NCS realignment: CV back to Bay Shore?

Here’s my story Ben Enos and I just finished writing for tomorrow’s paper about today’s NCS realignment meeting. Scroll to the bottom for analysis.

Castro Valley High may remain in the North Coast Section’s Bay Shore Conference after all, perhaps as part of a new configuration of 12-team super leagues.

The NCS Alignment and Classification committee met Monday at Redwood High in Larkspur and forwarded a recommendation that would align the Bay Shore Conference into one eight-team league and two 12-team leagues, one of which would include Castro Valley. That recommendation will be voted on at the NCS Board of Managers meeting on April 18, along with a proposal the Bay Shore Conference originally drafted in October.

Castro Valley applied for and was granted a switch from the Bay Shore to the Valley Conference a year ago in an effort to better satisfy its competitive needs. But the new Bay Shore Conference proposal sparked the interest of Castro Valley enough that it would like to remain the in Bay Shore Conference.

“What they’re discussing now is exactly what we wanted,” Castro Valley athletic director Andy Popper said of a proposal generated from a recent meeting of Bay Shore Conference schools and presented Monday by NCS commissioner Gil Lemmon and HAAL commissioner Dave Kiesel.

Popper said Castro Valley made calls over a year ago to gauge interest in a setup involving large leagues divided into divisions and there was no support for such a configuration, which led to the school’s intended move to the Valley Conference. He said they would’ve never made the move to the Valley if such a proposal was on the table.

The proposal would keep the current Mission Valley Athletic League in tact and add Moreau Catholic. The two new unnamed 12-team leagues would be divided into six-team divisions based on competitive equity. Each division would likley receive an automatic berth to NCS playoffs and its possible the schools in each division could vary by sport.

One league would consist of Alameda, Arroyo, Berkeley, Bishop O’Dowd, Castro Valley, Encinal, Hayward, Mt. Eden, Piedmont, San Leandro, San Lorenzo and Tennyson.

The other would include Albany, De Anza, El Cerrito, Hercules, John Swett, Kennedy-Richmond, Pinole Valley, Richmond, St. Joseph Notre Dame, St. Mary’s, St. Patrick-St. Vincent and Salesian.

The proposal requires Castro Valley to be re-admitted to the Bay Shore Conference, something that requires a vote of both the Bay Shore and Valley Conferences. Lemmon said he’s going to begin the process of organizing that vote.

The alignment committee also forwarded a proposal for the Valley Conference that would maintain status quo. That proposal is based on Castro Valley returning to the Bay Shore Conference.

That will go forward to the NCS Board of Managers along with the Valley Conference’s original proposal from October that placed Castro Valley in the East Bay Athletic League.

Much of Monday’s meeting with the Valley Conference centered on Livermore. At previous realignment meetings, Livermore principal Darrell Avilla spoke in support of finding a better competitive match for the Cowboys than the EBAL.

On Monday, athletic director Rex Anderson said Livermore would support the creation of a 12-team EBAL that would be split into divisions based on competitive equity. If that wasn’t an option, Anderson said the Cowboys would rather stay with the status quo than join the Diablo Foothill Athletic League, citing a potential increase in travel time and loss of class time.



Jimmy: I think overall the proposal going forward for the Bay Shore Conference is a good one. Having two 12-team leagues will provide a lot of flexibility to allow strong programs to compete in a league that is exciting and challenging and weaker programs will be able to avoid constant beatings from far superior teams.

Looking at the league that involves essentially the HAAL teams adding Berkeley, Alameda, Encinal and Piedmont, you’re talking potentially about a basketball league with Berkeley, O’Dowd and Castro Valley? How good is that! And a football league with Berkeley, Encinal, O’Dowd and San Leandro? Yes please. I think this type of league provides strong benefits for those types of programs, but it also allows the Tennysons and San Lorenzos of the world to participate in leagues that give them a shot to compete.

Turning to the other league, I think you’ll end up essentially with most of the private schools playing together, with a couple of the strong public schools added in. Picture basketball that’s already strong with Salesian, St. Joe’s, St. Mary’s and St. Pat’s adding a team like El Cerrito. Then it also would likely allow a boys soccer team such as Richmond the chance to be in a league with the likes of Albany and St. Mary’s. That’s a good thing.

So overall, I very much like that idea. The MVAL basically stays the same, adding back Moreau Catholic. Moreau wants to be in the MVAL and the MVAL seems receptive to adding them back in. So that’s a win-win.

The Valley Conference remains status quo in this proposal from today. Very few people have a problem with that. Livermore would like a league it has a better chance in which to compete, but it admitted today that it prefers the status quo to joining the DFAL, citing travel time.

The one hurdle involves getting Castro Valley re-admitted to the Bay Shore Conference. Gil Lemmon is working on setting up that vote. But even without the vote, he told me the bylaws appears to have wording that would allow the NCS Board of Managers to move CV to the Bay Shore Conference, so I’d say it’s a strong possibility that happens. Stay tuned. The official word comes April 18.


