Jeff Smith noon, March 8
Top four seeds receive first round bye
(1) Mount Miguel (8-1)
(8) Coronado (7-3) vs (9) Mission Bay (5-4-1)
(5) Imperial (7-2-1) vs (12) Del Norte (4-6)
(4) Santana (9-1)
(3) Valley Center (9-1)
(6) Brawley (7-2-1) vs (11) La Jolla (2-8)
(7) Mater Dei (7-3) vs (10) Palo Verde Valley (7-3)
(2) Madison (9-0-1)
First Round Friday, Nov. 18, 7 p.m. at home site of higher seed
Quarterfinals Friday, Nov. 25, 7 p.m. at home site of higher seed
Semifinals Thursday, Dec. 1, 7 p.m. at home site of higher seed
Finals Monday, Dec. 5, 10 a.m. at Qualcomm Stadium
Favorite (2) Madison
Madison finished the regular season as the only unbeaten in Division IV, with a tie against Point Loma the only blemish on its record. Though Madison had its 2010 section title run vacated, the Warhawks still feel like the crown is theirs to give up. With quarterback Chase Knox and running back Pierre Cormier, Madison has the talent to make a return trip to Qualcomm Stadium – but it won’t be easy in a field with three legitimate contenders.
Sleeper (7) Mater Dei
Mater Dei is enjoying its best season since 2004, but the Metro Pacific champion Crusaders were seeded lower in the bracket than Imperial and Brawley. Including a forfeit loss to San Ysidro, Mater Dei has won six straight entering the playoffs and could catch a higher seed that takes them lightly.
Star Watch WR Landon Lozoya, Santana, Sr.
The reigning Grossmont Valley League Player of the Year in basketball, Lozoya started playing football at Santana last year and has been a quick learn on the gridiron. Lozoya has caught 38 passes for 697 yards and 10 touchdowns for the Sultans, and his athleticism makes any pass catchable.
Early Upset (9) Mission Bay over (8) Coronado
Most of the Division IV first round matchups could go either way, and this coastal battle between Mission Bay and Coronado is no exception. The Buccaneers have been up and down all season, but enter the playoffs on a two-game winning streak while only two of Coronado’s wins have come against teams with winning records. This game will be a close one.
Potential Matchup to See Semifinals – (2) Madison vs (3) Valley Center
Madison and Valley Center have met in the Division IV finals in two of the past four seasons, and this year they could meet in the semis with a trip to Qualcomm Stadium on the line. The Warhawks and Jaguars would put up points in a high-scoring shootout, and would further develop an underrated postseason rivalry.
Pictured: Mount Miguel quarterback Ernest Williams and running back Derrick Dunn