require heavy training or long hours of play, don’t wait for the unthinkable to happen.

Protect yourself from ankle-related injuries by buying an ankle brace and putting it on whenever you’re out on the play field. If you want to check out which ones are great to buy, maybe this Official Top 5 Review – ankle braces can help!

If you still don’t understand the urgency of wearing such gear, here are the real costs of not wearing ankle braces:

You Can Miss Out On Training

Instead of getting the chance to improve yourself even further, an ankle injury can prevent you from pursuing your training for a significant amount of time. If you’re a dedicated athlete, watching your teammates train hard while you sit on the bench waiting for your injury to heal can be pretty frustrating. But hey, that’s what you get for not taking protective gear seriously. If you don’t want this happening to you then please, wear the braces.

An Ankle Injury Can Cost You A Good Game

What hurts more than missing training is missing the BIG game. As a sportsman, you train hard every day for big games where you get to test just how far you’ve gotten with your training exactly. If you sit out of big games because of a foot injury, I’m pretty sure that it wouldn’t just be your foot swelling but your heart too. Putting on ankle braces for a couple of seconds is nothing compared to missing big games.

Some Ankle Injuries Turn For The Worst

If you’re not careful enough, a simple injury may turn into something worse – and all because you refuse to follow safety protocols. It may seem minor for now, but constant foot injuries can lead to irreversible conditions that may compel you to stop doing sports altogether. I hope that day never comes so always be careful!

Anyway, you should always regard ankle injuries as a serious concern especially when you’re really into sports. Your physical health heavily affects how you perform on the field so it’s always best that you keep yourself in tip-top shape. Aside from being careful, you should also see to it that you wear the right gear whenever you go out to play. And I’m not just talking about your ankle.

If the sport you’re playing has a high risk of injuries, then you should really make prior preparations. Buy something to support not just your ankles but your elbows and knees as well. It is often these areas that get hurt the most when you play for long periods of time. You should also see to it that your body gets enough rest. Training can wait, you know. Everything will be for naught if you’re not careful about your physical health so always make sure that your body is not pushed to its limits – all the time. Save some of that energy for the real games!


All-State Softball: Patch List

For those just interested in seeing the names of players who are on the Gold Club post for this year’s All-State Underclass Team for softball 2019, here is a simple alphabetical list. If you want the full presentation and are not Gold Club, please check out getting a membership today.
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All-State Baseball: Patch List

Patches for every player named to every list of the 2019 Cal-Hi Sports All-State Baseball Teams will be available to order through our partners at BillyTees.com. This is an image of the 2018 patch. The 2019 patch will be similar. A certificate to accompany each all-state baseball patch also is part of the package.[/caption]
For those just interested in seeing the names of players who are on the Gold Club post for this year’s All-State Underclass Team for baseball 2019, here is a simple alphabetical list. If you want the full presentation and are not Gold Club, please check out getting a membership today.
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Salute to Tyler Skaggs

We were overseas when the tragic news broke about former Santa Monica High pitcher Tyler Skaggs dying at a hotel room in Texas while with the Los Angeles Angels baseball team on a road trip. Skaggs was 27 years old. Upon returning from our trip, we checked into more about Tyler’s family and his senior season with the Vikings in 2009 when he was named all-state first team.

Moment of silence is observed for Tyler in San Diego.


Cal-Hi Sports happened to be part of Student Sports and ESPN in 2009 and because of that we also were more connected to the Student Sports’ Area Code Games. Tyler was in that event in the summer of 2008 and was an impressive pitching prospect. In the 2009 high school season, he had given up playing football and basketball at Santa Monica and his recruiting/draft potential improved. He eventually would be picked at No. 40 overall in the supplemental draft by the Angels, who later traded him but got him back. He was in his fifth season as a starting pitcher for the Angels this year.

Despite only going 2-3 in 48 innings, Skaggs gained his all-state honor by striking out an impressive 76 batters in those innings and he also only had 11 walks. He struck out 12 batters in a game three times. He also had signed with Cal-State Fullerton, but didn’t go there after the draft.

That 2009 Cal-Hi Sports All-State First Team was exceptional. The two main player of the year candidates that season were Tyler Matzek of Capistrano Valley (Mission Viejo) and Matt Hobgood (Norco). We picked Matzek as Mr. Baseball after he led Capo Valley to the CIF Southern Section D1 title with a home run at Angels Stadium in a win over Norco and Hobgood. The Norco standout (who also had 55 RBI as a hitter) was the Gatorade National Player of the Year. It’s the other players on that team, however, that make it even more special. Among those selected were future MLB standouts Nolan Arenado (El Toro), Mitch Haniger (San Jose Archbishop Mitty), Jake Marisnick (Riverside Poly), Matt Davidson (Yucaipa) and Ryon Healy (Encino Crespi).

The following year, in 2010, the Santa Monica High softball team, coached by Tyler’s mom, Debbie, won the CIF Southern Section Division IV title. The Vikings defeated North of Torrance 11-3 in the championship game, sparked by a grand slam from Emma Woo in the fifth inning that erased a 2-1 deficit. It was Debbie’s first and only CIFSS title in a nearly 25-year head coaching career and her son paid for championship rings. That championship was bittersweet since it came just one week after Santa Monica athletic director Norm Lacy had died from a heart attack.

We didn’t know until reading about Tyler and Debbie in the aftermath of Tyler’s death that longtime Valencia High softball coach Donna Lee is the twin sister of Debbie so Tyler would be her nephew. Donna coached at Valencia in 2007 when the Vikings went 32-1 and won the mythical national title.

Obviously, this is a terrible time for all who knew and loved Tyler. A lot of people not just in the California baseball community but in softball as well will be thinking about the family over the rest of the summer.


Kawhi’s Mr. Basketball writeup (2009)

Kawhi Leonard has gone from being Mr. Basketball State Player of the Year at M.L. King of Riverside to become an MVP candidate for the San Antonio Spurs. Photo: Scott Kurtz.


Here’s a look at the article we did in 2009 when we chose Riverside M.L. King’s Kawhi Leonard as the Cal-Hi Sports Mr. Basketball State Player of the Year. It might seem today as if it was an easy choice at the time. It wasn’t. Leonard was not a McDonald’s All-American and he was lower than many others on national recruiting lists.

Editor’s Note: This also is one of the best articles that managing editor Ronnie Flores has ever done for our site.

If you can’t see this post, it’s easy to become a Gold Club member to see this article plus next week’s new state rankings and all of our other great, unique content. For sign up info, CLICK HERE.
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