Warren commits to UNC

According to this story on ESPN.com, Los Osos senior girls basketball player Cierra Warren verbally committed to North Carolina after visiting the campus this past weekend. Warren, a 6-foot-4 center, is regarded as the No. 31 prospect in the country by ESPN and was a first-team all-County and all-Inland Valley selection last season, when she helped the Lady Grizzlies to the CIF-Division II-AA championship game and a berth in the state playoffs.

Warren averaged 22.3 points, 12.9 rebounds and 4.3 blocked shots a year ago for Los Osos. The Sun/Bulletin will have a more indepth account of this story in the print edition within the next couple of days.

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Week 4 College Top 25

Here’s my Top 25 in advance of the polls. Nothing too crazy here.

1. USC (1) – A game, bye week. A game, bye week. Only thing stopping the Trojans from winning right now is their schedule.

2. Georgia (2) – A questionable No. 2 coming into the week, the Bulldogs reinforced their credentials with a big win at Arizona State.

3. Oklahoma (3) – Sooners take a break from kicking everyone’s butt. The nation is thankful.

4. Florida (4) – The Gators made Tennessee look real bad – in front of Upland QB Josh Nunes, who was taking his official visit. Hope Florida didn’t ruin his weekend.

5. Missouri (5) – I was tempted to give this to LSU after the Tigers’ win at Auburn, but gave Missouri the nod because Buffalo is quickly improving.

6. LSU (6) – Getting a tough road win at Jordan-Hare Stadium – a place where LSU has traditionally struggled – is huge for the Tigers’ inexperienced quarterbacks.

7. Texas (7) – Another game, another blowout win. Ho hum for the Horns until the Big 12 season starts.

8. Texas Tech (8) – The Red Raiders massacred UMass. Had Marcus Camby been playing, I might have moved Tech up. But alas, he’s with the Clippers (I think?)

9. Wisconsin (9) – Badgers didn’t play, so they don’t move anywhere. Wisky starts the Big Ten next week against a wounded Michigan squad.

10. Alabama (12) – The first upward mover this week, the Tide rolls into the Top 10 after destroying Arkansas. Big game next week at Georgia.

11. Ohio State (11) – Terrelle Pryor’s first start or not, the Buckeyes have to do better than a 14-10 lead entering the fourth against Troy. OSU is definitely in neutral right now.

12. BYU (15) – The Cougars keep shooting up the rankings. While hotshots (see East Carolina and Fresno State) have flamed out, BYU has kept the mid-major BCS-buster flag hoisted high.

13. Penn State (17) – Yes, I know the Nittany Lions are playing against awful competition, but unlike a lot of teams, they are pulverizing the weak. The season starts this week against Illinois though.

14. South Florida (16) – The Bulls got lucky that a bunch of teams around them lost. Typically beating a terrible Florida International team by 8 won’t move you up in this poll. Count your lucky stars Bulls.

15. Auburn (10) – I didn’t drop Auburn too far despite their loss from LSU. Maybe its because I dropped them for their win over Mississippi State. Either way, the Tigers are on notice.

16. Wake Forest (18) – The Demon Deacons won ugly Saturday. However, any time a team like Wake Forest, which isn’t exactly a traditional football player, can put the clamps on Florida State three years in a row, it deserves props.

17. Kansas (19) – Kind of a boring win over Sam Houston State. But it was a win and a step in the right direction after a loss to South Florida – a step the Jayhawks will take willingly.

18. Utah (20) – Tough win against Air Force, but the Utes came through. If they can get by TCU, the battle of the Beehive State with BYU in November could have major BCS ramifications.

19. Clemson (21) – They shut out South Carolina State. Big whoop. Clemson still needs to pick it up.

20. Vanderbilt (24) – The Cinderella story of the BCS conferences so far, the Commodores improved to 4-0 with a big road win against an improved Ole Miss squad. Don’t look, but Vandy looks like its legit.

