SBLive Power 25: IMG Academy finishes fall/winter season as top-ranked high school football team in country

A total of 34 states played high school football this fall and winter and — starting way back on Aug. 25 — we have ranked the Top 25 teams in the country every week. Yes, that adds up to 23 consecutive weeks of national high school football rankings.

And we’re not done yet.

Michigan was the last state to wrap up its fall/winter football season with its state championships taking place on Friday and Saturday, which puts a bow on our fall/winter rankings. Now, we turn our attention to the states and districts that plan to play football in late winter and into spring. Stay tuned for those rankings coming soon.

IMG Academy went wire-to-wire as the No. 1 team in our fall/winter rankings. Read the full breakdown of our final fall/winter Power 25 below.

SBLIVE POWER 25: PRESEASON | WEEK 1 | WEEK 2 | WEEK 3 | WEEK 4 | WEEK 5 | WEEK 6 | WEEK 7 | WEEK 8 | WEEK 9 | WEEK 10 | WEEK 11 | WEEK 12 | WEEK 13 | WEEK 14 | WEEK 15 | WEEK 16 | WEEK 17 | WEEK 18 | WEEK 19 | WEEK 20 | WEEK 21

The SBLive Power 25 rankings are compiled by SBLive reporter Connor Morrissette based on observations and conversations with an extensive network of coaching and media sources across the country.

As with everything in the COVID-19 era, the rankings will be fluid week-to-week and only include teams that are scheduled to play football in 2020. We will publish separate rankings in 2021 for all schools scheduled to play football from January through May.

Here are the 34 states that completed a high school football season in fall/winter: Alaska, Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Mississippi, Montana, Texas, Utah, Indiana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Tennessee, Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, West Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Kansas, New Hampshire, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, South Carolina, New Jersey, Michigan, Delaware, Minnesota, Colorado and Louisiana.

Here are the states and districts that have officially moved high school football to 2021 and have not yet started playing: California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Virginia, New Mexico, Nevada, Washington, Oregon, Illinois, Maryland, Hawaii, Rhode Island, New York, Maine and Vermont.

sblive power 25

Final rankings (Jan. 24)

1. IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.), 8-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 41-6 win over TRU Prep Academy (Miami Gardens, Fla.)

Last week’s ranking: No. 1

Ranking rationale: IMG started the year at No. 1 and that’s where they finish.

Running back Kaytron Allen rushed 14 times for 245 yards and five touchdowns in their final regular season win over TRU Prep Academy. Senior quarterback JJ McCarthy didn’t play for unspecified reasons, but the Ascenders still rolled.

IMG has six players listed in the top 50 of 247Sports.com’s 2021 Florida recruiting rankings and nine listed on the website’s top 50 for 2022. No one in the country playing in 2020 can compete with that type of roster.

img qb jj mccarthy
IMG quarterback JJ McCarthy

2. Westlake (Austin, Texas), 14-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 52-34 win over No. 10 Carroll (Southlake, Texas) (6A Division 1 championship)

Last week’s ranking: No. 2

Ranking rationale: Westlake finishes the season at No. 2 after winning the 6A Division 1 championship in Texas. The game was close early, but the Chaparrals scored 31 straight points at one point to win by three scores.

Westlake had flat out destroyed every team it had faced in 2020 before meeting North Shore in the semifinals, the reigning two time 6A Division 1 champions. Westlake won that game 24-21.

In the championship game, junior quarterback Cade Klubnik completed 18 of 20 passes for 220 yards. He also rushed for 97 yards. In total, he accounted for three touchdowns. Running back Zane Minors scored on a 75-yard run on the first Westlake play from scrimmage. In total, the Chaparrals finished with 528 yards of offense.

Westlake won the 6A Division 2 title in Texas a year ago. The last time a team went back-to-back winning a title in a larger classification in Texas was Lake Travis in 2007 (4A DII) and 2008 (4A DI).

3. Chandler (Ariz.), 10-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 23-21 win over Hamilton (Chandler, Ariz.) (Open Division championship

Last week’s ranking: No. 3

Ranking rationale: Chandler survived a state title upset bid against Hamilton in a game the Wolves probably should have lost, but a win is a win and Chandler claimed its fifth consecutive state championship.

Chandler secured the win when Hamilton missed a 27-yard field goal attempt with 13 seconds left, capping a hard-fought battle between the consensus top two teams in the state.

