Advertisement

The Times’ boys’ basketball rankings

The Times’ preseason high school basketball rankings by Ben Bolch (last season’s final records are listed):

Rk. Team (Rec., Sec.-Div.) Comment
1 WESTCHESTER (35-2, City-Div. I) Loaded Comets will be a force as long as they follow The Jordin (Mayes) Rules.
2 TAFT (27-5, City-Div. I) Coach Derrick Taylor and Mater Dei counterpart Gary McKnight agree to co-write “Impact Transfers for Dummies.”
3 MATER DEI (31-2, SS-Div. 1AA) Transfers Keala King and Max Hooper follow in the Nike Air-cushioned footsteps of Tyler Lamb, Jamal Sampson, etc.
4 CORONA CENTENNIAL (24-4, SS-Div. 1AA) Super sophomores Gelaun Wheelwright and Dominique Dunning are now jump-through-the-roof juniors.
5 HARVARD-WESTLAKE (28-7, SS-Div. 3A) Season should be one long high-five for Wolverines, who return all their starters from last year.
6 LOYOLA (26-7, SS-Div. 1A) Coach Jamal Adams wants Cubs to know that character counts -- and so does winning the Mission League.
7 GARDENA SERRA (23-8, SS-Div. 3A) Cavaliers have enough college-bound talent to compete in Big West Conference right now.
8 LONG BEACH POLY (23-6, SS-Div. 1AA) With football team in rebuilding mode, fans chant “Wait ‘till basketball season” for first time in decades.
9 EISENHOWER (32-3, SS-Div. 2A) Eagles bring their sneakers and industrial-strength earplugs to first practice.
10 FAIRFAX (27-5, City-Div. I) Lions have massive hole in middle of lineup but fewer headaches with Renardo Sidney gone.
11 LEUZINGER (26-7, SS-Div. 1A) It’s an Olympic year in 2010, but will it be year of the Olympians?
12 ORANGE LUTHERAN (25-6, SS-Div. 4AA) UC Irvine Coach Pat Douglass asks Lancers counterpart Chris Nordstrom if they could trade backcourts.
13 OCEAN VIEW (27-8, SS-Div. 3AA) Coach Jim Harris glad he got to experience state title game before it was moved to Bakersfield.
14 THOUSAND OAKS (30-3, SS-Div. 1AA) UC Davis-bound forward Alex Tiffin should relish final year of big-time hoops before heading to Big West Conference.
15 SIMI VALLEY (22-7, SS-Div. 2AA) Deep and balanced Pioneers could be a bigger attraction than retired Air Force One at the Reagan Library.
16 SANTA MONICA (22-9, SS-Div. 1A) Perimeter-oriented Vikings are seeking fifth consecutive 20-win season and first trip to The Lobster that isn’t overpriced.
17 CRENSHAW (19-4, City-Div. I) Highly touted freshman Isaac Hamilton hopes to help Cougars recapture a taste of their glory days.
18 PRICE (29-6, SS-Div. 4AA) As usual, small-school Knights are stockpiled with inordinate number of big-time prospects.
19 PACIFIC HILLS (28-7, SS-Div. 4A) Crenshaw transfer Geoffrey Allen wanted to test the waters elsewhere for senior year.
20 ETIWANDA (25-6, SS-Div. 1AA) Even with no returning starters, Eagles expect to soar with newcomer Byron Wesley and reserve Jordan Daniels in the fold.
21 KING (30-3, SS-Div. 1AA) Wolves might feel as if they’re starting every game down 5-0 with nobody back from starting lineup.
22 RANCHO VERDE (24-6, SS-Div. 1AA) Mustangs’ underclassmen thought last year that having a McDonald’s All-American entitled team to free McDonald’s.
23 LOS OSOS (18-12, SS-Div. 1AA) David Smith, returning to coach Grizzlies after colon cancer diagnosis, is the inspirational story of the year.
24 CLEVELAND (20-9, City-Div. I) Guards Jason Johnson and Jalen Bland will lead up-tempo attack that is anything but dull.
25 REDONDO (15-13, SS-Div. 2AA) Sea Hawks don’t expect to be anywhere near .500 this year with four returning starters.

Advertisement