High School Sports

Sacramento area high school football playoff forecast

Updated Friday morning to reflect Gustine’s forfeit victory over Livermore Valley Charter Prep, a result that is not in the Calpreps database. The win appears in the section’s tally, so Gustine will finish the season with at least six wins. That dramatically changed the projection: Oak Ridge was bounced out of the playoffs, and Grant moved to Division I.

With the 2014 high school football playoff brackets just a day away, The Sacramento Bee forecasts that Folsom, Rocklin and Inderkum will have the top seeds in Divisons I, II and III. Grant will join Folsom in the Division I bracket.

The findings are based on predicted results for this week’s games from Calpreps.com, combined with results from the season to date.

The Sac-Joaquin Section’s football playoff system has undergone considerable tweaks, including:

▪ Expansion to seven divisions, with 16-team brackets in the top three divisions. Division IV drops to an eight-team bracket.

▪ Elimination of the “wall” that prevented teams from floating between Divisons IV and V-VI based on enrollment.

▪ Creation of a bracket-seeding process that gives section officials discretion over the order of seeding criteria.

Our projection uses Calpreps ratings, one of the criteria, as a simple way of seeding the teams.

In our projection, no five-win teams earn an at-large berth. Cordova is the only team held out of the playoffs for failing to win twice in league.

Small deviations from the predictions can have big effects. Del Oro does not appear in the current projection, because the Golden Eagles are projected to lose against Granite Bay by eight points. But if Del Oro wins, it earn the Sierra Foothill League’s third playoff spot. Three-way ties determined a league qualifier in three league races – and since the tiebreakers are based on scores in Week 10, those outcomes are likely to change.

Calpreps projected 86 percent of California’s games accurately last week, but it only takes one unexpected result to have a dramatic affect on the section's playoff system.

The section plans to release the brackets late Saturday afternoon, after results from the day’s games are complete.

