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FINAL Central Section football playoff projections


By Gabe Camarillo

This is the final edition of Central Section football playoff projections.

Commissioner Ryan Tos said the Central Section tries to create as close-to-even brackets as possible, so the latest projections came up with the following division sizes by implementing first-round byes:

D1 – 12 teams

D2 – 15 teams

D3 – 15 teams

D4 – 15 teams

D5 – 15 teams

D6 – 15 teams

We learned that every 3-7 team or better will be in the postseason (unless they opt out).

The projections are based on, a computer rating system tasked with ranking teams, the same system used by the Central Section when they seed teams in order and place them in playoff divisions.

For those who are unfamiliar with the relatively new way that high school football playoffs are done in Central California, here are the ground rules:

1. Teams can move up and down one division from their base. The base divisions can be found here:

2. Teams can ask to move up a division, but they cannot ask to move down from the division they’re placed in. There will be 12 teams in Division I.

The projections accounted for tie-breaker scenarios that kick into effect when two teams are within three seeding places of each other. The first and foremost tiebreaker will be — finish in same league (if applicable), followed by head-to-head and record vs. common opponents.

For full transparency, here is the link to the CalPreps rankings (click under ‘Central Section’):


Division I
1. Clovis North
2. Frontier
3. Liberty
4. Clovis East
5. Sanger
6. Clovis
7. Central
8. Clovis West
9. Hanford
10. Arroyo Grande
11. St. Joseph
12. Garces

9 Hanford at 8 Clovis West (winner at No. 1 Clovis North)
12 Garces at 5 Sanger (winner at No. 4 Clovis East)
11 St. Joseph at 6 Clovis (winner at No. 3 Liberty)
10 Arroyo Grande at 7 Central (winner at No. 2 Frontier)

Clovis jumped ahead of Central in the CalPreps rankings last night. Since the CIF Central Section is supposed to base their brackets off CalPreps, do you think they would seed Clovis below Central if the Cougars are rated higher AND beat them head-to-head?

How would you clarify the TRAC quagmire between Clovis East, Central and Clovis, whom all tied for second in the TRAC, with head-to-head results that cancel each other out? Central beat Clovis East, which beat Clovis, which beat Central.

There is NO usable tiebreaker – so no tiebreakers should be used, and I believe the CIF will default to using CalPreps to ordering the three teams. Sanger beat Clovis, so they must be seeded higher.

I don’t think they should prioritize tiebreakers in this scenario, for the reasons I just explained. Yet if they still prioritize head-to-head results over CalPreps for the foursome of Clovis-Central-Clovis East-Sanger, then I could see CIF running this, since Clovis lost more heads-up than they won.

Version 2*
1. Clovis North
2. Frontier
3. Liberty
4. Central
5. Clovis East
6. Sanger
7. Clovis
8. Clovis West
9. Hanford
10. Arroyo Grande
11. St. Joseph
12. Garces

Division II
1. Central Valley Christian
2. Lemoore
3. Centennial
4. Bakersfield Christian
5. Tulare Union
6. Kingsburg
7. Sunnyside
8. Bakersfield
9. Tehachapi
10. Redwood
11. Madera
12. San Luis Obispo
13. Dinuba
14. Garza
15. San Joaquin Memorial

BYE 1 Central Valley Christian
9 Tehachapi at 8 Bakersfield
12 San Luis Obispo at 5 Tulare Union
13 Dinuba at 4 Bakersfield Christian
14 Garza at 3 Centennial
11 Madera at 6 Kingsburg
10 Redwood at 7 Sunnyside
15 San Joaquin Memorial at 2 Lemoore

Division III
1. Mission Prep
2. Atascadero
3. Mission Oak
4. Kennedy
5. Kerman
6. Lompoc
7. Mt. Whitney
8. Washington Union
9. Porterville*
10. Stockdale
11. Pioneer Valley
12. Templeton
13. Golden West
14. Nipomo
15. Santa Ynez

*Porterville beat Highland, which defeated Stockdale. That tiebreaker places Porterville at the No. 9 seed – out of reach for Golden West to enact its head-to-head tiebreaker.

Division IV
1. Shafter
2. Dos Palos
3. Coalinga
4. Torres
5. Exeter
6. Chowchilla
7. Caruthers
8. McLane
9. Santa Maria
10. Golden Valley
11. Roosevelt
12. Highland*
13. Independence
14. Immanuel**
15. South Bakersfield

*Highland beat Stockdale, which beat Independence, so the Scots must be seeded higher. That should also nudge Nipomo and Roosevelt ahead a couple spots. This actually nudged Nipomo into Division III.

** Immanuel moves up from Division V to make D-IV a 15-team field. They are ahead of Sierra Pacific because of head-to-head result.

Division V
1. Bishop
2. Sierra Pacific
3. Wasco
4. Liberty (Madera)
5. Morro Bay
6. Orosi
7. Chavez
8. Delano
9. Corcoran
10. North Bakersfield
11. Firebaugh
12. Reedley
13. East Bakersfield
14. Hoover
15. Sanger West

Division VI
1. Arvin
2. Boron
3. Mendota
4. Strathmore
5. Woodlake
6. Taft
7. Fowler
8. Avenal
9. Orange Cove
10. Minarets
11. Rosamond
12. Lindsay
13. Kern Valley
14. Riverdale
15. Foothill

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