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Monday, November 5, 2012
Lowell debuts in Top 25 football poll

By Brendan Hall

We updated our statewide MIAA Top 25 Football Poll this morning, and there is some movemenet in the bottom half of the list for Week 10.

To see the complete poll, CLICK HERE.

A few notes and observations about this week's poll:

MVC makes splash: The lone new entrant this week is Lowell, which makes its season debut at No. 22 following a 42-35 upset of Andover, which in turn fell 12 spots to No. 25. Spearheading the win were quarterback Cam Latta and receiver Jack Galvin, who both were featured in this week's Mr. Football Watch. And thus, a logjam has been created at the top of the Merrimack Valley Conference's Large division. Lowell and Andover both sit at one loss in the division, while Central Catholic sits atop the five-team divison at a perfect 3-0, though they still have Andover to take care of on Thanksgiving. For the first time all season, however, we have three MVC teams ranked -- Central (19), along with the aforementioned Lowell and Andover.

Red Devils rising: Burlington makes the biggest leap this week, jumping up six spots to No. 13 following a dominant 48-28 win over Stoneham to clinch the Middlesex League's Small division. It was a big night for the two-headed tailback monster of Marcus O'Diah and Anthony Cruz, as the seniors combined for over 300 yards rushing. Burlington, as our detractors have often pointed out, aslo held a lead on No. 4 Reading last month until the game's final minute.

Top 10 shuffle: With Natick's upset loss by Wellesley, strong play from Brockton, and an uninspiring win by Springfield Central, we've shuffled the back end of the Top 10. Auburn, on the heels of a 39-7 rout of Northbridge, makes its debut in the Top 10 for the first time since the 2011 season, at No. 10. Meanwhile, Brockton jumps up two spots to No. 7, dropping Nashoba (8) and Springfield Central (9) each one spot. Much debate can be made about whether No. 11 Beverly deserves a Top 10 ranking over Springfield Central.

Making the plunge: Natick drops 11 spots to No. 21 following the Red Hawks' shocking upset at the hands of Wellesley. Meanwhile, Leominster drops from No. 14 all the way out of the Top 25 with its last-second 33-32 loss to Shrewsbury.

Here's how the poll breaks down this week by league affiliation:

Hockomock - 3
Merrimack Valley - 3
AA - 2
Bay State - 2
Middlesex - 2
Old Colony - 2
Atlantic Coast - 1
Big Three - 1
CAL/NEC - 1
Catholic Conference - 1
Dual County - 1
Eastern Athletic - 1
Greater Boston - 1
Mid-Wach B - 1
Patriot - 1
Southern Worcester County - 1
South Shore - 1