Ben: Having sat in the input meeting last month, then today’s appeals hearing, I really want to say that I think the committee did a very good job of listening, being receptive to outside ideas and making what it felt was the best decision for the students of the Bay Shore and Valley Conferences. I thought Commissioner Lemmon did a good job of disseminating information and making his cases and did a good job of facilitating the meetings.

When we first heard the mention of these “mini-conferences” at the input hearings, I thought this really sounded crazy. I mean, 12-team conferences broken into six-team divisions? But, the more people started thinking about it, the idea really took hold. Credit the committee for keeping an open mind to it, and when somewhere around 20 schools met last week at Bishop O’Dowd to discuss the idea, they came back with a focused proposal today and that made a big difference.

I agree with Jimmy 100 percent. We could get some seriously good leagues out of this deal. We could also see some teams become more competitive. I think the biggest benefit this idea has is at the junior varsity and frosh/soph levels. If you have eight schools with a JV baseball program in your mini-conference, well there’s your league. It cuts down on travel costs and makes scheduling more creative and easier. Reducing travel costs is a big deal now that budget cuts are threatening athletic programs across the state. I think they took a step toward that today. 

As the Valley Conference is concerned, I think once Livermore agreed today that moving to the DFAL would create more out-of-class time than it was comfortable with, things opened up to remain the same. I remember the Valley Conference meeting in October when the schools voted 21-9 to simply move Castro Valley into the EBAL. That was a pretty clear sign that 21 schools wanted to stay in the same leagues, and the EBAL voted against it because it created an unwieldy, big league. Now, everyone stays the same and I think you maintain some important rivalries in the process.

All in all, I think it’s a good deal.


Just to recap, here is the new Bay Shore Conference if today’s proposal passes.

MVAL: American, Irvington, James Logan, Kennedy-Fremont, Mission San Jose, Moreau Catholic, Newark Memorial, Washington

New League 1: Alameda, Arroyo, Berkeley, Bishop O’Dowd, Castro Valley, Encinal, Hayward, Mt. Eden, Piedmont, San Leandro, San Lorenzo, Tennyson

New League 2: Albany, De Anza, El Cerrito, Hercules, John Swett, Kennedy-Richmond, Pinole Valley, Richmond, St. Joseph Notre Dame, St. Mary’s, St. Patrick-St. Vincent, Salesian

Jimmy Durkin

Jimmy Durkin is a sports writer for the Bay Area News Group.

  • WHere & what level have U coached? What is you relationship with DLS?

  • InTheKnow

    Junior said, “I have played and coached multiple sports and that is why I KNOW that DLS’s accomplishments CANNOT be as easily explained as some posters (such as yourself) try to do. Or that the Spartans success is due to an “unfair” advantage.”

    So what your saying is that if Ygnacio Valley “devoted 11 months” a year, and the DLS program was implemented there, they would be the next dynasty? Don’t you see the great big hole in that argument?

    I think you misunderstand me and many others. I tip my hat to Lad and the rest of his staff. His players are some of the hardest working and most prepared players in the nation. They deserve championships. BUT, they are a team of all-stars. There is no way around that. Comparing them to the Red Sox or Yankees is not an apt comparison. Instead it is more like saying that the Red Sox and Yankees get to operate by different rules then the rest of the teams in the bigs… which they don’t, but DLS does.

    A public school must abide by boundaries… their coaches make due with what they get (for the most part); De La Salle gets the pick of the litter. That is not to say they recruit, not at all. But when you are a player (or the parent of said player) and you can avoid playing at a crappy school, get a scholarship to go to a great school, and get national attention, why wouldn’t you? Public schools, by rule, are not allowed that opportunity.

    Again, I’m not a DLS basher. DLS supporters get way sensitive in these blogs, and have carefully worked out arguments. I understand their points. I just think the system as it currently stands is broken. I believe in fairness, and this is not fairness.

  • junior

    Moreau gets “the pick of the litter” also…….

    Dont forget, tuition is a major deterant-it has no “boundries”.

    Listen, I want the same thing you want: seperate leagues, divisions and sections. I would want COMPLETE seperation tho- zero playing between the two sides-not pre season, playoffs, nothing.

    Be careful what you ask for tho: if the seperation happens, the private schools will be flooded with applications by the athletes- the private school side of the equation will be viewed as the Championship side and the public as the also rans. Oh my, the bitching would be defeaning.

  • norcalfball

    i have read the book and i am sure most people who reside in norther california have too..it is a great book..

    and again i am not a dls basher..they are what they are..the model every team in american should aspire after…

    …but take there coaches and coaching model move it to mission san jose, how would they do? now i understand this is an extreme example but if they are miracle workers they could do the same thing there right…or how about any school in fremont, hayward, oakland, etc…how about the underfunded ones…would they win every single game for the past decade plus in northern california…absolutely not…how about at the schools where a good portion of the players have to work to help there parents pay rent…that winning formula still winning every game?

    the winning formula is a MAJOR factor with it, no doubt…but tired of hearing that it is the only reason they win.

    give DLS all the credit in the world and to do what they have done will never be repeated in high school sports again…and it will continue, which is why i am saying open the boundries or seperate public and private for playoffs…you open the boundries and DLS will lose within 2 years…good chance they still win NCS and go to state, but they will lose.

