Twin City Blue


Nothing is a sure thing, but Minneapolis North, fresh off an appearance in the Class 1A state semifinals and featuring a lineup loaded with talent and speed, should win this subdistrict going away. Minneapolis Edison’s new coach is J.J. Swain, son of former Viking John Swain.


1. Minneapolis North (12-1)


2. St. Agnes (5-5)


3. Brooklyn Center (4-6)


4. St. Paul Humboldt (1-8)


5. Minneapolis Roosevelt (2-7)


6. Spectrum (1-8)


7. Minneapolis Edison (2-7)


Twin City Gold


Easily the toughest of the four Twin City sub-districts. Providence Academy gets the nod thanks to returning QB Henry Van Dellen, who has committed to North Dakota St. What is SMB? A first-year cooperative between Blake, Minnehaha Academy and St. Paul Academy, all of whom were experiencing declining participation.


1. Providence Academy (9-1)


2. St. Paul Johnson (6-4)


3. Minneapolis South (2-7)


4. SMB Wolfpack (NA)


5. New Life Academy/ St. Croix Prep (2-7)


6. St. Paul Harding (3-6)


Twin City Maroon


Over the past four years, St. Croix Lutheran has posted a 42-7 record and has won Class 3A state titles in 2011 and 2013. But the Crusaders will have to replace 20 of 22 starters. That could bode well for St. Paul Central, which has offensive weapons galore and enviable size on both lines.


1. St. Croix Lutheran (8-3)


2. St. Paul Central (7-3)


3. St. Anthony (6-4)


4. Fridley (3-6)


5. Minneapolis Washburn (4-5)


6. Minneapolis Southwest (6-4)


7. St. Paul Highland Park (4-5)


Twin City Red


Breck is the choice, but not by much. The Mustangs have a Division I-caliber wide receiver in Ramaud Chiaokhiao-Bowman, a 6-3, 195-pounder who has committed to Northwestern. Columbia Heights has been .500 or better in each of the past three regular seasons but has significant holes to fill.


1. Breck (6-4)


2. Columbia Heights (5-5)


3. Mound-Westonka (2-7)


4. Concordia Academy (3-6)


5. Minneapolis Henry (4-5)


6. St. Paul Como Park (3-7)


East Metro Blue


Cretin-Derham Hall and East Ridge have the best athletes. But in the end defense wins championships, making Mounds View the team to beat. The Mustangs won the Suburban East a year ago and return four key defensive starters — two on the line, two at linebacker — from a unit that only allowed 9.2 points per game.


1. Mounds View (9-2)


2. Cretin-Derham Hall (6-3)


3. East Ridge (9-2)


4. Stillwater (7-3)


5. White Bear Lake (4-6)


6. Woodbury (1-8)


7. Forest Lake (0-9)


8. Roseville (3-6)


East Metro Red


In the past six years, three schools from this group — Mahtomedi, St. Thomas Academy and South St. Paul — have always been in the hunt for a conference championship. Don’t look for that to change in 2015. The Cadets have a history of winning league titles, and are favored to add another to their trophy case.


1. St. Thomas Academy (6-3)


2. Mahtomedi (6-5)


3. South St. Paul (9-2)


4. Simley (10-4)


5. Hill-Murray (5-5)


6. Hastings (3-7)


7. Park of Cottage Grove (2-7)


8. Henry Sibley (3-6)


9. North St. Paul (3-6)


10. Tartan (1-8)


East Metro White


A division hit hard by graduation, especially at Lakeville North and Rosemount. One of the two schools won the South Suburban Conference all five years of its existence. A new look (district scheduling) has to mean a new champion, right? Look for Lakeville South to finally reach the next level under coach Larry Thompson.


1. Lakeville South (3-6)


2. Rosemount (10-1)


3. Lakeville North (10-2)


4. Burnsville (4-6)


5. Eastview (4-5)


6. Apple Valley (3-7)


7. Eagan (5-5)


8. Farmington (0-9)


North Central Blue


This shrewd subdistrict alignment kept together a five-sided rivalry from the Mississippi 8 and added a natural fit in Elk River. Both St. Michael-Albertville and Rogers have big holes to fill but have large talent pools from which to draw. Elk River’s disciplined Wing-T offense gives the Elks a chance to win every game.


1. St. Michael-Albertville (10-2)


2. Elk River (7-3)


3. Rogers (8-2)


4. St. Francis (8-3)


5. Buffalo (3-6)


6. Cambridge-Isanti (4-5)


North Central White


Monticello has 6-5½, 285-pound tackle Conner Olson, a Minnesota recruit, leading an ornery offensive line capable of flattening everyone en route to the title. Chisago Lakes and Princeton have talent enough to hit back, but this one goes to the boys in the trenches.


1. Monticello (6-4)


2. Chisago Lakes (7-3)


3. Princeton (5-5)


4. Big Lake (3-6)


5. North Branch (3-7)


6. Duluth East (1-8)


East Central South


The 2014 season ended in big disappointment for Hutchinson, which lost to motivated DeLaSalle in the Class 4A semifinals. But at Hutch losing nearly its entire starting lineup to graduation means opportunity, not backsliding. Defensive-minded Glencoe-Silver Lake will have a say in the final order of finish, as will Delano.


1. Hutchinson (11-1)


2. Glencoe-Silver Lake (9-4)


3. Delano (3-7)


4. Holy Family (7-3)


5. Watertown-Mayer (7-2)


6. Annandale (2-8)


7. Dassel-Cokato (3-6)


8. Litchfield (1-8)

Suburban Red


Cooper is led by dynamic playmaker Phillip Howard at quarterback (plus safety and return man). The Hawks are excited about other top athletes and an improved kicking game as well. The big question is whether they can control the line of scrimmage against the likes of Spring Lake Park and DeLaSalle.


1. Cooper (5-4)


2. Spring Lake Park (8-4)


3. DeLaSalle (11-2)


4. Armstrong (3-6)


5. Park Center (5-5)


6. Benilde-St. Margaret’s (5-5)


7. St. Louis Park (5-5)


8. Irondale (0-9)


Suburban White


They played solid football in the former Wright County Conference, experience that should serve Orono and Waconia well. Conversely, Holy Angels romp through the old Tri-Metro won’t help much. The Stars also have a new coach.


1. Orono (7-3)


2. Chanhassen (7-3)


3. Waconia (4-5)


4. Chaska (7-3)


5. Bloomington Jefferson (7-4)


6. Holy Angels (10-1)


7. Bloomington Kennedy (2-7)


8. Richfield (1-9)

West Metro North


Expect the Class 6A runner-up Eagles to master what is essentially a paired-down version of the old Northwest Suburban. They return talented running backs and the bulk of a stout defense. Victories against Osseo and Centennial will be key to the Eagles’ North crown aspirations.


1. Totino-Grace (11-2)


2. Osseo (6-4)


3. Centennial (6-3)


4. Anoka (2-7)


5. Blaine (5-5)


6. Andover (4-6)


7. Champlin Park (5-4)


8. Coon Rapids (1-8)


West Metro South


Take all five teams from the former Lake Conference, including the Eden Prairie dynasty, mix in two of the best teams from the northern and southern suburbs and you get, without question, the state’s toughest subdistrict. This is going to be fun.


1. Eden Prairie (13-0)


2. Maple Grove (10-2)


3. Prior Lake (9-2)


4. Edina (2-7)


5. Wayzata (3-7)


6. Minnetonka (4-5)


7. Hopkins (5-5)


8. Shakopee (2-7)