With a rise in teams choosing to play independent football statewide, only nine Miami-Dade County teams will be playing in districts this season from Classes 5A-2A.
Among those few, however, resides a potential repeat national champion, a pair of state championship contenders as well as a couple more teams that should have playoff success.
Booker T. Washington graduated several key players from last year’s national title team. But as it showed in its season-opening rout of Oscar Smith (Virginia), the Tornadoes still have one of the most talented rosters nationwide and are the clear favorite to win a third consecutive Class 4A title.
If it accomplishes the feat, Booker T. would become the first Dade team to win three consecutive state titles.
Champagnat Catholic, the only other Dade team to complete an undefeated season in 2013, has also reloaded and could become the county’s first private school to win back-to-back state titles. The Lions are the overwhelming favorite in Class 2A.
Westminster Christian faces a tough road in Class 3A, but its core of playmakers, led by Tim Irvin and Jordan Cronkrite, should be right in the mix again this December with that classification’s best.
Among the county’s independents in conferences such as the Southeastern Football Conference, look for La Salle to be one of the more improved teams. And watch out for Keys Gate Charter to continue to impress coming off a 9-1 season.