OVERALL STATE TOP 20 FB RANKINGS

Several of the state's top teams face showdown matchups this week, including San Leandro vs. Hayward, Grant vs. Nevada Union, Taft vs. Birmingham, Monte Vista vs. San Ramon Valley and St. John Bosco vs. Mater Dei. See where all are ranked heading into action.

(After games of Nov. 9; last week's rank listed in parentheses)

1. (1) De La Salle (Concord) 9-0

He's only been coaching since 1979, but DLS head coach Bob Ladouceur is now among the top five on the all-time state career win list. The Spartans' 42-0 win on Friday in the slop at Clayton Valley was the 270th for Ladouceur against 14 losses with one tie. He moved past former Saratoga coach Benny Pierce into the fifth spot. Pierce won 269 games at Saratoga from 1961 to 1994. Maurice Drew had TD runs of 51 and 38 yards for the DLS offense, while the defense posted its fourth shutout of the season. The Spartans end the regular season Friday vs. neighborhood rival Ygnacio Valley.

2. (2) Poly (Long Beach) 8-1

The Jackrabbits built up a 21-0 halftime lead and that was all the scoring against city rival Long Beach Wilson on a cold, rainy, muddy night. It was the fifth shutout for Poly in nine games this season. This week's regular season finale will be against Long Beach Jordan.

3. (3) Los Alamitos 8-0-1

This week's foe, Edison of Huntington Beach, is nowhere near as good as last year, but the Chargers still have standout Tommy Grady at the helm and the Girffins will be more than fired up with thoughts of last year's 14-14 tie still fresh on their minds. It was a bizarre game in which the two teams exchanged fumbles three times in the last two minutes. Los Al won last week, 35-7, over Marina of Huntington Beach as Jeff Kline completed 20 of 24 passes for 254 yards and one TD and Ryan Bagley ran for three TDs.

4. (4) Hart (Newhall) 8-0-1

There's a chance the Indians could still fall into a three-way tie for the Foothill League title if they were to get upset by Valencia this week and Canyon were to win against Saugus. But that would be a HUGE upset. Last Friday, Hart clinched at least a tie for its 12th consecutive league crown with a typical 45-7 league blowout win, this time over Saugus.

5. (5) Mission Viejo 9-0

The Diablos tied a school record with 62 points against Capistrano Valley and won by 62-7 to keep up their dominance of recent weeks. It was 38-0 at halftime as QB Josh Rodarmel connected on his first eight passes for 133 yards and a pair of TDs. Mission Viejo should wrap up a top seed in the CIF Southern Section Div. II playoffs (Hart probably will be seeded No. 2) with a win this week against Trabuco Hills.

6. (6) San Leandro 9-0

Sekeli Faaeteete powered his way for 135 yards on 27 carries and scored one TD as the Pirates downed Logan of Union City, 21-6, in a nonleague matchup between two of the top programs in the S.F. Bay Area. Another running back, Michael Ignont, also came up big for San Leandro with a 53-yard TD run. QB Dennis Dixon was 11 of 19 for 121 yards. The win also set up a 9-0 vs. 9-0 showdown this Friday at Chabot College vs. Hayward. The winner will likely be seeded No. 2 in the North Coast Section Class 4A playoffs behind De La Salle.

7. (7) Grant (Sacramento) 9-0

It's showdown week for the Pacers as they'll take their 9-0 mark and No. 7 state rank and put it on the line at home on Friday vs. 9-0 and No. 11 state ranked Nevada Union. Grant won last week 26-0 in a mud bowl game against Sac High and it would be a benefit for the speedy Pacers to be on a dry field against the Miners.

8. (8) Taft (Woodland Hills) 9-0

Like Grant and NU, this week has been circled on the schedule of the Toreadors for quite some time. Their regular season showdown will be against 7-2 Birmingham of Lake Balboa, which has lost to only state-ranked Hart and Notre Dame. Taft hasn't played a close game since its opener, a 38-26 win over Crenshaw, although a game the next week against Carson was supposed to be close (Taft won, 39-0). Last week, Taft rolled on with a 42-0 victory over Granada Hills.

9. (10) Esperanza (Anaheim) 8-1

It was another impressive outing for the Aztec defense, which posted its second straight shutout in a 42-0 romp past Fountain Valley. Brad Adams came up with the game's key defensive play with a 24-yard interception return for a score. Esperanza will close the regular season vs. Marina of Huntington Beach.