  • Norcalfball, I agree totally. Good Blog.

  • junior

    Love how you give credit….BUT, claim they have an unfair advantage…make up your mind.

    PS- the teachers unions will NEVER allow open boundries- NEVER. I am for this as well- but it will never happen in Cali.

  • Prep Fan

    Junior, you are always there to take the credit, but fail to see what everyone else sees. It is like the emperor’s new clothes. I’m sure Perkins and Norcalfball have made up their minds long ago.

    There is no doubt DLS has a great coaching philosophy and system, and their players work as hard as any in the country. But there are plenty of public schools out there with great coaching and extremely hard working kids that will never get to the DLS level. It is like apples to oranges as they are operating with different opportunities. I’m not going to call it unfair or complain but there are obvious advantages that some DLS faithful either can’t seem to see or just refuse to admit.

    I’m glad that DLS is in the EBAL and they present a challenge like no other for the kids in that league and raise the bar. Short of going to the WCAL or recreating the old CAL, this is the best fit for them.

  • junior

    Prep fan, Perkin, norcalfb, whoever:

  • junior

    you seem to or refuse to admit that the public school excuse makers are weak.

  • Prep Fan

    I’m not making excuses and do not have knowledge on the issues in SJS or CCS. I’m just very familiar with the situation at DLS. Congratulations on all of DLS successes. I see they are the top ranked team in Volleyball in the pol that just came out, and the wrestling team did very well at state.

  • junior

    dont worry about not knowing anything about those sections. here are the facts: those sections have plenty of private schools with ALL of the same advantages as the Green Machine- and yet, the public schools dominate. same “advantages”, same rules, same everything- much different result.

    since there is NO empirical evidence of an “advantage”-the public school, self pity crowd is left with spin.

  • Scl alum

    I echo KillerD’s sentiments from posting #79. It’s one of those danged if you do, danged if you don’t type of scenarios..

  • THEanonymous

    It seems to me like this debate will eventually jump right off the webpage if certain public schools like CAL continue to push themselves to the limit and remain without any titles. Either one of two things is going to happen: DLS will win NCS every year for another decade or two, or a school like CAL will take them down, but the thing is, some people are going to fall and so I just hope to god that whichever one happens is what deserves to happen, and I’ve always believed the latter is just that thing but now I’m not so sure because it’s very well possible that something went wrong regarding something totally outside the realm of the slight possibility that EBAL coaches and players agreed to have DLS in their league that I had discussed around fifty posts earlier. That something could have traced all the way back to the setting of NCS boundaries or even controversy in the founding of the school. The more it traces back, the more heated of a debate this will look to become within the next year or so. The thing is, if DLS is indeed committing themselves to being the best football program around for eleven months a year and teams have been firing on all cylinders to take them down for a couple of decades, and bloggers have defended both sides not relentlessly but rather, more simply, repeatedly, throughout many different forums, it gets me to believe the debates will get heated, some athletes will fall, and the NCS will have shyed away from their mission statement. I feel we are very close to finding out, and I feel this will be the theme of the November showdown between CAL and DLS later this year, finding out the truth or seeing the scholastic system go under. It all figures though, our state, our economy, our political standing in the world, is in a similar situation today. This is a very interesting time for everything, we have no idea what is going to happen.

    So Junior, Prep Fan, Norcalfball, InTheKnow, it not only seems impossible to tell who’s right now, it may still be years from now! From my own experiences and perceptions as an athlete, Ive believed more than not that Cal deserves to triumph over DLS soon. Recall from last year that CAL’s chance to win may have been off the onside kick recovery where the ball was given to DLS following not only the controversial rule, but also the controversial interpretation of that rule at the time. Even though I was thrilled after the touchdown was scored, when I saw the onside kick happen, my emotions condescended, I sort of knew something was off, but I felt the imperfection of the play should have gone unnoticed. This foreshadows a controversial DLS pair of wins later this year. There was also a side of me that figured that since Coach Bellici didn’t seem to argue the call or discuss it much, maybe the football players had all the wins they needed this year (ending 24-7 against SRV) to be successful due to all the adversity they faced and thus CAL will, despite all the doubt expressed in the forums (which is why I mentioned the diversity), make a statement to the world next season, doing it right this time because they can now that they have seen what they are capable of. This would show to be true what I said earlier about the outcome being very unpredictable both in reality and with respect to who deserves it, and that I believe more than not that CAL deserves it.

