On the strength of two solid victories, St. John Bosco has taken over the top spot in the CIF-Southern Section Division 1 football poll released Aug. 27, a move that made sense in the midst of several other rankings that, well, didn’t.

The Braves — now No. 1 in Maxpreps’ “Xcellent 25” national poll — won their first two games by a combined 105-0 to gain the No. 1 D-1 rating ahead of Mater Dei, last year’s state and national champion. The Monarchs are now No. 2, their 1-1 record reflecting a powerful road win over highly-regarded Bishop Gorman of Las Vegas and a forfeit loss in week 1.

In Maxpreps’ national computer rankings, St. John Bosco is still second, but now behind IMG Academy of Bradenton, Fla., which visits the Southland Sept. 21 to play Mater Dei (No. 3 in Maxpreps’ computer poll) in one of the most anticipated high school contests of the 2018 season. Another, of course, will be when the Braves and Monarchs tangle Oct. 12 in Santa Ana in what will likely decide the Trinity League title.

Elsewhere in D-1, J.Serra (2-0), Serra of Gardena (1-0) and Chaminade (1-1) are Nos. 8, 9 and 10, respectively, with Santa Margarita (1-1) dropping out after a loss last weekend.

In Division 2, Alemany (2-0), Cathedral (2-0) and Loyola (1-0) are Nos. 4, 7 and 9, and Paraclete (0-2) has dropped to tenth in D-3 after a loss to Chaminade. The D-4 rankings changed markedly, with Bishop Diego (1-1) falling from first to tenth after a home loss to St. Bonaventure (2-0), which moved into the top 10 at No. 7.

Somehow, Crespi’s second straight big win saw the Celts drop out of the D-4 top 10 rather than move higher. On the other hand, St. Paul’s second straight big win saw the Swordsmen deservedly climb from ninth to fourth in the D-5 survey.

The D-13 rankings saw the entrance of St. Bernard (2-0) at No. 5, and the reappearance of Santa Clara (0-2) at No. 9.

This week’s games

  • Aug. 30: Cathedral at Carson; Dorsey at Alemany; St. Paul at Los Altos; Garfield at Salesian; St. Bernard at Westchester.
  • Aug. 31: Mililani (Hawaii) at St. John Bosco; Mater Dei at La Mirada; Cherry Creek (Colorado) at Santa Margarita; J.Serra at Bishop Amat; St. Augustine (San Diego) at Loyola; Chaminade at Mission Hills (San Marcos); Moorpark at Notre Dame (Sherman Oaks); St. Bonaventure at Highland; Lompoc at Bishop Diego; Paraclete at Quartz Hill; Harvard-Westlake at Crespi; Damien at St. Francis; Birmingham at La Salle; Palm Springs at St. Anthony; St. Genevieve at West Ranch; St. Pius X-St. Matthias at Bishop Montgomery; Fairmont Prep at Mary Star of the Sea; Village Christian at St. Monica (Santa Monica); Cantwell-Sacred Heart at Army-Navy (San Diego); Rio Hondo Prep at Santa Clara; Garces Memorial at St. Joseph (Santa Maria).
  • Sept. 1: Serra (Gardena) at Cathedral Catholic (San Diego); New Designs (Watts) at Verbum Dei.
  • Eight-man football (Aug. 31): Desert at Villanova Prep; St. Michael’s Prep at Cornerstone Christian.


Mike Nelson is the former editor of the Tidings (predecessor of Angelus News).


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