Tag: North Brunswick

Undefeated Hillsborough holds top spot in Big Central Media Poll for second straight week

Though it split the six first-place votes in the Big Central Media Poll evenly with Union and Somerville, Hillsborough held on to the top spot in the Week 8 Big Central Media Poll.

The Raiders got 53 points in the poll, edging our the Pioneers and Farmers, who had 53 apiece, and tied for second. Cranford held in fourth.

After some movement in the middle of the poll, Ridge re-entered the rankings at No. 8 after a 27-6 win at Westfield Saturday, while Bridgewater-Raritan made it back in at No. 9 following a 31-14 road win over Elizabeth.

Previous No. 7 Old Bridge, which blew out JP Stevens on the road Friday night, dropped out, but also received votes. Similarly, previously No. 9 Phillipsburg fell out, but picked up the same number of votes as the Knights, after a 42-0 home win over Connecticut’s Capital Prep Harbor.

Below is the Week 8 poll:

Few changes in Week 8 Central Jersey Sports Radio Top Ten, with Somerville still leading the pack

Another Somerville rout – this one 43-13 at Warren Hills, and without their starting quarterback – keeps the Pioneers on top of the pack in the Central Jersey Sports Radio rankings for Week 8.

In fact, few teams moved at all in the latest Top Ten, with Woodbridge dropping just one spot from 5th to 6th after a loss to unranked Scotch Plains-Fanwood. Sayreville moved up one spot to fifth.

The Barrons are tied with Bridgewater-Raritan for sixth; the Panthers were previously No. 7. Phillipsburg – previously No. 9, are tied for eighth with North Brunswick.

Though St. Thomas Aquinas – previously in a three-way tie for tenth with Old Bridge and Ridge – dropped out, it was really just a math quirk, as the Trojans (7-0) still received a Top Ten vote this week; others who were tenth simply were ranked higher.

Delaware Valley (7-1) also received a vote.

Below is the full Week 8 Top Ten:

North Brunswick gets big multiplier boost in South 5; Old Bridge falls, Hillsborough stands pat at the top

There was no change in the position of Hillsborough in the unofficial Week 8 UPR standings calculated after Friday night’s games by Central Jersey Sports Radio.

The Raiders – who won at Piscataway 36- Friday night – maintained a 2 UPR, and now have a wide lead over the third place team, but the teams have changed places.

Previous No. 3 Washington Twp. – which plays tomorrow at “C” multiplier St. Joe’s-Hammonton – moved up to second place, while Manalapan – which was second – dropped to fourth with a loss. North Brunswick jumped up four places from seventh to third with a win over multiplier St. Joe’s of Metuchen.

Old Bridge – which had been in sixth – dropped to ninth after a 43-6 win over a weak J.P. Stevens team.

Idle East Brunswick – which plays South Brunswick Saturday – stayed the course in 11th place, while Edison broke its 13th place tie with Egg Harbor, which is behind the, now by 0.8 UPR points. Edison crushed Hunterdon Central Friday night in Flemington 42-7; Egg Harbor won as well.

Outside the bubble, a win by New Brunswick would have done wonders for their playoff hopes. A loss to Sayreville, though, actually moved them up from 18th to 17th, and got them to within 0.8 UPR of 16th place Marlboro, which fell a spot.

South Brunswick got a wee bit closer, and can gain a lot more if they beat East Brunswick (6-1) Saturday afternoon.

Week 8 Analysis: Hillsborough surges to No. 1 in South Group 5; three others look safe

There were three football games in Week 7 that were matchups of two teams ranked in the Central Jersey Sports Radio Big Central Top Ten.

Only one panned out to be a competitive game – Cranford beating Woodbridge by ten – while Hillsborough and Union steamrolled their way to shutouts.

For the Raiders, it propelled them to No.1 in the South Jersey Group 5 playoff standings.

Now 7-0, Hillsborough was boosted by beating a strong opponent, North Brunswick, and jumped from fourth last week to the top spot this week. That’s a good example of strength of schedule, and how it can play in a team’s favor. Previous No. 1 Manalapan won, as did Washington Township (which was second, now third) and Cherokee (which was third, now fourth).

However, the race is tighter at the top than before. Following Week Seven, Manalapan led Washington Township by a full UPR point, and Cherokee by 1.2 UPR points. This week, Hillsborough is just 0.2 UPR points ahead of second-place Manalapan, and 0.6 ahead of Washington Township.

Remember, the top seed versus the two seed means little in the state playoffs, at least for now. The top two teams get the number one seeds in separate sections of eight once they break off and snake the brackets, meaning they get guaranteed home field advantage through all three rounds of the sectionals. The regional championships will be at a neutral site. (That could change next year, though, when football plays to a group champion for the first time ever.)

