Check out this daisy chain: Okolona beat Calhoun City, which beat Vardaman, which beat Bruce, which beat Baldwyn, the Daily Journal’s No. 1-ranked small school all season – until now.
Thanks to all that, along with Nettleton’s getting drummed by Louisville on Friday, the old rankings are ready to be calibrated. (I looked it up, and “recalibrated” is not actually a word, which means I can’t say “recalibrated rankings.” Dang it.) That’s why Ripley jumped two spots to No. 1, Okolona two spots to No. 2, Bruce from unranked to No. 3, Baldwyn three spots down to No. 4, and Nettleton three spots to No. 5. And poor Calhoun City, which won Friday, fell from fifth to unranked.
Don’t like it? Give me your suggestion, then. As I’ve said before, this is why I despise preseason rankings, because they can foul up every ranking thereafter. Remember last season, when one-loss Ripley was No. 1 for so long ahead of unbeaten Nettleton? Caught some flak for that, but since Ripley started out well ahead of the Tigers in the preseason – and that one loss was by one point to Class 4A New Albany in the season opener – I couldn’t simply make them swap places.
Honestly, I have a hard time believing Okolona is the second-best small school in the area, but I’m trapped by the system. Then again, maybe the Chieftains are that good. Remember, I didn’t even have Ripley ranked in the preseason. So maybe I was trapped by my own ignorance.
For those of you who didn’t catch them in the paper, here are the new rankings:
Team W-L Pvs
1. Shannon 4-0 1
2. West Point 3-1 2
3. Tupelo 3-1 4
4. Starkville 2-2 3
5. Lafayette Co. 3-1 5
Team W-L Pvs
1. Ripley 4-0 3
2. Okolona 4-0 4
3. Bruce 3-1 NR
4. Baldwyn 3-1 1
5. Nettleton 3-1 2
Dropped out: Calhoun City (3-1).