Hot squads on the move up include Franklin of Elk Grove, Sierra of Manteca and Heritage of Romoland. Still No. 1 are De La Salle, Santa Margarita, Placer, Serra of Gardena, Marin Catholic, Valley Center, Central Catholic and Sierra Canyon.
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With assistance from Harold Abend and Paul Muyskens, here are the Week 3 rankings for each of California’s CIF bowl game divisions (previous ranking in parentheses):
DIVISION I NORTH
1. (1) De La Salle (Concord) 2-0
2. (2) Elk Grove 3-0
3. (4) Vacaville 3-0
4. (5) Lincoln (Stockton) 2-1
5. (6) James Logan (Union City) 3-0
6. (7) Bellarmine (San Jose) 1-1
7. (10) Folsom 3-0
8. (12) Palo Alto 1-0
9. (8) Palma (Salinas) 1-0
10. (11) Serra (San Mateo) 1-0
11. (14) Pleasant Grove (Elk Grove) 2-1
12. (3) Nevada Union (Grass Valley) 2-1
13. (15) California (San Ramon) 3-0
14. (NR) Franklin (Elk Grove) 3-0
15. (13) Buhach Colony (Atwater) 2-1
Drops: Previous No. 9 St. Mary’s (Stockton) lost to Central Catholic of Modesto 28-21. St. Mary’s travels to De La Salle on Friday.
Bubble Teams: Archbishop Mitty (San Jose) 2-0, Burbank (Sacramento) 2-0, Del Oro (Loomis) 0-2, Freedom (Oakley) 1-2, Granite Bay 0-2, Monte Vista (Danville) 3-0, St. Ignatius (San Francisco) 1-1, St. Mary’s (Stockton) 2-1, Valley Christian (San Jose) 1-1.
No. 1 Team Result: De La Salle (Concord) defeated Mullen Prep (Denver, Colo.) 30-13.
Open Division: The top eight teams in this division also would be the top eight for us as the best for the Open Division.
Race for No. 1: Barring anything too bizarre, De La Salle will likely head into the CIF North Coast Section Division I playoffs at 10-0. But with Elk Grove having to rally late to beat Del Campo of Fair Oaks and Vacaville scoring with five seconds left to nip Marin Catholic, it’s more likely than ever that it will be a wide open race for the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division I and Division II titles. If James Logan gets by Del Oro of Loomis on Sept. 28 on the road, the Colts also should be 10-0 for the regular season. They also might end up being the best threat to the Spartans in this division.
DIVISION I SOUTH
1. (1) Santa Margarita (Rancho SM) 3-0
2. (2) Vista Murrieta (Murrieta) 2-0
3. (3) Oaks Christian (Westlake Village) 3-0
4. (5) Alemany (Mission Hills) 3-0
5. (4) Bakersfield 3-0
6. (6) Tesoro (Rancho SM) 3-0
7. (7) Mission Viejo 3-0
8. (8) Narbonne (Harbor City) 2-0
9. (9) Westlake (Westlake Village) 3-0
10. (10) St. Bonaventure (Ventura) 3-0
11. (11) Upland 3-0
12. (12) Centennial (Corona) 1-1
13. (14) Notre Dame (Sherman Oaks) 2-1
14. (15) Mater Dei (Santa Ana) 2-0
15. (NR) Chaparral (Temecula) 3-0
Drops: Previous No. 13 Long Beach Poly lost to Narbonne (Harbor City) 56-0. The Jackrabbits (1-2) host Bakersfield on Friday.
Bubble Teams: Bishop Amat (La Puente) 2-0-1, Central (Fresno) 3-0, Chino Hills 1-1-1, Clovis North (Clovis) 3-0, Crenshaw (Los Angeles) 2-1, Dorsey (Los Angeles) 2-0, El Toro (Lake Forest) 3-0, Loyola (Los Angeles) 3-0, Rancho Cucamonga 2-1, Redlands East Valley (Redlands) 1-1, San Clemente 3-0, Servite (Anaheim) 1-1, St. John Bosco (Bellflower) 3-0.
No. 1 Team Result: Santa Margarita defeated Trabuco Hills (Mission Viejo) 55-0.