    And let me add that I may be exaggerating (when I imply the world will be talking about the game) by as much as high school football is inferior to the NFL, and also because it is high school football and the tradition of hard work may not go as far at CAL as we thought it would. All in all however, the purpose of this post is to cut around to and provide a centralized opinion for the debaters, who agree externally, but don’t seem to internally, over whether DLS has an unfair advantage, and I think CAL is the prime example to use.

  • InTheKnow

    Junior says, “dont worry about not knowing anything about those sections. here are the facts: those sections have plenty of private schools with ALL of the same advantages as the Green Machine”

    Well, see, you missed the point again. There aren’t plenty of private schools in this area. There are a few and DLS stands above the rest (due to the greatness of Lad and other of course); but that makes it the ALL-STAR school. That is the difference. If there were even one or two other private schools in the greater Concord area competing for private school athletes it might be a different story.

  • Scl alum

    While not on the football topic for a second or two, I was pleased to see the Castro Valley boys take the D1 title for the first time vs. DLS. Way to be CV

  • Prep Fan

    I didn’t say I knew nothing about those sections, just not as much as I do about DLS. I know that St. Mary’s of Stockton is a major SJS power in just about all sports and the WCAL dominates the CCS in all sports.

    As InTheKnow states, DLS is the only Catholic HS in the greater Concord area. Plus they are the largest one by far in the entire NCS in terms of the number of boys at the school (1051). Almost twice as many as Bishop O’Dowd (600) and 4x Salesian (275). Can you imagine how good the BOD football or basketball teams would be with twice as many kids as they have now, or Salesian with 4 times as many kids? Not that BOD or Salesian are strugging athletically themselves with much smaller enrollment.

    Combine that with the emphasis on winning that DLS has with their coaches and their dedication and work ethic, and one can see how they might have a recipe for success. Lad is an awesome coach and walked into a perfect storm 30+ years ago and put a lot of work into a struggling football team. Had he arrived at YV, he would no doubt have been extremely successful, but no one in their right mind belives they could have duplicted the results acheived at DLS over that period.

    That really has nothing to do with the SJS, CCS or even Moreau (450). It may have something to do with the fact that a lot of really good athletes from all over the place apply at DLS. Some are even turned away.

  • Peter Brewer

    The effort to move CV to the EBAL was misguided in the first place. With the CV school district cutting all funding for sports last year and relying totally on pay-to-play, the additional travel expenses would have been prohibitive. In addition, CV does not carry the full range of sports intensity up and down the line as do most of the other EBAL schools. Swimming, tennis, volleyball, et cetera would have been a tough go, and football and baseball have not been stellar recently. The vaunted competitive equity argument falls a little short on a closer examination.

    The HAAL has a long and established tradition. The league has been largely intact since 1960, which is a long time in these parts. Arroyo, Castro Valley, Hayward, Mt. Eden, San Lorenzo and Tennyson are all charter members of the league.

    It is good to see that the thinking has shifted to retain the geographic nature of current leagues, with only a little shifting. Natural rivalries between neighboring schools fuel lots of competitiveness in spite of school size or program history.

    As far as competitive equity goes, I agree with the post that asserted that a coach can make more difference than almost anything else in having a consistent sports program. However, school administrations are now more focused on maintaining academic programs more than sports, and so this discussion is not the most important item on their plate. Coaches are hard to find for all sports, and the turnover is remarkable, and often schools scramble to just fill positions rather than promote sports success. League realignment is not the answer, or maybe not the complete answer. It is just the result of using school size as a numerical means to attempt parity.

  • Joe

    I don’t think the question is, “does DLS have some sort of advantage?” We know they do. They are an extremely well organized all-boys Catholic school. They have the culture and set up to succeed already in place.

    The question is, how does that advantage compare to the advantages other schools holds over one another. We don’t separate the inner and outer east bay becuase the outer east bay has some obvious advantages (tend to be more affluent, hire better staffs, more organized). Look back to what Jimmy said about the OAL. One coach was organized and ran the thing. Cal High has massive advantages because of where it is and what it is. We don’t say their should be further stratification to take them out of consideration, do we?

  • Prep Fan

    I didn’t say Cal High didn’t have certain advantages. Clearly they do, along with most of the other EBAL schools and some others. There are several reasons the EBAL has been so successful over the years, in addition to just plain old hard work and great coaching. There is already a stratification that puts them into D1 based on their size. But there are certain DLS supporters out there that refuse to admit that DLS has any type of advantages, much less that these advantages are even more than what the public schools in more affluent areas enjoy. You say “We know they do.”, but we does not include everyone.

  • norcalfball

    thank you prep fan, good posts…

    WCAL is very competitive…think about how many private schools there are in that geographic area…NOT RECRUITING, but vying for all the top athletes in the area…talent gets spread around and every year it is anybody’s league, whether it is serra, bellarmine, used to be st francis, valley christian, etc…put a private high school of DLS numbers in San Ramon (similiar to WCAL situation) and now tell me DLS would have same domination. Now DLS wouldn’t get much of the EBAL talent. would dls still be great absolutely but you just cut down on a dozen or so players at least per year that contribute big time to there football and of course all sports alike.