10. (11) Monte Vista (Danville) 9-0

The raves about QB Kyle Wright were plentiful once again after the Mustangs won surprisingly easily, 49-8, over Granada of Livermore. Despite rain and muddy conditions, Wright completed 12 of 18 passes for 226 yards and five TDs. He also scored on a 75-yard run. Monte Vista's final regular season game is Friday at home vs. San Ramon Valley of Danville. The Wolves, of course, are led by Sam Keller, who also is one of the top quarterbacks in the nation.

11. (14) Nevada Union (Grass Valley) 9-0

Coach Dave Humphers' team shut out Yuba City, 34-0, in a game that was called at the start of the fourth quarter for what was reportedly too many personal fouls. The referees apparently had had enough, waved the game over and left the field. The Miners moved up three spots in this week's rankings to get them closer to No. 7 Grant, their opponent in this week's Metro League title game.

12. (12) Mira Costa (Manhattan Beach) 9-0

Having top receiver Nick Haley out with a hamstring pull proved to be no problem for Mira Costa as QB Peter Dobush still threw four TD passes in a 42-22 victory over Leuzinger of Lawndale. Dobush tossed two of his TDs to Gregor McIver, Haley's replacement, and two others went to tight end Devin Adair. RB Michael Okwo also stayed on a roll with 141 yards rushing and one TD.

13. (13) Helix (La Mesa) 8-1

The Highlanders manhandled another East County opponent in a 41-6 dismantling of Mt. Miguel on the road in Spring Valley. Mt. Miguel could only muster 37 total yards of offense for the game. Senior defensive lineman Ricky Thomas led this week's charge with two sacks, three forced fumbles and 16 total tackles with six for losses. Reggie Bush reached double digits in carries with 12 for 157 yards and disappeared past Matador defenders and into the heavy fog three times for touchdowns on runs of 61, 34 and 22 yards.This week, the Highlanders face Monte Vista of Spring Valley, which was good enough last year to beat Helix in the regular season only to get thumped by the Highlanders in the playoffs.

14. (15) Skyline (Oakland) 8-0-1

The Titans downed Fremont of Oakland, 41-18, and should wrap up an unbeaten regular season this week against Oakland High. The only major hurdle remains a probable rematch with McClymonds in the Oakland Section final.

15. (19) St. John Bosco (Bellflower) 7-2

Joe Cowan's 15-yard fumble return for a score after a strip by Derrick Williams completely turned around the Braves in their game with previous No. 16 Servite last week. At the time, they were down 20-9 and just more than five minutes remained. Bosco wound up winning, 24-20, and more good news came the next night when Mater Dei lost to Santa Margarita. A win this week against the Monarchs and the Braves will be the outright Serra League champs.

16. (17) Oak Ridge (El Dorado Hills) 8-1

The Trojans joined the surprisingly long list of top 20 teams that recorded a shutout win last week with a 25-0 victory over El Dorado of Placerville. They shouldn't have much trouble this week, either, in a home game against Galt.

17. (9) Mater Dei (Santa Ana) 7-2

They're goooooone! A week after returning to the top 10, the Monarchs were bounced right back out of it with a 19-0 loss to Santa Margarita. The team's tough schedule, great track record and upcoming game this week with St. John Bosco, however, is still enough to avoid us from dropping it all the way out of the top 20.

18. (18) Notre Dame (Sherman Oaks) 9-0

Coach Kevin Rooney's club won in yet another shutout by a top 20 team, this one by 42-0, over Chaminade of West Hills. Notre Dame closes its regular season on Friday at Harvard-Westlake.

19. (20) Oceanside 7-2

The Pirates rise one spot this week after another sparkling performance on both sides of the line of scrimmage in blistering San Pasqual of Escondido, 41-0. Running back Tyler Lavea, in the midst of a sparkling season that has him in contention for section player of the year honors, handled the muddy conditions easily to run for 242 yards on 26 carries with three touchdowns of 3, 14 and 86 yards. Oceanside will tune up for the playoffs this week by traveling to Ramona to end the regular season.

20. (nr) Arcadia 9-0

Michael Howe darted for 175 yards and one TD and quarterback Brian Ziska threw for TDs of 35 and 25 yards as the Apaches impressed in a 47-6 win over Pasadena. We like ‘em for this spot despite recent playoff failures by teams from the Pacific League because they have a 23-13 win over Rancho Cucamonga (same team that tied Kaiser) and they are No. 3 in the CIF Southern Section rankings behind Mira Costa and Notre Dame.


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