Rodriguez commits to San Diego State

San Gorgonio offensive lineman/defensive lineman Paul Rodriguez verbally committed to San Diego State a couple of weeks ago according to San Gorgonio football coach Ron Gueringer. Rodriguez, a 6-foot-6, 240-pound senior, chose the Aztecs over offers from Washington State and Colorado State.

“He’s the first of hopefully many kids that we send off to Division I colleges,” Gueringer said. “I’m proud of him and what he did for this program. I know the San Diego State coaches came down a few weeks back to see him play and loved him. They had a great season and it’s a great place for Paul to go.”

Rodriguez starred on both offense and defense for the Spartans, who went 7-5 this season and finished second in the San Andreas League. San G advanced to the Central Division quarterfinals, where it was ousted by top-seeded Moreno Valley Rancho Verde. Gueringer thinks the Aztecs will use Rodriguez on the offensive line.

“That’s where I would guess,” Gueringer said. “He has a lot of potential with his frame to be a very good offensive lineman and I think he’s an all-area guy at that position.”

Girls basketball heating up

It didn’t take long for the girls basketball season to get going, as two tournaments – Rialto’s “Jam the Gym” and the Big Daddy Tournament, tipped off today.

Both tournaments will have their championship games Saturday, with the Jam the Gym title game being played at 6:30 p.m. at Rialto High School while the Big Daddy Gold Division championship game will be played at 6 p.m. at Notre Dame High School in Riverside. Joining Rialto in the Jam the Gym are Palm Springs, Upland, Ayala, Serrano, Fontana, Corona Centennial, Chino Hills, Victor Valley, Riverside North, Patriot and Ganesha High Schools.

The Big Daddy Tournament is a 18-team tournament with a Gold Division and a Green Division. The Gold will feature Cajon, Eisenhower, Lake Elsinore Lakeside, Moreno Valley, Temecula Valley, Vista Murrieta, Riverside Arlington, Redlands, Sultana and Riverside Poly. The Green Division will have Riverside Ramona, Banning, Corona, Mesa Grande Academy, Notre Dame, Norte Vista, Aquinas and Colton High Schools. Aquinas, Moreno Valley and Notre Dame will all host the tournament.

Also on the horizon is the Arroyo Valley Tournament, which will be held Dec. 6-10 at Arroyo Valley and Pacific High Schools. Teams involved in the tournament, which is straight bracket format, are Valley View, San Bernardino, Riverside Poly, Oak Hills, San Gorgonio, Rim of the World, Pacific, Patriot, Cajon, Kaiser, Fontana, Corona, Bloomington, Redlands, Arroyo Valley and Rubidoux. The title game will be held at Arroyo Valley at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 10.

Week 13 top 25

Boise State falls from the ranks of the unbeaten, allowing TCU a chance to sneak into the title game.

1. Oregon (1) – The Civil War stands in the way of the Ducks’ first national-title appearance.
2. Auburn (2) – Tigers overcome 24-point deficit against Bama to stay undefeated.
3. TCU (4) – Horned Frogs end season unbeaten, now just wait.
4. Wisconsin (5) – Badgers put up 70 to seal Rose Bowl berth.
5. Stanford (7) – Cardinal could bust into BCS after third shutout of the season.
6. Ohio State (8) – Buckeyes beat Michigan for seventh straight year, looking at another BCS berth.
7. Michigan State (10) – Spartans win 11th game, but likely to be shut out of BCS.
8. Arkansas (12) – Big win over LSU made the Razorbacks some serious money.
9. Boise State (3) – Two late missed field goals doom Broncos in loss to Nevada.
10. Nebraska (14) – Huskers beat Colorado to set up matchup with Oklahoma in Big 12 title game.
11. Oklahoma (17) – Win over Oklahoma State gives Sooners Big 12 South.
12. LSU (6) – Tigers lose at Arkansas and likely lose BCS berth in the process.
13. Missouri (13) – Mizzou beats Kansas to seal 10-win season.
14. Nevada (18) – Nevada takes control of WAC with upset win over Boise.
15. Virginia Tech (15) – Va. Tech wins 10th in a row to set up ACC title matchup with Florida State.
16. Oklahoma State (9) – Big plays doom Cowboys to 8th straight loss to Oklahoma.
17. Alabama (11) – Tide cursing the name of Cam Newton after blowing 24-0 lead.
18. Texas A&M (16) – Aggies beat Texas, but fall six spots. Life is rough sometimes.
19. South Carolina (19) – Have a chance to be TCU’s best friend by beating Auburn in the SEC title game.
20. Florida State (22) – Seminoles break six-game losing streak to Florida and move into ACC title game.
21. Northern Illinois (20) – Win over Miami (Ohio) would seal MAC title for Huskies.
22. Utah (24) – Utes pull one out of the fire in Holy War win over BYU.
23. Mississippi State (NR) – 8-4 best Bulldog record in a decade.
24. West Virginia (NR) – Slaughter of Pitt puts Mountaineers back in rankings.
25. Hawaii (NR) – Warriors only team to beat Nevada, which became a lot more impressive after this week.

