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July 28, 2009

RivalsHigh 100 Countdown: 90-86

Rivals.com continues its 2009 countdown with teams ranked from No. 90-86.

We started at No. 100 and are releasing two groups of five teams per day, then we'll do a daily countdown from 10th to first. Our No. 1 team to be unveiled Aug. 10, two weeks from the start of the season.

After that, we will wait until Sept. 1 for the next rankings, then have them every Monday during the season.

The team rankings were compiled by high school sports managing editor Dallas Jackson, the Rivals AMP team, football recruiting analysts and the entire RivalsHigh network of publishers.

RivalsHigh 100: 100-96 | 95-91 | Post YOUR thoughts about it on the message board

Top 100 countdown
No. 90 Hutchinson, Kansas
COACH: Randy Dreiling
LAST SEASON: 11-2; won Kansas 6A state title
FINAL 2008 RIVALS.COM RANKING: No. 1 in Kansas

KEEP AN EYE ON: Salt Hawk Dominance. Hutchinson has long been the power in Kansas. It tried to go out of state last year and lost. To stay in the top 100 Hutch will need to once again dominate its state.
STAR POWER: SDE Geneo Grissom, is the No. 25-ranked end by Rivals.com. He is already commited to stay in state and will attend Kansas and play for the Jayhawks.
STRENGTHS: Tradition. Hutchinson has the mystique of being the best, and in close games it may play in opponents heads. The coaching staff does a great job of getting the kids into spots to succeed.
QUALITY DEPTH: "They are the best team in Kansas," Bob Hovey of HovPenSports.com said of Hutchinson. "And their JV team may be the second-best varsity team in the state, too."

Top 100 countdown
No. 89 Butler, North Carolina
COACH: Mike Newsome
LAST SEASON: 13-2
FINAL 2008 RIVALS.COM RANKING: No. 10 in North Carolina

KEEP AN EYE ON: Can Butler get out of the shadow of Independence? Butler has produced a lot of college talent recently but has yet to get the national attention of its in-state rivals. This season Butler brings back nine starters on offense, including running back Markel Moore. Coach Mike Newsome said Moore is working harder than ever.
STAR POWER: The only rated player on the team this season is Nate Charest. The two-star receiver, who led the team in receptions and interceptions in 2008, has yet to receive a scholarship offer.
STRENGTHS: The skill players. Butler has several players who can move to the ball. Alex Polofsky at linebacker may be the best to come through Butler in some time.
N.C. HEIRARCHY: "As long as Tommy Knotts is at Independence, they will be the class of the state," Deana King of NCPreps.com said. "But some teams are closing that gap. Butler got over on them two years ago and could do it again this season."

Top 100 countdown
No. 88 Blue Springs, Missouri
COACH: Kelly Donahoe
LAST SEASON: 9-2
FINAL 2008 RIVALS.COM RANKING: No. 6 in Missouri

KEEP AN EYE ON: The development of QB Jared Lanpher will be key for the team's success. He should get plenty of chances to earn more scholarship offers throwing to a talented group of receivers.
STAR POWER: Four-star WR Keeston Terry will leave the state and attend Nebraska next season. He would love to leave high school as a state champion.
STRENGTHS: A deep senior class (42 return) will give coach Kelly Donahoe some freedom with his depth chart.
QUOTABLE: "This is a very good team. They could be a great team if everyone embraces their role," Donahoe said.

Top 100 countdown
No. 87 Iowa City, Iowa
COACH: Dan Sabers
LAST SEASON: 10-1
FINAL 2008 RIVALS.COM RANKING: No. 5 in Iowa

KEEP AN EYE ON: The role players. With teams in the state focusing their defense on four-star ATH A.J. Derby, the rest of the team should have plenty of opportunity to break some big plays.
STAR POWER: Derby has offers from everyone. His decision will be one of the biggest in the state this season. He is also the shining star of a very good Iowa City High team.
STRENGTHS: Iowa City returns 13 starters - seven on offense, six on defense - so depth is great for a team being fueled by a disappointing second-round playoff loss.
QUOTEABLE: "We have a leadership committee of nine players," coach Dan Sabers said. "They do a great job letting everyone know what is expected. They are keeping the young kids focused on how they all need to work to win this year."

Top 100 countdown
No. 86 Shiloh Christian, Arkansas
COACH: Josh Floyd
LAST SEASON: 13-1; won Class 4A state title
FINAL 2008 RIVALS.COM RANKING: No. 99 nationally

KEEP AN EYE ON: Shiloh Christian coach Josh Floyd told RivalsHigh he wanted to make "a serious effort to run the ball more." If his team can incorporate more running from a spread, no-huddle pass attack, it could be dangerous.
STRENGTHS: The offensive line comes back very deep with three of the five starters being third-year starters. The skill-position players are all also very strong and should all benefit from great line play.
QUOTABLE: Floyd on recruiting allegations: "We don't get involved in that trash talk. The fact is when I got here five years ago these kids were in sixth grade and we knew they would be special. We do things right, and anyone who plays us know we play the game right too."
MEASURING STICK: Shiloh Christian will play Evangel Christian to open the season. This should be an excellent test for both teams.



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