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Football: Pac-5 Division looks as strong as ever

November 7, 2012 |  7:32 am

The Pac-5 Division is the toughest in Southern California, and the reason is that usually most of the teams are capable of winning first-round playoff games.

Santa Ana Mater Dei Coach Bruce Rollinson warns, “It’s probably one of the more talented pools of teams that have made the 16-team bracket. I guarantee you there will be an upset in round one. Hopefully, it won’t be us. Somebody will get hit in the mouth and rock the bracket.”

Mater Dei opens against Lakewood on Friday night.

The toughest games to figure out will be Santa Margarita-El Toro, Oaks Christian-Sherman Oaks Notre Dame and Bishop Amat-Long Beach Poly.

Does Santa Margarita have enough offense to beat El Toro? Can Oaks Christian run the ball well enough to beat Notre Dame? Can Poly’s rushing attack control the clock enough to beat Bishop Amat?

If all goes as planned, there’s going to be some amazing quarterfinal matchups, and then the predictions will be even tougher.

Think about these potential quarterfinal matchups: St. Bonaventure vs. Santa Margarita, Alemany vs. Mater Dei, St. John Bosco vs. Notre Dame, Long Beach Poly vs. Mission Viejo.

First, though, the favorites will have to survive the first round.

-- Eric Sondheimer