Chandler is loaded with talent, from quarterback Mikey Keene (UCF signee) to running backs Eli Sanders and Nicholas Nesbitt, plus wide receiver Jalen Richmond (Boise State signee). The Wolves have the best receiving corps in Arizona and the best defense, led by defensive end Brandon Buckner, an Oregon signee. Going undefeated in a year with many great teams in Arizona gives the Wolves the resume to finish as a top five team in the country.

Eli Sanders

4. Grayson (Loganville, Ga.), 14-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 38-14 win over Collins Hills (Suwanee, Ga.) (7A championship)

Last week’s ranking: No. 4

Ranking rationale: Grayson completed an undefeated championship season when the Rams beat Collins Hill 38-14. The win clinches Grayson’s spot in the top five of the Power 25.

Grayson led 35-0 at halftime in the title game. Quarterbacks Jake Garcia and Jayvian Allen combined for five touchdowns. Grayson’s defense has been exceptional in 2020 and that continued in the championship. The Rams stifled one of the top passing offenses in the state forcing three first half turnovers.

Last month, Grayson took a major hit when senior running back Phil Mafah (Clemson signee) left the Rams’ game against Tift County with a leg injury and did not return. He hasn’t played since, but Grayson has managed to win without him. The Rams were the best team in the state from August to December and will go down as one of the better teams in the history of Georgia high school football.

5. St. Joseph’s Prep (Philadelphia, Pa.), 6-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 62-13 win over Central York (Pa.) (6A championship)

Last week’s ranking: No. 5

Ranking rationale: St. Joseph’s Prep won its third straight state title in 2020. 2021 Temple signee Malik Cooper caught a touchdown, threw a touchdown and returned a punt for a score in the state championship win over Central York. Senior quarterback Kyle McCord, an Ohio State signee, threw four touchdowns. Marvin Harrison Jr., another Ohio State signee, caught two of the scores.

St. Joseph’s Prep will go down as one of the best Philadelphia-area high school football teams of all time, according to Phil Anastasia of the Philadelphia Inquirer:

“The victory cemented the legacy of the Hawks’ seniors as arguably the best class in school history. They are the first team from the city to win three state titles in a row, and the first to three-peat in the state’ largest classification since Central Bucks West in 1997-1999.”

6. Corner Canyon (Draper, Utah), 14-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 45-7 win over Lone Peak (Highland, Utah) (6A championship)

Last week’s ranking: No. 6

Ranking rationale: In 2020, Jaxson Dart put together one of the best regular seasons from a high school quarterback we’ve ever seen. In ten games, the senior completed 68 percent of his passes for 3,345 yards and 48 touchdowns. He threw just two picks. Dart is a USC signee.

In the playoffs, Dart kept up that level of production as he led the Chargers to a 14-0 state title run. In the championship game, he completed 25 of 36 passes for 329 yards and four scores. He finished the season with 67 touchdowns and only four picks. The Chargers have won three state titles in a row.

corner canyon utah football
(Jaxson Dart feature photo by @astrongphotography)

7. Thompson (Alabaster, Ala.), 14-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 29-28 win over Auburn (Ala.) (7A title game)

Last week’s ranking: No. 7

Ranking rationale: Thompson dominated every team they played in 2020, until they met Auburn in the state championship. The Warriors needed an improbable comeback that saw them score ten points in the final 18 seconds to win the game.

Thompson lost star quarterback Conner Harrell to injury late in the second quarter. The Warriors struggled without Harrell in the second half and entered the fourth quarter trailing 28-13.

Thompson’s Ryan Peppins’ scored on a 6-yard run to cut the lead to 28-19 with under nine minutes to play, but the Warriors couldn’t get any closer.

Then the unthinkable happened.

As Auburn was running out the clock in the final minute, they elected to punt on 4th down from their own 44-yard line with under 30 seconds to play. Thompson’s Korbyn Williams blocked the punt, scooped it up and returned it 38 yards for a touchdown. The PAT brought Thompson within two points, 28-26, with 18 seconds to play.

Thompson kicker Trevor Hardy executed a perfect onside kick, and the Warriors recovered the ball at the Auburn 48 with 15 seconds left. Thompson then picked up back-to-back pass interference penalties, moving the ball to the 18-yard line with 4 seconds to play.

Hardy trotted onto the field and booted a 35-yard field goal as time expired to win the game. Final: Thompson 29, Auburn 28.

