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Pre-Season XC 2012

BOYS Teams - National 2012

Bill Meylan (July 28, 2012)

Boys - Potential National Contenders

My pre-season projection for National Boys Teams is listed below ... I do this each pre-season for my own interest.

Purpose ... There is one purpose ... Get a general idea where the NY State teams rank overall ... I am primarily concerned about teams likely to compete in NXN (teams that have shown interest, have competed or may be expected to compete).

For the most part, the team listing below is an extension of the 2011 XC season into 2012 with a few modifications ... IF data for 5 runners on each team was not readily available (or guess-able), that team was probably NOT included ... This could exclude some good teams, but it does not matter because actual race results will identify those teams (and then I start including them and ignore the pre-season).

My first criteria for this pre-season list is to consider teams that competed in the NXN Regional races ... Performance in NXN (both Regional & National) plus State Meets is the major focus (plus a few other major meets) because I am considering "championship" performance.

Initially, I combined all potential teams in a single race scenario and began eliminating teams with the highest scores in an iterative process until I had about 35 teams remaining ... The scores are listed below along with the teams just behind the top 35 scoring teams.

Remember ... this list is just an informational starting point ... Real 2012 race results are what count.

Also Remember ... Most top boy's teams contain a fair number of seniors, and those seniors graduate ... Significant graduation from last year means projecting many of the teams below requires guessing - hopefully informed guessing, but occasionally it's a "shot -in-the-dark guess.

Updated Aug 3, 2012  ... Cardinal O'Hara PA dropped from 9th to 35th (one of their graduating seniors was mistakenly included in this team since he was listed as a junior in the PA State meet 2011).


 Pre-Season National BOYS Teams 2012

 Pre-Season Projection - BOYS National Team Contenders - 2012

      School                 State   Score      Region
      --------------------   -----   -----      ------
  1   Southlake Carroll       TX      250       South
  2   North Central           WA      260       Northwest
  3   Christian Brothers      NJ      270       Northeast
  4   York                    IL      280       Midwest
  5   Davis                   UT      300       Southwest
  6   Bismarck                ND      350       Heartland
  7   Carmel                  IN      360       Midwest
  8   Seattle Prep            WA      380       Northwest
  9   American Fork           UT      400       Southwest
  10  Central Catholic        OR      410       Northwest
  11  Fayetteville-Manlius    NY      405       New York
  12  Stillwater              MN      415       Heartland
  13  Bishop Hendricken       RI      420       Northeast
  14  Belvidere North         IL      425       Midwest
  15  Gig Harbor              WA      430       Northwest
  16  Summit                  OR      435       Northwest
  17  Cleveland               NM      440       Southwest
  18  Siuslaw                 OR      450       Northwest
  19  Trabuco Hills           CA      470       California
  20  O'Fallon                IL      480       Midwest
  21  Mountain Vista          CO      485       Southwest
  22  Valparaiso              IN      490       Midwest
  23  Belen Jesuit            FL      495       Southeast
  24  Lawrence Central        IN      500       Midwest
  25  Highland Milford        MI      501       Midwest
  26  Waterford Mott          MI      501       Midwest
  27  Dowling Catholic        IA      510       Heartland
  29  St. Xavier              KY      515       Southeast
  29  St. Anthony's           NY      520       New York
  30  W Windsor-Plainsboro S  NJ      525       Northeast
  31  St. John Bosco          CA      530       California
  32  Lexington               SC      535       Southeast
  33  Arlington               NY      540       New York
  34  The Woodlands           TX      550       South
  35  Cardinal O'Hara         PA      560       Northeast (dropped as noted above)

    The next group is basically in order following the
     list above ... Many are very close and the order 
      could be shuffled ... some could be above as well

      Fairview                CO        Southwest
      Arcadia                 CA        California
      Saratoga                NY        New York
      Northport               NY        New York
      Mt Spokane              WA        Northwest
      Ogden                   UT        Southwest
      Arrowhead               WI        Heartland
      Carlsbad                CA        California
      Rancho Cucamonga        CA        California
      Carlmont                CA        California
      Colonial                FL        Southeast
      Edina                   MN        Heartland
      Brentwood               TN        Southeast
      Mt. Carmel              CA        California
      Jesuit                  OR        Northwest
      Mountain View           UT        Southwest
      Herriman                UT        Southwest
      Wayzata                 MN        Heartland
      Eisenhower              WA        Northwest
      Eden Prairie            MN        Heartland
      Severna Park            MD        Southeast
      Kamiakin                WA        Northwest
      Pembroke                MA        Northeast
      Hereford                MD        Southeast
      Columbus North          IN        Midwest
      Columbus (Miami)        FL        Southeast
      Bishop Feehan           MA        Northeast
      Rocky Mountain          ID        Northwest
        *** I may have missed a team or two going through
              my databases as quickly as I did

Where did the scores come from? ... In part, the scores are a composite of computer race simulations using 2011 seasonal speed ratings (sort of) ... a few speed rating ranges were altered based on track results ... I manually manipulated some numbers (because I had to) ... Speed ratings were scarce for some teams, so I used my imagination (but so what, this is pre-season).


Note ... Boys Pre-Season rankings are generally less accurate and harder to generate than Girls rankings ... The reason is that boys teams are generally more senior-dominated than girls teams, so a higher percentage of boys graduate making the following season less predictable due to lack of information.

