Following the best start in the programs history, the Cosumnes Oaks boys set the Sierra Valley Conference championship and the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II title as goals. Instead, the Wolfpack is picking up the pieces of a shattered season that is suddenly on the brink.
The Elk Grove Unified School District confirmed No. 5 Cosumnes Oaks allowed an athletically motivated student transfer and must forfeit 16 victories, officially dropping its record from 19-1 to 3-17 entering Tuesdays games. Senior guard Josh Johnson transferred from Edison of Stockton to Cosumnes Oaks for this academic year, moving within the schools boundaries. But another EGUSD school recently alerted the district of its suspicions for the transfer, pointing out four of Johnsons teammates at Cosumnes Oaks were also his teammates for a summer travel AAU team.
But the ruling doesnt necessarily knock the Wolfpack out of the playoff picture.
We were recently made aware of a student-athlete who may be an athletically motivated transfer, EGUSD interim athletic director Todd Reiswig said. Cosumnes Oaks immediately self-reported to the Sac-Joaquin Section, and the CIF ruled that player ineligible. Cosumnes Oaks is still eligible for the playoffs.
The playoffs would not have been possible for Cosumnes Oaks in previous seasons, when the section used a power ratings formula to fill out playoff brackets, with overall wins paramount. The section now advances the top three or four teams in each league. If the Wolfpack wins its final six league games, it will finish 8-4 and finish in the top three in SVC play to make the Division II playoffs. Cosumnes Oaks could still garner a top-four seed, regardless of overall record, as those who seed teams will surely recognize that this squad isnt a true low seed.
Cosumnes Oaks will likely appeal the ruling. Athletic director Bill Kapp did not want to comment while he looked into the matter.
Wolfpack coach Patrick Roth said: Were going to keep playing our butts off. We have a shot at the playoffs.
Cosumnes Oaks will remain ranked by The Bee with on-court victories reflected in the overall record.
DRL showdown No. 4 Folsom hosts No. 2 Jesuit on Friday to cap first-half play in the Delta River League.
Jesuit has length in 6-foot-9 center Brady Anderson and 6-7 Lake Lutes. Folsom features quick, prolific guard Jordan Ford and a host of role players.
Theyre really, really good, Jesuit coach Greg Harcos said. Jordan Ford makes them go, and hes not the only one. Itll be a fun game two teams that really play hard.
Ota pride It was some week for Jeff Ota. A McClatchy star guard in the late 1970s, Ota coached his alma mater past rival and then-No. 7 Burbank 89-82 in Metropolitan Conference play last Wednesday to remain in the playoff chase. The following night, Ota was the assistant to Lions girls coach Jessica Kunisaki for another upset. The Lions beat previous No. 1 Sacramento 54-29 to snap the Dragons 92-game league winning streak.
Dragons vs. Dragons No. 3 Sacramento hosts Bishop ODowd of Oakland at 7 p.m. Saturday in a meeting of NorCal powers that go by Dragons.
Among the story lines will be the center play of Sacramento sophomore Solomon Young and ODowd junior Ivan Rabb. Both are national recruits.
THE BEES TOP 20
Records through Monday
|1. Capital Christian||17-3||1|
|5. Cosumnes Oaks*||3-17||5|
|6. Del Oro||21-1||6|
|7. Del Campo||17-3||9|
|10. Monterey Trail||15-5||11|
|14. Oak Ridge||11-8||14|
|15. Pleasant Grove||9-10||15|
|18. Christian Brothers||12-8||19|
* Forfeited 16 games