Under consideration: Central Florida, Maryland, Navy

Dropped out: No. 21 N.C. State, No. 23 Arizona, No. 25 Iowa

CIF semifinal football schedule

Saturday is going to be a huge day, as four county teams will be playing, including two county-county games.

INLAND DIVISION
Corona Centennial at Chino Hills (Friday)
Rancho Cucamonga at Vista Murrieta (Saturday)

CENTRAL DIVISION
Rancho Verde at La Quinta (Friday)
Cajon at Colton (Saturday)

EASTERN DIVISION
Elsinore at Kaiser (Friday)
Summit at Serrano (Saturday)

EAST VALLEY DIVISION
St. Margaret’s at Paraclete (Friday)
Sierra Canyon at Yucca Valley (Saturday)

In Division 2 girls, Ayala is sixth, Serrano 8th

On a chilly day, Ayala girls finished a solid sixth (after being ranked sixth) at the CIF State cross country championships in Division 2, after finishing sixth at the CIF-SS Finals last week. Junior Taylor Khan was 16th to lead the Bulldogs.
Outstanding Serrano freshman Melissa Fairchild led the race a mile into it, before being passed and finishing sixth. The Diamondbacks took eighth as a team.
The Rancho Cucamonga boys were a disappointing 10th in Division 1, as junior Luis Gutierrez was 14th. The Cougars were ranked eighth in the state after finishing sixth at CIF-SS Finals.

–pete marshall

Disappointing day for Granite Hills cross country

Granite Hils, the first county school to qualify its boys and girls teams for state cross country in four years, had a disappointing morning here in Fresno.
The boys started strong, tied for first after the first mile with Palos Verdes. But they faded after that and took eighth in the Division 3 race, a drop from the fourth-place finish last year.
The girls didn’t start as strong and sophomore standout Chelsea Bennis was affected by her hip injury. Bennis, usually the No. 1 or 2 runner, was the 7 runner on Saturday. As a result Granite Hills was ninth.
Apple Valley senior Hannah Valenzuela finished her CIF high school cross country career with a seventh-place finish in the Div. 3 race on a chilly, cloudy morning.
–pete marshall

Reporting from Fresno, chill awaits county runners

I’m here in Fresno for the CIF State Cross Country Championships, and it’s cold. It’ll be down close to freezing tonight, and the high tomorrow is only expected to get to the low 50s. At least rain isn’t expected to move into the area until late afternoon, after the final race.
Check back here on this blog during the morning and early afternoon Saturday for updates on county competitors: Apple Valley’s Hannah Valenzuela, Aquinas’ Alyssa Windle, Ayala’s girls team, Colony’s Xochitl Navarrete and Nick Valenzuela, Granite Hills’ boys and girls teams, Rancho Cucamonga boys team and Serrano’s girls team.

The races begin at 8:30 a.m., with the Division 3 boys, which includes Granite Hills.

–Pete Marshall

Quickie predictions

Just got back in town from Thanksgiving and will get these done real quick before heading out to Ramona High School for Cajon-Arlington.

Inland Division

Corona Centennial at Upland
In the battle between defending CIF champions last week, Upland took down Chaparral to help the Baseline League to a 3-0 mark. While that victory was impressive, Centennial is a different, more potent beast. Upland will score some, but not nearly enough to keep up.
Centennial 52, Upland 21

Chino Hills at Etiwanda
Can the Eagles pull off another upset? The Etiwanda defense stepped up huge in the win at Redlands East Valley, but Chino Hills just put up 10 touchdowns on Corona. The Huskies are humming on that side of the ball and should win a shootout.
Chino Hills 45, Etiwanda 35

Rancho Cucamonga at Roosevelt
The Cougars are playoff-savvy and looked good against Murrieta Valley, while Roosevelt had to scratch and claw against Claremont. Look for Rancho to keep the Baseline contingent alive.
Rancho Cucamonga 34, Roosevelt 28

Vista Murrieta 41, Norco 27

Central Division

Rancho Verde at San Gorgonio
Rancho Verde is the top seed in the bracket, but they had to scratch and claw to get past the Spartans in week one. And that’s before San G caught fire with its current seven-game win streak. I still like Rancho Verde though.
Rancho Verde 29, San Gorgonio 21

La Quinta at Chino
This is easily the toughest test that 11-0 Chino has had to face this year, as La Quinta is perennially among the top teams in whatever division it is playing in. Chino has been quite the story, but I’m not sure it’s fully prepared for this.
La Quinta 28, Chino 22