Thompson finishes the year at No. 7. In addition to the Auburn win, the Warriors beat Hoover and Hewitt-Trussville twice in 2020, two of the best teams in the state.

Conner Harrell – Courtesy: alabama7afootball.com

8. North Shore (Houston, Texas), 14-1

Next game: Season complete

Last result: Lost to No. 2 Westlake (Austin Texas) 24-21 (6A Division 1 playoff semifinals)

Last week’s ranking: No. 8

Ranking rationale: 2021 QB Dematrius Davis’ quest to win three straight upper Division championships in Texas came up just short as North Shore fell to Westlake 24-21 in the 6A Division 1 semifinals. Davis threw two interceptions in the game. North Shore was stopped on a 4th down and 17 at the end of the fourth quarter which sealed their fate.

North Shore is 43-2 over the last three seasons. Davis (Aubrun signee) and receiver Shadrach Banks (Texas A&M signee) will go down as two of the top Texas high school football players of all time.

9. Ryan (Denton, Texas), 15-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 59-14 win over Cedar Park (Texas) (5A Division 1 championship)

Last week’s ranking: No. 9

Ranking rationale: With Memphis QB signee Seth Henigan, WR/DE Ja’Tavion Sanders (Texas), WR/DB Billy Bowman (Oklahoma), and LB DJ Arkansas (Rice) all in the fold, the Raiders were one of the clear top teams in the country all season and they finished the year as undefeated 5A Division 1 champions in Texas.

Henigan completed 15 of 23 passes for 270 yards and four touchdowns in the championship win, which earned him offensive MVP honors. The Raiders’ defense held a Cedar Park offense that was averaging 54.2 points per game to 14.

Ryan lost in the 5A Division 1 state title game last season, which made their victory on Friday that much sweeter.

10. Carroll (Southlake, Texas), 12-2

Next game: Season complete

Last result: Lost 52-34 to No. 2 Westlake (Austin, Texas) (6A Division 1 championship)

Last week’s ranking: 10

Ranking rationale: In a matchup between father and son head coaches, Riley Dodge’s Carroll team fell to Todd Dodge’s Westlake squad in the 6A Division 1 title game on Saturday. The Dragons still had a remarkable season, led by 2022 Ohio State QB commit Quinn Ewers, and they finish the year at No. 10.

Saturday’s championship was tied 21-21, but then Westlake pulled away. Ewers finished 23 of 39 for 350 yards and three touchdowns. He also threw two interceptions. Carroll should be very dangerous again in 2021 with a lot of underclassmen returning.

11. Duncanville (Texas), 10-2

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 34-27 loss to No. 3 Carroll (Southlake, Texas) (6A Division 1 playoff semifinals)

Last week’s ranking: No. 11

Ranking rationale: Duncanville fell to No. 10 Carroll in the 6A Division 1 semifinals. The Panthers didn’t score in the second half and they couldn’t stop Carroll sophomore running back Owen Allen down the stretch.

Overall, seven Duncanville seniors are ranked in the top 200 of 247Sports’ 2021 in state rankings. Offensive tackle Savion Byrd (Oklahoma signee) leads the way at No. 12. Duncanville’s other loss came to No. 1 IMG Academy on Oct. 10, 41-14. Their best wins came against Cedar Hill (Texas) and DeSoto (Texas).

12. Katy (Texas), 13-1

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 51-14 win over Cedar Hill (Texas) (6A Division 2 championship)

Last week’s ranking: 12

Ranking rationale: Even though Katy had their 12-year, 85 game district win streak snapped by Tompkins this season, the Tigers ended the year with a 6A Division 2 state championship in Texas and a Power 25 spot.

Jalen and Seth Davis combined to rush for 239 yards and two touchdowns in Katy’s state title win. Katy scored on all but two of their possessions in the game. Defensively, Katy kept Cedar Hill QB Kaidon Salter (Tennessee signee) in check, forcing the senior to throw two interceptions and complete only 50% of his passes. He did rush for both of Cedar Hill’s TDs though.

Overall, Katy has won nine state titles in Texas. Their win on Saturday was their first since 2015.

13. Archbishop Hoban (Akron, Ohio), 11-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 35-6 win over Washington (Massillon, Ohio) (Division II state championship game)

Last week’s ranking: No. 13

Ranking rationale: Archbishop Hoban ends the season as Ohio’s top team after claiming a Division 2 state title. In the championship game, senior quarterback Shane Hamm completed 9 of 10 passes for 172 yards and four scores. Kharion Davis hauled in two of the touchdowns and also had an interception.

