The first half of the season has come to a close in the Junior Varsity 1 league, and there has been action all across the league. Many teams have gone completely undefeated, unmatched by their peers in their division. Today, I’m going to break down what’s been going on in JV1, and show you some early favorites to take home first place in 2019.
Up north we have some familiar names that are already looking like a safe bet for a run in the playoffs. McMaster University has taken north division 4 by storm, who went 6-0 with a 12-0 record in gamescore. A familiar name in CSL, McMaster is definitely going to be gunning for a top spot yet again. Moving on to another familiar name is Ryerson University, who is currently tied for first alongside the University of Waterloo. Ryerson does have one more match win compared to the University of Waterloo which puts them ahead, but this hotly contested division is one to keep an eye on. The other two teams reporting most of their games undefeated would be Sheridan College and Boston University. Sheridan is home to Ostrlch, a D2 ADC main that is a foundational player for Sheridan, who is going to have to play phenomenally to keep Sheridan in first.
The east has two extra divisions, which means even more teams that are trying their best to make it to the top. We’ll start in East 1 which is hotly contested between University of North Carolina at Greensboro, who leads the division at 7-0, and Virginia Commonwealth University trailing not far behind at 6-1. Moving on to East 2 we see a division that is somehow even more contested than East 1. Both Temple University and Pennsylvania State University sit at 6-0, and neither are going to give up that top spot very easily. While everyone at Temple is keeping up, D3 ADC Dragonback, like Ostrlch, is leading the team, and his mechanics need to be there to win the group against PSU. East 3 is home to another 7-0 team, Johns Hopkins University, who also boasts a 14-0 game record. This impressive team is surely one of the top candidates for making a deep run in the playoffs. The other two teams worth mentioning in the East would be le Universite de Montreal, and the New Jersey Institute of Technology, who both sit at 6-0, with a 12-0 game record. Lots of very impressive teams in the east, to say the least.
The South seems to be a very contested region, and only two schools managed to go undefeated: the University of Houston in South 1, and Kennesaw State University in South 4. Kennesaw State is led by the heart and soul of their team, top laner HAV0C, as well as one of the best ADCs in JV1, LightsPoxleitner. With these two players at the forefront of KSU, I see very bright things in the future for this team!* (I might be on KSU). In most other divisions in the South, there seems to be a race for first. South 7 is a close race between the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill, and the University of Central Florida, who both posted 6-1 records. Moving down to South 6, there is also a tight race between the University of South Florida and the… University of South Florida. Alright, after looking at South 6, which is basically just ‘the Florida division’, I can confirm that South Florida is THE League of Legends school for Florida. The other race I wanted to mention is in South 2, between the University of North Texas, and the University of Texas at Dallas. Both schools currently sit at a 6-1 record with a 12-3 gamescore. A very contested region as you can see, which means the next split is going to be that much more interesting!
In the midwest, half the divisions have a clear top dog, and the other half are insanely contested. Looking at Midwest 1, there are THREE teams with the same record at the top, Western University, University of Manitoba, and Wichita State University. Another division with the exact same situation is in Midwest 7, with University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and Central Michigan University. In divisions like these, a single match can make or break your record, so all of these teams are going to be trying as hard as they can to stay on top. There are a few impressive undefeated teams in the midwest, that all look like they have a chance to accomplish great things as a school. The undefeated teams in the midwest are University of Wisconsin - Madison, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Illinois Institute of Technology, Purdue University, Missouri State University, Michigan State University, University of Cincinnati, and last but not least, Miami University. With this many teams being undefeated, it’s very hard to determine who is actually the top out of all of these schools. Michigan State University has a very impressive roster, even boasting a D1 player Lanse, but until we see one of these teams lose, they all seem like solid contenders.
The west also features a plethora of talent, with many teams remaining undefeated in their respective divisions. West 1 is led by a familiar name, Simon Fraser University, who are 7-0 currently. Moving up to division 2 we see another frontrunner in the division, Menlo College at 7-0. In West 4, they are led by University of California, Berkeley, who also have a very impressive CLOL team. The UCal team is extremely good, with players Janna Kendrick and TurkeyMaster sitting at D2 and D3. Another team in JV1 with an impressive CLOL squad is Arizona State University, who also sits atop their division West 9 at 6-0. Continuing on with that trend, the University of Washington has two teams at the top of West 8, one at 7-0 and one at 6-1. Finally, the University of Oregon also sits at 7-0, not having lost a single game.
Alright, with all that being said, I’d like to now dive into a top 10 list. There are a lot of teams with perfect record, so this list is not going to be exact, as it’s hard to differentiate teams with exact records. With that being said, here are the top 10 schools in JV1:
10. University of Houston
Houston currently has a 7-0 record, and they don’t look like they’ll be dropping one anytime soon. Although not as star-studded as some of the top teams, they are one of the southern teams that can make an impact in JV.
9. Kennesaw State University
Kennesaw boasts a complete diamond lineup that screams consistency. While they might not be the best of the best in JV1, they have the potential to compete with the best CSL has to offer.
8. University de Montreal
The French-Canadian representative of the list, the University of Montreal has posted an impressive game score, all while having a complete diamond roster. As one of the best teams in the east, they have a strong potential of making it into the top 4 in the playoffs.
7. University of Cincinnati
This team also has an impressive roster, from a school that doesn’t usually have the best CLOL roster. With a little more practice they can easily crack into the top tiers.
6. Johns Hopkins University
Johns Hopkins is another university that finished completely undefeated in the regular season, and is hoping to do the same in the spring. Coordinator TheRinTohsaka is a D2 player and has been diamond for 5 years, and his veteranship is going to help John Hopkins finish in a top spot.
5. Pennsylvania State University
Pennsylvania State University is the first on our top 5 list for good reason; they are a very strong team who can finish in a top place if they continue to play their clean, coordinated game style.
4. Simon Fraser University
Simon Fraser is an experienced school, and this experience helps them place high. This, on top of the strong mechanics of the team, will see them in a top spot this year.
3. Michigan State University
MSU places third on the top 10 list, being undefeated. Looking at their players, I really liked the lineup they’ve set up and I’m excited to see where they end up.
2. McMaster University
A very talented, organized, and experienced team, McMaster is on the cusp of first place and can absolutely reach it. McMaster has been playing for many years, and I’d expect to see them in the finals.
1. University of California - Berkeley
Berkeley was my number one pick, especially after seeing their CLOL team have an amazing showing in their preseason playoffs. This team is filled with talent, and coupled alongside the school’s years of experience, makes them my number one team.