2017 O.C. Hot 150: Ranking Orange County’s impact football players

A duel between All-County teammates for the No. 1 spot. A plethora of skill players in the middle. And several potential surprises toward the end.

The annual OCVarsity Hot 150 again takes an expansive look at the many talented players in Orange County football and ranks them according to their expected impact during the upcoming season.

The selections were based on input from coaches and players, analysis of video highlights from last season, college interest, statistics and observations.

Mater Dei teammates JT Daniels and Amon-Ra St. Brown were considered for the No. 1 spot, with the junior quarterback edging his senior wide receiver.

St. Brown agreed with the selection, noting Daniels’ standing in the class of 2019 as a USC commit. But Monarchs coach Bruce Rollinson suggested another arrangement at the top.

“Both of them,” he said with a laugh. “1 and 1-A. … I’m not going to go down that route.”

For the OCVarsity Hot 150, there’s only one path toward the 2017 season, so let’s begin:

Mater Dei, QBMater Dei quarterback JT Daniels in Anaheim on Tuesday, July 25, 2017. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)Mater Dei quarterback JT Daniels. (Photo by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The Register’s reigning offensive player of the year edged teammate Amon-Ra St. Brown for the No. 1 ranking. Daniels, named Rivals’ No. 1 recruit in the class of 2019, has the advantage as the trigger man for the most potent offense in the county. He set O.C. records last season for passing yards (4,849) and touchdowns (67) and returns nearly his entire offense. Daniels also seems as focused as ever. The reigning Trinity League MVP committed to USC the day before fall camp began and said, “Season starts tomorrow. Recruiting ends today.” Daniels’ arm fatigue will be watched. He bypassed the Battle at the Beach passing tournament in July to get some extra rest.

Mater Dei, WRMater Dei wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown for the cover of SoCal Prep Legends football preview magazine. in Anaheim, CA on Wednesday, July 19, 2017. (Photo by Sam Gangwer, Orange County Register/SCNG)Mater Dei wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown. (Photo by Sam Gangwer, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The speedy All-County wideout pushed for the top spot on the strength of an impressive summer and junior campaign. He collected 60 receptions last season for 1,229 yards, including a school-record 21 TDs. Scout.com ranks him as the best player in the state for the class of 2018. St. Brown also has a physical concern. He missed the Battle at the Beach passing tournament with a finger injury, but he is aiming to play in the Monarchs’ season opener.

Mater Dei, LBMater Dei inside linebacker Solomon Tuliaupupu, one of the many weapons that helps make Mater Dei football the No. 1 team in the O.C. Preseason Top 25 football rankings. Photographed in Santa Ana, CA on Friday, August 11, 2017. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)Mater Dei inside linebacker Solomon Tuliaupupu.(Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The highly-recruited transfer from Claremont is a complete player and arrives at Mater Dei at an important time. The senior brings the size (6-2, 220), physical presence, athleticism and leadership to anchor a unit that graduated several players with those qualities after last season. Nicknamed “Solo,” Tuliaupupu had 128 total tackles last season, including 18 for loss. Mater Dei fans will love his aggressive pursuit of ball carriers.

Mission Viejo, CB/WRMission Viejo defensive back/wide receiver Olaijah Griffin for the cover of SoCal Prep Legends football preview magazine. in Anaheim, CA on Thursday, July 20, 2017. (Photo by Sam Gangwer, Orange County Register/SCNG)Mission Viejo defensive back/wide receiver Olaijah Griffin. (Photo by Sam Gangwer, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The UCLA commit starts the season as arguably the county’s top two-way player. He is the best lockdown-cornerback in the county and also an elite wide receiver. Griffin had 39 receptions for 759 yards and 11 TDs last season. If you don’t believe in his receiving skills, watch him split defensive backs or just run away from others.

Mission Viejo, WRMission Viejo's Austin Osborne has no one around him as he runs toward the end zone for a score during a game at Mission Viejo High School in Mission Viejo on Friday, October 14, 2016. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register, SCNG)Mission Viejo wide receiver Austin Osborne. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register, SCNG)
Who needs the spread formation when you have the duo of Osborne and Olaijah Griffin? The Washington commit possesses the route-running skills, 6-foot-3 size and hands to beat double coverage. Osborne averaged a staggering 26.7 yards per reception last season and caught 16 TDs. He is aiming for a third consecutive All-County season.

Edison, QBEdison quarterback Griffin O'Connor for the cover of SoCal Prep Legends football preview magazine. in Anaheim, CA on Wednesday, July 19, 2017. (Photo by Sam Gangwer, Orange County Register/SCNG)Edison quarterback Griffin O’Connor.(Photo by Sam Gangwer, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The senior appears well-positioned to deliver another huge season. While veteran Edison coach and passing-game guru Dave White retired after last season, O’Connor teams with new coach Jeff Grady, a former QB under White. The reigning Sunset League MVP also returns plenty of weapons, so he could push toward 4,000 yards passing and 40 TDs. He also rushed for 415 yards last season and 10 TDs.

