Who's No. 1? Newman, Rancho, Ukiah?

Appropriately, in the next two weekends, three undefeated large school high school football teams will be playing one another, which should also make it easier to rank the three teams.

Here’s an argument for each of Cardinal Newman, Rancho Cotate and Ukiah being ranked No. 1:

Cardinal Newman — Had toughest preseason schedule of the three, is averaging 45 points a game and hasn’t given up a point in three league games. Arguably has one of the top three players in the Empire at five positions: Randy Wright at QB, Jeff Badger/Joe Ferguson at RB and LB, Jacob Gowan at offensive tackle and Wade Amaral at wide receiver.

Can’t overestimate strength of schedule with the Cardinals. Palma and Central Catholic are ranked just behind Newman in Div. III in Northern California by Cal-Hi Sports and Del Oro is one of the top teams from the Sacramento area.

Rancho Cotate — The Cougars have played the tougher league schedule to date, having handled Maria Carrillo, 41-19, while the Pumas were still relatively healthy and Montgomery, 33-0. Rancho did beat Petaluma and while the score was just 14-7, Petaluma is the only undefeated team in the SCL. Rancho not only has one of the best defensive lines in the Empire, it may rank as one of the best ever. The Cougars first string defense has allowed just two TDs. Offensively, the Cougars are playing their best football. QB Cody Allen can both run the triple option and pass and running backs like Brain Dworkin and Sergio Orduna gain more experience each week.

Ukiah — The Wildcats have a balanced offense — running about half the time and throwing about half the time — and probably the best throwing QB in the Empire this season, Kyle Morris. Morris threw 4 TD passes to Kyle Mayfield last week in a 37-20 win against Montgomery. Morris has thrown for 1300 yards in six games and 13 TDs. Gabe Ott is also a very versatile player, coming up with big plays on offense (receiver) and defense (free safety). Marcos Hernandez is one of the Empire’s top running backs. And just like Rancho, Ukiah has a 14-7 win against Petaluma.

So there it is, three perfect teams all deserving to be ranked No. 1

What is your feelings about the three teams? Which should be ranked No. 1 and why? Just include your rankings and comments at the end of the blog entry.