Hoban’s best wins this year came against St. Edward (Lakewood, Ohio) on Sept. 5, a game they won 35-0, and their state title win over Washington.

14. Center Grove (Greenwood, Ind.), 14-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 38-14 win over Westfield (Ind.) (6A state championship game)

Last week’s ranking: No. 14

Ranking rationale: Undefeated Center Grove dominated Westfield in the state title game scoring all 38 points in the first half. Running back Carson Steele rushed for 138 yards and two touchdowns in the win.

“I didn’t know we’d quite roll like we did,” Center Grove coach Eric Moore told Indy Star. “But that’s what we do — when we get going, we roll.”

The Trojans held all 14 of their opponents to 14 points or less in 2020. Running the ball and playing good defense was the key to Center Grove’s success in all 14 games. Their best win was a 17-13 come-from-behind victory over No. 19 Cathedral on Oct. 16.

15. Dutch Fork (Irmo, S.C.), 10-0

Next game Season complete

Last result: 28-6 win over T.L. Hanna (Anderson, S.C.) (5A title game)

Last week’s ranking: No. 15

Ranking rationale: Dutch Fork won its fifth straight state title in 2020, which set a new record in South Carolina. Here’s a state championship game breakdown from The State’s Lou Bezjak:

Dutch Fork took control of the game early, scoring on its first four possessions to take a 28-6 halftime lead.

Clemson QB commit Will Taylor and running back Jarvis Green each ran for two scores in the first half as Dutch Fork gained 327 of its 372 yards in the first two quarters.

Dutch Fork didn’t play any of their opponents closer than three scores this season. The Silver Foxes didn’t have the toughest schedule, but between their talent level and standard of excellence, they’re a clear Power 25 team.

16. St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), 8-1

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 31-21 win over Edgewater (Orlando, Fla.) (7A title game)

Last week’s ranking: 16

Ranking rationale: Star 2022 running back Anthony Hankerson rushed for three touchdowns in St. Thomas Aquinas’ semifinal playoff win and three more in their state title win. St. Thomas Aquinas’ championship was their 12th all-time, which is a state record in Florida.

The Raiders have six players listed in the top 50 of 247Sports’ 2021 Florida player rankings. Alabama defensive line signee Dallas Turner leads the way at No. 7.

Last year’s St. Thomas Aquinas team went 15-0 and won a 7A title in Florida. The Raiders were ranked as high as No. 3 in this year’s Power 25 before losing to No. 18 Cardinals Gibbons 17-10 on Oct. 23. On Nov. 6, Aquinas beat No. 17 American Heritage 33-23.

17. American Heritage (Plantation, Fla.), 11-2

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 24-6 win over Rickards (Tallahassee, Fla.) (5A title game)

Last week’s ranking: 17

Ranking rationale: American Heritage won the 5A championship in Florida to cement their place in the 2020 Power 25. Sophomore running back Mark Fletcher rushed for 127 yards and a TD in the win.

Defense is where the majority of the big names are for American Heritage, led by safety James Williams (Miami signee), cornerback Earl Little Jr. and defensive end Marvin Jones Jr. Jones Jr. had four tackles for loss in the state title game.

American Heritage beat No. 18 Cardinal Gibbons 23-17 in October. They also beat Chaminade-Madonna, Northwestern and Jesuit in 2020, which makes for a great resume. Losing to No. 25 Trinity Christian Academy was a surprise, but the Patriots were without quarterback Blake Murphy in that game.

18. Cardinal Gibbons (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), 8-1

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 35-21 win over Bolles (Jacksonville, Fla.) (4A championship)

Last week’s ranking: 18

Ranking rationale: On Oct. 23, Cardinal Gibbons beat No. 16 St. Thomas Aquinas 17-10. The following week, the Chiefs lost to No. 17 American Heritage 23-17. In Gibbons’ state title win over Bolles, senior quarterback Brody Palhegyi dominated completing 27 of 32 passes for 332 yards and four TDs. This win clinched Cardinal Gibbons second state title in three seasons.

19. Central (Miami, Fla.), 8-1

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 46-0 win over Lake Minneola (6A title game)

Last week’s ranking: 19

Ranking rationale: Central stormed to a 6A championship in Florida and even though the Rockets lost their first game of the season 21-14 to Northwestern (Miami, Fla.), their playoff domination couldn’t be ignored.