JSerra, QBJserra quarterback Matt Robinson throws during the Battle at the Beach seven on seven football tournament at Edison High School in Huntington Beach on Saturday, July 8, 2017. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register, SCNG)JSerra quarterback Matt Robinson. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register, SCNG)
The Montana commit has the experience, skill set and weapons to produce a monster season. Robinson is a three-year starter in the Trinity League, so don’t expect much to rattle him. The dual-threat passed for just over 2,000 yards last season and rushed for another 459 yards. Robinson’s receiving corps includes speedy Munir McClain, a transfer from Santa Margarita. The Lions also feature transfer running backs Al Fisher and Jamiel Henning. If JSerra finds its chemistry on offense, watch out.

Mater Dei, LTMater Dei offensive lineman Tommy Brown is the highest-ranked offensive lineman in the county and has recently committed to Alabama in Anaheim, on Wednesday, July 26, 2017. (Photo by Nick Agro, Orange County Register/SCNG)Mater Dei offensive lineman Tommy Brown. (Photo by Nick Agro, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The Alabama commit holds down arguably the most important job in O.C. football: protecting the blind-side of quarterback JT Daniels. Brown has the size, toughness and drive to again perform well. And when he does his job, Daniels and his receivers are difficult to handle.

Tustin, RB

Tustin High School's KC Carr III is considered the top running backs in the county. (Photo by Ana Venegas, Orange County Register/SCNG)
Tustin running back KC Carr III.
(Photo by Ana Venegas, Orange County Register/SCNG)

The uncommitted senior will be a marked man by defenses this fall, but don’t expect the All-County back to slow down. Ranked No. 114 to start last season, Carr erupted for a county-leading 2,745 yards in the return season for Coach Myron Miller. The ground-oriented Miller remains at Tustin, so expect him and Carr to remain hungry for yardage.

10. TAE LE
Corona del Mar, WR/TETae Le, Corona del Mar, wide receiver. (Photo by Kyusung Gong/ Orange County Register, SCNG)Corona del Mar receiver Tae Le. (Photo by Kyusung Gong/ Orange County Register, SCNG)
Le climbed from No. 72 on the Hot 150 last year to be a first-team All-County performer. He teamed with Chase Garbers, who is now at Cal, to grab 78 receptions for 1,294 yards and 22 TDs. The Sea Kings are searching for a new quarterback, but they know what they have in the 6-foot-4, 237-pound Le. Because of his size, versatility and athleticism, he’s a matchup nightmare for defenses.

Mission Viejo, LBMission Viejo senior linebacker Christian LaValle throws-up the "forks up" of the Arizona State Sun Devils in Anaheim, on Wednesday, August 9, 2017. (Photo by Nick Agro, Orange County Register/SCNG)Mission Viejo senior linebacker Christian LaValle throws-up the “forks up” of the Arizona State Sun Devils. (Photo by Nick Agro, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The senior gives the Diablos a legit defensive player of the year candidate. The Arizona State commit led Mission Viejo in tackles as a junior with 108.

Servite, DB/WRServite football player Julius Irvin plays safety and is considered one of the top players in the county. in Anaheim, CA on Monday, August 7, 2017. (Photo by Sam Gangwer, Orange County Register/SCNG)Servite safety Julius Irvin. (Photo by Sam Gangwer, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The highly-recruited senior anchors an improved secondary, but look for him to also emerge as a deep threat on offense. Irvin, the son of former Rams All-Pro LeRoy Irvin, has USC in his final-five college choices.

Santa Margarita, WR/RB/ATH.Santa Margarita senior Malone Mataele is one of five O.C. players on the watch list for the Polynesian High School Player of the Year.

Santa Margarita running back Malone Mataele.The dynamic Utah commit might be the county’s top return man. He had 1,341 all-purpose yards last season and returned two kicks and two punts for scores.

Orange Lutheran, QBOrange Lutheran quarterback Ryan Hilinski looks to pass against Centennial in the first half of the game in Corona, CA. Friday, Sep. 9, 2016. TERRY PIERSON,THE PRESS-ENTERPRISE/SCNGOrange Lutheran quarterback Ryan Hilinski.
Orange Lutheran quarterback Ryan Hilinski.