21. Boise State (NR) – I don’t care if Oregon played a true freshman quarterback. Getting a win at Autzen Stadium is quite a feat.

22. Oregon (13) – The Ducks took too long to get untracked against Boise State and paid dearly for it. However, freshman QB Darron Thomas could be the real deal.

23. Virginia Tech (25) – It’s not a win that’s going to get much pub, but the Hokies deserve a lot of credit for overcoming a 17-3 deficit to beat a quickly-improving North Carolina team.

24. Illinois (23) – Whatever. The Illini didn’t play this week and struggled against the Ragin’ Cajuns the week before. Illinois can earn its respect by beating Penn State though.

25. East Carolina (15) – I was tempted to dump the Pirates out of the poll entirely, and probably should. I just wasn’t in love with any of the other prospective teams to do so.

On the cusp: Fresno State, TCU, Colorado.

Dropped: No. 22 West Virginia (lost at Colorado).

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A hairy situation

I have to say that the Los Angeles Crenshaw-Miller game was one of the more entertaining games I’ve covered in a while. The action itself was pretty good, though kind of erratic, as the chess match between Jeff Steinberg’s spread offense and the Crenshaw defense – which had some truly huge human beings – was definitely something a football fan could appreciate.

I also appreciated the Crenshaw band. The Cougar band stole the halftime show, marching out with horns blaring, drums drumming and members marching in a highly-regimented style that more resembled a college band than anything I’ve seen in high school. The drummers were intense, invoking images from the movie Drumline starring Nick Cannon, while the dancers and color guard were pretty into their routines.

In fact, the dancers were so into their routines that one of them lost their weave while executing a manuever toward the end of the performance. The girl was a champ, continuing her routine without fail as her hair sat on the 40-yard line, where it would remain until a second before the two teams returned for the second half. I’m sure it was a moment that the dancer would want to forget, but she gets credit for not losing her cool and finishing her performance.

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Week 3 high school rankings

Here are the rankings, which will be released Monday. It was tough dropping Kaiser out, but Rancho Cucamonga deserves to be in the top 10 at this point.

1. Redlands East Valley (2-0)
The Wildcats certainly won’t get the high marks for artistic interpretation that they got last year with Chris Polk. But REV keeps on winning, which is good enough to keep it perched atop the rankings. They have an intriguing road test at Compton Dominguez this week.

2. Upland (3-0)
The win over Serrano was a good test for the Highlanders, who were punched in the mouth by a tough, scrappy team but rose off the canvas to grab a big win. After a tough first three weeks, Lancaster Eastside should be a relative breather.

3. Los Osos (2-0)
Got the week off, which is good because they have a big battle with Vista Murrieta coming. They survive that, and visions of Baseline-League dominated CIF title games might come to fruition.

4. Miller (3-0)
The Rebels got quite a test against Crenshaw and aren’t quite all there yet on offense, but showed a great deal of scrap and heart to pull out the victory. Now they have two weeks to oil the machine before starting CBL play.

5. Hesperia (2-0)
The Scorpions are showing that last year’s breakthrough was no fluke. It seems as if their offense has taken the next step, which should have the Hesperia faithful pretty pumped up.

6. Serrano (2-1)
The Diamondbacks fall, but not very much. Although they lost by 16 points, they played against probably the most talented team they’ll face all season in Upland and hung right with them. That will only help them once the MRL starts next month.

7. Colton (1-1)
It’s becoming apparent that the Yellowjackets will be able to play some serious defense this year. The offense seems to be a work in progress, but that’s to be expected with a brand-new offensive line. With Friday’s win over La Quinta, Colton could conceivably come out of their four-game season-opening road tour with three wins.

8. Cajon (2-1)
The Cowboys were dazzling against Sultana, more than making up for their struggles against Los Osos. If sophomore quarterback Thomas Carter continues to mature, this is going to be a dangerous team in SAL play. Big game this Friday at Kaiser.