2021 LB Terrence Lewis, 2021 OG Laurence Seymore (Miami signee), 2021 ATH Yulkeith Brown (Texas A&M signee), 2021 RB Amari Daniels (Texas A&M signee), 2022 LB Wesley Bissainthe and 2022 WR Zaylan Reese are all national recruits for the Rockets. Their talent level and 6A state title makes them a clear Power 25 team.

20. Bixby (Okla.), (11-0)

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 17-14 win over Choctaw (Okla.) (Class 6A-II state championship)

Last week’s ranking: 20

Ranking rationale: Following their state championship win over Choctaw (their third straight), the Spartans will finish the year in the Power 25. Bixby has won 36 straight games.

Junior running back Braylin Presley rushed for 206 yards in the title game, bringing his season totals to 1,732 yards and 20 touchdowns. Junior linebacker Jack Puckett had two sacks on Choctaw’s final drive, which secured the win.

21. Cathedral (Indianapolis, Ind.), 13-1

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 46-28 win over Zionsville (Ind.) (5A championship)

Last week’s ranking: 21

Ranking rationale: Quarterback Nathan McCahill completed 27 of 35 passes for 322 yards and five touchdowns in Cathedral’s state title win. Wide receiver Camden Jordan caught 12 passes for 91 yards and three TDs. Cathedral finished the game with 469 yards of total offense.

St. Xavier entering the rankings following their Division 1 state title in Ohio meant that Cathedral had to be ranked as well thanks to the Fighting Irish’s 25-22 head to head win on Sept. 18. Cathedral’s lone loss came to No. 12 Center Grove on Oct. 16. The Fighting Irish tried to win the game on a 4th and 1, didn’t convert and then gave up a last second touchdown.

22. Trinity (Louisville, Ky.), 10-0

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 28-0 win over Male (Louisville, Ky.) (6A championship)

Last week’s ranking: No. 22

Ranking rationale: Trinity won its second 6A state title in a row on Saturday, beating Male 28-0. Running back Bradley West scored three TDs in the victory.

Led by Cincinnati signee Jack Dingle, the Shamrocks pack a punch on defense. He’s a big reason why Trinity recorded shutouts in the quarterfinals, semifinals and championship in 2020. The Shamrocks gave up only 4.8 points per game this season.

Trinity is a very good team, but they played an easy schedule, which prevented us from seeing exactly how good of a team they are.

23. St. Xavier (Cincinnati, Ohio), 10-2

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 44-3 win over Pickerington Central (Division 1 state championship)

Last week’s ranking: 23

Ranking rationale: St. Xavier flirted with the Power 25 early in the season but losses to Brownsburg (Ind.) and No. 21 Cathedral (Indianapolis, Ind) put the Bombers off our radar. But since the defeat to Cathedral, St. Xavier rattled off eight wins in a row, culminating in their demolition of Pickerington Central in the Division 1 title game.

St. Xavier scored 30 points in the first quarter, which is more than they had put up in their previous two playoff wins combined.

“We’ve been talking all year long that one of these days we’re going to put a game together,” St. Xavier coach Steve Specht told Cincinnati.com. “If you saw us this year we score a lot of points, but we give up a lot of points. Then, at the end of the year, we weren’t giving up many points. Boy, we picked the right time to put it together!”

Brogan McCaughey threw four touchdown passes to Jalen Patterson in the win. McCaughey finished 25 of 39 for 291 yards and four TDs. Senior Penn State commit Liam Clifford had three catches for six yards, but he received a lot of Pickerington Central’s attention on defense which opened things up for McCaughey.

24. Cherry Creek (Greenwood Village, Colo.) (9-0)

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 21-0 win over Valor Christian (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) (5A championship)

Last week’s ranking: 24

Ranking rationale: Cherry Creek completed a perfect 9-0 state championship season after beating Valor Christian 21-0 to win a 5A title. The Bruins have three seniors ranked in the Top 10 of Colorado’s 2021 247Sports recruiting rankings. Texas tight end signee Gunnar Helm leads the way at No. 3. He caught seven touchdowns in 2020.

Schools from Colorado traditionally don’t make national Top 25’s, but between some states not playing season and this Cherry Creek team being one of the best teams Colorado has ever produced, the Bruins make the cut. They won every game by at least three scores this season.