Servite, WRServite's Delon Hurt gestures for a first down after a catch during the Battle at the Beach seven on seven football tournament at Edison High School in Huntington Beach on Saturday, July 8, 2017. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register, SCNG)Servite’s Delon Hurt.(Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register, SCNG)
The rising senior dominated at the Battle at the Beach passing tournament and stands as the Friars’ No. 1 target

Mater Dei, WR/DBMater Dei wide receiver CJ Parks, one of the many weapons that helps make Mater Dei football the No. 1 team in the O.C. Preseason Top 25 football rankings. Photographed in Santa Ana, CA on Friday, August 11, 2017. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)Mater Dei wide receiver CJ Parks. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The UCLA commit is a popular pick for breakout performer to watch. He impressed at the Battle at the Beach 7-on-7 tournament in July and could help the Monarchs on defense.

Orange Lutheran, WRServiteÕs Kyle Ford holds onto the ball for a 20-yard gain and a first down as Orange LutheranÕs Lance Dravis takes him down in the first quarter of a Trinity League football game at Orange Coast College. STEVEN GEORGES, CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERKyle Ford, shown playing for Servite in 2016, is now a potential standout for Orange Lutheran. (STEVEN GEORGES, CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER)
Ford has emerged as the top junior wideout in the county. As a sophomore, he had 52 receptions for 950 yards, including a huge game against Mater Dei.

JSerra, DEJSerra defensive lineman Abdul-Malik McClain announced his commitment to UCLA on Monday, July 31, 2017. (Photo courtesy of Abdul-Malik McClain via Twitter)JSerra defensive lineman Abdul-Malik McClain. (Photo courtesy of Abdul-Malik McClain via Twitter)
The UCLA commit has the speed and size to be a fearsome defender. He should blow past his total of 7.5 sacks in 2016.

Los Alamitos, LBIssaiah Johnson, linebacker for Los Alamitos on Friday, July 28, 2017. (Photo by Nick Agro, Orange County Register/SCNG)Issaiah Johnson, linebacker for Los Alamitos on Friday, July 28, 2017. (Photo by Nick Agro, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The Arizona commit leads a stellar group of linebackers. His resume includes 140 tackles last season and growth in the weight room.

Corona del Mar, LBCorona del Mar high's Clyde Moore sacks Sierra Canyon high's quarterback Johnny Hawkins during the second half of the CIF-SS Division 4 championship game at Granada Hills High in Granada Hills on Friday, December 02, 2016. Sierra Canyon high wins in double overtime with the score of 36 to 35. (Photo by Ed Crisostomo, Orange County Register/SCNG)Corona del Mar’s Clyde Moore. (Photo by Ed Crisostomo, Orange County Register/SCNG)
If you’re looking for a hard hitter, watch the Colorado commit dish out the punishment.

Mater Dei, WR/DEMater Dei's Bru McCoy, one of the many weapons that helps make Mater Dei football the No. 1 team in the O.C. Preseason Top 25 football rankings. Photographed in Santa Ana, CA on Friday, August 11, 2017. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)Mater Dei’s Bru McCoy. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The junior, with an offer from Ohio State among others, is an emerging star who improved with each game last season. He also is an explosive third-down rush specialist. His six sacks last season earn him bonus points.

Pacifica, LBPacifica senior linebacker Isaak Togia in Anaheim, on Wednesday, August 9, 2017. (Photo by Nick Agro, Orange County Register/SCNG)Pacifica senior linebacker Isaak Togia. (Photo by Nick Agro, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The senior’s stock is soaring with recruiters. Offers this summer from Penn State and Notre Dame confirm he plays with a high-octane motor.

Mater Dei, WRMater Dei receiver Nikko Rimigio makes a catch along the sidelines against St. John Bosco during the Battle at the Beach seven on seven football tournament at Edison High School in Huntington Beach on Saturday, July 8, 2017. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register, SCNG)Mater Dei receiver Nikko Rimigio.(Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register, SCNG)
The Cal commit would be the No. 1 wide receiver for most teams, but he thrives with the Monarchs’ talented bunch. He reeled in 46 receptions for 758 yards last season.

Whittier Christian, QBWhittier Christian quarterback Quinn Commans. (Photo by Brian Whitehead, Staff)Whittier Christian quarterback Quinn Commans. (Photo by Brian Whitehead, Staff)
The senior is a must-check player on Friday nights after an eye-popping 2016. In 10 games, he threw for almost 3,800 yards and 43 TDs, including nine against Bell. For the season, he was intercepted only twice in 367 attempts.

Pacifica, QBPacifica's Ben Jefferson throws a pass during a nonleague game against Newport Harbor at Orange Coast College on Sep. 1, 2016. (Photo by Kyusung Gong/Orange County Register)Pacifica quarterback Ben Jefferson. (Photo by Kyusung Gong/Orange County Register)
The speedy senior might be the best pure dual-threat quarterback in the county. If the Mariners make a playoff run, watch his total yards pile up. Jefferson could approach 4,000 yards.