9. Aquinas (3-0)
The “Holy War” was about as competitive as the Grenada conflict, as Aquinas overwhelmed Riverside Notre Dame. The Falcons, with their new-found balance, might have a CIF championship formula brewing.

10. Rancho Cucamonga (3-0)
Yes, Damien, Canyon Springs and Carter may be down a bit. But Rancho is straight pulverizing people right now and deserves to be on this list. If it takes down Charter Oak this week, then its place will be safe.

Receiving consideration: Kaiser (1-1), Chino Hills (2-0), Eisenhower (2-0), Ayala (2-1), Barstow (3-0).

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Sweet play by Bolden

Arizona State CB Omar Bolden, a Colony graduate, almost caused Kirk Herbstreit and Brent Musberger to have side-by-side heart attacks, as he made a leaping deflection of a long Georgia pass in the end zone. Bolden, now a sophomore, has started since midway through last year and looks to be a serious player at the Division I level.

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Week 3 NFL picks

Definitely one of the weirder picking weeks I’ve ever had. On one hand, I was awesome against the spread, coming a Chicago-Carolina push away from having a 10-win week. However, I was completely pathetic straight up, actually guessing wrong on 10 of the 15 winners. I would have been more successful playing darts blindfolded.

Anyway, lets see if we can get some more winners this week. If not, I’ll lose whatever remaining credibility I might have.

Kansas City (+5.5) at Atlanta
These two teams are pretty bad. One, the Falcons, has a rookie quarterback, a couple decent RBs and nothing else. The Chiefs have three bad qbs and a frustrated Pro Bowl running back. However, I can’t see how the Falcons should be favored by this much over anyone (except the Lions apparently). I’ll go with KC to cover in an ugly game.
Atlanta 13, Kansas City 12

Oakland (+9) at Buffalo
The Bills look to be legit. Marshawn Lynch is a Pro Bowler in waiting, the defense is opportunistic and QB Trent Edwards is improving. I like what the Raiders did in KC, but there’s still too much drama in Oaktown right now. It’s a large number to give, but I’ll do it.
Buffalo 26, Oakland 13

Houston (+4.5) at Tennessee
I really don’t think the Titans are that good (seriously, Kerry Collins at QB), but the Texans have had quite an ordeal with Hurricane Ike and its aftermath. Between taking care of family, dealing with housing damage and just overall drama, its going to be hard for the Texans to do much against a good Titan defense.
Tennessee 23, Houston 10

Cincinnati (+13.5) at N.Y. Giants
Once again, this seems like a big number to give. However, the Giants have looked great in both of their games, while the Bengals might have the most dysfunctional family this side of Marlon Brando. Ok, old reference, but the Giants are humming on both sides and I don’t see Cincy putting up much resistance.
N.Y. Giants 30, Cincinnati 14

Arizona (+3) at Washington
Are the Cardinals truly ready to take that step towards becoming a playoff contender? A win here would definitely do that. Washington is no slouch, as it showed by defeating New Orleans. I’m going with the Cardinals, though this one could seriously go either way.
Arizona 21, Washington 20

Miami (+12.5) at New England
The Patriots silenced a few doubters last week by beating the Jets, but Miami linebacker Joey Porter wasn’t impressed, proceeding to talk an insane amount of trash for a person who’s team is 1-17 since he joined last year. However, I’m still not sold on the Patriots being able to score much. They’ll win, but I’ll grant the Dolphins a weak cover.
New England 21, Miami 10

Tampa Bay (+3) at Chicago
A year ago at this time, Brian Griese was getting booed by impatient Bears fans. Now he takes the Bucs into Chicago against what looks to be an improved Chicago offense. Rookie RB Matt Forte looks to be the real deal, and the Bears look to be closer to the 2005-06 versions than the substandard version of a year ago.
Chicago 21, Tampa Bay 16