25. Trinity Christian (Jacksonville, Fla.) (12-1)

Next game: Season complete

Last result: 25-22 win over Chaminade-Madonna (Hollywood, Fla.) (3A state championship)

Last week’s ranking: 25

Ranking rationale: Trinity Christian won the 3A state title in Florida 25-22 over Chaminade-Madonna and also logged a regular season win over No. 17 American Heritage. Their one loss on the year came in their opener against Bolles (Jacksonville, Fla.), the 4A runner up in Florida. QB Jacory Jordan and WR Marcus Burke (Florida signee) formed a lethal partnership this season.

DROPPED OUT

None

MOVED IN

None

TEAMS ON THE OUTSIDE LOOKING IN

  • Tompkins (Katy, Texas) (10-1): Tompkins would be the 26th team in our rankings if we went beyond 25. The Falcons beat No. 12 Katy 24-19 on Nov. 5 to end the Tigers’ 12-year, 75 game District win streak. Tompkins lost to No. 8 North Shore (Houston, Texas) in the third round of the 6A Division 1 playoffs 47-22 on Christmas Eve, which moved them out of our rankings.
  • Hamilton (Chandler, Ariz.) (8-2): Hamilton’s two losses both came to No. 3 Chandler this season. The second one was a heartbreaker in the state championship game. The Huskies are a very good team, but falling twice to Chandler means Hamilton won’t end the year in the Power 25.
  • Aledo (Texas) (13-1): Aledo played only one close postseason game en route to a 5A Division 2 state title in Texas. The Bearcats took down Crosby 56-21 to win the state championship. Aledo’s lone loss on the season came to Cedar Hill in October. That head-to-head defeat ultimately cost Aledo a Power 25 spot.
  • Cedar Hill (Texas) (12-2): Cedar Hill was blown out in the 6A Division 2 title game against No. 12 Katy, losing 51-14. That lopsided defeat took the Longhorns out of Power 25 contention, despite having quality regular season wins over DeSoto and Aledo.
  • Bergen Catholic (Oradell, N.J.) (5-1): Bergen Catholic’s season is over after only playing six games. Their one defeat came against arch rival Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.) on a last second touchdown. In their final game of the year, the Crusaders beat a good St. Peter’s Prep team 22-15. With no state playoffs taking place in New Jersey, Bergen won’t get a chance at a state title, but they did win the North Jersey Super United Red League, which is the toughest in the state.
  • Bryant (Ark.) (13-0): Bryant has won 30 games in a row and finished this season with its third straight 7A title in Arkansas. The reason the Hornets continue to miss out on the Power 25 is because in their two biggest games of the year against Trinity Christian (Cedar Hill, Texas) and North Little Rock in the 7A state title game, Bryant had spells where they didn’t look like a Power 25 team. They won both games, but didn’t pass the Power 25 eye test. Due to playing a relatively easy schedule, it’s tough to properly evaluate the Hornets. Bar North Little Rock in the state championship game, teams from Arkansas were no match for Bryant in 2020. Leaving them out is nit-picky, but when determining the best 25 teams in the country, it’s okay to nit-pick.
  • Oakland (Murfreesboro, Tenn.) (15-0): Oakland beat Brentwood 56-33 to win a state championship in Tennessee and finish the year undefeated. 2022 running back Jordan James had 226 yards and six touchdowns in the victory. The scary thing about Oakland is that they bring back virtually every impact player next season.
  • St. Thomas More (Lafayette, La.) (10-0): Following their 35-28 Division 2 state championship win over De La Salle (New Orleans, La.), St. Thomas More ends the season as the top team in Louisiana in a year where there was a lot of parity at the top. The Cougars top players are 2021 LSU wide receiver signee Jack Bech and 2022 LSU QB commit Walker Howard. In the state title game, Bech had 10 catches for 232 yards and two touchdowns.

OTHER TEAMS IN CONTENTION

Arizona: Saguaro (season complete)

Florida: Columbus (season complete) and Seminole (season complete)

Georgia: Buford (season complete)

Michigan: West Bloomfield (season complete), DeWitt (season complete), Mona Shores (season complete) and Catholic Central (Grand Rapids) (season complete)

New Jersey: Delbarton (season complete), Wall Township (season complete), Holy Spirit (season complete)

Ohio: Chardon (season complete)

Pennsylvania: Pineland-Richland (season complete)

Texas: Argyle (season complete) and Carthage (season complete),

SBLIVE POWER 25:

PRESEASON RANKINGS

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WEEK 21 RANKINGS

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