Race for No. 1: There are only five section champions that will be eligible for a bowl game from Division I in the south and as of now it’s easy to see that the CIF San Diego Section D1 champ is going to be the odd man out. This isn’t a knock on the competition there, it’s just that in the SDS the probable lineup of top teams is clearly in Division II (Helix, La Costa Canyon, Poway, Oceanside, etc.). If Bakersfield repeats as the CIF Central Section Division I champ, the Drillers are more than likely going to get a bowl game even if they don’t defeat Long Beach Poly this week similar to what Narbonne did last week. If the SoCal regional bowl selections were being made this week, it would be Santa Margarita vs. Vista Murrieta for the Open Division and then Bakersfield vs. Narbonne for Division I. If Narbonne keeps rolling, though, the big debate in the south might end up being which team – L.A. City (Narbonne) or CIF Inland Division champ -- should be matched up against the CIFSS Pac-Five champ in the Open Division.
DIVISION II NORTH
1. (1) Placer (Auburn) 2-0
2. (2) Concord 3-0
3. (7) Inderkum (Sacramento) 2-0
4. (5) Paradise 2-1
5. (6) Oakdale 2-1
6. (8) Benicia 2-0
7. (NR) Sierra (Manteca) 3-0
8. (NR) Cosumnes Oaks (Elk Grove) 3-0
9. (9) Windsor 1-1
10. (4) Foothill (Palo Cedro) 1-1
Drops: Previous No. 3 Casa Grande (Petaluma) lost to Napa 35-14; No. 10 Manteca lost to Los Banos 42-28.
Bubble Teams: Casa Grande (Petaluma) 1-1, Dublin 2-1, Patterson 3-0, Rancho Cotate (Rohnert Park) 2-0.
No. 1 Team Result: Placer defeated Foothill (Palo Cedro) 42-14.
Race for No. 1: After Placer’s second impressive win of the season, we’re hoping more than ever that the Hillmen actually end up in the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division III playoffs instead of having to drop to Division IV. Concord also continues to look good after a 50-7 win against Arroyo of San Lorenzo. It would be a lot of green-and-gold on the field, but Placer vs. Concord in the D2 North bowl game would be a matchup involving dominant players as well – USC-bound 300-pounder Eddie Vanderdoes for Placer and record-breaking running back Olito Thompson for Concord. Two games to watch in this division would be Inderkum hosting D1 North ranked Pleasant Grove this week and Sierra of Manteca hosting Oakdale in two weeks. Newly ranked Cosumnes Oaks also will take a crack at new D1 North ranked Franklin of Elk Grove.
Note about CIF Central Coast Section teams: Once the playoff brackets are announced, we expect several quality teams from CCS “A” leagues that are not going to be in the CCS Open Division to be placed in the section’s Division I or Division II brackets. Examples could be a third-place team from the West Catholic Athletic League or a second-place team from the De Anza League (Palo Alto, Los Gatos, Milpitas, etc.). At that point, those teams would then get placed into our D2 North bowl game rankings (they are all considered Division I now) and it’s possible one or more of those teams will be ranked near the top.
DIVISION II SOUTH
1. (1) Serra (Gardena) 3-0
2. (2) Helix (La Mesa) 2-0
3. (4) Lompoc 3-0
4. (6) Chaminade (West Hills) 3-0
5. (7) Hart (Newhall) 1-1
6. (8) Edison (Huntington Beach) 2-0
7. (3) Oceanside 1-1
8. (10) Tustin 3-0
9. (9) Citrus Hill (Perris) 3-0
10. (12) La Costa Canyon (Carlsbad) 2-0
11. (15) Canyon (Canyon Country) 3-0
12. (NR) Heritage (Romoland) 3-0
13. (11) Poway 1-1
14. (14) Garces (Bakersfield) 2-1
15. (5) Cathedral Catholic (San Diego) 1-1
Drops: Previous No. 13 Los Alamitos lost to Charter Oak (Covina) 22-14.
Bubble Teams: Carter (Rialto) 2-0, J.W. North (Riverside) 1-1, Kaiser (Fontana) 2-0, Kingsburg 3-0, La Mirada 2-1, La Serna (Whittier) 3-0, Mt. Whitney (Visalia) 3-0, Serrano (Phelan) 3-0, St. Francis (La Canada) 2-0, Villa Park 2-1.
