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Football: The Trinity League challenge

May 17, 2011 | 11:37 am

Once again, only three teams from the Trinity League will qualify this fall for the Pac-5 Division football playoffs even though all six schools could be top 25 material. It's going to drive the schools' fans and coaches who don't make the playoffs a little crazy.

Let's say Anaheim Servite, Bellflower St. John Bosco and Santa Margarita finish one-two-three. Then Santa Ana Mater Dei, Orange Lutheran and JSerra would be out. How would their fans take that? Not well.

In 2012, a new playoff format takes effect, which will allow more than three schools selected from a six-team league.

"I'm looking forward to the new rule," St. John Bosco Coach Jason Negro said.

Meanwhile, Negro must find a way to get his team to have a breakthrough season and crack the top three. The Braves came close last season, playing tough against Servite and Mater Dei, but there's no playoff spot for coming close.

St. John Bosco looks loaded with returning players, from receivers Bryce Treggs and Justin Johnson to running back Devonte Young, a junior who had to sit out last season. The team started spring practice on Monday.

"Kids are excited," Negro said.

St. John Bosco will be prominent in seven-on-seven passing tournaments this summer. The Braves should be impressive with their athleticism, but the key will be finding a way to beat the Trinity League heavyweights when the pads come on.

-- Eric Sondheimer