Football: Can the City Section champion make a bowl game?
In 2009, Crenshaw became the first and only City Section team to be selected for a CIF state championship bowl game, losing to Concord De La Salle, 28-14, in the Open Division game.
Two more bowl spots have opened up this fall for Division I teams with the addition of a regional championship, so that increases the chances for a City representative but doesn't guarantee that the City champion will be picked. The San Diego and Central Sections want in, too.
Narbonne, however, has a real shot if it can succeed in winning the City Division I title while doing well in its tough nonleague schedule. That was the path Crenshaw took. And the Gauchos have a top player in quarterback Troy Williams.
Narbonne opens against Palos Verdes on Aug. 30, followed by games against Long Beach Poly, Lakewood, Gardena Serra and Mater Dei before opening the Marine League against Carson.
Coach Manuel Douglas has lots of returnees on both sides of the ball. It will be a challenge getting his team to focus over a possible 16-game schedule and survive the physical and mental grind.
Crenshaw, though, proved that a talented, motivated City title can more than hold its own.
-- Eric Sondheimer