HOT 150: PLAYERS 26-50

Mission Viejo, QB
The St. John Bosco transfer takes the reins of an offense that features wideouts Olaijah Griffin and Austin Osborne, tackle Jarrett Patterson and coordinator Rob Johnson. The junior won a golden ticket.

Sonora, CB/WR
County fans will be eager to see highlights on both sides of the ball from the Cal commit.

Servite, OLB/TE
The 6-foot-4, 215-pound junior is a fast-rising defender who has been offered by UCLA among others. He plays with a mean streak.

Capistrano Valley, DE
The senior led a talented defense in sacks last season with 18. He could crack 20 in 2017, so don’t forget his name during postseason awards.

Mission Viejo, OT

Mission Viejo offensive lineman Jarrett Patterson committed to Arizona State on Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register/SCNG)
Mission Viejo offensive lineman Jarrett Patterson. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The Arizona State commit is another tackle who provides vital protection for a high-powered offense.

Edison, WR
The athletic senior tops the list of Edison receivers set to prosper with the return of QB Griffin O’Connor. He’ll join the 1,000-yard club this fall, and then he’ll excite the school’s basketball fans during the winter.

Santa Margarita, RB
The Eagles found their groove late last season as Magyar rolled up yards in consecutive victories against Orange Lutheran, Servite and Serra of Gardena. They’ll ride the senior, who is also an excellent receiver, again.

San Clemente, RB
The highest-ranked Triton surged late in 2016 to help San Clemente capture its historic CIF and state titles. Look for him to pick up where he left off.

Mater Dei, OG
Interior linemen don’t get much attention, but this senior is worth a look. He’s one of the county’s most improved players and holds offers from Stanford and Notre Dame among others.

JSerra WR
The Santa Margarita transfer gives QB Matt Robinson a serious deep threat. The junior could eventually follow his brother to UCLA.

Yorba Linda, WR/DB

Yorba Linda High's Ricky Lane makes a move against St. Anthony High's Elijah Bankston during the first half of the Southern Region Division 4-A final of the CIF State football playoffs at Veterans Stadium in Long Beach on Saturday, December 10, 2016. (Photo by Ed Crisostomo, Orange County Register/SCNG)
Yorba Linda High’s Ricky Lane.(Photo by Ed Crisostomo, Orange County Register/SCNG)
The junior reads the game well. His instincts led to five interceptions in ’16 while his smooth routes and sure hands netted 64 receptions. He’s a smooth operator.

Garden Grove, OL/DL
The Argonauts’ massive lineman (6-6, 330) throws opponents around like dolls. They should try to avoid him.

Mission Viejo, CB
Offenses would be smart to avoid Olaijah Griffin’s side of the Diablos defense, but they won’t find much relief against Mitchell. He’s outstanding and holds a Notre Dame offer.

Servite, CB
The 5-foot-11 junior is rising after setting a school record in the long jump. He landed an offer from USC and impressed during the summer.

Sunny Hills, MLB

Sunny Hills senior Brandon Won committed to Harvard during the summer. (Photo by Michael Huntley, Contributor)
Sunny Hills senior Brandon Won committed to Harvard during the summer. (Photo by Michael Huntley, Contributor)
Won’s numbers are top-40 worthy: 6-foot-2, 215 pounds, 4.82 weighted GPA, 101 total tackles and four forced fumbles in ’16. The Harvard commit packs a punch.

La Habra, OG
The La Mirada transfer returns to his freshman-year roots as a road-grading offensive lineman. La Habra’s line will be stellar.

San Juan Hills, OG/DT
The two-way lineman deserves attention. Most of the teams in the Pac-12 have offered, and he’s a big reason why the Stallions could surprise.

Santa Margarita, LB
The senior linebacker surfaced last season as a sure-tackler with excellent pursuit. He led the Eagles with 119 tackles.

Mater Dei, OLB
The transfer from Santa Margarita is being mentioned as a key player for the Mater Dei defense.

Buena Park, WR/FS
The senior is one of the few well-known players who stayed with the Coyotes after their coaching change. He’s the No. 1 target at receiver and a key defender at free safety.

St. Margaret’s WR

St. Margaret's senior Ryan Cragun has committed to Penn. (Nick Agro, SCNG)
St. Margaret’s senior Ryan Cragun has committed to Penn. (Nick Agro, SCNG)
The Penn commit is a highlight-waiting-to-happen as a receiver or kick returner. He had 70 receptions for 1,137 yards as a junior.

Mater Dei, DB
The newcomer has emerged as one of the county’s top sophomores. He counts Utah as one of his offers.