Carolina (+3.5) at Minnesota
It’s really hard to believe that the Panthers are getting points. I guess the oddsmakers are expecting the absence of Tavaris Jackson to give the Vikings a boost. I don’t know, but I’ll take the Panthers with Steve Smith returning over Minnesota with Gus Frerotte starting.
Carolina 19, Minnesota 14

St. Louis (+9.5) at Seattle
The Seahawks are 0-2, lost to the 49ers at home and are taking out ads on Craigslist for wide receiver help. I applied, but I haven’t heard back from Mike Holmgren. I guess they are busy preparing for the Rams, who are somehow last in offense and defense in the NFL. I can’t pick them to cover any spread against any team right now.
Seattle 28, St. Louis 13

Detroit (+4.5) at San Francisco
I’ll actually be at this game tomorrow. It’s definitely nothing to brag about, as both of these teams are pretty bad. The Niners should win this game, but they won’t for two reasons. No. 1 is that the Lions defense knows the Mike Martz system in and out, as Martz was the offensive coordinator in Detroit last year. Second is that the Lions are 4-0 in the last four games I’ve attended dating back to Thanksgiving 1997. Never mess with a streak.
Detroit 24, San Francisco 22

New Orleans (+5) at Denver
This might be the most entertaining game of the day, as Drew Brees and Jay Cutler could both threaten 400 yards passing in this game. There will be touchdowns galore and many fantasy football owners will exult. As far as the actual game, I’ll go with the home team here.
Denver 36, New Orleans 27

Pittsburgh (+3) at Philadelphia
I’m somewhat upset that I have tickets to the Niners game because it means I’ll miss this one. And the battle for Pennsylvania should be a battle indeed. The first two weeks have identified these teams as Super Bowl contenders, and the battle between Philly’s offense and the Pittsburgh D should be intense. I’ll take the Eagles in a good one.
Philadelphia 24, Pittsburgh 20

Jacksonville (+4.5) at Indianapolis
The Jaguars, regarded as Super Bowl contenders by many, will be desperate coming into this game. There is no way they can afford to be 0-3 and reach their lofty goals. The Colts, while struggling, have a win under their belt, which takes a bit of the desperation out. I’ll go with the most desperate team here.
Jacksonville 17, Indianapolis 15

Cleveland (+2.5) at Baltimore
These first two weeks have been hell for the Browns, who have gone 0-2 and seen Pro Bowl WR Braylon Edwards drop every pass in sight. Apparently there are Vegas bookies who are taking over/under bets on the number of Edwards’ drops Sunday. That’s bad news. What isn’t is the Ravens and rookie QB Joe Flacco. Cleveland gets on the board.
Cleveland 17, Baltimore 16

Dallas (-3) at Green Bay
This might be the first time these two teams have played in Wisconsin since the Ice Bowl. I don’t think the NFL has been punishing the Packers for that -14 degree game for making them play the Cowboys in Dallas constantly, but its pretty weird how uneven the discrepancy is. Both of these teams have looked great on offense, but Tony Romo is pretty untouchable – at least until December.
Dallas 31, Green Bay 24

New York Jets (+8.5) at San Diego
Talk about desperate. The Chargers, after two last-second losses and one prodigious officiating screw-up, are ready to eat glass at this point. Meanwhile, it doesn’t seem as if the Jets are completely comfortable with gunslinging Brett Favre as their quarterback. Their play-calling has been conservative, which won’t get it done in this game.
San Diego 28, N.Y. Jets 17

Straight up: 12-18. Against the spread: 14-15-1

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Week 4 college picks

The downward spiral of my college picks continue, as I went a pretty crappy 3-6-1 a week ago against the spread. I’m just going to stop picking Michigan games, or just stop picking them to win.

Luckily (for the reading audience and for the alum), the Wolverines don’t play this week.

