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    Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.) No. 1 in Latest CAC Top 25 Catholic High School Football Poll

    September 28, 2017, 10:44 am

    High School Football Week Four Rankings
    Presented by CAC, Siena Heights University, and Global Football
    Sept. 27, 2017

    There is a palpable feeling that something is ready to pop in the Catholic Athletes for Christ Top 25 High School Football rankings.  We’re about to flip the calendar on the month of September and next week at this time, it’ll be October.  If any month oozes the autumn, or the heart of prep football, it’s October.

    October is defined by foliage, pumpkins, apple cider, costume parties and Halloween (a.k.a. All Hallows’ Eve) but when it comes to football, the rivalries are rolled out, teams are jockeying for playoff bids, and games become more important each week.  We’re almost there and September still has one weekend of games remaining.

    Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.), No. 1 in the CAC Top 25 presented by Siena Heights University and Global Football, holds steady.  The Monarchs again were dominating and put on a show in northern California during a lopsided victory in a big-time venue – Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, home of the San Francisco 49ers.  The Monarchs, like four other from the CAC Top 25, will head into a bye week before emerging with league games and the playoffs ahead.

    A quick glance at the CAC Top 25 reveals one addition: No. 24 St. John Vianney (Kirkwood, Mo.). The St. Louis area school is 6-0 with three games left in the regular season. The Golden Griffins are currently Missouri’s No. 1 team in Class 5.

    The top 14 teams in the CAC 25 were static while 10 others shifted positions and No. 25 St. John’s College (Washington, D.C.) slipped nine spots following a loss to No. 5 St. John Bosco (Bellflower, Calif.), 21-17.  The Cadets (2-2) remain in the CAC Top 25 because of their strength of schedule, with both losses to CAC 25 teams.  However SJC needs to pick it up and has the opportunity with Washington Catholic Athletic Conference games left – that includes the playoffs.

    Fans everywhere are encouraged to follow the CAC Top 25 through social media at and on Twitter @CACTop25.

    Triple Option

    Player of the Week: Somewhere in the South Pacific on an island far, far away from the East Coast (about 5,000 miles) and five time zones, Chevan Cordeiro of No. 12 Saint Louis School in Honolulu, Hawaii was the perfect foil in a 56-50 wild victory last weekend over Narbonne (Harbor City, Calif.) at Aloha Stadium.  Quarterback Cordeiro lit up the scoreboard in the fourth quarter, throwing for four of his seven touchdowns in the fourth quarter for the victory.

    The 6-foot, 176-pound senior passed for 393 yards on 18-of-28 accuracy and now has 1,303 passing yards and 14 TDs.  Cordeiro, who says he’ll stay home and sign with the University of Hawaii, is the latest in the line of Saint Louis quarterback lineage.  You might remember predecessors such as Timmy Chang, Darnell Arceneaux, Marcus Mariota (Tennessee Titans, Heisman Trophy winner) and Tua Tagovailoa (now a true freshman at Alabama).

    Game of the Week: Each week the CAC Top 25 has dynamic games that have a national spin or a game involving the ranked teams.  This week it’s American rivalry that put most to shame with the hoopla and pageantry that surrounds it.

    Only one game needs to hog the “Game of the Week” spotlight.  Heck, “The Game” between Louisville (Ky.) archrivals No. 14 Trinity and No. 18 St. Xavier is played Friday at University of Louisville’s Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium, 8 p.m. ET.  The winner takes home the coveted shillelagh (an Irish war club) and is a symbol of pride and presented by a local division of the Ancient Order of Hibernians.

    The Trinity Shamrocks have won 16 of the last 20 meetings (including playoffs) and lead the all-time series 43-37-2.  Dubbed the Vatican Bowl by some locals, the gridiron battle between the two all-male schools can divide the town and will attract more than 20,000 when the matchup is juicy as is the case this year with two 5-0 clubs.  On the Trinity campus, it’s called “Pride Week” and a host of events such as a chalk talk night, fun contests, keynote speakers, award ceremonies, dinners, elaborate tailgates, pep rallies, sold-out freshman and junior varsity football games, and the popular Shillelagh Cup, where alumni golfers from both schools compete in a Ryder Cup-style competition.