  • norcalfball

    is the WCAL not a better situation for high school sports or sports at all levels? competitive equity, is that not one the NFL (the greatest running sports program in the world, despite recent issues). is that not what raised the bar in the NFL…rather than the years where the 49ers and cowboys won the super bowl every year because they had more money.

    let dls play in any league i dont care…but if we move to a private vs public playoff system…we would be able to create a great playoff atmosphere where teams were on even playing fields and i believe with the split would be able to move toward true state championship playoff formats…do away with NCS/CCS/SJS/etc….

    season ends you move into playoff system, split up geographically of course initially to cut down on costs before moving closer and closer to the state title (AS TEXAS DOES!!!!)..where DLS would open up against teams like the WCAL rather than american. is this not better for high school sports and fans alike?

  • KillerD

    I hope this example puts the issue to rest regarding DLS and Private Schools, and that they DO have inherent advantages over Public Schools, and that the Playing Fields are NOT equal.

    But, as stated all along I’m in favor of Private schools, to each their own, BUT California should follow the lead of Texas and Split into two separate Divisions: Public and Private each with their own Playoff system, but allowed to play some crossover non-league games vs. either Public or Private.

    Example For All:

    a. My competition and I are each going to start a new Business, an exciting business that many consumers will enjoy using or watching.

    b. However, under current business laws and regulations, MY business Will be able to obtain the materials required to build my sellable Product from within any region of the NCS (within a 1.5 hour drive during commute time).

    c. But, my competition is Not allowed (in fact it’s illegal for them) to go outside of their small geographic boundary of a(20-minute drive during commute time) in which to obtain the materials required to build Their sellable Product.

    d. IF my competition tries to obtain or does illegally obtain some sellable materials for their Product from Any area outside of their small and legally required geographic region, the Lawmakers will instantly punish and/or fine my competition.

    e. Any unsatisfied or curious “sellable materials” that are developed and nutured from within the Geographic boundaries of my competition are Free to forgoe their legal commitment to my competition’s business, and those unhappy or unfulfilled “sellable materials” can legally leave my competition’s stockpile and join my own stock for future consideration. Since it is legal, my business shall suffer no damages from the Business Lawmakers whatsover, even if the “sellable materials” that departed from my competition’s business never even make it to the open market for the consumers to enjoy, solely at my discretion.

    Questions to then be answered:

    1. How long will it take for My business to establish itself as having the Best Product available when compared to my competition? Five years, four years…?

    2. Wholesalers and Vendors, understanding that My business can legally obtain their top-rated sellable materials to build my Product from within a much larger geographic area quickly recognize that they can sell me the best bunch or choice materials from their crop or mine, etc.

    Is that fair when compared to my competition?

    3. How long will it take for my competition’s business to struggle or go under?

    4. How long will it take (if ever) for the Business Lawmakers to change the rules?

  • HS Football Fan


    Your example fails to point out a few other differences. First of all, your “materials” will have to pay (or have somebody pay) > $10,000 per year per material for the right to be featured by your new business.

    Second, yours is not the only new business that’s capable of operating under these rules, and yet the “public vs. private” debate is created to single out only one of those entities.

    Let’s face it, this entire debate is because of the belief that it’s unfair for DLS to compete against public schools. There is no similar outcry for St. Elizabeth, Holy Names, St. Patrick/St. Vincent, Moreau, St. Mary’s, Valley Christian or St. Joseph-Notre Dame. So in order to address a perceived inequity for DLS, you want to banish all of those other schools? Sounds an awful lot like you want to throw the baby out with the bath water.

    Also, despite this debate, the NCS (nor the state) isn’t currently considering a private vs. public option, so we’re currently Don Quixote fighting windmills. I’d be more interested in seeing how the NCS is going to address their real problem at hand, which is that their plan for two 12-team leagues isn’t tenable since there are only 22 (or 23 if Salesian moves up) football playing members.

  • EBfootball

    I bet De La has some recruiters that aren’t officially related to the school pillaging the youth football leagues. Anyone hear stories like that? I have. And about Serra too. Maybe DLS has the best recruiters compared to the other private schools.

  • Prep Fan

    “St. Elizabeth, Holy Names, St. Patrick/St. Vincent, Moreau, St. Mary’s, Valley Christian or St. Joseph-Notre Dame.”

    All those schools you listed except for VC are within a tight geographical region, smaller than the area that DLS currently enjoys accepting applications from. If the Catholic HS slated for Livermore ever takes hold, eventually they might siphon some of the applicants from DLS after they establish a program.

  • HS Football Fan

    ““St. Elizabeth, Holy Names, St. Patrick/St. Vincent, Moreau, St. Mary’s, Valley Christian or St. Joseph-Notre Dame.”

