View From the Press Box: Dion Clisso 11/16

Dion Clisso

By Dion Clisso PrepsKC Managing Editor
Posted: November 16, 2016 - 8:16 PM

When the season starts people in my business are always asked what team do you think will win the state championship this year? What are the surprise teams? Etc.

Sometimes it is easy to see a favorite like a Bishop Miege, Kearney or Blue Springs. Other times teams will truly come out of nowhere like say Odessa last year and Shawnee Mission East in 2013.

It’s tough to make those picks before the season starts but once the season gets going it sometimes comes into focus. On the Kansas side things came into focus pretty quick and haven’t changed much. In 6A Blue Valley and East have been the better teams on the east side of the state. In 5A Mill Valley and St. Thomas Aquinas have had some rough spots but still looked like the best of a wide open group and in 4A-I Bishop Miege and Basehor-Linwood have been the most complete teams for the entire season.

So here we are and those are precisely the matchups. Throw in a Lawrence Free State and Derby semifinal rematch from last year and the postseason has had few surprises.

It doesn’t always work out like that. Look at the west side of the 5A bracket. Great Bend and Goddard are battling for a chance to play in the championship game. The traditional programs like Bishop Carroll and Wichita Heights are long gone while two teams that haven’t been out of the first round or even qualify for the playoffs are in the semis.

Well not over here. The favorites are in place and ready to play. Miege is looking for its third straight title game and is going against an 11-0 team that is in its first semifinal. Mill Valley and Aquinas are back for a rematch from last year and Blue Valley and East were the top two seeds.

Everyone loves upsets. It’s what makes the NCAA tournament so exciting in the first few rounds. While those 14 seeds that sometimes find their way into the sweet sixteen are great. The classic moments seem to be made when two really good teams get together in the biggest games.

That’s what we’ve got this week. All the games that feature Metro teams are matchups of the best teams playing their best football. I wouldn’t want it any other way.