    Trinity’s Bob Beatty is the winningest head coach in the series, with a 20-8 mark.  Last year the Shamrocks won twice, including the Class 6A state semifinals, 24-14, on Nov. 25.  The two schools have combined for 37 state titles—Trinity has 25 and the Tigers check in with 12.

    We’ll have an update next week.

    NFL Ties: St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) leads the list of high schools with 12 players on the 2017 NFL opening day rosters, the NFL announced.  Three other schools eligible for the CAC Top 25 rankings have four players, Elder (Cincinnati), De La Salle (Concord, Calif.) and Servite (Anaheim, Calif.).

    The dozen Aquinas alumni in the league are Geno Atkins and Giovani Bernard (Cincinnati); Joey Bosa (Los Angeles Chargers); Phillip Dorsett and James White (New England); Lamarcus Joyner (Los Angeles Rams); Marcus Gilbert (Pittsburgh); Bobby Hart (New York Giants); Brandon Linder (Jacksonville); Michael Palardy (Carolina); Jake Rudock (Detroit); and Sam Young (Miami).

    With the action heating up and action coming at you fast and furious, the CAC Top 25 is due for a shakeup.

    Fans are encouraged to follow the CAC Top 25 through social media at and on Twitter @CACTop25. The CAC Top 25 rankings will return on October 4.

    2017 Catholic Athletes for Christ Week 4 Top 25, Sept. 27, 2017
    Presented by Siena Heights University & Global Football

    1. Mater Dei, Santa Ana, Calif. (5-0)
    Previous rank: 1.
    In the Huddle: The Monarchs tallied a defensive score on the first play from scrimmage and coasted past St. Mary’s (Stockton, Calif.), 52-14. Now coach Bruce Rollinson will have a week to prepare before teeing up the Trinity League season with one of the state’s top teams – Santa Margarita (Rancho Santa Margarita).

    2. St. Thomas Aquinas, Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (2-0)
    Previous rank: 2.
    In the Huddle: Idle. The Raiders resume playing on Friday at Centennial (Peoria, Ariz.).

    3. St. Joseph’s Prep, Philadelphia, Pa. (4-0)
    Previous rank: 3.
    In the Huddle: QB Marquez McCray improved to 18-0 as a starter, dating back to last year’s unbeaten campaign, after a 38-6 win over league rival Archbishop Carroll (Radnor, Pa.). Kyle McCord and CJ Duell each scored their first varsity TDs. The Hawks enter their bye week with an Oct. 7 date against rival Roman Catholic (Philadelphia) after their break.

    4. St. Xavier, Cincinnati, Ohio (5-0)
    Previous rank: 4.
    In the Huddle: The Bombers scored the final 30 points to defeat league rival Moeller (Cincinnati), 30-7. Wisconsin-commit QB Chase Wolf completed 16 of 26 passes for 202 yards and an 8-yard TD to Matthew Fox (25 carries, 166 yards), and rushed for another score. Key moment in the game, Moeller was up 7-0 in the first period but on the ensuing kickoff, Jared Kreimer returned it 95 yards to even the score at 7. This week Elder (Cincinnati) comes to town for another Greater Catholic League South showdown.

    5. St. John Bosco, Bellflower, Calif. (4-1)
    Previous rank: 5.
    In the Huddle: The Braves needed a late comeback to make their day, beating then-No. 16 St. John’s College (Washington, D.C.), 21-17. Backup QB DJ Uiagalelei engineered two TD drives inside the final 6 minutes when the Braves pulled ahead from a 17-7 deficit. After a second transcontinental trip in five weeks, the Braves enter their bye week.

    6. DeMatha Catholic, Hyattsville, Md. (4-1)
    Previous rank: 6.
    In the Huddle: Topped Friendship Collegiate (Washington, D.C.), 42-18. The Stags have the weekend off in preparation for a rivalry game with Washington Catholic Athletic Conference ramifications with Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.) on Oct. 6.

    7. St. Ignatius, Cleveland, Ohio (5-0)
    Previous rank: 7.
    In the Huddle: It’s never easy playing at “The Pit” but the Wildcats walked away with an impressive 30-28 win at Elder (Cincinnati). Matthew Trickett’s 55-yard field goal in the fourth quarter gave them the lead for good and Cam Toppin picked off a pass late to preserve a fifth straight victory.

