Competing websites, if that’s what you want to call them, will go any length for publicity. How else can you explain ANYONE touting La Mirada No. 1 in the Southeast and West Covina No. 2. Absolutely ridiculous. I’m not saying La Mirada’s not good, there’s just no justification for ranking them ahead of West Covina. NONE. The Bulldogs’ semifinal and final in last year’s Southeast playoffs was the most dominating performance over divisional rivals I’ve ever seen. After blasting La Mirada 63-34 in the semis, they mercied La Serna 84-21 in the championship. Sure, there might be some slippage, but West Covina’s second unit could have won last year’s title. What’s probably even more shocking on the Southeast poll mentioned by a certain website I refuse to mention is that Compton Dominguez isn’t ranked in the Top Ten. COMPTON DOMINGUEZ! May God rest his soul, but you know you can hear Big Bob saying, “Cmon Man.”
Okay, here is what a Top Ten Southeast Poll should look like ..
1. West Covina — Absolutely and without question.
2. La Mirada — Out of respect for Mike Moschetti, one of my favorite players of all time and coach of the Matadores, this is the spot they should occupy. Like I mentioned, they’re not bad, just not as good or talented as West Covina.
3. Compton Dominguez — Look, they play big-boy football. They went 2-1 against three Pac-5 teams in nonleague. The Southeast is a step down for them. Two of their four losses were to Crespi and Redlands East Valley. Athlete for athlete, they could be scary.
4. La Serna — Despite how bad they looked in the title loss to West Covina, they were absolutely playing their best toward the end of the season, beating Mayfair, Los Altos and Muir to reach the title game, and they have several players back.
5. Paramont — Played Monrovia and St. Francis tough last year and is another dangerous team from the San Gabriel Valley League that is use to playing higher-division opponents.
6. Bonita — I’m sold on QB Tanner Diebold having a sensational year. I thought injuries hurt the ‘Cats more than anything last year. Two years removed from reaching a title game, they’ll bounce back.
7. Diamond Ranch — Aram has the Ranch ahead of Bonita in his all-encompassing poll, but I’ll take a wait and see approach.
8. Muir — On talent alone (although its dwindling), Muir’s a top ten in this division even if they play bad.
9. Mayfair — Was certain they would do better in last year’s playoffs. Doubt they will be that disappointing again.
10.T — Bellflower — Finished in a three-way tie for the Suburban with La Mirada and Mayfair, but they were consistently inconsistent. Maybe they improve, but certainly capable.
10T. Arcadia –– Way too many question marks in the post Dimalante era. Without the deepest talent pool to pull from, wondering how they replace so many skilled players from last year. But historically, the Apaches are always in the mix.