Planet Claire has pink air. All the trees are red. — B52s “Planet Claire”
Reputation is one thing. Playing on a real football field is another.
COVID-19 postponements and cancellations are keeping many of the best teams in Hawaii off the field in these crazy times. Normally, by now every high school team in the state would have played about seven games and there would be plenty of insight into the pecking order.
Instead, only one league — the Interscholastic League of Honolulu — has played games so far. And because of additional COVID-19 postponements, some teams have played a lot more games than others. ‘Iolani, for instance, has been fortunate to have played four games. Another team, Saint Louis II, has only one game under its belt.
It’s amazing how things can change so quickly in this pandemic era. Going into the season, Saint Louis School’s attempt to field a second varsity team (officially known as Saint Louis I-AA by the league) was denied. But when the Department of Education announced a major postponement to the public school leagues’ official game openers (a delay from an Aug. 6 start date to Oct. 15), the ILH — in need of as many teams as possible to fill out a regular season schedule— accepted not only Saint Louis II but also Kamehameha II into its Division II competition.
So, right now, it’s difficult for anyone to gauge who belongs where in the Top 10 because 41 out of the 47 squads haven’t played yet
But Bedrock Sports Hawaii went ahead and formulated a brand-new Top 10 list. It’s based on the teams’ PERFORMANCES SO FAR, PAST TRACK RECORD AND REPUTATION, discussion with fans, administrators and coaches IN THE KNOW, along with GUT FEELING and a GOOD, LONG GLANCE at the HawaiiPrepWorld.com’s Top 10 and ScoringLive.com’s power rankings.
It is FAR, FAR from scientific. But as the season progresses, MAYBE it will head in that direction. One thing is for sure, we think, is that there will be more new data to work with as time goes by. At some point, the hope is to add a few really knowledgeable and trustworthy correspondents for valuable input.
Kiddingly, one of the WORST parts of my previous job as a sportswriter for the Honolulu Star-Advertiser was begging people to send in their Top 10 votes three hours after the supposed DEADLINE after I had emailed them the ballots a few days earlier.
As Beavis or Butthead would utter: “He-he-he-he.” Funny, right? You try rounding up voters someday. Not easy.
But people have lives, right? So I was always thankful that they always pulled through, even if it was late.
No surprise: Saint Louis is the top-ranked team in the state by Bedrock Sports Hawaii.
With ALL of that in mind, listed below is the FIRST BedrockSportsHawaii.com football Top 10 list.
Oh wait, I almost forgot. It should be noted that MANY people complain that ranking Open Division teams like Saint Louis, Punahou and Mililani in the same Top 10 as Division I teams like Hilo, ‘Iolani and Lahainaluna and D-II teams like Kapaa is like comparing APPLES to ORANGES.
Yes. But there really is no other good way around it. Please keep in mind that ranking all teams in Hawaii on one list no matter the division they’re in is kind of like ranking the college POWER 5 conference teams and the GROUP OF 5 conference teams in one AP poll.
When UCF went undefeated (with former Mililani star quarterback McKenzie Milton) in 2017, the Knights ended up No. 6 in the final Associated Press poll. In that example, you had some people saying UCF should be recognized as NATIONAL champion and others saying that UCF shouldn’t be ranked that high because the Knights didn’t play the country’s top competition.
So it’s a compromise, with teams’ rankings based on their own merit and no matter the division, even though what you are weighing are the APPLES right there along with the ORANGES and the PAPAYAS.
Here we go:
(Sept. 22, 2021)
1. Saint Louis, 1-1 … (Crusaders’ only 2 losses since midseason in ’16 were to mainland powerhouses)
2. Mililani, 0-0 … (Trojans’ 7 games in ’19 were against MaxPreps national top 200 opponents)
3. Kahuku, 0-0 … (Red Raiders own 8 top-tier state titles since 1999 inaugural tournament)
4. Punahou, 1-1 … (Buffanblu lost twice to Saint Louis by 13 total points in ’19)
5. Leilehua, 0-0 … (Mules moved up to Open Division for a reason)
6. Kamehameha, 0-1 … (Warriors lost to Puns 33-28 on Aug. 28 on TD pass with 1:28 left)
7. ’Iolani, 4-0 … (Raiders are the most technically proficient team in the state)
8. Campbell, 0-0 … (Sabers’ great ’19 season ended in 21-19 loss to Kahuku in state Open semis)
9. Lahainaluna (0-0) … (Lunas moved up to D-I after four straight D-II state titles)
10. Hilo (0-0) … (Vikings have made 3 straight appearances in D-I state title game, winning twice)
On the cusp: Kapaa, Roosevelt, Kapolei, Waianae, Farrington.