Britball rejoice! After months of wondering whether we’d see the schedule before the new BAFA National Leagues season came around, we’re now just 11 days away from the big kickoff!
As is now tradition here at DC Towers, we gathered members of #TeamDC around a non-existent table to argue over who’ll win what this season. We’ve taken a look at conference titles, division titles, Britbowl and even threw out some Random predictions. After kicking off our Way Too Early Predictions with Divisions One and Two, we now turn our attention to the Premier! As always, if you think we’ve got it horribly wrong, shout at us in the comments!
Perhaps the biggest shock of 2016 (perhaps not to themselves) was the manner in which Merseyside Nighthawks settled in to life in the top division. They flew out of the gates, racing to a 6-0 record (including two victories over East Kilbride Pirates) before slipping up against Sheffield and registering two defeats to the eventual conference winners, Tamworth Phoenix. Lancashire Wolverines enjoyed a less than stellar campaign following a couple of promising seasons in the top flight, but were spared from relegation thanks to Coventry Jets‘ 1-9 record.
In 2017, a rivalry will be renewed as Edinburgh Wolves will make their Premier debut. The Wolves came unstuck against the Nighthawks in the Division One final two seasons ago, and will be out to prove a point.
A 10-0 regular season record in 2016 leads 13 of our writers to predict a second straight conference title for Tamworth Phoenix. The ‘Nix have been busy adding further to an already impressive roster this offseason. New to National Leagues coverage, SFC2 South correspondent JJ Segarty has plumped for Sheffield Giants to take the title. He either knows something the other writers don’t, or just chose to be different…
Another dominating season for the London Warriors in 2016, who again marched undefeated to the Britbowl title. More interestingly, London Blitz dropped 3 regular season games for the first time since…well, forever. Home and away defeats to the Warriors wouldn’t have hurt as much as the 14-17 home defeat to Bristol Aztecs. Farnham Knights chalked up 4 wins in their return to the top tier, and even South Wales Warriors entertained the neutrals en route to a 3-6-1 record. London Olympians limped over the line, racking up 8 straight losses to open the season before forfeiting their final two fixtures, finishing 0-10 and dropping to Division One.
A rebel without a cause, JJ again bucks the trend, opting for Bristol Aztecs to take home the Premier South title. The other writers, however, all agree on London Warriors dominating the Premier South once again.