Arizona (-3) at UCLA
All I have to really say is wow. That’s in reference to both teams, but more to UCLA. 59-0? Really, Bruins? I thought BYU would win, but I didn’t think UCLA would lose in a way that they haven’t since the Great Depression. I also didn’t think Arizona would lose to a winless New Mexico team. The Wildcats aren’t quite ready for Primetime, but the Bruins from the first-half of the Tennessee game (four turnovers) are what we are more likely to see for the time being.
Arizona 27, UCLA 13

Georgia (-7) at Arizona State
The Sun Devils were caught looking ahead badly last week, losing to a UNLV team at home that only has eight wins in the past four seasons. Just bad tidings all around. Georgia had issues of its own with South Carolina, needing a gift Gamecock fumble at the Georgia 1 to avoid overtime. However, South Carolina would work UNLV. I should pick Georgia to cover, but after the Tennessee-UCLA game, I refuse to question the West Coast theory again. This will be entertaining.
Georgia 30, Arizona State 27

Boise State (+10) at Oregon
The Broncos have accomplished quite a bit over the last five years – winning four WAC titles, going undefeated and beating Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl two years ago, having a ton of local stars (Ryan Clady, Gerald Alexander, Ian Johnson, Ryan Putnam, etc.). However, Boise State hasn’t done well against the Pac-10 on the road. And while Oregon is down to its third- or fourth-string quarterback (I’m not sure which), it keeps rolling. I’m taking the Ducks and Rancho Cucamonga graduate Patrick Chung.
Oregon 33, Boise State 21

San Jose State (+8) at Stanford
If I get another Stanford game wrong in this space, I’m not picking a Cardinal game ever again. Ok, I’m not serious with that, but Stanford hasn’t exactly followed up its Oregon State win gracefully. And San Jose State, which gave Stanford problems during the Tyrone Willingham era, isn’t completely awful. But I think the Cardinal are ultimately on the right track and should take this game.
Stanford 38, San Jose State 20

LSU (-2.5) at Auburn
Auburn had possibly the most unlikely win as far as score is concerned last week, somehow beating Mississippi State 3-2. Yeah, I’ve never seen that in a college football game either. I did see Michigan (sorry) beat Purdue 5-0 in a snow/ice storm in 1995, but that’s as close as I can come. LSU has had its issues at Auburn and I just don’t trust the LSU QBs in this environment. Auburn wins a nailbiter.
Auburn 10, LSU 9

Florida (-7.5) at Tennessee
Yes, that’s two SEC games in a row and three so far that involve SEC schools. But quite frankly, the SEC is the best conference going right now (especially after the Pac-10’s ofer against the Mountain West last week) and are already into their conference slate. My opinion of Tennessee has gone down quite a bit since the season has started and wasn’t helped by UCLA’s loss to BYU. While the Vols, embarrassed by Florida 59-20 last year, will be hungry, I don’t think they have the guns to win this fight.
Florida 34, Tennessee 19

Notre Dame (+9) at Michigan State
After the win over Michigan last week, Notre Dame is supposedly back on the map. However, six Michigan turnovers – one of which the ND defense scored on and two of which set up TD drives from inside the Michigan 15 – made last week easy for the Irish. Michigan State plays Notre Dame tough traditionally and with senior RB Javon Ringer, will wear down ND on the ground. I see Sparty wearing Notre Dame down.
Michigan State 34, Notre Dame 21

Wake Forest (+4.5) at Florida State
If you look at the talent dispersal, you wonder how Florida State would ever lose to the Demon Deacons. But Wake has had FSU’s number, tattooing the Seminoles 30-0 two years ago in Tallahassee and beating them again in Winston-Salem last year. Its hard to really get a gauge on Florida State, which has killed two I-AA teams, but Wake makes more out of its talent than any BCS-conference team.
Florida State 21, Wake Forest 20