    All those schools you listed except for VC are within a tight geographical region, smaller than the area that DLS currently enjoys accepting applications from. If the Catholic HS slated for Livermore ever takes hold, eventually they might siphon some of the applicants from DLS after they establish a program.”

    And then at that point, will it be acceptable for private schools and public schools to compete against each other again? Like I said, this isn’t really “private vs. public,” this is “public vs. DLS,” and I don’t think their reign will last forever. You mix in the Livermore catholic school with Ladoceur’s eventual retirement and DLS will eventually come back to the pack. No dynasty lasts forever.

  • storm

    To All
    If any of you have attended the EBAL football games in the past years you’ll understand. Look at both side lines and you will see several players whom have been injured during the season with some on crutches. Now look at the line currently on the field for DLS and the talent on said line. Their is no one on the EBAL that can reload like DLS from freshmen on up. If Las Vegas was providing a line on DLS for next season on going undefeated in the EBAL for football they would be N/A. Each school in the EBAL has as many as 6 great players but little depth thereafter. You hear DLS supporters pointing to college athletic scholarships from other EBAL teams, but they fail to realize how important the ability to reload is to maintaining a competitive team. We all know where the large depth of talent is located and it is in Concord. Give any of the fine coaches in the EBAL that talent and they would also succeed. I believe it is time to say many teams have diligent and hard working coaches that also includes the great coaching staff at DLS. No matter what happens going forward DLS will go undefeated in league for many years. Thank god the other high school sports take far fewer athletes and many attend public and privates schools because 40 players are not needed to succeed and the families know the crowd at the top would mean their student athlete would not participate at DLS. Yes I am talking about basketball and baseball. DLS will win some and lose some in these sports but their is no sure thing they will win the EBAL each year. Like many of the other coaches in the EBAL I am tired of debating this point and applaud DLS supporters for enjoy a winning season. This is good for DLS, the Northern California newspapers and NCS Directors whom relish the national publicity.

  • junior

    In summary:

    *Only DLS football is able to turn the private “advantage” into domination (therefore, it is unfair)- due to stars aligning, voodoo, magic, etc.
    *Yes EBAL teams have advantages over other schools (shhhhh)- but not as much as DLS football does
    *DLS football wins have caused hurt feelings by some public school teams who “might” have won without the Spartans
    *Seperate privates and publics- but let them play in non league if they want (not sure why you would want this if you feel “disadvantaged”)
    *DLS coaching is good- but it cant POSSIBLY be that much of a differentiator (the poster who talks about DLS lineman is classic football ignorance!)
    *The SJS and Central Section (Fresno area for the uninformed) dont have these whiners and complainers because- public schools dominate- (so it must be a level playing field-which is a MAJOR contradiction)

    Same old, same old… I still hold out hope that the next generation will get it.

  • InTheKnow

    Not sure why I’m responding because Junior has made it clear he is not willing to listen or concede any valid points but here goes anyways:

    *Only DLS football is able to turn the private “advantage” into domination (therefore, it is unfair)- due to stars aligning, voodoo, magic, etc.
    ANSWER: DLS is the only private school in the greater Concord area… players from Sacramento to Dublin along the 680 corridor go to DLS. This is not voodoo or magic. Because they took this early advantage they have built upon it. Even with the O’Dowd’s and Moreau’s of the world, DLS is the easy choice for top athletes to go.

    *Yes EBAL teams have advantages over other schools (shhhhh)- but not as much as DLS football does
    ANSWER: I don’t agree that that EBAL has advantages. They have more affluent parents, yes, and that stinks for poorer schools to try and keep up, but many have including San Leandro in it’s hayday. You could argue that Berkeley and Logan (who has beat EBAL schools occasionally over the past 5 years), Pitt, and now Heritage are right there knocking on the door. DLS does have an advantage… open enrollment and scholarships.

    *DLS football wins have caused hurt feelings by some public school teams who “might” have won without the Spartans
    ANSWER: Agreed, but not hurt feelings as much as utter frustration. Frustration that they are playing an All-Star team who has a different set of enrollment rules.

    *Seperate privates and publics- but let them play in non league if they want (not sure why you would want this if you feel “disadvantaged”)
    ANSWER: I support this. Yes, if a team wants to play them they absolutely could, and they would want to play them to test how good they really are and yet still have the opportunity to win an NCS championship even if they lose to them.

    *DLS coaching is good- but it cant POSSIBLY be that much of a differentiator (the poster who talks about DLS lineman is classic football ignorance!)
    ANSWER: Agreed, with the concession that it could very well be that Lad is absolutely a legend and far above other coaches in the area, but as many people already stated, it’s doubtful that even he could bring a public school to the heights he brought DLS.

    *The SJS and Central Section (Fresno area for the uninformed) dont have these whiners and complainers because- public schools dominate- (so it must be a level playing field-which is a MAJOR contradiction)
    ANSWER: This where you aren’t listening or are missing the point. Without other private school affectively competing for candidates, DLS can dominate. Public schools in those sections win because the talent is thinned out at the private schools due the options many kids have. Again, DLS is the only private school in their area.

