Full disclosure: this might have been the toughest preseason ranking in the history of preseason rankings ... at least for the Varsity Beat.
William Penn was an easy pick for No. 1 in these rankings. The Bearcats are ninth in the preseason state poll -- the only YAIAA team to receive such billing (Note, one other York County team, New Hope in Class A, also is ranked). But who to pick next? Read below to find out which way we went:
1. William Penn (27-4 last season): Two starters, 6-foot-3 junior Jahaire Wilson and senior point guard Stephen Dickson, return to a Bearcats team that advanced to the District 3 Class AAAA championship last season. This winter, coach Troy Sowers brings in a team he says is ahead of the curve, defensively.
2. Dallastown (14-11): The Wildcats return most of their team outside of last season's leading scorer, Ethan Sutton. The combo of Mitch Small and Mike Gibbs, plus 6-3 Ben Doorn as the "big guard" or defacto post player, is a strong nucleus.
3. Delone Catholic (18-10): After back-to-back district titles in Class AA, the Squires still have a team that could make other schools its size envious. That would be thanks to 6-3 Devon Moore and fellow junior guard Jake Wiles along with 6-3 senior forward Andrew Austin. The Squires obviously will play with heavy hearts, following the death of coach Jim Dooley.
4. Bermudian Springs (16-7): Two seasons ago, Tom Flaherty's team enjoyed a breakout season. The Eagles' encore wasn't bad, either, but four starters return. That should make them a favorite in Division III.
5. Red Lion (13-9): At 6-5, Mike Fox can present matchup problems. Expect a much-improved Red Lion team after barely missing the district tournament.
Under consideration: 6. York Suburban, 7. Central York, 8. Eastern York, 9. West York, 10. Dover.