Some of the most fierce competition last week played out away from the football field.
It was all verbal. Coaches and administrators within the Sierra Foothill League have said top-ranked Folsom is too good.
At issue is the perceived advantages for the Bulldogs and kudos to people speaking so strongly on the record.
On the field, the area’s two best teams are headed for a Week 10 showdown in Loomis, when No. 2 Del Oro hosts top-ranked Folsom in what figures to be the SFL championship game — and another chance for someone to knock off the Bulldogs.
Here’s a closer peek at The Bee’s Top 20 for the week. This is a terrific area for football. Folsom rolling makes it even better, including a target that everyone wants to take down.
Keep in mind that these are power rankings and not win-loss standings, so teams with a losing record will be dotted here because of strength of schedule.
The Bee’s Top 20
Last week’s ranking in parentheses.
1. Folsom (1) 6-1 — Any notion that the Bulldogs run up the score is way off. Starters exit sometimes before the half. No one is padding stats here.
2. Del Oro (2) 7-0 — Offense, defense, special teams, leadership, coaching, support. It’s all rolling in Loomis again.
3. Monterey Trail (3) 7-0 — The Mustangs won’t get challenged much in the Metro League, but they will against Burbank on Friday.
4. Placer (4) 7-0 — The Hillmen are playoff-ready now, the wing-T crushing teams with line play and a bevy of backs.
5. Inderkum (5) 7-0 — The Tigers are like a frightening freight train: fast on offense and tenacious on defense. But penalties? Too many.
6. Oak Ridge (6) 5-2 — The Trojans have lost to No. 1 Folsom and No. 2 Del Oro, but could still roar right on into the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I finals.
7. Capital Christian (7) 8-0 — The Cougars showed some championship grit by rallying to beat Sacramento at Hughes Stadium. A 10-0 regular season is within view.
8. Sheldon (8) 6-1 — The Huskies had a bye and close the Delta League slate with Pleasant Grove, Jesuit and Franklin.
9. Grant (9) 4-3 — The Pacers have scored spirited late wins to beat Granite Bay and Rocklin. They now host Del Oro with a chance to really make some noise.
10. Granite Bay (10) 3-4 — The Girzzlies had a bye and close the SFL schedule with Folsom, Oak Ridge and Rocklin. Wins are needed to extend playoff streak to 20 successive seasons.
11. Jesuit (11) 5-2 — The Marauders were banged up during first two losses to Folsom and Granite Bay, but the got healthy, got better and got hot.
12. Bear River (12) 7-0 — The offense has battered teams but the defense has been equally as dominant. Amazing what small rosters can achieve.
13. Elk Grove (13) 3-4 — The Thundering Herd play hard, but this is a young team and that means mistakes. Need more wins to secure a playoff.
14. Colfax (16) 7-0 — The homecoming rout of Marysville included pregame moment to honor 200-game winning coach Tony Martello, as good a leader as there is in the section.
15. Center (16) 5-2 — The Cougars were shorthanded with a rash of injuries in a loss to Foothill. A win over Rio Linda earlier warrants this ranking.
16. Rio Linda (17) 5-2 — There is no shame losing to Placer (everyone is), but the Knights know that they can compete.
17. Lincoln (20) 4-3 — The Zebras are battle tested with big wins over Antelope and Ponderosa.
18. Antelope (14) 5-3 — The Titans face their stiffest test of the season next: Inderkum.
19. Ponderosa (18) 5-2 — The Bruins have lost to Casa Roble and Lincoln, but are all but a lock to make the playoffs.
20. Casa Roble (19) 5-1 — The Rams have a 1-2 rush attack with Austin Gandy and Devin Carmona to go with QB Marciano Huston.
Dropped out — None
Bubble teams (in alphabetical order) — Bradshaw Christian (5-2), Burbank (5-3), Christian Brothers (4-3), Cosumnes Oaks (4-4), Davis (4-3), Dixon (4-3), East Nicolaus (6-0), Foothill (5-2), Oakmont (4-3), River Valley (4-3), Rocklin (2-6), Vista del Lago (4-3), Winters (6-0), Woodcreek (6-2), Yuba City (4-3).
This week’s schedule
All kickoffs between 7-7:30 p.m. Friday, unless noted.
No. 10 Granite Bay at No. 1 Folsom
No. 2 Del Oro at No. 9 Grant
Burbank at No. 3 Monterey Trail
No. 4 Placer at Oakmont
No. 18 Antelope at No. 5 Inderkum
No. 6 Oak Ridge at Whitney
Pleasant Grove at No. 8 Sheldon
Davis at No. 9 Jesuit, Saturday, 1 p.m.
Foothill at No. 12 Bear River
Franklin at No. 13 Elk Grove
No. 14 Colfax at Lindhurst
No. 15 Center at Marysville
No. 16 Rio Linda at No. 17 Lincoln
Nevada Union at No. 19 Ponderosa
Woodland at No. 20 Casa Roble
Bye — No. 7 Capital Christian
Christian Brothers at Vista del Lago
El Camino at Del Campo
Bella Vista at River Valley
Yuba City at Roseville
Pioneer at Dixon
Florin at Natomas
McClatchy at River City
Foresthill at Woodland Christian
Valley Christian at Delta
Golden Sierra at Vacaville Christian
Highlands at San Juan
Rio Vista at Linden
Bradshaw Christian at Union Mine
Galt vs. Rosemont at Liberty Ranch
Johnson vs. Valley at Rosemont
Laguna Creek vs. Kennedy at Cosumnes River College
Mira Loma vs. Mesa Verde at El Camino