Advertisement
  1. Blogs
  2. /
  3. HomeTeam

HomeTeam 25: Football rankings for Tampa Bay

Our final high school rankings of the season.

1. Armwood (10-0)

Up next: vs. Sebring

Skinny: The Hawks wrapped up an undefeated regular season with last week's win over Durant. What's impressive is that Armwood stayed perfect by playing a schedule that included five games against playoff teams and six against teams with winning records. That helped the Hawks put together the highest point average (46.10) in all of Class 6A.

2. Plant (9-1)

Up next: vs. East River

Skinny: Last year, the Panthers played every playoff game at home leading to the state championship game. If Plant makes another title appearance, it will have to go on the road at some point. The Panthers have the No. 3 seed and at least one home game in the playoffs. Since losing to Armwood last month, Plant has won three straight, all by 20 or more points.

3. Tampa Bay Tech (9-1)

Up next: vs. Bloomingdale

Skinny: The Titans' offense keeps producing. Tampa Bay Tech has scored at least 42 points in eight straight games, all wins. It could be another high-scoring game for the Titans this week. After all, Tampa Bay Tech put up 49 points in a win over Bloomingdale last month.

4. Clearwater Central Catholic (9-0)

Up next: vs. Tampa Catholic

Skinny: The Marauders, coming off their second undefeated regular season in school history, had an extra week to prepare for the playoffs because of their bye. CCC has the No. 1 seed in Class 3A, Region 2 and faces rival Tampa Catholic in a rematch of game the Marauders won 25-0 in September.

5. Mitchell (10-0)

Up next: vs. Chamberlain

Skinny: Thanks to their first undefeated regular season in school history, the Mustangs have the No. 2 seed in the Class 6A, Region 2 behind Armwood. That guarantees Mitchell at least two home games in the postseason provided it keeps winning. In the last two years, the Mustangs have only lost two home games.

6. Lakewood (7-1)

Up next: vs. Tarpon Springs

Skinny: Quietly, the Spartans have put together a solid season and have their best regular-season record since 2012. They head into the playoffs on a six-game win streak and have the No. 2 seed in Class 5A, Region 3.

7. Wiregrass Ranch (8-2)

Up next: at Lake Nona

Skinny: The Bulls are making their second straight playoff appearance, the first time the program has ever done that. After a slow start, the offense is developing into a high-scoring unit. Wiregrass Ranch has scored 30 or more points in four straight games.

8. Hillsborough (7-3)

Up next: at Lake Gibson

Skinny: The Terriers have been tested. Their three losses are to Armwood, Plant and Tampa Bay Tech, the top three teams in the rankings. Those matchups will prepare Hillsborough against defending Class 6A state finalist Lake Gibson in a rematch of last year's regional quarterfinals.

9. Jefferson (8-2)

Up next: vs. Jesuit

Skinny: The Dragons closed the regular season with five straight wins, none bigger than last week's 17-16 overtime victory over nemesis Jesuit that clinched a district title. There was not much time to celebrate that win. Jefferson gets the Tigers again in the first round of the playoffs.

10. Zephyrhills (9-1)

Up next: vs. River Ridge

Skinny: Since losing in the last minute to Wiregrass Ranch in the season opener, the Bulldogs have won nine straight and are hosting a playoff game as a district champion for the first time since 2006. Zephyrhills is averaging an impressive 47.9 points per game.

11. Chamberlain (8-2)

Up next: at Mitchell

Skinny: Aside from a few district games, the Chiefs were not challenged much in the regular season. But they did play Armwood and Hillsborough tough in their two losses. This week Chamberlain travels to play Mitchell in one of the area's best first round matchups.

12. Largo (7-2)

Up next: vs. Naples Barron Collier

Skinny: Last week's loss to Lakewood ended the Packers' seven-game win streak. Still, Largo had a high enough point average to clinch the No. 3 seed in Class 6A, Region 3. To advance, the Packers have to rely on their run game and their defense.

