PRESEASON ALL-BAY AREA NEWS GROUP
(Listed in alphabetical order)
Monte Beam, Concord, 5-9, 170, junior
Beam was a consistent presence on a Concord team in desperate need of it, running for 797 yards and eight touchdowns last season. He reportedly has improved both his strength and speed this offseason.
Charles Brown Jr., Antioch, 5-7, 155, senior
The Pittsburg transfer was a terror next to Jaden Rashada last season, running for 14 touchdowns and 992 yards. Brown Jr. will now be counted on to provide similar production at Pittsburg’s rival, Antioch, which is aiming for the league crown.
Salvador Espinoza, Lincoln-San Jose, 5-7, 155, senior
The baseball standout for Lincoln is also one of the best runners in the South Bay. Espinoza ran for 827 yards and seven touchdowns in nine games. Was named the BVAL Mt. Hamilton’s most valuable running back.
Jordan Fuentes, Live Oak, 5-11, 160, senior
Even though he battled injuries last season, Fuentes was still prolific on the ground for Live Oak. In eight games played, he ran for 623 yards and four touchdowns.
Charles Greer, De La Salle, 5-10, 180, senior
The Fresno State commit ran for 1,258 yards and 17 touchdowns on only 149 carries in 2021, and he caught three more touchdowns on top of that. De La Salle coach Justin Alumbaugh said Greer has put on weight and strength and “looks to carry the load” in 2022.
Jacob Lang, Westmont, 5-9, 180, senior
Lang earned his first-team all-league selection last season with a highly-efficient year. He ran for 1,107 yards and 12 touchdowns and did it on only 104 carries. Could crush those numbers with a larger workload.
Andrew Latu, Sacred Heart Prep, 5-11, 205, senior
Latu is a bowling ball near the goal line, as evidenced by his 13 rushing touchdowns and one touchdown reception last season. He’s far from just a goal-line merchant, though. Ran for 729 yards with a long run of 70 yards last season.
Greyson Mobley, Monta Vista, 6-0, 205, senior
Mobley has a good arm and threw for two touchdowns when pressed into quarterback duty, but his true talents lie as a runner. He ran for 1,133 yards and 11 touchdowns as Monta Vista’s workhorse on the ground. Was the team’s MVP and first-team all-league.
Ivan Nisa, Aragon, 6-1, 185, junior
Nisa was one of the integral pieces of an Aragon team that won a CCS championship, a game in which he ran for 165 yards and a touchdown. Ran for 892 yards and 13 touchdowns as a sophomore.
Andrew Palacios, Wilcox, 5-8, 165, senior
As a three-year starter for Wilcox, Palacios has a track record of excellence. He also has track speed, having run for 1,042 yards and 12 touchdowns for last year’s 2-A state championship runner-up.
Ben Pfaff, Bellarmine, 5-11, 190, senior
Pfaff was an easy choice for the 2021 all-WCAL team after he rushed for almost 1,000 yards and punched in 16 touchdowns. His coach, Jalal Beauchman, described Pfaff as “a hard runner with breakaway speed.”
Devon Rivers, Heritage, 5-7, 170, senior
As the son of former Fresno State star and NFL running back Ron Rivers and brother of Fresno State’s all-time TD leader, Ronnie Rivers, Devon is following in the family’s footsteps. Devon juked and sprinted to 1,175 yards and 15 touchdowns during his junior season, and is committed to play at Fresno State.
Shayan Shariat, Leigh, 6-1, 220, junior
The team’s sophomore of the year is a hammer of a back who uses his power to run through defenses. Shariat ran for 846 yards on 8.2 yards per carry during his sophomore season and this year should have a chance at cracking double-digit TDs.
Javian Thomas, McClymonds, 5-10, 170, class
Thomas was the engine of a California state champion, running for 20 touchdowns and around 1,500 yards. He combined with fellow all-Bay Area News Group teammate Amir Gobar to form the best backfield in the OAL.
Makoa Ah Tou, Hillsdale, 5-10, 200, senior
Ah Tou ran for 721 yards and eight touchdowns last season as part of a backfield collective. Hillsdale coach Mike Parodi said, “He will look to get many carries this fall.”
Jeaden Underwood, The King’s Academy, 5-7, 180, junior
Underwood was a revelation as a sophomore. He ran for 1,353 yards and chipped in 16 touchdowns on the ground and caught one more touchdown through the air. Underwood also flashed in the return game, taking back two kickoffs for a total of 105 yards.
Anthony Alonzo, Oakland Tech, 5-11, 180, senior
The three-star recruit has an offer from Grambling and should receive many more in the months to come. Alonzo reads his blocks, then explodes through openings for long gains. Will compete with Javian Thomas for the mantle as the top back in the Oakland Athletic League.
Jabari Mann, Serra, 5-11, 180, junior
The junior ran seven times for 58 yards and caught one pass for a 47-yard touchdown last season, totals he could dwarf in a bigger role this fall. With the departure of Hassan Mahasin to San Diego State, Mann could get a shot to fill Mahasin’s shoes as a do-everything playmaker.
A’Jhuan Parker, Alameda, 6-0, 165, junior
Parker led the team in tackles and rushing last season as a sophomore. Alameda coach Robin Morris said the runner has “developed in the offseason” and that a more mature Parker is ready for another big season.
Deondre Prim, Kennedy-Richmond, 5-10, 175, junior
Prim should burn defenses from multiple spots, one of those being as a runner out of the backfield and on sweeps. Coach Greg Marshall called Prim one of the best players he has had in eight years. “He’s a freak athlete (and) is a stud for us,” the coach added.
Herschel Turner, Freedom, 5-9, 195, junior
Freedom coach Zach Sims called Turner the best player to come through the Oakley school since current NFL pro-bowler Joe Mixon about a decade ago, and that Turner has put on 20 pounds to handle the transition to running back. Last season, Turner caught 75 passes and seven touchdowns and ran for five scores and 450 yards on the ground.
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