Miami (Fla) (-3) at Texas A&M
When this game was set up 5-10 years ago, it looked like a September battle between a college football power (Miami) and a tradition-rich, fairly-good program (A&M). Quite frankly, its none of that. The Hurricanes are picking up the pieces from the Larry Coker era, an era that has left them completely bare offensively, while the Aggies have already lost to Arkansas State this season. Not Arkansas, Arkansas State. It will be ugly.
Miami (Fla) 16, Texas A&M 12

Alabama (-9) at Arkansas
Both of these teams are undefeated, but that doesn’t make them equal. The Crimson Tide made a statement early, bombing what was a top-10 ranked Clemson team opening weekend. With top notch talent coming in, Alabama should be near the top of the SEC before long. Arkansas, meanwhile, had to have crazy fourth-quarter comebacks to beat I-AA Western Illinois and Louisiana-Monroe. That’s not going to be possible tomorrow.
Alabama 37, Arkansas 17

Overall record: 23-7. Record against spread: 13-16-1

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Week 2 high school picks

My win percentage went down a bit this week, as I went 19-6-1 and Barstow fooled me yet again. I guarantee that I’m picking the Aztecs this week – even if they were playing the Dallas Cowboys.

Now for the rest:

Kaiser at Riverside North
This has almost been like an NFL divisional matchup, as the Cats have played North two times a year for the last two years. However, its been a Chargers-Raiders type pairing, with North playing the Chargers and the Cats taking the role of the Raiders. Kaiser looked great against Apple Valley Friday, but you can’t bet against a streak.
Riverside North 21, Kaiser 13

Serrano at Upland
A great matchup and quite frankly, I’m jealous of Lou Brewster for getting to cover it. Serrano coach Ray Maholchic was hilarious in describing the Upland talent, making a quip about possibly getting postgame autographs. Maholchic is sandbagging a bit, as the Diamondbacks will get in Upland’s face. The Highlanders will win, but they’ll have to pack a lunch, because this game is going the full 48 minutes.
Upland 31, Serrano 24

San Gorgonio at Redlands East Valley
A very intriguing matchup due to the proximity of the schools. The East Highland area is basically split between the two, which should make for a passionate game. I was impressed with the skill level of San G’s Tre Meadors and T.J. Smith when I saw them Thursday, but REV has too much size and too much depth. The Wildcats wear the Spartans down.
REV 34, San Gorgonio 13

Los Angeles Crenshaw at Miller
Crenshaw has been all over the place on offense. After scoring 34 points in their opener against Lakewood, Crenshaw was shut out at Norco last week and now plays a Miller team that has only given up 13 points in two games. The Rebels’ defense has allowed the offense to get its feet under it, a process that results in another win on Friday.
Miller 27, Crenshaw 6

Canyon Springs at Hesperia
Canyon Springs, the Central Division runner-up last season, was bombed by Rancho Cucamonga in its opener 30-0. Now it’ll play Hesperia, which looks to be improved offensively from its 9-2 squad a year ago. The Scorpions will send Gavin Santos up the middle, Ricky Yell on end-arounds and Jerone Waddell deep for a nice home-opening victory.
Hesperia 31, Canyon Springs 10

Colton at La Quinta
The Yellowjackets rarely lose season openers and would laugh in my face if I suggested that their 15-14 loss to Vista Murrieta was a moral victory, but that was what I’d call a good loss. It doesn’t get much easier with a trip to the Low Desert to play La Quinta, but I think Colton gets a win.
Colton 22, La Quinta 20

Riverside Notre Dame at Aquinas
Even if Aquinas wasn’t ranked, there’s no way I’m not writing about “The Holy War.” This game is always hard-fought, often entertaining and usually has a fair amount of star power. The Falcons got over the Big Bear hump with a big win Saturday and I have a feeling that their star power, led by QB Tyler Stirewalt, will do the same.
Aquinas 26, Notre Dame 20

Sultana at Cajon
Yeah, Cajon didn’t look awesome in losing to Los Osos. But Los Osos is a pretty good team and it was apparent that star RB Walter Kazee is still getting his legs under him after sitting out much of the preseason with a knee injury. I expect Kazee will look more like his old self this week, which is bad news for the Sultans.
Cajon 27, Sultana 15