Of course, the Raiders need to keep on winning. The question is not whether, but how much, the Piscataway game next week will hurt them – the Chiefs have an SI value of 48.83, while ‘Boro’s OSI is a 63.65. A win over North Brunswick, which should be around 67 by next week, will help them. And then it comes down to how the teams behind them do. Manalapan has Red Bank Catholic (7-0) this week, after the Shore conference abandoned its pod idea in favor of set matchups. It’s their second multiplier this season, but they can only take one anyway. And, of course, it’s a game the Braves could lose. Washington Twp. has only one game left, against St. Joe’s of Hammonton (6-2). And while Kingsway (3-3) this week won’t drop Cherokee much even if they win, Seneca the next week (OSI likely to be in the 40s) will.

We say if Hillsborough keeps winning, they’ll end up with home field throughout the sectionals.

Further down the list are Old Bridge and North Brunswick in sixth and seventh, respectively. Each dropped just one spot despite the big losses; Old Bridge 44-0 at Hillsborough without injured Owen Haughney, and North Brunswick 42-0 at home to Union. The drops weren’t as bad because both the Raiders and Farmers have high SI values (now 89.78 and 88.99, respectively) and are still worth some power points because they have a lot of wins (Hillsborough 7, Union 6).

The Knights have a road game at JP Stevens which does them no favors this week and a home game against Sayreville on the Cutoff. The Raiders have St. Joseph-Metuchen at home this week and Hillsborough away on Week Nine. Old Bridge likely would clinch a top 8 finish and a guaranteed first round home game if they can win out, and still may if they split (beating JP and losing to the Bombers).

North Brunswick almost has the easier path despite the more difficult games. St. Joseph is a multiplier, so even a loss means they would gain a lot in power points, 28 to be exact, more than any of their other wins so far this season. Beat them (worth 42 points), and they could even end up in the top 4 and get first round through the semis, especially if they win out. Even a loss against Hillsborough might not be the end of the world, given their strong rating, and thanks to the Joe’s multiplier.

After Williamstown at 8 and Southern at 9, things get a little murkier.

Donovan Catholic was forced to take several forfeits earlier this season after using an ineligible player. The NJSIAA ruled that since they’re a multiplier, it wouldn’t be fair for public schools who lost to them to get multiplier points for a win, so they awarded multiplier points for a loss.

In an October 8th post, Gridiron New Jersey wrote: “the NJSIAA has determined that Toms River North and Colts Neck will NOT receive the 42 points for defeating Donovan Catholic, but rather the 28 for a loss.” However, according to Central Jersey Sports Radio’s calculations, Gridiron continues to have 42 points in the power points calculation for Toms River North.

This has affected the standings, as CJSR puts Eastern in 10th, followed by East Brunswick 11th, Toms River North 12th, and Egg Harbor and Edison tied for 13th, with the edge to Egg Harbor due to a stronger OSI. Gridiron has TR North 10th, followed by Eastern, East Brunswick, Edison and Egg Harbor. Gridiron has East Brunswick one spot lower than it should be and Edison one spot higher than it should be.

An email to Gridiron New Jersey sent late Monday afternoon was not returned, and the standings were not corrected as of early Tuesday evening. We’ll keep you posted.

Nonetheless, neither team should have a crack at a home game here, but while East Brunswick (6-1) should be in, and can solidify the math with a home win over South Brunswick Friday night, the Eagles can’t afford a trip-up against Hunterdon Central or Watchung Hills, a pair of one-win teams.

What will be intriguing is whether New Brunswick (3-4) or South Brunswick (4-3) can make a push. The Zebras are 18th and have two decent games left: Sayreville and Monroe. South Brunswick is in 20th and has East Brunswick – the Bears’ 6-1 record means a lot of power points – and Bridgewater-Raritan in Week Nine, also a good game.

The good news for them is the teams ahead of them – all the way up to 16th – are not winning teams. Vineland is in 19th and just 1-6. Lenape at 16th is 2-5. The only .500 team ahead of them is Atlantic City (17th, 3-3).

We’ll paraphrase Lloyd Christmas here: “So you’re saying they have a shot!”

Split vote gives Hillsborough top ranking in Big Central Media Poll, ousting Somerville from No. 1

Hillsborough, Somerville and Union each got two first place votes from the media, but it was the undefeated Raiders who came out first overall in the Week 7 Big Central Media Poll.

Hillsborough (7-0) received 47 points, while Somerville (5-1) got 45, and Union (6-1) picked up 43 in media voting, the tightest among the top three this season for the second week in a row, as only four points separated last week’s grouping as well.

Last week, Somerville and Woodbridge split the six first place votes, but then-No. 4 Woodbridge’s loss to then No. 8 Cranford caused a stir among voters for Week 7.

Seventh-ranked Ridge and No. 9 Delaware Valley dropped out after losses, while Phillipsburg re-entered the poll, and St. Thomas Aquinas made its first appearance of the season. The Trojans are 6-0 and have not allowed a point all season.

