Ball Fever: Mile High Madness Time


Another fun and exciting season is in the books, hoops fans. Our last two weeks have been full of overtime excitement, individual “monsta” performances and leagues that have come down to the wire.

Hopefully this is a sign of what’s to come over the next few weeks!

There is NO PERFECT ANSWER regarding the final RPI 5A and 4A standings/rankings, but luckily our awesome athletes aren’t playing this “Mile High Madness” on the internet…it will be set on hardwood!

Those who follow Ball Fever also know that we don’t believe this is a rare moment for Colorado hoops, but the result of many factors leading to great basketball being played on our high school courts. The buzz around Colorado hoops is rightful and we can thank a growing basketball community for it, from our recreational peewee leagues to competitive club ball, to increasing individual personal training opportunities and through the truly dedicated staff of the school. The basketball product hitting the Colorado hardwood is improving and colleges at all levels are taking notice!

It’s the perfect time to be part of the Colorado hoops…let’s go crazy!

5A bracket
Chauncey Billups area

Our defending 5A champion ThunderRidge returns as the tournament seed after just one loss in the state. The Continental League was the creme de la creme this season, and this region has Continental teams in Heritage and especially Mountain Vista that are capable of surprising anyone in a single-elimination game setting.

ThunderRidge is clearly the best dog here in the Billups area. They have veterans who know what it takes to progress and easily have one of the toughest coaches in the business. Big man Zach Keller, hired from Wake Forest, is a “double-double” machine capable of putting the Grizzlies on his shoulders and a supporting cast eager to come back back to back!

We’ve mentioned that “continental” heavy region and if there’s one team capable of upset-type action, it’s Rock Canyon who are seeded at #9. Another “battle-tested” team is Centennial Hard Overland, and a possible Round 2 match Centennial/Continental Overland vs. Mountain Vista would be a lot of fun. A few fun matches possible here, but the Fever Crew sees ThunderRidge advancing as the smoke clears.

Chuck Williams region

Only one team that could argue that they could have been the No. 1 seed overall and that’s Fossil Ridge coming in at No. 2 with an overall record of 22-1. The Sabercats’ only loss was in the season opener to the top-seeded Grizzlies, and there’s certainly no shame in that. Anyone who wants to keep pace with the Sabercats in this region better rack up some points to match their average of 72 points per game!

The bottom half of this region has two teams that have exceeded regular season expectations in Horizon and Regis. Horizon finished the season with an outstanding 19-3 regular season record and we see that momentum leading them into a possible tangle with Fossil Ridge. The Sabercats are our favorites here because of that senior guard game from Brock Mishak and his 20 points per game.

The Fever Crew had the chance to see a Montbello (FNE Warriors) crew recently and they have seven seniors who won’t want to go down easy. Our prediction from Fever Crew is that “Bellos” will pick up an upset victory in the first round and be a fun test for Horizon’s second round. You’ll be hard pressed to find a better trained team than Coach Shaw’s Raiders, and with time to prepare they are capable of advancing. Regis’ signature win was over No. 4 Denver East in the Angels’ gym, so when they’re on, they can compete with the best.

Larry Farmer Region

Continental and Centennial leagues still well represented in this region as well! Chaparral comes in as the 3rd seed on an 8-game winning streak and ranked No. 3 in our latest Coaches Poll. Not to be outdone, Eaglecrest is a tough 6 seed on a 12-game winning streak and is a Centennial League champion!

We’ve mentioned how the Fever Crew loves late-season guard play and senior Luke Williams is as steady as it gets for Chaparral “stat-stuffin” 16 points, 4 assists, and 6 rebounds per game on the season! Inside/outside action from Williams and big man Joel Speckman makes the Wolverines our favorite here!

Smoky Hill flirted with our top 10 coaches poll all season and finished 10th. As the 11th seed in this region, they are in a prime position to progress and cause trouble for anyone. The human highlight film known as Anthony Harris Jr. will play above the edge and is worth the price of admission alongside slick senior guard Brandon Maldonado. In order to make some noise in this region, however, Smoky will potentially face a third game of the season against Eaglecrest, who they shared the regular season with. In the Centennial game, both teams won their home games against each other. Come on, let’s break this tie!