Divison I

PW-Projected wins PL-Projected losses LF-League finish

AL-At-large berth

Seed

School

PW

PL

LF

League

Calpreps rating

1

Folsom

10

0

1

Sierra Foothill

76.7

2

Grant

10

0

1

Delta

52.6

3

Granite Bay

8

2

2

Sierra Foothill

51.4

4

Jesuit

8

1

2

Delta

46.7

5

Merced

8

2

1

Central California

38.5

6

Napa

8

2

1

Monticello Empire

35.8

7

Monterey Trail

6

4

AL

Delta

34.3

8

Cosumnes Oaks

8

2

1

Capital Valley

33.8

9

Franklin-Elk Grove

6

4

AL

Delta

31.2

10

Tracy

7

3

2

Tri-City

30.5

11

Modesto

9

1

2

Modesto Metro

23.6

12

Pitman

7

2

AL

Central California

23.4

13

Turlock

6

4

2

Central California

22.3

14

Tokay

7

3

AL

Tri-City

15.8

15

Gregori

7

3

AL

Modesto Metro

10.8

16

Chavez

8

2

1

San Joaquin AA

6.4

Division II

Seed

School

PW

PL

LF

League

Calpreps rating

1

Rocklin

8

2

3

Sierra Foothill

49.9

2

Elk Grove

8

2

3

Delta

43.8

3

St. Mary’s

9

1

1

Tri-City

41

4

Vacaville

8

2

AL

Monticello Empire

37.4

5

Wood

6

4

AL

Monticello Empire

26.6

6

Downey

9

1

1

Modesto Metro

26.3

7

Burbank

7

3

1

Metropolitan

25.5

8

Antelope

7

3

2

Capital Valley

25.3

9

Roseville

6

4

AL

Capital Valley

23.6

10

Del Campo

7

3

AL

Capital Valley

23.1

11

Yuba City

5

5

2

Tri-County

21.5

12

River Valley

6

4

AL

Tri-County

19.4

13

Vintage

6

4

AL

Monticello Empire

18

14

Patterson

7

3

AL

Western

13.9

15

Central Valley

6

4

AL

Western

-2.8

16

Bear Creek

5

5

2

San Joaquin AA

-5.3

Division III

Seed

School

PW

PL

LF

League

Calpreps rating

1

Inderkum

9

1

1

Tri-County

37.2

2

Oakdale

8

2

AL

Valley Oak

32.6

3

Sierra

9

1

1

Valley Oak

30.6

4

Rio Linda

8

2

AL

Tri-County

26.6

5

Manteca

8

2

AL

Valley Oak

24.6

6

Placer

8

2

1

Pioneer Valley

20.3

7

Sacramento

8

2

2

Metropolitan

19.1

8

Pacheco

8

2

1

Western

18.1

9

Christian Brothers

9

1

1

Capital Athletic

16.7

10

Vista del Lago

6

4

2

Capital Athletic

14.9

11

El Dorado

10

0

1

Sierra Valley

13.3

12

American Canyon

8

2

1

Solano County

12.5

13

Vanden

6

4

AL

Solano County

10.2

14

Rosemont

6

4

2

Sierra Valley

6.6

15

Benicia

5

5

2

Solano County

6.1

16

Valley

6

4

AL

Metropolitan

-12.1

Division IV

Seed

School

PW

PL

LF

League

Calpreps rating

1

Central Catholic

8

2

2

Valley Oak

27

2

Sonora

9

1

1

Mother Lode

21.2

3

Escalon

7

3

2

Trans Valley

9.9

4

Los Banos

7

3

2

Western

9.4

5

Center

6

4

AL

Pioneer Valley

8.4

6

Dixon

6

4

2

Golden Empire

-5

7

Marysville

7

3

AL

Golden Empire

-7.2

8

Natomas

6

4

AL

Golden Empire

-12.5

Division V

Seed

School

PW

PL

LF

League

Calpreps rating

1

Bear River

8

2

2

Pioneer Valley

14.8

2

Colfax

6

4

AL

Pioneer Valley

5.5

3

Le Grand

7

2

1

Southern

-0.1

4

Hughson

6

4

AL

Trans Valley

-0.5

5

Amador

6

4

2

Mother Lode

-1.3

6

Summerville

6

4

AL

Mother Lode

-4.2

7

Mariposa County

6

4

3

Southern

-6.7

8

Orestimba

7

3

AL

Southern

-9.8

Division VI

Seed

School

PW

PL

LF

League

Calpreps rating

1

Capital Christian

10

0

1

Golden Empire

20.1

2

Modesto Christian

9

1

1

Trans Valley

18.6

3

Bradshaw Christian

7

3

1

Sierra Delta

0

4

Ripon Christian

8

2

2

Southern

-2.5

5

Golden Sierra

7

2

2

Sierra Delta

-3.7

6

Rio Vista

7

2

3

Sierra Delta

-5.2

7

Gustine

6

4

AL

Southern

-12

8

Vacaville Christian

7

3

AL

Sierra Delta

-23.1

On the divisional edge: Many teams can float between division because of enrollment and the mix of qualifying teams. The smallest enrollment school in D-I is Grant. In D-II, the largest school is Downey and the smallest school that could move down is Patterson. Rio Linda is the largest school in D-III; Rosemont is the smallest that could move down. In D-IV, Center is the largest and Escalon is the smallest that could move down. In D-V, Bear River is the largest; Mariposa County the smallest that can move down. In D-VI, Gustine is the largest.

Outside looking in: All teams with six wins are projected to make the playoffs – Hughson is the the last team in since it has the lowest number of opponents’ wins. Just outside the playoff bubble are a number of teams projected to finish 5-5. The strongest, in terms of opponents’ wins: Oak Ridge, Laguna Creek and Lodi.

How our projection is done: This forecast applies the section’s playoff rules based on games played to date plus Calprep’s predictions for Week 10 games. The section’s playoff plan attached to this story, along with some sample brackets. No projection is shown for Division VII because its qualification process simply takes the top three finishers from two leagues.

The section has broad authority to adjust the seeds to compose the final brackets. For example, seeding is generally adjusted to prevent teams from the same league from meeting in the first round. Travel distance has been another potential reason for a seeding adjustment. These determinations are up to the seeding committee’s discretion.

Questions? Send me an email at nlevine@sacbee.com or leave a comment.

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