La Habra, OLB/RB
Fuamatu is another top sophomore. Expect Coach Frank Mazzotta to unleash him on offense and defense.

El Toro, QB
The senior is coming off a strong summer and has talented teammates at receiver, including Austin Derrico. The Chargers love to sling the ball.

Santa Margarita, QB
The transfer from Troy faces competition for playing time but his dual-threat abilities are intriguing. The Eagles are deep at running back and tight end, so imagine the play fakes.

HOT 150: PLAYERS 51-75

Corona del Mar, RB
The senior flashed his potential in the playoffs last season, gaining 240 yards during a windy and cold Division 4 final. With the quarterback spot in question, feeding Murphy carries becomes part of CdM’s answer.

JSerra, OL
The senior anchors a unit that will get after opponents under new coach Pat Harlow, a former offensive lineman at USC.

Servite, DB
The junior is among the rising O.C. players offered by UCLA and a big reason why the Friars’ secondary will be tough.

Tesoro, QB

Tesoro quarterback Chase Petersen looks for a receiver in the second quarter against La Habra on Friday.(Photo by PAUL RODRIGUEZ )
Tesoro quarterback Chase Petersen. (Photo by PAUL RODRIGUEZ )
Coach Matt Poston has seen a ton of improvement in the 6-foot-3, 220-pound dual-threat senior. Now it’s the county’s turn.

Yorba Linda, QB
The senior has a championship ring, which puts him in a special class for county QBs in 20017. Wilson also possesses excellent touch and accuracy on his deep passes.

Godinez, ATH.
The 6-foot, 165-pound junior is one of the county’s most versatile players and is the reigning Orange Coast League MVP. Malik McMorris’ brother can play running back, receiver, safety and cornerback for the defending Orange Coast champion.

San Clemente, QB
The junior, a transfer from Mission Viejo and Santa Margarita, has competition for playing time, but his dual-threat skills and experience make him a serious option.

El Toro, WR
The 6-foot-3 senior returns as the No. 1 target for Cooper Jones, which is bad news for defenses. The Sea View League offensive MVP had 69 receptions for 1,162 yards and 13 TDs last season.

Aliso Niguel, WR
The 6-foot-2 senior racked up 70 catches for 1,074 yards and 14 TDs last season, and is also a dangerous return man.

La Habra, QB

La Habra quarterback Zach Fogel has committed to Claremont-Mudd-Scripps.
La Habra quarterback Zach Fogel has committed to Claremont-Mudd-Scripps.
The dual-threat senior, who recently committed to Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, was clutch last season in the playoffs, helping the Highlanders reach the Division 2 semifinals. He’s athletic and carries a 4.91 grade-point average.

Mater Dei, DT
The senior transfer from M.L. King of Riverside is a preseason All-County pick who should clog running lanes. Keep an eye on him.

Corona del Mar, WR
Humphreys showed major potential late last season as a freshman and hasn’t slowed. He’s a two-way starter and might be the team’s best “pure football player”, according to Coach Dan O’Shea.

Mission Viejo, RB
The Diablos have a ton of weapons on offense, but if they want to help new QB Joey Yellen settle in, just turn the Ferrell loose. The junior showed his potential last season when he got a season-high 20 carries against San Clemente. He gained a season-high 145 yards.

Los Alamitos, RB
Norman’s star should continue to rise after a promising sophomore year, but he needs to clear a meniscus injury first. He’s also an outstanding kick returner.

Capistrano Valley, QB
The junior goes from being an All-CIF wide receiver to replacing the graduated Kevin Brown. The dual-threat is on the fast track physically and mentally.

San Clemente, TE

San Clemente tight end Chris Kane leaps up to secure a touchdown pass against San Juan Hills during the 2016 season. (Courtesy of San Clemente athletics)
San Clemente tight end Chris Kane. (Courtesy of San Clemente athletics)

Kane will help grow the Tritons’ tradition of blue-chip tight ends. Look for the senior to soar past his 2016 total of 28 receptions.

Santa Margarita, TE
The Fresno State commit delivers serious damage as a blocker and forms an impressive duo with Jake Peters.

Santa Margarita, TE
The senior is back from knee surgery and already hauled in an offer from Arizona.

Mater Dei, C
The senior carries on the county’s legacy of elite centers. Scout.com ranks Gonzalez as the best in Orange County.

Los Alamitos, LB
The St. John Bosco transfer is another reason why the Griffins look so intimidating. The 6-foot-2, 220-pound senior has been offered by BYU.

Mater Dei, LB
The linebacker has come back strong from a knee injury in ’16, prompting Coach Bruce Rollinson to call him the surprise of preseason camp.

Mission Viejo, DE
The senior should again be a disruptive force coming off the edge. Air Force and Army are among his offers.