    8. Bishop Gorman, Las Vegas, Nev. (3-2)
    Previous rank: 8.
    In the Huddle: Order has been restored in southern Nevada as the Gaels waltzed to a 58-0 win over Bonanza (Las Vegas). The offense clicked with QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson accounting for three TDs, including two in the air and the defense added a pair of pick-sixes. RB Matthew De Los Reyes ran for scores of 17 and 31 yards in the second quarter. Honestly, the Gaels should win out versus instate competition.

    9. Cathedral Prep, Erie, Pa. (5-0)
    Previous rank: 9.
    In the huddle: The Ramblers are rolling after a 69-7 overwhelming triumph over General McLane (Edinboro, Pa.). It was the third straight week they have scored more than 60 points. Next up is St. Francis (Athol Springs, N.Y.).

    10. De La Salle, Concord, Calif. (4-1)
    Previous rank: 10.
    In the Huddle: The Spartans fended off a valiant effort from Fresno Central for a 49-30 victory. RB Henry To’oto’o ran 18 times for 171 yards and four TDs, including all three of his team’s TDs in the second half.

    11. Archbishop Rummel, Metairie, La. (3-0)
    Previous rank: 11.
    In the Huddle: In their final non-district game, the Raiders turned back Teurlings Catholic (Lafayette), 41-23. The Raiders came back to top Riverside Academy (Reserve), 38-34, QB Chandler Field came out firing with two TDs passes to Koy Moore in the first half for a 21-7 lead. Field wound with four scoring tosses. Friday’s contest at Teurlings Catholic (Lafayette) is the final non-district fixture before embarking six straight in Class 5A, District 9 or the meaty portion of the slate.

    12. Saint Louis, Honolulu, Hawaii (5-0)
    Previous rank: 12.
    In the huddle: The explosive offensive duo of QB Chevan Cordeiro and WR Mitchell Quinn were sensational in wild 56-50 win over Narbonne (Harbor City, Calif.) last weekend in Honolulu. Cordeiro threw for 393 yards and seven TDs, including four in the fourth quarter to Quinn, who had 233 receiving yards on seven receptions. The win streak, dating back to last season, is 10 games as the Crusaders play league rival Kamehameha School (Honolulu) on Friday back at Aloha Stadium.

    13. St. Edward, Lakewood, Ohio (5-0)
    Previous rank: 13.
    In the Huddle: The Eagles pitched a shutout, defeating Buchtel (Akron), 36-0. They are off to Naperville (Ill.) Central Saturday for the first two straight out-of-state trips.

    14. Trinity, Louisville, Ky. (5-0)
    Previous rank: 14.
    In the Huddle: Defeated Jeffersontown (Louisville), 40-6. Rivalry week is here! The Shamrocks face No. 18 St. Xavier (Louisville).

    15. St. Frances Academy, Baltimore, Md. (4-0)
    Previous rank: 18.
    In the Huddle: The Panthers built a 21-0 lead at the intermission en route to a 28-7 victory over Calvert Hall College (Baltimore). Next up is Loyola Blakefield (Towson, Md.) on Friday afternoon.

    16. Chaminade, West Hills, Calif. (4-1)
    Previous rank: 19.
    In the huddle: QB Ryan Stevens hit on 12 of 15 passes for 279 yards and two TD, including one to favorite target Stanford-bound Michael Wilson during 39-7 rout of Crespi Carmelite (Encino). It’s a short week for the Eagles, who host rival Serra (Gardena) Thursday for Mission League supremacy.

    17. St. Joseph Regional, Montvale, N.J. (2-1)
    Previous rank: 17.
    In the Huddle: Idle. The Green Knights had a bye week, preparing for rival Bergen Catholic (Oradell) on Saturday.

    18. St. Xavier, Louisville, Ky. (5-0)
    Previous ranked: 20.
    In the huddle: Anthony Moretti rushed for 181 yards and three scores in a 35-21 victory over Pleasure Ridge Park (Louisville). Next up is No. 14 Trinity (Louisville) in a traditional rivalry game that usually grabs hold of the city.

