It’s that time of year again. With high school football down to its last week, its time to get my math skills in order and break down the playoff fortunes of each team in each league of the county. We’ll start with the Baseline League because a) it might be the best league top to bottom and b) its first in alphabetical order.
1) Los Osos (5-4, 3-1): The equation is simple for the Grizzlies – beat Alta Loma Friday and grab the league’s No. 1 seed. The Grizzlies own head-to-head tiebreakers over the teams that it is tied with (Rancho Cucamonga and Etiwanda), so no matter who wins that battle, Los Osos will finish ahead of them. However, if Alta Loma pulls the shocker, everything could be chaotic. If Los Osos loses and Upland loses to Claremont, the Grizzlies would get the No. 2 seed over the Rancho-Etiwanda loser. If Los Osos loses and Upland wins, there would be a three-way coin flip between the Grizzlies, Upland and the Rancho-Etiwanda loser for two spots, as each team is 1-1 against the other two. If Los Osos loses that flip, it would have to sweat, as its 5-5 record might not be good enough to hold off Glendora or Ayala from the Sierra League for the at-large berth in the Central Division.
That being said, Los Osos isn’t losing to 0-9 Alta Loma.
2) Rancho Cucamonga (8-1, 3-1): A win over Etiwanda wraps up at least the No. 2 seed in the Baseline League. If Los Osos wins, Rancho is No. 2, as it lost to the Grizzlies head-to-head. If Los Osos loses, Rancho would grab the top seed with a win. If Rancho loses to Etiwanda, a whole bunch of things could occur. A Rancho loss coupled with a Los Osos win and an Upland win would have the Cougars in the No. 3 slot, as they’d win the head-to-head tiebreaker with Upland. They’d also get the No. 3 seed if Los Osos and Upland lost, as they’d lose the tiebreaker to Los Osos for second. A Los Osos loss and Upland win would cause a three-way coin flip for two spots. If Rancho lost that flip, it would be snatched up as the at-large in less than a second.
3) Etiwanda (6-3, 3-1): A win over Rancho wraps up at least the No. 2 seed in the Baseline League. If Los Osos wins, Etiwanda is No. 2, as it lost to the Grizzlies head-to-head. If Los Osos loses, Etiwanda would grab the top seed with a win. If Etiwanda loses to Rancho, a whole bunch of things could occur. An Etiwanda loss coupled with a Los Osos win and an Upland win would have the Eagles in the No. 3 slot, as they’d win the head-to-head tiebreaker with Upland. They’d also get the No. 3 seed if Los Osos and Upland lost, as they’d lose the tiebreaker to Los Osos for second. A Los Osos loss and Upland win would cause a three-way coin flip for two spots. If Etiwanda lost that flip, it would almost assuredly be picked as the at-large.
And yes, I did copy and paste the Rancho writeup and just switch some words around.
4) Upland (7-2, 2-2): It’s amazing that Upland, the No. 1 team in the Central Division two weeks ago, could be forced out of the playoffs. But a loss to Claremont Friday eliminates the Highlanders, as Claremont would jump Upland in consideration for the at-large berth. A win over Claremont pretty much guarantees at least an at-large berth for the Highlanders, as an 8-2 team with wins over Serrano, Miller and Los Osos isn’t staying home. Upland can finish as high as second if Los Osos loses, as it would be in a three-way coin flip with the Grizzlies and the Rancho-Etiwanda loser. A Los Osos win would put a victorious Upland in fourth, as it would lose the head-to-head tiebreakers to the Rancho-Etiwanda loser.
5) Claremont (5-4, 1-3): The Wolfpack still have some hope. It’s pretty simple – they need to beat Upland and hope that they are selected for the at-large berth over either Glendora or Ayala. It’d be about a 50/50 shot for Claremont, as a win over Upland would give its resume a huge boost. A loss eliminates them from playoff consideration.
6) Alta Loma (0-9, 0-4): Eliminated from playoff consideration.