I witnessed one of them.â†µ
On Saturday, Georgia's Milton High - ranked No. 3 or No. 4 by most national polls - lost to a team with nine losses, Norcross, in the Class AAAAA final.â†µ
Also last week, East Aurora of Illinois defeat its state's No. 1 team, Beney Academy, 60-52. Benet's season ended at 29-1. Benet was ranked in the top eight by MaxPreps (No. 8), USA Today (No. 6) and ESPN Rise (No. 7).â†µ
How do you rank these teams whose bodies of work remain worthy of national rankings, but their state finishes don't?
Benet has a post player going to Kentucky (Frank Kaminsky) and a guard headed to Northwestern (David Sololewski). It has a victory over Simeon, ranked No. 15 in MaxPreps.
Milton has played one of the nation's toughest schedules. It has wins over Winter Park and Oak Hill Academy, programs that have spent time ranked No. 1. Four of its players has signed with Division I schools. Shannon Scott, a point guard bound for Ohio State, is one of them.â†µ
Norcross is an outstanding team in its own right with three Division I signees but started the season 7-9. Those nine losses don't allow Norcross to be ranked in anyone's national top 25, but Milton certainlly deserves to stay for its full season's accomplishments.â†µ
Would you keep them there? Tough calls.â†µ
Not enough appreciation exists for how difficult it is for teams to win their state titles, especially in places such as Illinois and Georgia. Ranked teams had better bring it every night. And even then, it might not be enough.