Kent-Smith area

The highest seeds jump out at you in this region as well with Denver East fresh off a thrilling 3-point “City Championship” win over George Washington on Saturday. Douglas County ranked 5th in our last coaching survey, has just 2 losses in the Continental League and is a stellar 19-3 this season.

On paper, this leans towards the obvious top seeds on a collision course. The Angels not only carry the torch of Denver East, but one of the few surviving schools for the Denver Prep League. A pressure that Coach Carey and the Angels welcome, we are sure! The Angels aren’t afraid to go up and down with a fast pace against anyone and if we get this game possible with Douglas County it will be a high score as both are averaging over 70 points per game. game!

Cherry Creek has the potential to advance in the first round and give us an intriguing game for the Bruins against the Raiders in the second round. Rangeview haven’t been ranked this season like we’re all used to, but they’re EMAC champions again and will be eager to prove they shouldn’t be written off so quickly. Also, Denver South “rep’n” for the Denver Prep League, but they can’t take a tough first-round legend team lightly. The Titans are capable of ruining a Denver South/East rematch!

4A bracket
Ron Vlasin Region

Lewis-Palmer comes in as the 1 seed in 4A. Rangers have an absolute resume to be proud of with a 12-game winning streak, finishing our coaching poll at No. 2, and their only loss of the season came in a close game with 5A No. 3 Chaparral.

Longmont and Windsor know each other VERY well and Longmont is coming off a 12-point League Tournament win over Windsor to close out the regular season. We see one of these two have a chance to challenge top dog Lewis-Palmer.

We have another stat-stuffer in the Longmont do-it-all Brandon Barcewski. At 6’5 scoring 17 points, 8 rebounds, 2 blocks and 2 steals per game. Outstanding performances are nothing new for him and will be needed if we finally get Longmont’s shot against top seed Lewis-Palmer and 6’5 senior Cameron Lowe, who is averaging 17 points per game.

Larry Brunson Region

After finishing the regular season 23-0, the Pueblo South Colts enter as the No. 2 seed. This scoring machine has all the motivation for the postseason to settle things on the field.

Pueblo South is the hottest team in the state, regardless of class, and they put on a show! The Austin Brothers, led by senior Tarrance, are helping to pick up the Colts’ blistering pace and no one will follow their 80 points per game, in our humble Fever opinion.

Centaurus, 18-5 on the season, finished our last coaches poll at No. 7 and a 2-game winning streak. The Warriors play at a rate of 50 points per game, so they won’t be looking to run away from teams, but rather wear them down with 4 seniors averaging at least 7 points per game over the season.

Guy Gibbs region

This region is solid and touts the defending 4A State Champion in Mead, 18-4 Frederick, and a “Town” prospect in Thomas Jefferson who played very hard against his last Prep opponents. League.

The leader plays you say? Look no further than Elijah Knudsen who is our state’s leading shooter averaging 19 points per game, and he has a nice inside/outside advantage that many PGs don’t have in his fellow senior 7’0. James Shirs. The only 4A team Mead has lost against is that previously mentioned tough Longmont team. The Mavs are battle tested and will give anything for a repeat.

Armon Baker is an exciting game designer for Thomas Jefferson who leads his team in many statistical categories and he’s just a junior! The Spartans will be playing with fire but Mead’s depth and experience is just too much in this area.

Richard Tate area

Lots of balance in our top seeds here in the last 4A region. An undefeated team along with three other teams that landed in our latest 4A Coaches Poll will make this a lot of fun to follow.

This team is a mystery to many simply due to geography, but 23-0 says a lot for the 4-seeded Montrose. Many will wonder if they were tested “out west” and often they were. They’ve won 20 of their 23 wins by DOUBLE DIGITS…many games by 20 or more!

It’s easy ! Kadyn Betts and Pueblo Central finish our latest Coaches Poll as No. 5 and happen to be No. 5and global seed in 4A. Betts is a “double-double” machine averaging over 20 points and 12 rebounds per outing and he has the ability to put the team on his back if necessary. A Division-I NCAA caliber player who will be worth a “Watch Out For” look!

Whore ! Here we go guys. Some dreams will come true and some hearts will be broken, but that’s why we love the passion for competition and sport. Go out and enjoy your neighborhood school, the city, or just hoops in general. Always, 72 & Sunny in the gym #BallFever

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