Irvine, DE/OLB/WR
The senior is a sleeper off a squad that went 2-7-1 in ’16. He’s 6-foot-5 and has the athletic ability to make plays on offense, defense and special teams. Howard has offered.

Corona del Mar, OT
The 6-foot-4, 275-pound tackle protected Chase Garbers’ blindside last season. The Sea Kings are counting on him again. Columbia among others has offered.

Corona del Mar, ATH.
The transfer from University brings big-play capabilities and versatility to the Sea Kings.

HOT 150: PLAYERS 76-100

Cypress, WR
The athletic senior was slowed a bit last season by injuries, but he still showed potential. He continued to impress during the summer. “We threw against Edison in summer and he was great,” Centurions coach Rick Feldman said.

Villa Park, QB
The first-year starting junior has big shoes to fill as the replacement for Nick Sipe, who is now at Purdue. The 6-foot-4, 195-pounds Piferi has a few Ivy League offers.

Servite, QB

Servite quarterback TJ McMahon, right, celebrates a touchdown during the Battle at the Beach seven on seven football tournament at Edison High School in Huntington Beach on Saturday, July 8, 2017. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register, SCNG)
Servite quarterback TJ McMahon, right. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register, SCNG)
The senior has competition for playing time, but he impressed at the Battle at the Beach tournament, helping the Friars reach the quarterfinals.

Canyon, DL/RB/TE
The senior (6-2, 270) developed into a defensive force last season and was athletic enough to get a few carries on offense. He is Canyon’s version of Malik McMorris (Mater Dei/Cal).

Mater Dei, DE
The senior will be more than ready for his move from offense to defense. He practices daily against Tommy Brown.

Mater Dei, DE
The senior is the Monarchs’ defensive sparkplug and leading returning tackler from ’16.

Orange Lutheran, WR
The Mater Dei transfer brings major speed to the Lancers, and could emerge as the No. 2 option after Kyle Ford.

Huntington Beach, WR/CB/ATH.
The 6-foot-4, 185-pound junior impressed during the summer with his size, speed and athleticism. UNLV and San Diego State have already noticed. He is the type of playmaker the Oilers need. Teammate Arick McLawyer is a similar athlete.

JSerra, RB
The senior transfer from Paramount returns to his freshman stomping ground as a breakaway threat. He’s the brother of former JSerra star RB Edward Vander.

JSerra, RB
The Lions have not one but two standout transfer running backs. Henning, from Buena Park, might be more elusive than Fisher but both are playmakers.

Mater Dei, RB
The Monarchs are a pass-first offense with JT Daniels, but the ultra-quick junior (5-7, 180) will chew up the yards with his opportunities.

La Habra, RB
The senior transfer from Troy is coming off a 768-yard season and now will run behind one of the best lines in the county. Watch out.

Tesoro, OT
The well-rounded senior excels at pass protection and pulling on run plays.

Servite, OG
The senior guard/center anchors the Friars’ offensive line at 6-foot-3, 315 pounds. San Diego has offered.

Edison, LB
The junior returns as the Chargers’ second-leading tackler from ’16. He collected 119 tackles for the CIF champs.

JSerra, OL/DL
The 6-foot-5, 235-pound senior has been offered by Montana and Montana Statte

Orange Lutheran, OT
If the Lancers get good line play, they might be the third-best team in the Trinity and the county. Kolopeaua (6-2, 245) is their top returning offensive lineman.

JSerra, DL
The junior (6-2, 245) emerged in ’16 as one of the Lions’ rising sophomores. He collected five sacks last season.

Fullerton, RB/WR
The speedy senior posted 1,077 all-purpose yards as a junior, so expect even more production this season. Howard has offered.

Cypress, QB
The 5-foot-9 senior makes up what he lacks in height with smarts and mobility. Last season, he passed for 2,165 yards, including 300-yard games against Tustin and Valencia.

Orange, QB
The 6-foot-4, 195-pound senior didn’t play quarterback last season but generated a buzz with a strong summer. He also has speedy Syrus Collins and Jordan Schmidt at receiver.

San Juan Hills, WR
The Linfield Christian transfer nabbed 32 receptions last season but could make a bigger impact at safety. Eastern Washington has offered.

Edison, RB
The bruising 6-foot-3, 190-pound senior gives the Chargers the ground attack to balance Griffin O’Connor. He rushed for 188 yards and three TDs in the CIF finals last season en route to a 1,000-yard season.

San Clemente, WR
The senior gives the Tritons some of that Brandon Reaves spark. He grabbed 55 receptions in ’16.

Pacifica, WR
The senior is the top target for QB Ben Jefferson after collecting 45 receptions for 758 yards and 11 TDs last season.