No. 1 Result: Serra outlasted Mira Costa of Manhattan Beach 27-20.
Race for No. 1: Look out this week for the possibility of Chaminade making a major move because the Eagles play D1 South No. 3 Oaks Christian. A Chaminade win would lift the team past Lompoc for sure in next week’s D2 South rankings. Top-ranked Serra has a huge game coming up in two weeks against Narbonne of Harbor City. A loss, however, would probably only drop the Cavs behind Helix in the D2 South rankings and if it’s close it might not cost them at all. Another team in this division with the chance to play and perhaps beat a higher-ranked D1 team in the next two weeks is Edison. The Chargers host Mater Dei of Santa Ana on Sept. 21 at Orange Coast College.
DIVISION III NORTH
1. (1) Marin Catholic (Kentfield) 2-1
2. (2) Campolindo (Moraga) 3-0
3. (3) Cardinal Newman (Santa Rosa) 3-0
4. (4) Sutter 2-0
5. (7) Los Banos 3-0
6. (8) El Cerrito 3-0
7. (5) Bishop O’Dowd (Oakland) 2-1
8. (NR) Seaside 1-0
9. (9) Salesian (Richmond) 3-0
10. (10) Hilmar 3-0
Drops: Previous No. 6 Carmel lost to Soquel 48-20. Soquel and Seaside play this week.
Bubble Teams: Aptos 0-2, Argonaut (Jackson) 3-0, Carmel 1-1, Escalon 2-1, Justin-Siena (Napa) 3-0, Menlo School (Atherton) 2-0, Ripon 3-0, Soquel 2-0, St. Helena 2-0.
No. 1 Team Result: Marin Catholic lost to Vacaville 28-24 on a touchdown pass with five seconds left.
Race for No. 1: Losing in such a heart-breaking manner to a highly ranked D1 opponent like Vacaville on the road does not cost Marin Catholic in this week’s rankings. The Wildcats, though, can’t dwell on it too much. They probably are playing their toughest Marin County Athletic League opponent, unbeaten Justin-Siena, in this week’s game. The loss also likely ensures that Marin Catholic will move up from D4 to D3 for the CIF North Coast Section playoffs. Although they’d have the edge over most teams for a D3 North bowl game berth due to strength of schedule, no chances should be taken because there could be two undefeated teams on the board if the Wildcats don’t move up. Marin Catholic’s players, despite the loss to Vacaville, also have to remain confident about perhaps getting to play Campolindo again. The team’s bigger problem is getting healthy at the wide receiver position. A second top receiver, Andrew Celis, went out in the second quarter against Vacaville with a foot injury and did not return. Senior Nick Devere already has been lost for the season with a knee injury.
Note about CIF Central Coast Section teams: Once the playoff brackets are announced, we expect several quality teams from CCS “A” leagues that are not going to be in the CCS Open Division to be placed in the section’s Division III or Division IV brackets. At that point, those teams would then get placed into our D3 North bowl game rankings and it’s possible one or more of those teams will be ranked near the top.
DIVISION III SOUTH
1. (1) Valley Center 2-0
2. (2) Mission Oak (Tulare) 2-0
3. (3) St. Augustine (San Diego) 2-0
4. (4) Segerstrom (Santa Ana) 3-0
5. (5) San Dimas 3-0
6. (6) Monrovia 1-1
7. (7) Paraclete (Lancaster) 2-1
8. (8) Corona del Mar (Newport Beach) 1-1
9. (9) Wasco 3-0
10. (NR) Rubidoux (Riverside) 3-0
Drops: Previous No. 10 Madison (San Diego) lost to Valhalla of El Cajon 42-28.
Bubble Teams: Estancia (Costa Mesa) 2-0, Imperial 1-1, Madison (San Diego) 1-1, Nordhoff (Ojai) 3-0, Ontario Christian 3-0, South (Torrance) 2-0, Twentynine Palms 2-0.
No. 1 Team Result: Valley Center defeated Imperial 33-21.
