Scott is the best running back in the nation, and the top player in the West, so he was an easy choice to head our list. Knox is the top running back in the City but McNeal will give him some competition. Bass is the best in the Inland Empire, Dailey and Eskridge lead the NorCal charge and Tate and Bland are tops in the central part of the state. Coleman is the top overall fullback, and the best ball-carrier in Orange County.
1. Darrell Scott, Ventura (Calif.) St. Bonaventure
The reigning state player of the year, Scott will play his senior year for arguably the top team in the state, and behind an excellent offensive line.
2. Milton Knox, Van Nuys (Calif.) Birmingham- UCLA
When its all said and done, Knox could own every major rushing record in L.A. City Section history.
3. Ryan Bass, Corona (Calif.) Centennial
All he’s done is rush for almost 4,500 yards in the last two years. And reach the end zone 70 times.
4. Curtis McNeal, Venice (Calif.)- USC
One of the best “little” players in the country, McNeal can do it all, run, catch and return.
5. Terrance Dailey, Vacaville (Calif.)- Washington
An Ian Johnson clone, Dailey is the top rusher in NorCal and he’s looking to lead the Bulldogs to back-to-back section titles.
6. John Tate, Fresno (Calif.) Edison
One of the top backs in Central California, Tate doesn’t get the press that his defensive teammates do, but he’s aiming for a big senior season.
7. DeLeon Eskridge, San Mateo (Calif.) Serra
Eskridge is another versatile threat who can play a number of positions, but running back is where his heart is.
8. Thaddeus Brown, Sherman Oaks (Calif.) Notre Dame
Brown and his Notre Dame teammates will have plenty of chances to prove they’re one of the best teams in the state, and he’s hoping to make a statement this fall.
9. Louis Bland, Modesto (Calif.) Central Catholic
Bland is an elite wrestler, but he loves to grapple on the field, and he’s one of the most underrated players in the state.
10. David Freeman, Inglewood (Calif.)
What he lacks in size, he makes up for with heart, and he’s poised for a big season this year.
The Next 10 (in alphabetical order):
Andre Smith, Bakersfield (Calif.) East
Cedric Foster, Riverside (Calif.) J.W. North
Jack Sula, Carson (Calif.)
Jason Klingerman, Escondido (Calif.) Valley Center- Colorado State
Kenjon Barner, Riverside (Calif.) Notre Dame
Langston Jackson, Simi Valley (Calif.)
Lawrence Doss, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco
Marselius Williams, Sacramento (Calif.) Grant
Michael Harris, Chino Hills (Calif.)
Seta Pohahau, San Mateo (Calif.) Aragon- BYU
Wes Fletcher, Placentia (Calif.) Valencia
1. Derrick Coleman, Fullerton (Calif.) Troy- UCLA
Blocks like a fullback, runs like a tailback. Coleman is the best runner in Orange County.
2. Rob Andrews, Pleasanton (Calif.) Foothill
Andrews could play on either side of the ball, but we like him best at fullback.
3. Ina Liaina, Oxnard (Calif.) Rio Mesa
Liaina is in the same boat as Andrews, a good linebacker who’s probably best at fullback.
4. Kennith Jackson, San Jose (Calif.) Archbishop Mitty
Yet another two-way threat, Jackson’s attention is coming as a fullback.
5. Casey Cotta, Los Banos (Calif.)
Cotta moved to tailback for his senior year, but he’s at his best blocking defenders.
Others to watch:
Etu Taufa, Lawndale (Calif.) Leuzinger
L.J. McGee, Stevenson Ranch (Calif.) West Ranch
Nick Kalpin, Los Gatos (Calif.)