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January 11, 2011

NorCal Basketball Ranks- Jan. 11 Edition

1.) Archbishop Mitty (11-1); Preseason Rank: 9

The Monarchs' schedule is riddled with quality wins, which includes a victory over No. 2 Bishop O'Dowd. Mitty isn't scoring at an exceptionally high clip, but team defense has been excellent, as coach Kennedy's team has only allowed two opponents to score 60 points.

2.) Bishop O'Dowd (10-2); Preseason Rank: 2

The Dragons don't put up gaudy offensive statistics, instead relying on their length to play suffocating defense against their opponents. O'Dowd's top scorer is averaging a shade under 14 points a game, but the Dragons are blocking over 10 shots a game as a team.

3.) Salesian (12-0); Preseason Rank: 13

A perfect record is nice, but Salesian has posted some very good wins on the season as well. The Pride have taken down Jesuit and Sacramento, with the latter victory coming by a whopping 28 points.

4.) Castro Valley (11-1); Preseason Rank: 7

The Trojans have taken down a slew of top-ranked programs this season, which includes wins over Sheldon, Arroyo, Oakland, Jesuit and McClymonds. Castro Valley's only loss came in a two-point nail-biter against Berkeley. Senior forward Juan Anderson leads the team in scoring with 20 points per game.

5.) Sacramento (9-3); Preseason Rank: 1

Burbank got revenge on Josiah Turner and the Dragons last week, as the Tigers beat Sacramento 78-74. Earlier this season, the Dragons soundly defeated Burbank by 18 points in the Gridley Invitational.

6.) Jesuit (11-5); Preseason Rank: Unranked

The Marauders looked to be the class of the Sac-Joaquin Section after handing No. 1 Archbishop Mitty its only loss of the season. Jesuit now looks to be scuffling a bit, however, after dropping two straight games.

7.) San Ramon Valley (13-1); Preseason Rank: 14

The Wolves had won 13 in a row before falling at home to De La Salle last Friday.

8.) Granite Bay (15-2); Preseason Rank: Unranked

The only thing holding the Grizzlies back from a top-5 spot is last week's two-point loss at the hands of a lesser Newark Memorial team.

9.) Oakland (8-5); Preseason Rank: 4

After a slow start to the season, Jabari Brown has led Oakland back to elite status on the heels of a 43-point explosion against Crenshaw. The Wildcats have won four straight games.

10.) Oak Ridge (15-0); Preseason Rank: Unranked

Head coach Bob Christensen's team is a perfect 15-0 but lacks a signature win. This week's game against Jesuit will give the Trojans a chance to earn that big-time win.

11.) Serra (10-2); Preseason Rank: Unranked

The Padres were on their way to the top-10 before their offense lost its rhythm in a 45-34 loss at Archbishop Mitty. Serra is unquestionably the Monarchs' biggest threat in the WCAL and the CCS.

12.) Sheldon (9-6); Preseason Rank: 8

The Huskies have played a brutal out-of-section preseason schedule, taking on tough opponents like defending state champions Westchester and San Diego Lincoln. That experience should bode well for a talented but inconsistent Sheldon squad.

13.) De La Salle (10-2); Preseason Rank: Unranked

The Spartans recently gave EBAL rival San Ramon Valley its only loss of the season, winning 53-42 on the road.

14.) Analy (12-3); Preseason Rank: Unranked

Senior point guard Max Fujii is one of NorCal's premier scorers and is averaging over 26 points per game. The 5-foot-9 sharpshooter has already drained 54 three-pointers this season to lead the Tigers.

15.) Newark Memorial (9-5); Preseason Rank: 10

The Cougars played a very difficult preseason schedule, and their record suffered some as a result. Last week's win over top-10 Granite Bay could be a turning point for this young team.

16.) Sacred Heart Cathedral (9-2); Preseason Rank: 16

The Fightin' Irish are undefeated inside the Central Coast Section, with their only two losses coming to Sac-Joaquin foe Jesuit and Washington state's Seattle Prep.

17.) Deer Valley (12-3); Preseason Rank: 11

Junior guard Olajuwon Garner has been on a tear lately for the Wolverines. The 6-foot-2 shooting guard is averaging 32.7 points per contest over his last three games, including a 41-point outburst against Palo Alto on Dec. 30.

18.) Piedmont Hills (11-1); Preseason Rank: Unranked

The Pirates' lone loss came at the hands of No. 1 Archbishop Mitty.

19.) Berkeley (9-3); Preseason Rank: 3

Head coach Damion McNeil's team got off to a great start by winning its first eight games. After dropping three of their last four, the Yellowjackets are scuffling and in danger of falling out of the top-20.

20.) St. Joseph Notre Dame (11-4); Preseason Rank: 5

Maybe the Pilots should avoid Southern California. St. Joseph Notre Dame is 0-2 this season against teams from the south, falling to Loyola and Crespi.

Dropped Out: No. 6 McClymonds, No. 12 Arroyo, No. 15 El Cerrito, No. 17 Rodriguez, No. 18 Antioch, No. 19 Dublin, No. 20 Vallejo

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