West - Prepzone Preview

JuJu Smith leads Poly back to Prepzone

FOX Sports West's PrepZone kicks off year three this weekend, and the schedule of games is only getting better. Here is a preview of the four games that will be streaming live on FOXSportsWest.com

No. 10 Upland (0-0) @ No. 5 Mater Dei (0-0) 7PM (Prepzone)

Upland hasn't lost a regular season game in over two years, but the Scots haven't faced a challenge like they will get against a deep and experienced Mater Day team. Mater Dei returns 15 starters from a Pac-5 final team including quarterback Chase Forrest who helped lead the Monarch run in the playoffs. Washington verbal commitment Jonathan Lockett is a triple threat as a receiver, defensive back and return man for the Monarchs. Mater Dei tight end Kyle

CIF-SS: Top 20
1. St. John Bosco (0-0)
2. Serra (0-0)
3. Long Beach Poly (0-0)
4. Corona Centennial (0-0)
5. Mater Dei (0-0)
6. Vista Murrieta (0-0)
7. Mission Viejo (0-0)
8. St. Bonaventure (0-0)
9. Chaminade (0-0)
10. Upland (0-0) 
11. Edison (0-0)
12. Alemany (0-0)
13. Santa Margarita (0-0)
14. Crespi (0-0)
15. Hart (0-0)
16. Oaks Christian (0-0)
17. Rancho Verde (0-0)
18. Valencia (0-0)
19. Villa Park (0-0) 
20. Notre Dame (0-0)
Penniston has already gotten a scholarship offer from Florida State as a junior.

Upland lost a lot of talented players including quarterback Nate Romine and sackmaster Joe Mathis, but the Scots lost a lot off of their 2011 team and still went 13-1 last year. Junior quarterback Tyler Hilinski joined the Scots last year from Notre Dame and will make his first start for Upland. He will have talented senior athlete Jeff Farrar to throw to. Farrar is headed to Virginia next year. One of the most intriguing players to watch could be freshman receiver Nathan Tilford who already claims offers from Arizona State and USC.

: Mater Dei's experience out duels Uplands young talent. 

Crenshaw (0-0) @ No 3 Long Beach Poly (0-0) 7PM (Prepzone)

Poly's league schedule leaves a lot to be desired, so the Jackrabbits load up their non-league schedule with local powers including perennial City-Section power Crenshaw this week. The Jackrabbits got off to a rough start in 2012 only to rebound and win the prestigious Pac-5 Championship over Mater Dei. Poly has the best defensive back tandem in the country in senior safety Juju Smith and junior cornerback Iman Marshall. Smith is a highlight reel waiting to happen at defensive back and receiver. He doesn't get the press time of his highly recruited teammates, but linebacker Caleb Tucker is one of the top high school players in the state. 

Crenshaw returns dynamic quarterback Ajene Harris. Harris is undersized for the college level, but that doesn't help anyone trying to slow him down on Friday Nights. Harris returns his top weapon in running back Jacob Knight, and the defense is spearheaded by linebacker Corey Walker and defensive lineman Kenneth Davis.

: Poly returns too many players from last year's team who remember what 1-3 feels like. The Jackrabbits get off to a fast start with a convincing win over Crenshaw.

Serrano (0-0) @ Paraclete (0-0) 7PM (Prepzone)

Serrano and Paraclete both had terrific seasons in 2012 advancing to the CIF Finals in the Eastern and Mid-Valley Divisions respectively. Paraclete brings back an especially impressive team with 40 players returning from last season including 16 starters. New quarterback Brett Nelson has big shoes to fill as Tyler Carvolho has graduated, but big play receiver Triston Brown comes back after posting 14 touchdowns and four interceptions on offense. 

Serrano has more of a rebuilding job with nine starters returning including athlete Jay Henderson who is committed to San Diego State. Henderson posted 82 tackles and 6.5 sacks on defense and sees some time at receiver as well. Linebacker John Mackesy is only a junior, but he still led the team in tackles with 160 as a sophomore.

Prediction: Paraclete wins after some growing pains as each team starts a new quarterback.

South Anchorage (AK) (2-0) @ Moorpark (0-0) 7PM (Prepzone)

And you thought your road trip was tough? South Anchorage endures the 2300+ miles flight to take on Moorpark. The Wolverines have already played two games, and that experience could prove to be the difference as Moorpark will be shaking off the rust. Moorpark has a new quarterback in Anthony Upshaw, but they return Marmonte League lineman of the year Tyler Puccio.

Prediction: South Anchorage came to Southern California with gaudy numbers last year and got beat by Vista Murrieta 49-8. Moorpark is no '12 Vista Murrieta, but they're still a Pac-5 playoff team. The game should be closer and much more competitive, but Moorpark comes away with the win.


Scott began with Scout as the Southeast Regional Manager in 2002. In addition to his recruiting responsibilities, Scott developed and ran the National Scout Combine series from 2005 thru 2008. Scott has been Director of Scouting since 2006 and oversees the Recruiting Rankings for Scout.
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