  • InTheKnow

    Let me add something not being talked about.

    How many DLS football players are on scholarship? How many have full tuition?

    With the escalating budget crisis in California more and more public schools are going to a pay to play system. Public school parents are being asked to foot the bill to the tune of between $200 to a $1000 dollars.

    Now if I am a parent and I can get my kid on scholarship or partial scholarship to DLS versus paying for my kid to play at a lesser school, what choice am I going to make?

    With this situation it is likely DLS will get even more dominant.

  • storm

    Sorry you feel this way but please take a look at Servite and the surrounding schools of the big 5 both private and public. They are located near each other in their league affiliation.We all know their is more available talent in So/Cal and more schools dividing said talent. The families can chose to pay tuition or attend a public school because of the much larger talent pool an even playing field is currently in place at most of the power schools.. I can see you have made up your mind and I once more applaud your loyalty. I will leave you with one thought who is going undefeated in league next year and next year and next year. Could their be just a little doubt in your stand.

  • NCS Fan

    InTheKnow – Well said!!

  • Gdog

    What is the population that DLS draws from compared to say Bellarmine or VC? San Jose is 1 million people itself plus surrounding cities. Concord is 100,000 plus their surrounding area another 400,000? Now VC & Bellarmine are pretty darn good but better than Cal last year, or MV the 2 years before that? Advantage, certainly but to take it to the level they have can not be explained away by some advantage. St. Mary’s Stockton has similar advantage and while very good has not taken their program to this level. Few if any have. The great coach from St. Thomas Aquinas has 2 1/2 times as many losses I believe as Lad w/ DLS. Just using an example not trying to debate anyone about the greatness that is Florida.

  • mudhen

    Well, all I can say about DLS, is that whenever they go to the South (my home region ) they tend to get their heads handed to them. There Are PUBLIC schools in Georgia that have three thousand seat high school stadiums (sold out every year) and large private christian academies where multi-thousand dollar scholarships are handed out like candy to star players.
    Both play killer football, and other sports too, but even the largest public schools can’t compare to the ability of some private school alumni to whip out the checkbook. Thus—separate leagues.
    It’s sort of like automobile racing; “how fast do you want to go? Really? how much money do you have? “

  • I don’t think they are nearly as many athletes in San Jose area as the East Bay. But I think VC & Bellarmine get every one of them. Can’t think of any really god San JOse schools. Atleast in football.

  • renegades10

    Mudhen- Heads handed to them? Huh? Last time I checked when playing teams from the South DLS is 1-1 with a win vs. Evangel Christian and a OT loss to Lakeland. The game against Aquinas will be the first time DLS has traveled to the South.

    While I have made the argument before about the population in San Jose and the surrounding areas you have to remember that there are actually four private Catholic high schools there. Bellarmine, VC, Mitty, and St. Francis over in Mountain View. They all draw from the same general area. That being said Bellarmine is the only all-boys school out of the group and they have 1,500 students. The only public school in that area that consistently has had good teams over the recent years is Oak Grove.

  • Prep Fan

    Hey, a voice of reason. Welcome back R10.

    DLS rarely gets their heads handed to them, and there is certainly no pattern to it. They lose every now and then due to their tough scheduling, but they’ll give STA all they can handle.

  • junior

    if you agree with me = voice of reason

  • Joe

    Ok. It’s established that DLS has some advantages. And it seems to be pretty well believed that those edges outweigh the disadvantages of a private school (tuition, less able to skate by academically, whatever).

    The problem is that no one has really proposed much of a solution. Separating teams out by public and private seems nice, but unless other sections join in, it won’t work.

    Someone brought up the WCAL as an example. But look at how that plays out. You have one team with almost as many boys as the next largest school has students, and they still don’t dominate. The way DLS operates makes a similar situation an impossibility. Beyond that, the WCAL schools still participate in section playoffs, so if a DLS was among them, they would still off the San Leandros and Cal Highs of the world just the same.

    Looking at the idea of a catholic school league by itself in the NCS opens up its own problems. The gap between DLS and the next largest private school is 800 kids (gender adjusted). The next biggest after that has 900 total kids, less than the population of boys at DLS. If you decided on a catholic school league, you are basically saying, “sorry guys, the rest of the world can’t compete, so you all are the sacrificial lambs to keep them at bay.”

    Herein lies the problem, DLS is just an outlier. The only solutions to deal with them seem to be reshaping the system into some format that excludes them, consigns them to being a big fish in a smaller pond. To do so would essentially be marching backwards, splintering competition.

    If you sent DLS away to some other league it would eventually return. The team has been tearing up the best league in the Bay Area (eight teams with three total losses to non-league opponents). Give it three seasons annihilating some alternative Catholic league, and they would be moved back to the rest of the NCS with teams nearer their level. Meanwhile every champion would have the pall of a winning a title knowing the best team was cut out of the competition all together.

