NCS postseason bubble gets bigger

Posted by Staff Writer Eric Branch:
Two weeks ago, the North Coast Section’s Board of Managers approved an amendment allowing for expansion of its playoff brackets in all sports.
In football, the change will have an impact on the Division I and Division II brackets, which will both expand from 12 to 16 teams. Division IV could expand from eight to as many as 16 teams.
Division II is comprised of 31 schools, including Cardinal Newman, Casa Grande, Maria Carrillo, Montgomery, Petaluma, Piner, Rancho Cotate, Ukiah and Windsor.
Maria Carrillo (4-4), Rancho Cotate (4-4) and Cardinal Newman (4-4), teams that could be on the postseason bubble, could benefit from the expansion. In order to be eligible for postseason consideration in football, teams must meet at least one of the following qualifications: 1. Have at least a .500 overall record. 2. Have at least a .500 league record. 3. Have at least a .500 record in their division. In other words, Maria Carrillo, Rancho Cotate and Cardinal Newman will be eligible for the postseason with one win in its last two games.
The Division III bracket, which includes five of the Empire’s other six large-school teams, will remain a 16-team bracket. The Division V bracket will include, at most, eight teams. Santa Rosa is the only Empire school in Division I.