For the last three summers, we have been counting down the days to the start of the cross country season by highlighting 30 boys teams and 30 girls teams to watch out for! The goal isn't to define the actual top 30 teams in the state - a nearly impossible task - but instead to focus on squads that have something that stands out about them. We use returning rankings from the 2017 fall season, returning 1600 and 3200 rankings from the 2018 spring season, and our own internal Improvement Ratings to identify 60 XC teams that will be interesting to follow!
As we lead up to the start of the countdown, we will post most of the raw data that provides the foundation for our selections. The exception is the Improvement Ratings themselves, which I will save for after the countdown. During the countdown itself, we will periodically post individual returning rankings as well, so that the entire focus isn't solely on teams. And we won't forget about the last meets of the outdoor track season, as California athletes will be in competition at the AAU and USATF national championships later this month. So stay with us, and let us get you hyped for the 2018 cross country season!