HOT 150: PLAYERS 101-125

101. Thomas Wade, San Clemente, DT/OT
The improving 6-foot-6, 265-pound senior has been offered by Montana State.

102. Matt Faupusa Los Alamitos, OL/DL
The 6-foot-3, 305-pound senior is a sleeper recruit from the Jesse Sapulo training group. The Griffins see him as the key to their success in the Sunset.

103. Anthony Shipton, Villa Park, DT
The 6-foot-4, 285-pound senior is a force in the middle. He racked up 87 tackles last season.

104. Malik Banks, Villa Park, LT
The powerful drive-blocking tackle has been offered by San Diego and UC Davis among others.

105. Parker Thomas, Edison, DL
The senior could become one of the next pass-rusher standouts at Edison. He recorded 6.5 sacks last season and now teams with newcomer Hunter Griggs.

106. Nathan Perez, Valencia, DE/RB
The senior was an explosive player on defense last season, but new coach Jason Gray will give him a heavier role on offense in ’17.

107. Jonoven Smith, Fullerton, S/WR
The senior proved to be a ball-hawk last season by collecting five interceptions and breaking up six passes. He and Dylan Nicholson are a strong under-the-radar duo.

108. Tarik Luckett, JSerra, WR
The 6-foot-2 Luckett is another junior receiver to watch with the Lions.

109. Nick Friedman, Trabuco Hills, OLB
The all-South Coast selection plays with a high-speed motor and could push toward 100 tackles.

110. Talik Sekona, Orange Lutheran, LB
The middle linebacker was the Lancers’ second-leading tackler, behind Brandon McKinney, last season. Look for him to be first in tackles this fall.

111. Sai Mikaio, Tustin, OG/NG
When you see all those yards from KC Carr, remember this 6-foot, 290-pound senior. He gets after opponents.

112. Jaydyn Webb, Yorba Linda, RB
The motivated senior returned from a knee injury to rush for just over 1,300 yards and 20 TDs in ’16. He dedicated his season to injured teammate Luke Dawson.

113. Jojo Forest, Orange Lutheran, CB
The rising junior flashed his cover skills and tackling ability as a sophomore in the Trinity League.

114. Isaiah Alcocer, La Habra, CB
The senior might be an O.C. sleeper, but the Highlanders know how good he was last season: four INTs, 13 pass breakups.

115. Akili Arnold, Mission Viejo, DB
The junior gained valuable experience last season, and that will help the Diablos’ secondary in ’17.

116. Dominic Wingfield, Servite, WR
The senior showed last season against De La Salle that he’s a name to remember: 11 catches for 122 yards.

117. Jojo Hawkins, Orange Lutheran, Jr.
The ultra-quick transfer from Buena Park didn’t post big numbers last season but the junior will excel with QB Ryan Hilinski and the Lancers’ cast of athletes.

118. Michael Martinez, Mater Dei, TE
The 6-foot-6, 235-pound junior showed he’s an athletic target with a spectacular, one-handed grab on the decisive 2-point conversion in the final of the Battle at the Beach tournament against St. John Bosco. Oregon has offered.

119. TJ Medina, JSerra, LB
The senior returns as the Lions’ top tackler from 2016. Also keep an eye on Hot 150-considered Calvin Mouisset at linebacker.

120. Hunter Ancich, Villa Park, ATH.
The son of Spartans coach Dusan Ancich is uniquely versatile. He excels at wide receiver, defensive back and punter.

121. Blaine Riederich, Marina, LB/RB
The senior helped lead the Vikings’ resurgence in ’16 by contributing on offense and defense.

122. Logan Loya, Orange Lutheran, WR
Loya’s versatility makes him ultra valuable to the Lancers. He plays wide receiver and kicks. San Jose State has offered the sophomore.

123. Michael Nadeau, La Quinta, QB
At 6-foot-5, 220 pounds, the junior is generating buzz with his powerful runs and soft touch on passes.

124. Brandon Coleman, Garden Grove, FS/WR
The senior (6-1, 170) is a big hitter and playmaker on defense. He’ll also pound opponents on offense.

125. Alex Jung, Sunny Hills, RB
The senior piled up highlights against just about every foe last season en route to almost 1,500 yards.

HOT 150: PLAYERS 126-150

126. Reece Hite, Mission Viejo, DE
The 6-foot-5, 235-pound junior might be an O.C. recruiting sleeper, but the Diablos know he comes off the edge fast.

127. Cross Faletoi, Rancho Alamitos, QB
The left-handed junior is an emerging dual-threat quarterback who also hauled in 52 receptions last season. Also remember the name of a new player for the Vaqueros: LJ Kennedy, a speedy transfer who briefly played last season for Edison of Stockton.

