We updated our statewide MIAA Top 25 poll this morning for Week 3 of the 2012 season. To find the poll, CLICK HERE.
A few thoughts and observations about this week's poll:
Three Up, Three Down: North Attleborough (8), St. John's of Shrewsbury (9) and Reading (10) make their debuts in the Top 10 following wins over BC High, Longmeadow and Brockton, respectively. Of the three, Reading makes the biggest jump, hopping 12 spots up from No. 22. North and St. John's each move up nine spots, from Nos. 17 and 18 respectively.
That's quite a significant shakeup for the football landscape. For the first time, there is no Western Mass. representation in the Top 10 (Springfield Central ranks highest at No. 14), while three Central Mass. teams are in -- Leominster (6), Nashoba (7) and the aforementioned Pioneers.
As for the three losing squads, Brockton takes the shortest fall in the poll, dropping six spots to No. 15. Longmeadow drops 10 spots to No. 16, while BC High continues its free fall to No. 22 -- that's 20 spots down from their preseason No. 2 ranking.
High-powered: Five teams in our poll are currently averaging more than 40 points per game, led by No. 4 Barnstable (state-best 55) and followed by No. 25 Minnechaug (43.5), No. 7 Nashoba (42.5), No. 9 St. John's of Shrewsbury (41), No. 2 St. John's Prep (40)
No. 1 vs. No. 2 on tap: For the first time since 2010, the top two teams in our poll will be squaring off this Saturday, when No. 2 St. John's Prep takes a visit to No. 1 Everett. We had two 1-vs.-2 matchups in 2010, and in both games the No. 2 team came away victorious -- first Xaverian over Brockton, then Everett over Xaverian. Can the Prep continue this streak?
Nothing new: With pretty much everyone winning out again, there are no new debuts in this week's poll. Of the squads in the "Last 10 out", Andover has made the biggest case for inclusion, following wins over North Andover (50-35) and Gloucester (43-7).
Wareham is also making a strong case for inclusion, following dominant wins over Falmouth (51-14) and Case (35-6) in the first two weeks of the season, led by running back Darien Fernandez.
As always, here is how this week's poll breaks down by league affiliation:
Bay State - 4
AA - 3
Catholic Conference - 3
Hockomock - 3
Central Mass. Conference - 2
Old Colony - 2
CAL/NEC - 1
Big Three - 1
Greater Boston - 1
Middlesex - 1
Mid-Wach A - 1
Mid-Wach B - 1
Patriot - 1
Southern Worcester County -1