1. The playoff picture is a little jumbled because of the "Sunnyside situation."
For the four 4A teams, life is pretty simple: The top two teams advance to the regional round and will play the top two Greater Spokane League teams for state berths -- No. 2 at No. 1 style.
For the 3A teams, it is a little complicated, but it boils down to this: If nonleague Sunnyside finishes in playoff contention among the four Mid-Col teams, then seeding will be based on games against other 3A teams. If Sunnyside is not a factor, seeding will be based on all Mid-Col games, including against 4A foes.
2. There can be only one ... league champion. No 3A champ and 4A champ like the previous CBBN. The league is built like the GSL, with all games counting (note the Sunnyside exception above).
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Speaking of league champs, Chiawana and Hanford would seem to have a head start on the rest of league based on returning starters.
The Falcons figure to have one of the best defensive lines in the state and have six returning starters on defense. The big question they face is adding that extra dimension to offense and getting teams to respect the passing game.
The Riverhawks have only three senior starters but still are one of the most experienced teams in the league. They figure to have a pretty tough front seven of their own, and Terro Bell figures to run for big numbers with a full season in which to work.
3. Kamiakin and Kennewick staged a two-team battle for the CBBN 3A last season, and both graduated a boatload of talent. But don't expect either to drop off the map.
In fact, many are picking the Braves -- 25-2 over the last two seasons with deep playoff runs each time -- to stand atop the 3A teams again, and quarterback Kylle Robertson is one of the exciting players to keep an eye on.
4. After missing the playoffs last season, Richland is looking to get back in the postseason mix. It looks as though junior QB Zach Whitby and quarterbacks coach Tom Moore are on the same page, which could give Richland a true Bomber offense.
5. If there is a player from another team fans want to root for, it might be Southridge senior QB Grant Lathim, who has the unenviable task of following in the footsteps of a first-team all-league player.
But Lathim is no stranger to adversity. His freshman season was taken away by various injuries, and a dirtbike accident wiped out his sophomore year. Last year was spent recovering from a knee injured playing baseball.