By Matt Smith
Sunday, February 24th, 2013 at 10:49 am in Boys volleyball.
The new boys volleyball season is upon us, which gives rise to some pressing questions at the start of the year. Here are five of them.
1. Just how good is Campolindo?
There is a reason they are the top ranked team to start the season. They lose very little and return so many talented underclassmen from a team that won the Division II title. They can beat you from anywhere on the court, which makes them the most dangerous team the East Bay has to offer to start the year.
2. Is it a down year for De La Salle?
Hardly. They lost some absolute studs, there is no doubt, but De La Salle will have the horses to compete, which is why I still have them ranked in the top two. It will be some new faces that step up, but don’t look for this team to be down. Still the favorite in Division I.
3. Which EBAL team can compete with DLS for the title?
Ranking the other EBAL teams before the season starts is hard. Amador Valley, California and Foothill are always going to be competitive and make a run for the league and NCS title, but this year the top competitor could be San Ramon Valley. The team has been pretty young at a lot of positions the last couple of years and this could be the year they take off.
4. How’s the MVAL looking this year?
I expect MSJ and Logan to be the top teams, and even though I am waiting to see what American and Kennedy do to start the year before ranking them, they will be in the rankings at some point. This league was very competitive last year, and with the American and Kennedy programs getting better, look for that to continue this year.
5. What about the BVAL?
Deer Valley, once basketball season ends, will be the force in the BVAL and compete for an NCS title once again. They are the heavy favorites in the league, with several studs returning. The Heritage program is getting better, and is a team to keep an eye on in this league.
The Campolindo Cougars open the season as the top ranked team, becoming the first Division II team to top the first poll of the season. The reason for this is that they return talent from all over.
The usual suspects round out the next two spots, with SRV perhaps being the challenger in the EBAL.
Northgate is at No. 5 as they will be a very good team this year, with returners and incoming players, and it will be a great battle with College Park for the DVAL crown.
A team to watch out for in the DVAL is No. 15 Berean Christian. This team was young last year and got a lot better as the season went on.
2. De La Salle
3. Deer Valley
4. San Ramon Valley
6. College Park
7. Amador Valley
8. Mission San Jose
12. Dougherty Valley
13. Valley Christian
15. Berean Christian