  • bhsfan

    have to agree with r10’s post #136

  • Chs101214

    Just think…if Lad had landed just a few klicks away at Berean Christian in ’85 the Eagle-hood would’ve been flying high for 20+ years…. in football that is. El Divisadero Park would’ve been made into an identical funkified baseball field with the short RF porch. The East stands would have the track behind them too! The BC Eagles, “#1” team in the nation….lol.

  • Prep Fan

    No Junior, he is just normally a voice of reason in here. He seems like a real level headed guy. He wasn’t agreeing with anything I had posted, just sticking up for his Spartans in a reasonable tone to a post from someone else, which is fine.

  • KillerD

    Excelleant debate gentlemen.

    Any news on coaching hires?

    Albany, Alameda, Dublin or Piedmont, or any new ones?

  • mudhen

    If DLS played in the premier leagues in Texas, Florida, Or Alabama (or Georgia, or Tennessee ), then much like the SEC where week in week out you get hammered, win or lose, well,you’de find out just how tough southern football(where you have to PASS as well as run), really is.

  • storm

    To all
    Some of you bring up the surrounding population as an answer to why their is not a problem comparing them to other private schools in the northern areas. Others site the difference in the brotherhood and how much better the DLS coaches are as compared to public schools. The truth is the basket of solid football players in a radius of 30 miles of Concord contains just so many student athletes that all schools in that circle would love to have on their teams. Currently most families in that circle believe they can maximize their sons ability and play on a large stage attending DLS. Now the NCS allows DLS to compete with the right to fill their team with any of these athletes and provide scholarships if needed by said families. Currently DLS does not need to recruit and can be selective on candidates to fill their academic and athletic quotas. No matter where you place DLS they will crush private schools whom are dividing their students with nearby private schools and public schools, as well. This is a snow ball going down hill growing larger and larger each year. The only answer is to wait for many years for a dramatic incident to change the land scape or have the NCS provide an even playing field by restricting private schools to a smaller geographic areas. The idea that a heavy travel schedule for DLS, competing against other nationally ranked schools would solve the problem is wrong. DLS touring the country playing a schedule of nationally ranked schools is not the answer either because then your mimicking the flawed system currently in place with the NCAA. There would be nothing stopping this snow ball from reaching an epidemic of athletes from Texas staying with families in Antioch while attending DLS.

  • renegades10

    Junior- I am a diehard DLS fan. If you have read any convos Prep Fan and I have had on this board you would realize that there are a lot of things on which we don’t see eye to eye. What we do agree on is the ability to have reasonable discussions about topics such as this even if we don’t agree with each other.

  • junior

    I am happy for you and prep fan.

    If you are nice and soft in your posting=voice of reason.

  • guest

    I think this is good but I think Berkeley and St Joes be switched

  • THEanonymous

    Actually Joe, there was a solution proposed in which De La Salle goes independent and plays only CAL, SRV, MV, AV, and FOOT every year. That way they wouldn’t officially be members of the East Bay Athletic League and they could play five national teams. I don’t know how in the world this hasn’t been approved yet (and because of this I understand why you felt it couldn’t have been proposed in the first place), but I do know that it is a far, FAR better idea than for them to play Granada and Livermore and ambush them every year. There wouldn’t be issues with proximity either, as DLS can travel within the Bay Area in future years instead of flying all the way to Florida. I thought about it and realized that this is also a way better solution than moving them to the WCAL, as it would be impossible anyway to integrate NCS and CCS schools together. Lastly, I don’t think we have to worry too much about DLS being an outlier. Considering CAL came out of a losing season to come so close to beating DLS, either they may go down next year or the year after, or there is no way the proposal I mentioned as now being the best could fall through a hole in the floor. Remember that Coach Bellici has only been at CAL for two years and that we may not have seen anything yet. Wasn’t there a blog twenty-two months ago in which a bunch of people thought CAL would tumble to the bottom with Livermore? Didn’t SportStars think this would happen to CAL last year? I see where the trend is headed, and hopefully this offers hope in the midst of all the problems you mention. After all, a blog needs a point, and the point is, there seems to be sufficient evidence it will all work out.

    And Storm, your quote “The only answer is to wait for many years for a dramatic incident to change the land scape or have the NCS provide an even playing field by restricting privates schools to a smaller geographic areas” is a little short of the truth because of the proposal I mentioned. So with those three things perhaps you may sense the snowball losing mass and acceleration significantly at some point before those good ol’ Texans even think about putting on some green and silver.

  • Joe

    Interesting call THEanonymous, though I assume it still ends with DLS in the NCS playoffs. I’d like that I suppose.

    I also wouldn’t call what DLS does to Livermore and Granada “ambushing.” That implies some surprise ro trickery. Anyway, I asked for a workable plan, and you have provided and interesting one. I’m sure some here will want more, but I like it as a step.