Race for No. 1: After a crazy week that saw every ranked team in this division switch positions, it was much more stabile. In addition to Valley Center, No. 2 Mission Oak also had a strong outing. The Hawks blasted Golden West of Visalia 67-0 behind Elijah Porchia, who carried 14 times for 331 yards and five touchdowns. For Mission Oak to move in front of Valley Center, it may require the Hawks to beat Mt. Whitney of Visalia in three weeks and that won’t be easy since the Pioneers are unbeaten as well. The top-ranked Jaguars also could strengthen their grip with upcoming games against Mission Hills of San Marcos and Poway. Because it’s on a Thursday and we have to be in the Torrance office of ESPN/Student Sports on Friday morning, one game that we are likely to check out is Thursday’s matchup at Antelope Valley College between Paraclete and visiting Dorsey of Los Angeles.
DIVISION IV NORTH
1. (1) Central Catholic (Modesto) 2-1
2. (2) Ferndale 2-0
3. (3) McClymonds (Oakland) 1-1
4. (6) Valley Christian (Dublin) 3-0
5. (7) Capital Christian (Sacramento) 3-0
6. (4) Willows 1-1
7. (5) Le Grand 1-1
8. (8) Bradshaw Christian (Sacramento) 1-2
9. (10) Pierce (Arbuckle) 3-0
10. (NR) Woodland Christian 3-0
Drops: Previous No. 9 St. Vincent de Paul (Petaluma) lost to St. Helena 44-14.
Bubble Teams: Durham 2-1, Modoc (Alturas) 1-1, St. Bernard (Eureka) 2-1, St. Vincent de Paul (Petaluma) 1-1.
No. 1 Team Result: Central Catholic defeated St. Mary’s (Stockton) 28-21.
Race for No. 1: Until and if Central Catholic loses in the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV playoffs, there’s no chance that any other team will be No. 1 for this division. No disrespect intended, but it would be very doubtful that any other team in this division could come within three or four touchdowns of the Stockton St. Mary’s team that the Raiders just beat. This continues to be a division simply about Central Catholic getting bowl eligible by winning its section title and those chances probably hinge most on whether Placer of Auburn ends up slipping down into that D4 section bracket or ends up staying in the section D3 bracket. Second-ranked Ferndale has strong challenge this week with a matchup against unbeaten D3 team Argonaut of Jackson.
DIVISION IV SOUTH
1. (1) Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth) 2-0
2. (2) Bishop Diego (Santa Barbara) 3-0
3. (3) Mission Prep (San Luis Obispo) 3-0
4. (4) Santa Fe Christian (Solana Beach) 1-1
5. (6) Boron 3-0
6. (7) Rio Hondo Prep (Arcadia) 2-1
7. (8) St. Margaret’s (SJ Capistrano) 2-0
8. (9) Christian (El Cajon) 2-0
9. (5) Francis Parker (San Diego) 1-1
10. (NR) Poly (Pasadena) 2-0
Drops: Previous No. 10 Chadwick (Palos Verdes) lost to Malibu 32-29.
Bubble Teams: Aquinas (San Bernardino) 1-2, Bakersfield Christian 1-1, Capistrano Valley Christian (SJ Capistrano) 3-0, Chadwick (Palos Verdes) 1-1, Desert (Edwards) 2-1, Desert Christian (Lancaster) 2-1, Grace Brethren (Simi Valley) 1-2.
No. 1 Team Result: Sierra Canyon did not play.
Race for No. 1: Mission Prep’s 47-14 win two weeks ago over Rio Hondo Prep has been enhanced following Rio Hondo’s 35-21 win last week over previous No. 5 Francis Parker. Sierra Canyon still looks like a strong No. 1, however, with Bishop Diego solid at No. 2. Both teams also are going to be “playing up” in the postseason with Sierra Canyon in the CIFSS Mid-Valley Division (San Dimas, Paraclete, Monrovia, etc.) and Bishop Diego in the CIFSS Northwest Division (Nordhoff, South of Torrance, etc.). If both teams win those sectional titles, there’s not much doubt by us even at this early stage that those two would meet in CIF Division IV South regional bowl game. Another scenario to watch for is Mission Prep staying unbeaten until it plays Bishop Diego in the final week of the regular season. If the Royals were to win that game, that would potentially help all teams from the CIFSS Northeast Division.
Corrections or comments? Email Mark.Tennis@espn.com or email@example.com.