1 All Stars Only ME Superhero - Spring 2009 Cardinal
36 Little Lebowski Urban Achievers UT Mountain - Summer 2009 Royal Blue
37 Kickhopopotamus MA Ivy - Spring 2009 Lime Green
72 Slow Yer Roll NM Sandia - Summer 2009
Analysis: While Maine ball has been in full swing for a good 4 years, it hasn’t enjoyed the distinction of some of its northeastern brethren in Boston or NYC. They look good on video, and obviously they had to roll some teams really badly to get the #1 seed, but national-level competition is going to be a big wakeup call for ASO. They could get out of this pool on pure raw talent, but may not get much further without the big-game experience. Utah has been a region of steady growth for WAKA – again, just not enough to prepare this version of the Lebowskis for what’s before then. Slow Yer Roll also comes from a region that should be stronger than it is – and no, they’re not even the dominant team in the Land of Enchantment. Then, we come to the Kickhops, who actually play in a city with semi-decent competition – look for them to contend a little bit – and lead this pack -- considering they’ve seen more talent than their pool counterparts.
2 Ludicrous Speed AZ Fire - Winter 2009 Royal Blue
35 5th Year Seniors CA Golden Gate - Spring 2009 Pistachio
38 We've Got the Runs CA Junction - Spring 2009 Navy
71 BoneCrushers WV Jewel City - Summer 2009 Irish Green
Analysis: Our friends the crushers are just happy to be here. We do hope it’s start of a better representation from Appalachia for years to come. I would not count the Junction Runs out too easily from a 2nd spot, as the division boasts many overflow players from the main SoCal leagues looking to form funner, cross-roster teams. The 5th Years are here for their kickball swan song, after having held up the NorCal social kickball scene for so long. While they may have bits and pieces of talent, they probably don’t have the motivation. Clear favorite in this group is Ludicrous Speed. A known quantity – lots of talent – has been there before.
3 Hugo St Hooligans TX Victory - Summer 2009 Irish Green
34 Weve Got The Runs GA Thunder - Fall 2008 White
39 Playground Bullies SC Upstate Division - Fall 2008
70 The Savage Freds CA Action - Winter 2009 Gold
Analysis: If we’re looking for a sleeper out of Texas, it’d have to be in Dallas, where the WAKA scene has thrived in the Lone Star State for the longest time. Since we last checked in on Dallas, the competitive landscape has changed somewhat, but we would not be surprised to see some talent out of the Hooligans. WGTR is an enigma – there are rumors the Peachtree State should be pretty far along by now. The Bullies represent a part of the kickball-verse that should have built on its past FC appearance long ago but hasn’t. The Freds are quite familiar with how competitive ball is played; it’s just a matter of whether they play it or not come tourney day. Look for good showings from WGTR and the Freds, and maybe the Hooligans will surprise us by putting Dallas’ steady progress on display.
4 Best Coast Ballers CA Gold Rush - Spring 2009 Azalea
33 Stewies Sexy Party MA Minutemen - Spring 2009 Irish Green
40 Team Mandrake X NM Mesa Division - Fall 2008
69 CLAM CHOPS! NM Sandia - Summer 2009 Yellow
Analysis: First pool with quite a bit of talent to talk about. BCB are the class of NorCal, hands down. They have talent in spades and good leadership at the top. While they have big game experience from last year’s FC under their belt, the competition at home itself has fallen several notches. Still see them as the favorite out of this pool. SSP is no stranger to FC, having represented Beantown multiple times. We expect to see a much more intense game out of them – and wouldn’t be surprised by a 2nd place finish in the pool. The Poll finally saw Mandrake play for the first time; the talent is certainly there, but like BCB, putting together the necessary intensity for tourney play when the home competition is so sparse will be key to contending against the Ballers or Stewies. Clam Chops are probably going to be looking up at the other teams in this pool.