When the Arizona Interscholastic Association released the first football rankings today, it was no surprise to see Salpointe Catholic as the top-ranked team in Division II.
The Lancers (5-0) have scored at least 40 points in all five games while holding teams to less than six points a game. Salpointe has steamrolled through the first half of its schedule which included wins over California and Nevada powers, and most recently, a 40-7 win over Tempe Marcos de Niza, another Division II title contender which is ranked third in the seedings.
The three other Southern Arizona schools in the top 10 of the Division II seedings are Tucson (4-1), Sahuaro (4-1) and Ironwood Riidge who are ranked sixth, seventh and eighth, respectively.
At No. 15, Sunnyside (3-2) is the lone remaining team in the top 16. The Blue Devils host No. 20 Nogales (3-2) on Friday night in a game that could shake up the standings. Mountain View (3-2) is No. 17 but will host the top-ranked Lancers Friday night.
In the Division III seedings, Sabino (3-2) is No. 7, Canyon del Oro (4-1) is No. 10 and Catalina Foothills (4-1) is No.16. The Falcon can bump themselves up with a win over CDO Friday night while the Dorados could get one step closer to winning the section by beating Foothills.
Meanwhile, Rio Rico (4-1) and Palo Verde (4-1) are both in the top 10 of the Division IV seedings. The Hawks opened the season 3-0 before losing at Safford but rebounded with a win over No. 21 Santa Rita last week. Rio Rico plays at No. 19 Sahuarita on Friday night.
Todd Mayfield led Palo Verde to its best start since 2000 at 4-0 but the Titans lost their first game of the year last week at No. 2 Coolidge. The host Santa Rita this week.
There are five weeks left in the regular season. The state playoffs begin Nov. 8 and conclude with the state finals Thanksgiving weekend.