Boys' basketball: Playoffs show league dominance
This is the first season of the new format for the Southern Section basketball playoffs, where teams are placed in divisions based on past performance, competitive equity and enrollment, and the early results are that certain leagues could produce multiple champions.
There are 10 leagues with three or more schools still alive into the quarterfinals, topped by the Mission League, which has Loyola, Harvard-Westlake, Crespi, Chaminade and Verbum Dei in four separate divisions. Is that good?
The Trinity League has four teams alive -- Mater Dei, Orange Lutheran, Santa Margarita and St. John Bosco. They could win three division titles.
The Foothill League has Golden Valley, Hart, West Ranch and Valencia alive. And the Sierra League has Chino Hills, Glendora, Ayala and Damien.
It means league competition will lose importance if you can finish fourth and go on to win a section title in a weaker playoff division. Welcome to 2009 basketball.
-- Eric Sondheimer