Carter at Rancho Cucamonga
Carter’s run through the Baseline League continues with a game against the Cougars, who have been dominating in whipping Damien and Canyon Springs. Irregardless of whether those two teams are down or not, Rancho has been extremely impressive. I don’t expect much to change against a Carter team in flux.
Rancho Cucamonga 30, Carter 14

Summit at Fontana
The SkyHawks have won two in a row for the first time in school history, while the Steelers were embarassed by Banning. While this isn’t a great Fohi team, a Summit win here could really launch its program. I see Summit pulling this win out and getting its first three-game win streak.
Summit 28, Fontana 21

Other games of note:
Arrowhead Christian 20, Twin Pines 3
Arroyo Valley 34, Rialto 16
Los Angeles Carson 24, Redlands 14
Eisenhower 27, Palmdale Knight 17
Yucaipa 24, San Bernardino 17
San Jacinto 29, Twentynine Palms 16
Victor Valley 26, Yucca Valley 14
Big Bear 23, Beaumont 17
Granite Hills 25, Pacific 10
Barstow 32, Antelope Valley 21
Ridgecrest Burroughs 27, Apple Valley 22
Quartz Hill 27, Silverado 25
Rim of the World 33, Cathedral City 14

Overall record: 32-9-1

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Week 3 top 25

Here’s my top 25 for this week. Arizona State takes the huge tumble of the week after being upset by UNLV at home.

1) USC (1) – The Trojans pretty much put a hammerlock on this spot by destroying Ohio State on Saturday. Beanie Wells or not, 35-3 is pretty impressive.

2) Georgia (2) – The polls dropped the Bulldogs for a 14-7 win over South Carolina. I won’t, because inter-conference road games are always tough.

3) Oklahoma (3) – Just rolling along after smacking down feckless Washington.

4) Florida (5) – Gators didn’t play, but move up anyway. Thanks Ohio State.

5) Missouri (6) – Three games, three wins where the Tigers have scored 50 or more points.

6) LSU (7) – Didn’t let remnants from Ike dampen a 41-3 rout of North Texas.

7) Texas (9) – Horns move up two despite having their game with Arkansas pushed back two weeks because of Ike.

8) Texas Tech (10) – The Red Raiders smacked down SMU. They basically moved up because they looked less feeble than other teams.

9) Wisconsin (11) – Gotta give the Badgers credit here. Winning at Fresno State is no small task.

10) Auburn (8) – Tigers win on the road in-conference, but drop because they won 3-2. Guess Auburn grad Frank Thomas hit a three-run shot in the seventh.

11) Ohio State (4) – Buckeyes were beat up and beat down by USC. But they’ll be back toward the top of the Big Ten.

12) Alabama (13) – Tide did well against Western Kentucky. Western Kentucky just joined Division I-A last year.

13) Oregon (16) – Ducks get a bump after a gutty OT comeback win at Purdue.

14) East Carolina (15) – Tulane almost upset the Pirates and killed their BCS-buster dreams. But the Pirates survived the “letdown game”.

15) BYU (17) – UCLA fans will be having the shakes over losing 59-0 to BYU Saturday for weeks, if not years.

16) South Florida (18) – The Bulls’ last-second field goal win over Kansas saved the reputation of the flagging Big East – for now.

17) Penn State (20) – The Nits have looked pretty great in their first three games. Of course, Coastal Carolina, Oregon State and Syracuse aren’t exactly a murderer’s row.

18) Wake Forest (19) – Moved up despite not playing. Have a big one this week at Florida State.

19) Kansas (12) – Jayhawks get seven-spot drop for a loss, but a Friday night loss on the road to a top 20 team isn’t the end of the world.

20) Utah (22) – The Utes’ signature win at Michigan has probably lost some luster, but their 42-14 win over UNLV last week has definitely gained some back.