Cajon at Arlington
The second-hottest team in the county goes against a red-hot player, as the Cowboys’ 8-game winning streak will be tested by Arlington and their star RB Superiorr Reid, who has 32 touchdowns. Cajon is good but I like Arlington’s smashmouth style.
Arlington 35, Cajon 24

Palm Springs at Colton
While both of these teams put up ridiculous point totals last week, I think we’ll see some defense in this one. Both of these teams are stout on that side of the ball, though I feel Palm Springs has a bit more oomph.
Palm Springs 20, Colton 14

Eastern Division

Kaiser at Granite Hills
The Cats have apparently declared war on the city of Apple Valley, as they took out Apple Valley High last week. Granite Hills is scrappy, but they don’t have the firepower to challenge Kaiser.
Kaiser 36, Granite Hills 6

Victor Valley at Elsinore
The Jackrabbits resurgence continued last week with another last-minute win, this time against Norte Vista. But Elsinore on the road is a tough task and I’m not sure if the Jackrabbits will be able to wave their magic wand again.
Elsinore 28, Victor Valley 24

Heritage at Summit
Heritage has been impressive this year, running off 11 wins to grab the No. 3 seed. But player for player, Summit might be the most talented team. I like the SkyHawks to come through with a mild upset.
Summit 30, Heritage 27

Serrano at Ridgecrest Burroughs
Going up to Ridgecrest is a tough task for anyone. But if there’s any team that can handle it, its’ the Diamondbacks. The Serrano D is playing at a high level, which should be the difference.
Serrano 17, Burroughs 9

East Valley Division

Paraclete 42, Grace Brethren 24

St. Margaret’s at Big Bear
This has already been played, with St. Margaret’s prevailing 17-6.

Twentynine Palms at Sierra Canyon
The Wildcats were impressive in rolling over Sage Hill, but going out to the San Fernando Valley from the High Desert is a lot to ask. Sierra Canyon will pull away late in this one.
Sierra Canyon 34, Twentynine Palms 16

Rubidoux at Yucca Valley
The Trojans pulled off the shocker of the playoffs, heading to San Bernardino and shocking No. 2 Aquinas. Now they face a Rubidoux team that they tied in September. I think Cinderella has another dance after this one.
Yucca Valley 20, Rubidoux 18

Week 12 top 25

Boise State bumps by TCU and Nebraska falls. Besides that, not much really happened.

1. Oregon (1) – Ducks get week off before Arizona/Oregon State homestretch.
2. Auburn (2) – This should be one of the more intense Iron Bowls in a long time, especially with the Cam Newton hoopla still at a fever pitch.
3. Boise State (4) – Had to bump up after Broncos killed Fresno State.
4. TCU (3) – Horned Frogs have walk-over season-ender at New Mexico.
5. Wisconsin (5) – Badgers run over Michigan to make statement.
6. LSU (6) – Struggled but won as usual. Par for the course really.
7. Stanford (7) – The Big Game with Cal was a big rout.
8. Ohio State (9) – Buckeyes survive against Iowa to keep Rose Bowl hopes alive.
9. Oklahoma State (11) – Can clinch berth in Big 12 title game with win over Oklahoma.
10. Michigan State (10) – Spartans stay put after scare against a bad Purdue team.
11. Alabama (12) – Would love nothing more than to spoil Auburn’s national-title hopes.
12. Arkansas (13) – Razorbacks have big game with LSU coming up.
13. Missouri (15) – Tiger defense pitches another shutout.
14. Nebraska (8) – Huskers’ suddenly feeble offense killed them against Texas A&M
15. Virginia Tech (14) – Hokies wrap up ACC title game berth with win at Miami.
16. Texas A&M (18) – Aggies topple Nebraska for fifth straight win.
17. Oklahoma (16) – A resume bereft of signature wins has Oklahoma in back of second-place Big 12 cluster.
18. Nevada (17) – Can make a whole bunch of teams happy if they pull an upset against Boise State this week.
19. South Carolina (19) – Gamecocks have rivalry game with Clemson before first SEC title game appearance.
20. Northern Illinois (23) – Huskies rolling up big wins in the MAC.
21. N.C. State (NR) – A win against Maryland puts Wolfpack in first ACC title game.
22. Florida State (25) – Seminoles try to break six-game losing streak to rival Florida.
23. Arizona (24) – Can really mess up BCS if they pull the shocker against Oregon.
24. Utah (NR) – Utes return to rankings after big win at San Diego State.
25. Iowa (20) – Hawkeyes now have lost four times in the last five minutes of the fourth quarter.

Under consideration: Southern Miss, Mississippi State, West Virginia

Dropped out: No. 21 USC, No. 22 Mississippi State