Should Aquinas pick up a seventh shutout at Governor Livingston Friday night, that would be the most in a season by a Middlesex County school since the 2004 Piscataway Chiefs shutout seven in 2004, en route to a perfect 12-0 season and a state title win over Phillipsburg. That Chiefs team had three future NFL first round draft picks: Malcolm Jenkins, Kyle Wilson and Anthony Davis.

Below are the Week 7 Big Central media rankings:

Somerville holds steady in Week 7 Central Jersey Sports Radio Top Ten

A hard-fought 47-26 win at St. Joseph of Metuchen – Saturday’s Big Central Game of the Week driven by Autoland – was enough to keep Somerville in the top spot of the Central Jersey Sports Radio rankings.

The 5-1 Pioneers – a unanimous pick – are followed by Hillsborough (7-0) in second and Union (6-1) in third, with the top three all holding their positions.

But two blowouts and a tight Division 4 battle threw the rest of the rankings for a topsy-turvy ride in Week 7.

Cranford jumped to fourth from seventh after a 38-28 road win at then-No. 4 Woodbridge, while Old Bridge and North Brunswick fell after getting blanked a combined 86-0 by No. 2 Hillsborough and No. 3 Union.

Three teams re-enter the poll this week: Bridgewater-Raritan (7th), Phillipsburg (9th) and St. Thomas Aquinas (10th). In fact, the poll was so fractured this week, three teams – Aquinas, Old Bridge and Ridge – ended up tied for tenth.

Delaware Valley was the only team to drop out, after suffering its first loss of the season, 21-19 at Hillside.

Below are the full Week 7 Central Jersey Sports Radio rankings:

Week 6 South 5 Playoff Analysis: Three BCC teams in play for a top seed, 7 Big Central teams in legit contention

NOTE: This story has been updated to reflect today’s cancellation of the Shore Conference pod championships.

A number of Big Central teams have a good chance of making the playoffs in the South 5 supersection, with Hillsborough leading the pack, three teams solidly in, another needing to right the ship to stay in, and two more knocking on the door.

We start with Hillsborough, which is fourth, followed by Old Bridge fifth and North Brunswick sixth. All those teams have a lot to play for and some big opportunities in front of them.

Let’s start at the top, where Manalapan (UPR 2) is followed by Washington Township (UPR 3) and Cherokee (UPR 3.2). The trio from the BCC is not far behind. Hillsborough has a UPR of 3.4, Old Bridge is a 4.6, and North Brunswick has a 5.6 UPR. Remember every one place up in OSI is 0.6 UPR points, and every place up in power points is 0.4 UPR points.

Hillsborough is in striking distance with a gain in either of those categories. Old Bridge is 1.6 behind the second place team (top two spots get byes in their respective sections). And North Brunswick is 2.6 points behind.

Continue reading “Week 6 South 5 Playoff Analysis: Three BCC teams in play for a top seed, 7 Big Central teams in legit contention”

Gap narrows at the top, but Somerville remains cream of Big Central Media Poll crop in Week 6

When it took over first place in Week 3 from North Brunswick following a Raiders loss to Sayreville, the Somerville Pioneers had four of the six first place votes, and 55 points.

Though they remain atop the media rankings in Week 6, they’ve had three votes the last few times out, but are down to 45 points in the survey, ten points off their high water mark.

And only five points separates Somerville from the fourth place team, Woodbridge, which got the other three first-place picks. Places five through eight are a big drop down, then it goes down to nine and ten, with five BCC teams also receiving votes.

Sayreville debuts at No. 10.

Following is the Week 6 Big Central Media Poll:

Somerville holds, Sayreville debuts in Week 6 Central Jersey Sports Radio Big Central Top Ten

Idle Somerville – waylaid by a COVID-related cancellation for the second straight year against Phillipsburg – remains in the top spot of the Central Jersey Sports Radio Big Central Conference rankings for Week 6.

In fact, the top six places saw no change, which has been a fairly typical occurrence this season; the top half has generally remained steady, while the bottom few teams tend to change week to week.

The Week 6 rankings found seventh-ranked Bridgewater-Raritan dropping out after its third loss of the season, this week a 49-21 decision at No. 3 Union.

Tenth-ranked Colonia also bowed out, dropping its second game this season, a 27-14 loss at No. 7 Cranford.

Making its debut in the rankings this week was Sayreville, after a 34-6 win over Piscataway. The Bombers are 3-2 and own a road win at ranked North Brunswick last month.

Below are the Week 6 rankings:

Instant Replay: No. 5 North Brunswick 21, Edison 0

Click below to listen to the “Big Central Game of the Week” driven by Mark Montenero and his team at the world-famous Autoland from Friday, October 8, 2021.

No. 5 North Brunswick won its third straight game – and fourth in a row over Edison – a 21-0 win over the Eagles (3-3)

Mike Pavlichko and Justin Sontupe call the action from Matthew Drwal Stadium in Edison.

1st Half

2nd Half