128. Noah Melbon, Westminster, QB
The Lions expect big things from the dual-threat senior, who has four solid receivers and a trio of running backs in his arsenal.

129. Cade McGee, Whittier Christian, WR
QB Quinn Commans has a deep receiving corp around him, but the 6-foot-1 senior stands out based on ’16 production: 63 receptions for 1,166 yards, 20 TDs.

130. McCade Barrett, Edison, WR
Look for the athletic senior to emerge as the Chargers’ No. 2 wide receiver, behind rising David Atencio.

131. Alonzo Pineda, Kennedy, RB
Look for the hard-running senior to crack the 1,000-yard barrier for the second consecutive season.

132. Jordan Schmidt, Orange, CB/WR/ATH.
The senior with 4.5 speed is a playmaker on offense, defense and special teams. He nabbed seven interceptions last season and returned six kicks (four punts) for TDs.

133. Malcolm Wesley, Santa Ana Valley, RB
The athletic senior flashed his potential at receiver the past two season, but now he becomes the Falcons’ featured back. “He’s a beast,” Valley coach Larry Mohr said.

134. Donald McKinney, Tustin, WR
Remember former Tustin wideout George Wilson? McKinney (6-4, 185) is the brother of the former All-County player who is now at Utah. “He’s special,” Tillers coach Myron Miller said of McKinney.

135. Hunter Griggs, Edison, DE/DB
The transfer from Pinnacle of Ariz., is a player to remember when the Sunset League rolls around. He’s 6-foot-2, 215 pounds and can run.

136. Nathan Arrington, Katella, QB
The 5-foot-10, 235-pound senior won’t have James Faitasia as a target this season, but the Orange League offensive POY is armed with experience. He passed for almost 1,500 yards last season.

137. Augustine Jo, Kennedy, DE/OG
Undersized at 5-foot-9, 180 pounds, Jo posted nine sacks last season and now adds offensive guard to his duties. “He’s so tough,” Kennedy coach Sean Clark said.

138. Richard Yukihiro, Los Alamitos, NG/OL
Another under-sized defender, the 5-foot-11, 250-pound Yukihiro is a handful for opposing centers.

139. Caine Savage, Western, WR/DB
Remember the names of this rising sophomore and his twin brother, Cassius. Caine swept the 200 and 400 meters at the Empire League track finals in May, and the Pioneers return junior quarterback Anthony Munoz. “They’re pretty special kids,” Western coach Dan Davidson said. Senior John Ojelabi is another receiver to watch.

140. Damian Macias, Santa Ana, QB/DB
The reigning Golden West League MVP helped the Saints reach the CIF finals last season with his versatility and leadership.

141. EJ Gowdy, Buena Park, LB/RB
The junior emerged last season with 89 tackles – fourth on the team — but the Coyotes have bigger plans for him in 2017.

142. Doug Jackson, San Juan Hills, QB
Aaron Flowers knows how to coach-up quarterbacks, so expect the 6-foot-3, 175-pound senior to have a strong senior season.

143. Gavin Klepper, Fullerton, QB
The 6-foot-3, 220-pound junior has improved his accuracy and could elevate the Indians in the Freeway League.

144. Grant Caraway, Los Alamitos, QB
“Flying way under the radar,” Los Alamitos coach Ray Fenton said of the senior (5-11, 175). “He’s extremely athletic. The improvement that he’s made on his throws is really impressive.”

145. Thomas Keeling, University, QB
The junior’s apprenticeship began with solid numbers for a sophomore: 1,181 yards, 10 TDs and four INTs. The question is whether the Trojans can protect him.

146. Allen Pacheco, Santa Ana, RB
The Saints love to run the football, and the senior could fill the void left by the graduated Jorge Briseno.

147. Michael Callahan, Yorba Linda, DE/TE
Coach Jeff Bailey is high on the rising junior defensive lineman, who attended the Nike The Opening Regional in the spring.

148. Dylan Brady, Santa Margarita, K
A senior with range to make a 60-yard field goal has to make the list, right?

149. Keyon Ware-Hudson, Mater Dei, DL
There’s a chance the highly-recruited junior returns from a knee injury to play late in the season. He recorded 10 sacks as a sophomore for Vista Murrieta in ’16. USC, UCLA and Michigan are among his many offers.

150. Ethan Rae, Orange Lutheran, TE
The Lancers were excited to utilize the 6-foot-5, 240-pound junior – a transfer from Servite – but he suffered a knee injury in early August. His availability for the season is unknown but he’s a major talent.

The next 5 (listed alphabetically): Noah Aguilar, El Toro, WR; Michael Dyer, Capistrano Valley, WR; Nathan Hartman, Los Alamitos, LB; Calvin Mouisset, JSerra, LB; Jack Shippy, San Clemente, WR/DB.


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