13. Gaither (7-3)

Up next: at Viera

Skinny: The Cowboys' six-game win streak ended with last week's loss to Tampa Bay Tech. Still, that was not enough to keep Gaither out of the playoffs. Expect a low scoring in the Cowboys' first-round game against Viera, which has allowed just 77 points all season.

14. East Lake (5-5)

Up next: at Anclote (Thursday)

Skinny: Since a 1-5 start due to forfeits, the Eagles have won four straight, outscoring opponents by a combined 147-39. It was not enough to get into the playoffs, but East Lake will get another game by traveling to play Anclote in a bowl game.

15. Calvary Christian (6-2)

Up next: at Lakeland Christian

Skinny: Last week's win over playoff-bound Indian Rocks Christian was big because it helped the Warriors leapfrog Tampa Catholic for the No. 3 seed and avoid a first-round matchup with undefeated CCC. Calvary Christian won its last three regular-season games by a combined 119-13.

16. Pinellas Park (8-2)

Up next: vs. Palmetto

Skinny: The Patriots are district champs and will host a playoff game for the first time since 2012. Lawrance Toafili has already set the school's single-season rushing record with 1,583 yards and has at least one more game to add to that total.

17. Clearwater (6-3)

Up next: at East Lake

Skinny: The Tornadoes closed the regular season with two straight losses. A beefed up non-district schedule came in handy as Clearwater made the playoffs as the eighth and final seed in Class 6A, Region 3, finishing 0.39 points ahead of Punta Gorda Charlotte.

18. Jesuit (5-4)

Up next: at Jefferson

Skinny: The Tigers rebounded from their overtime loss to Jefferson to beat rival Tampa Catholic in the regular season finale. The win not only put Jesuit above .500 but also extended its win streak against the Crusaders to 18 games.

19. River Ridge (7-3)

Up next: vs. Sunlake

Skinny: The Royal Knights beat Sunlake last week for the first time since 2007. Revenge will be on River Ridge's mind again this week in a rematch against Zephyrhills in the first round of the playoffs. The Bulldogs won the regular-season meeting to end the Royal Knights' three-year reign as district champs.

20. Nature Coast (7-2)

Up next: at Baker County

Skinny: The Sharks closed out the regular season with wins against rivals Hernando and Springstead. It helped Nature Coast maintain a high enough average in points to hold on to the eighth and final seed in Class 5A, Region 2. That means the Sharks have to take the long road through the playoffs starting with this week's game at Baker County.

21. Tampa Catholic (7-3)

Up next: at CCC

Skinny: The Crusaders' six-game win streak ended with another frustrating outcome against rival Jesuit last week. Tampa Catholic faces another nemesis in the first round of the playoffs. CCC shut out the Crusaders in their regular-season meeting.

22. Hernando (7-2)

Up next: vs. Clay

Skinny: The Leopards are the No. 3 seed hosting a first-round playoff game as a district champion. But this is not the way Hernando wanted to enter the postseason. After starting 6-0, the Leopards have lost two of their last three.

23. Bloomingdale (7-3)

Up next: at Tampa Bay Tech

Skinny: Since losing to Tampa Bay Tech last month, the Bulls have won three straight to get into the playoffs as the No. 7 seed in Class 7A, Region 3. Their reward? A rematch with the Titans in the first round of the postseason.

24. Durant (6-4)

Up next: Season is done

Skinny: After starting 4-0, the Cougars lost four of their final six games, including three against district opponents, to fall out of playoff contention. Durant's most impressive victories this season were against Jesuit and Newsome.

25. St. Petersburg (6-4)

Up next: at Venice

Skinny: The Green Devils lost three of their final four games, but were still able to make the playoffs as a No. 8 seed in Class 7A, Region 3. That had a lot to do with beating Largo and Lakewood at the start of the season.

On the bubble: Newsome (6-4), Springstead (7-3), Anclote (7-3), Countryside (6-4), Tarpon Springs (5-4), Superior Collegiate (6-2), Cambridge Christian (7-3), Indian Rocks Christian (8-2), Wesley Chapel (6-4), Zephyrhills Christian (7-2), Berkeley Prep (5-4)

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Advertisement
Advertisement