Overview There will be a lot new this season, starting with league alignments. The season will start a week earlier, on Aug. 24 . The 5A playoffs have been expanded to 24 teams with the top eight …
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There will be a lot new this season, starting with league alignments. The season will start a week earlier, on Aug. 24 .
The 5A playoffs have been expanded to 24 teams with the top eight seeds getting first-round byes. Class 5A teams will not have a bye week but 6-man through 4A classes will have a bye week.
Perennial state contenders Valor Christian, Cherry Creek and defending 5A state champion Pomona are expected to be among the top teams in the state again this season.
Creek was top-ranked in the CHSAANow.com preseason poll with Valor Christian third, Pomona fourth, Ralston Valley ninth and Highlands Ranch 10th. Arapahoe and Chaparral received votes.
Ponderosa, which graduated a lot of key starters, was ranked eighth in the 4A poll.
Top returning players
The following are some of the top returning south metro-area football players:
Alex Padilla, Cherry Creek; Adam Mullen, Rock Canyon; Luke McCaffrey, Valor Christian; Nick Moss, Lutheran; Andre Norman, Lutheran; Marcus Miller, Cherry Creek; Trustin Oliver, Legend; Ikaika Gonzalez-Bentosino, Englewood; Dominic Bettini, Highlands Ranch; Spencer Lambert, ThunderRidge; Joshia Davis, Valor Christian; Drake Nugent, Highlands Ranch; Michael Lynn, Cherry Creek; Austin Johnson, Highlands Ranch; Carson Lee, Cherry Creek; Mikey McClelland, Chaparral; Caden Meis, Legend; Isaac Wilson, Chaparral; Alec Pell, Cherry Creek; Aiden Kneller, Cherry Creek; Ethan Frasier, ThunderRidge; Connor Kelly, Castle View; Angelo Marchiol, Lutheran; Kevin Lukasiewicz, Arapahoe; Campbell Lancaster, Mountain Vista; Brian Brogan, Valor Christian; Ethan Zemla, Valor Christian; Jaden Triplett, Cherry Creek; Justin Boyd, Legend; Tizell Lewis, Chaparral; Christian Bemiller, Castle View; Braydon Nelson, Douglas County; Ethan Waite, Ponderosa.
Class 5A preliminary-round playoff games will be Nov. 3. Class 3A and 4A prelims are set for Nov. 10.
Semifinal games for 3A, 4A and 5A will be Nov. 24 with the championship games for 3A, 4A and 5A set for Dec. 1. The 4A and 5A title games will be played at Broncos Stadium at Mile High.
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