Hopefully, the boy's list above identifies many of the top teams entering the 2012 XC season in a reasonable order ... If it does, I made some decent guesses ... As a point of reference for last year, my 2011 pre-season projections with corresponding results from NXN 2011 are shown in a table below ... Of the 22 teams at NXN 2011, I did not identify 6 teams (they were unranked in the top 35 teams and not listed in the extra team list) ... 15 of the 22 NXN teams were ranked in my pre-season top 35 teams ... I did better with my girl's pre-season rankings (9 of the top 13 girl's teams at NXN were ranked in my pre-season top 13).

General Comments for the Coming Season:

Southlake Carroll TX gets a slight advantage over North Central WA, Christian Brothers NJ and York IL ... Davis UT is close.

The top four teams in my projections finished 2nd, 7th, 1st and 3rd at NXN last year ... In addition, 7 other teams in my top 35 competed at NXN Nationals last year.

I know this will surprise some people ... I have three New York teams in the top 35,, (Fayetteville-Manlius (#12), St.Anthony's (#30) and Arlington (#34), plus Saratoga and Northport are near the top of the "extra team" list ...... Fayetteville-Manlius gets this respect because of prior success at NXN ... In the last four years (2011-2008), the Fayetteville-Manlius guys finished 12th, 2nd, 9th and 16th, respectively, at NXN Portland Meadows, and this coming year, FM's top runner (Nick Ryan) is one the top runners in the nation meaning  FM's team score starts out with a very low number ... More info is available from my NY Pre-season Boys Team preview and Top NY Boys preview.

The other New York teams scored well in my projections ... one reason could be that I have more data on the NY teams which could show a "data bias" (more data to find good results) ... But relative scoring has two components, (1) "How good is my team??" and (2) "How good is everybody else??" ... Where any individual team ranks depends on how good the other teams seem to be.

The two Michigan teams in my top 35 is something new ... I typically exclude teams not eligible for NXN, but Michigan has some really good runners, so I included them for reference ... To this outsider, both teams have positives and are close in scoring to each other against the top 30 teams, so I rated them even-up as a "guess".

I assume list order will change a lot when the season actually starts ... Pre-season ranking is part data and part "educated guessing", and at the national level, I use significant amount of guessing ... margins of error and uncertainty is large ... My "guesses" are just one guy's opinion.



 Last Year's (2011) Boy's Pre-Season Projections ... and corresponding results with NXN Nationals
                                           NXN                   Finish Order at           Last Year's
      School               State  Score  Region                     NXN 2011               Pre-Season Projection
      ------------------   -----  -----  ------            ---------------------------     -----------------------
  1   Southlake Carroll      TX    270   South             1   Christian Brothers   NJ  -  #6-7 pre-season
  2   Palos Verdes           CA    275   California        2   Southlake Carroll    TX  -  #1  pre-season
  3   Arcadia                CA    280   California        3   Davis                UT  -  #18 pre-season
  4   Shaker                 NY    285   New York          4   Arcadia              CA  -  #3  pre-season
  5   Rancho Cucamonga       CA    290   California        5   Palatine             IL  -  #12-13 pre-season
  6   Fort Collins           CO    300   Southwest         6   American Fork        UT  -  unranked (insufficent data)
  6   Christian Brothers     NJ    300   Northeast         7   North Central        WA  -  #20-21 pre-season
  8   Columbus North         IN    325   Midwest           8   Arrowhead            WI  -  #17 pre-season
  9   The Woodlands          TX    335   South             9   Columbus North       IN  -  #8  pre-season
  10  Buchanan               CA    340   California        10  Stillwater           MN  -  unranked
  11  St. John Bosco         CA    350   California        11  Golden Valley        CA  -  #15 pre-season
  12  Palatine               IL    360   Midwest           12  Fayetteville-Manlius NY  -  #25 pre-season
  12  Belvidere (North)      IL    360   Midwest           13  York                 IL  -  #20-22 pre-season
  14  Rush-Henrietta         NY    375   New York          14  Trabuco Hills        CA  -  unranked
  15  Golden Valley          CA    390   California        15  Gig Harbor           WA  -  #35+ group
  16  WW Plainsboro So       NJ    390   Northeast         16  Shaker               NY  -  #4 pre-season
  17  Arrowhead              WI    395   Heartland         17  Brentwood            TN  -  unranked
  18  Davis                  UT    400   Southwest         18  Pembroke             MA  -  unranked
  19  Loyola                 CA    405   California        19  Rancho Cucamonga     CA  -  #5  pre-season
  20  North Central          WA    410   Northwest         20  Belen Jesuit         FL  -  #29-30 pre-season
  20  York                   IL    410   Midwest           21  The Woodlands        TX  -  #9  pre-season
  20  Neuqua Valley          IL    410   Midwest           22  Westfield            NJ  -  unranked
  23  Crater                 OR    415   Northwest
  24  Adolfo Camarillo       CA    430   California
  25  Fayetteville-Manlius   NY    435   New York
  26  North Harrison         IN    440   Midwest
  26  La Costa Canyon        CA    440   California
  28  Cabdell Midland        WV    445   Southeast
  29  Belen Jesuit Prep      FL    465   Southeast
  29  Wayzata                MN    465   Heartland
  31  Dowling Catholic       IA    475   Heartland
  31  West Torrance          CA    475   California
  31  Hamilton Southeastern  IN    475   Midwest
  31  Great Oak              CA    475   California