The opening week of the high school football season was full of surprises. Three of the top four teams in the PrepZone Power Poll lost, while a few from the bottom pulled big upsets.
How did those results affect the Daily News’ weekly ranking? The No. 1 team stayed the same, but there was a lot of movement among the next 10 teams. Keep reading to find out who rose or fell the furthest.
Power Poll: High school football preseason rankings
Each week the PrepZone staff will rank all 11 high school football programs in Collier County top to bottom. The poll is a consensus of votes from Daily News sports reporters and editors based on our observations from the week before.
1. Naples (1-0; Last week: 1)
The Golden Eagles proved they are for real by going on the road to beat Sarasota-Riverview, a regional champ in the state’s largest classification (8A) last season. Naples rushed for 316 yards against a Rams team loaded with athletes.
The Golden Eagles defense shut out the Sharks while Naples offense rolled in the exhibition victory Adam Fisher, firstname.lastname@example.org; 239-403-6135
2. Barron Collier (0-1; Last week: 2)
The Cougars didn’t look particularly good in a home loss to a much smaller school, but we’re not ready to drop them in the rankings just yet. Barron Collier still has strong skill players and a veteran defense – the Cougars just seemed out of rhythm after their preseason game was canceled.
3. Palmetto Ridge (0-1; Last week: 3)
Like Barron Collier, the Bears lost at home and didn’t look good doing it. However, they lost to a consistent playoff team with Division I recruits in Tampa Catholic. Palmetto Ridge should still be good if it can clean up its turnovers (Tampa Catholic scored 17 points off turnovers).
Palmetto Ridge opens football season with heavy hearts, big expectations Andrew Sodergren, email@example.com, 239-263-4731
4. Gulf Coast (1-0; Last week: 4)
The Sharks might have legitimate beef being ranked behind two 0-1 teams. But Gulf Coast didn’t show quite enough in a win over a rebuilding Golden Gate team to move up any higher in the poll. The quarterback situation remains unclear, with starter Justin Mattia missing Week 1 due to injury, which impacts the Sharks’ ranking.
5. St. John Neumann (1-0; Last week: 6)
The Celtics showed in Week 1 that they still have plenty of weapons despite graduating Class 2A Player of the Year Jensen Jones. Seven players scored a total of seven touchdowns against Community School. Neumann gets a much stronger test this week against Oasis, a 3A team that won at Lakeland Christian in Week 1.
Week 1 Roundup: Naples, FBA, Gulf Coast, Lely, Neumann win
6. Lely (1-0; Last week: 7)
Winning the season-opener was huge for a Trojans team that went 2-8 each of the past two seasons. If Lely keeps winning it will keep climbing in the poll – especially if it beats No. 4 Gulf Coast this week.
Lely head coach JJ Everage and Island Coast coach Jim Wiseman talk about the Trojans 15-8 win over the Gators. Wochit, Wochit
7. First Baptist Academy (1-0; Last week: 9)
The Lions might have pulled the biggest upset in Southwest Florida in Week 1. The young team with just three seniors knocked off an Evangelical Christian team loaded with transfer talent, a new coach and sky-high expectations. That’s why FBA is the biggest climber in this weeks’ poll.
FBA offense will feature pair of young playmakers in Richemard Mellien, Tyler Coleman Andrew Sodergren, firstname.lastname@example.org, 239-263-4731
8. Immokalee (0-1; Last week: 4)
We’re not punishing the Indians for a lopsided loss against Clearwater Academy International, which has players from all over the globe. Immokalee drops because it’s unclear where the Indians offense will come from after switching to a new quarterback, the third QB since the spring.
Immokalee moves on after Rosales transfer, excited about new QB Lukas Soto Andrew Sodergren, email@example.com, 239-263-4731
9. Golden Gate (0-1; Last week: 8)
Despite getting shut out in Week 1, the Titans defense played well at times. First-year coach Nick Bigica is hoping for his inexperienced players to learn from these early-season games so their athleticism can shine through later.
10. Community School (0-1; Last week: 10)
In two games so far this season (including the preseason), the Seahawks have not scored an offensive touchdown. CSN is big up front but is breaking in a slew of new skill position players who are learning on the fly.
Season preview: CSN looking to rebuild following departure of QB McNamara
Bonita Springs defeated Community School, 23-7, in its first-ever varsity preseason game on Friday, Aug. 16, 2019. Greg Hardwig, firstname.lastname@example.org; 239-263-4767
11. Marco Island Academy (0-1; Last week: 11)
The Manta Rays, who in Week 1 lost their 10th straight game dating back to 2017, have to play at St. Petersburg-Shorecrest this week after traveling all the way to Winter Haven last week.