    19. St. Peter’s Prep, Jersey City, N.J. (2-1)
    Previous rank: 21.
    In the Huddle: Shayne Simon, a Notre Dame recruit, scored three TDs and the Marauders topped Seton Hall Prep (West Orange), 43-20. Coach Rich Hansen’s team looked refreshed coming off a bye week, but the there is little time for rest as Paramus Catholic comes to Caven Point Friday night.

    20. Central Catholic, Pittsburgh, Pa. (4-1)
    Previous rank: 22.
    In the Huddle: Defeated Seneca Valley (Harmony), 28-20. Khalil Weathers ran for scores of 23 and 7 yards and Gavin Thomson added a 42-yard punt for a TD. The Vikings have won four straight since an opening day loss to No. 9 Cathedral Prep (Erie).

    21. Dowling Catholic, West Des Moines, Iowa, (5-0)
    Previous rank: 23.
    In the huddle: Iowa’s top-ranked Class 4A team is on a roll and averaging 50 points per game. The latest scoreline was a 77-7 thrashing of Sioux City West. Next up is a road at Lincoln (Des Moines) on Friday.

    22. Archbishop Wood, Warminster, Pa. (3-1)
    Previous rank: 24.
    In the Huddle: Coach Steve Devlin’s club overwhelmed Roman Catholic (Philadelphia), 38-6, impressively bouncing back from a rare loss. The schedule rolls on this weekend with Archbishop Ryan (Philadelphia).

    23. De Paul Catholic, Wayne, N.J. (2-1)
    Previous rank: 25.
    In the huddle: Coach John McKenna’s team showed a resilient attitude in the fourth quarter with 20 points to put away Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey), 42-17. Next up is Hudson Catholic on Friday.

    24. St. John Vianney, Kirkwood, Mo. (6-0)
    Previous rank: Not ranked.
    In the huddle: Missouri’s top-ranked Class 5 squad defeated De Smet Jesuit (St. Louis, Mo.), 56-21. The Golden Griffins are churning out the points, averaging nearly 47 points. Kyren Williams has scored 18 TDs. The biggest game left is Christian Brothers College (St. Louis) on Oct. 13, which will likely determine the Metro Catholic League champion.

    25. St. John’s College, Washington, D.C. (2-2)
    Previous rank: 16.
    In the Huddle: The Cadets dropped a tough one to No. 5 St. John Bosco (Bellflower, Calif.), 21-17, after coughing up a 17-7 late in the fourth quarter. They have a bye week to regroup for league foe Good Counsel (Olney, Md.) on Oct. 6.

    Dropped out: No. 15 La Salle (Cincinnati, Ohio).

    Others to Consider: JSerra Catholic (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.); Cardinal Gibbons (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.); McGill-Toolen Catholic (Mobile, Ala.); Roncalli, (Indianapolis, Ind.); Eastside Catholic (Sammamish, Wash.); Covington (Ky.) Catholic; Bishop McGuinness Catholic (Oklahoma City, Okla.); O’Dea (Seattle, Wash.); Catholic Central (Toledo, Ohio); Bergen Catholic (Oradell, N.J.); Christian Brothers (Memphis, Tenn.); and La Salle (Cincinnati, Ohio).

    Global Football has also formed an alliance with Catholic Athletes For Christ to take high school-aged players to Italy, to participate in the inaugural 7-on-7 Roma Bowl tournament from June 10-17, 2018. Click here for more information for how to take your school on the visit of a lifetime:

    About: The Catholic Athletes for Christ Top 25 High School Football Rankings, presented by Siena Heights University and Global Football are released on Wednesdays from September until the conclusion of the high school season in December. Criteria include the quality of the team and its players, strength of schedule, tradition, and quality of the team’s league, conference, region or district. The rankings are compiled by Christopher Lawlor, an award-winning writer, who is a voting committee member and advisor for several major national high school events, including the McDonald’s All-American Games and Gatorade Player of the Year.  All Catholic high schools from the United States that feature only four-year players on 11-man teams are eligible for consideration. Fans are encouraged to follow the CAC Top 25 at and on Twitter @CACTop25.

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