21) Clemson (21) – The Tigers beat N.C. State, who looks really bad. Still not sold on Clemson moving up any time soon.

22) West Virginia (24) – Mountaineers will get a decent test Thursday at Colorado.

23) Illinois (NR) – Illinois’ 20-17 win over Louisiana-Lafayette didn’t really do much for me, but a lot of losses in this region of the rankings moved it up.

24) Vanderbilt (NR) – This is definitely my shocker of the week, but the Commodores have looked good in going 3-0. They are definitely a sleeper.

25) Virginia Tech (NR) – It wasn’t pretty, but that win over Georgia Tech was a good one. Plus, that ECU loss isn’t looking so bad anymore.

On the cusp: Tennessee, Florida State, Fresno State, Arizona State, TCU

Dropped: No. 15 Arizona State (lost to UNLV), No. 23 California (lost at Maryland), No. 25 Fresno State (lost to Wisconsin).

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Week 2 high school rankings

Definitely saw some fluctuation in the bottom five this week, as one would expect this early into the season. The top 5 is looking pretty formidable right now.

1) Redlands East Valley (1-0)
The Wildcats keep their No. 1 ranking with a gut-check win. Despite special teams breakdowns and despite star QB Tyler Shreve being banged up, REV stepped it up late and defeated an accomplished North team. Good way to start the season.

2) Upland (2-0)
The Highlanders got their revenge against Glendora in impressive fashion and, quite frankly, are just as qualified for the top spot as REV is. They’ll get another chance to pad their resume this week by hosting Serrano.

3) Serrano (2-0)
The Diamondbacks have shown an explosive nature that belies their normal “play defense and pound you to pieces on the ground” attack. If they go into Upland and grab a victory, that will be a huge statement.

4) Los Osos (2-0)
While QB Richard Brehaut gets most of the headlines (and deservedly so when he performs as well as he did in the first half against Cajon), the Grizzlies’ defense seems to have stepped up their game. If Los Osos can continue to throttle opposing offenses, the Grizzlies will make some serious noise.

5) Miller (2-0)
The Rebels’ offense made some more strides this week against Palmdale Highland, which you would expect. The defense also looks to be fierce, led by senior LB Jacob Guzman, which will help keep the pressure off the O.

6) Kaiser (1-0)
Dick Bruich’s club jumps up from No. 9 and while losses by SAL teams helped a bit, their 42-3 destruction of Apple Valley was eye-poppingly impressive. A matchup against their recent tormentor, Riverside North, will really tell us how close the Cats are to being elite.

7) Hesperia (1-0)
The Scorpions go from unranked to this spot thanks to a complete 34-17 win over San Gorgonio. While the Hesperia defense wasn’t as dominating Thursday as it was a year ago, an offense with a lot of returning starters seems capable of carrying the load.

8) Colton (0-1)
The Yellowjackets don’t fall much, dropping from No. 6 to No. 8, in this poll. Playing at Vista Murrieta with a young team isn’t easy, yet Colton only lost 15-14. A win at La Quinta next week would do wonders.

9) Aquinas (1-0)
Maybe I’m going a little crazy ranking the small-school Falcons here, but after beating Big Bear for the first time since 2004, I think they’ve earned it. Quarterback Tyler Stirewalt seems to give Aquinas a passing element that it doesn’t normally have.

10) Cajon (1-1)
Friday wasn’t good for the Cowboys, as they lost to Los Osos 20-7 and saw starting QB Ronald Sereno get knocked out by an injury. But losing to the Grizzlies is nothing to be ashamed of, therefore Cajon barely stays in the top 10.

Colony (No. 8) and Arroyo Valley (No. 10) were dropped from the poll. Other teams under consideration: Etiwanda (1-0), Chino Hills (1-0), Eisenhower (1-0), Arroyo Valley (1-1) and Rancho Cucamonga (2-0).

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