Carson 1971, Banning 1980 and San Fernando 1974 get the nod in yet another unique look at prep football history from Cal-Hi Sports. More exclusive state record book features are coming soon and many will be part of our Gold Club membership. To become a member and not miss any of our content, CLICK HERE.
Our research partners over at jimmychitwood.com are dedicated to capturing the essence of high school and college athletics, especially during a time when amateur athletics was pure and not so commercial, and celebrating its great teams and players. We collaborated with the editor of the website to create a 18-team all-time CIF Los Angeles City Section football tournament. As the results of the simulated games play out, Cal-Hi Sports chooses its all time 10 best teams from the section. For more on the L.A. City Section all-time greats football tournament, CLICK HERE.
Jimmy Chitwood, the character in the all-time great high school sports movie Hoosiers, captures the essence of high school athletics and that’s why Steven Clark decided to name his statistics-driven, high school simulated sports games website jimmychitwood.com.
Similar to our co-founder, the late Nelson Tennis, and some of the high school historians we collaborate with, particularly but not limited to Bruce McIntosh, Bob Barnett, the late Bill Frazier, Kevin Askeland, Rick Orbrand, and a host of others, Clark’s labor of love is compiling and researching high school sports information. He particularly loves to chronicle the exploits of great teams from yesteryear that generally didn’t get as much media attention outside its local coverage as today’s top teams do.
Today’s top high school athletes and Student Sports FAB 50 ranked teams are household names thanks to television and social media. It hasn’t always been like that.
While discussing some of California’s all-time greats in football, and since an all-time California tournament was already completed for football and basketball, jimmychitwood.com decided to produce an all-time tournament with the greatest football teams ever from the Los Angeles City Section.
Initially, it was decided upon to conduct an eight-team tournament, but with the information we have in our L.A. City Section Football Record Book, the decision was made to expand the field to 16 teams. Clark compiled so much info from gathering box scores and viewing microfilm of old newspapers, two play-in games were added to create a 18-team field. Of course, all teams had to win the L.A. City Section title in order to be eligible (thus eliminating great teams such as ’86 Banning and ’87 Carson).
Without knowing the results of the in-progress tournament (the semifinals were to be simulated at publish time), we rank the 10 greatest teams ever from the L.A. City Section in the modern era (post World War II). We decided not to consider any teams prior to the end of World War II because we don’t have as much info on those teams compared to the vast information on all the great teams since and because it’s hard to imagine a teams from 80 years ago defeating teams of recent lore.
Our rankings are based on final record, grid log, dominance of key players, final Cal-Hi Sports state ranking and, in many instances, our personal observations.
For more info on the L.A. City Section football all-time greats tournament, including schedule, starting lineups, results, box scores, grid logs, and for a post all-tournament team at the conclusion of the simulation CLICK HERE. If you enjoy high school football and basketball and enjoy most of the research-driven content in our statewide Cal-Hi Sports Record Book, you’ll enjoy jimmychitwood.com. Check it out today!
CAL-HI SPORTS TOP 10 ALL-TIME
LOS ANGELES CITY SECTION FOOTBALL TEAMS
(Post World War II to present)
1. 1971 Carson
Coach: Gene Vollnogle & Paul Huebner
Key Players: RB/DB Mike McClure, RB Jimmy Vaipou, WR/DB Wesley Walker, LB Brad Vaughn, LB Marvin Morris, DB Danny Kay, DB Sam Harper, C Kim Wiese, OT Chris Alberg, OG Pete Minko, OT Meki Solomona, OG Kise Fiatoa.
Won-Loss Record: 12-0
Final Cal-Hi Sports Ranking: No. 1 (State Team of the Year)
Resume: Defeated rival Banning, 29-28, in one of the greatest regular season games in state history. Outscored opponents, 483-147, and handily beat three playoff opponents.
The Skinny: This was one of the most talented, balanced units in state history with speed on the outside led by Walker, State Junior of the Year, and a powerful running game. The defense put up numbers that have been unmatched in state history. The unit forced an incredible 74 turnovers (a state record), including 41 fumble recoveries, a state record by a wide margin and reportedly No. 2 on the all-time U.S. prep list. When coaches talk about “11 hats on the ball,” 16mm film of this team is what they should be showing. Basically, a team has to play lights out without turnovers just to be in the game, but since Carson forced an average of over six per game, most teams wouldn’t have a prayer.
2. 1980 Wilmington Banning
Coach: Chris Ferragamo
Key Players: FB/LB/P Michael Alo, RB/DB Danny Andrews, DB Raymond Moret, LB Greg Battle, OT Montel Bryant, OG Paul Newell, C Mark Kaveney, LB Louis Bielma, DL Taulau Tupua.
Won-Loss Record: 12-0
Final Cal-Hi Sports Ranking: No. 1 (Sports State Team of the Year)
Resume: Its only close contest was a 14-13 victory over a talented Long Beach Poly team that went on to win the CIFSS Coastal Conference title. The Pilots beat rival Carson twice, including a 26-0 whitewashing in the playoff semifinals.
The Skinny: This team was big, strong and intimidating with Alo, the Atlanta Touchdown Club’s National Player of the Year, the Cal-Hi Sports Mr. Football and two-time L.A. City Player of the Year. There was nothing Alo couldn’t do on the football field at 6-foot, 220 pounds. He formed one of the best 1-2 rushing combos in state history with Andrews, who was also a Parade All-American and part of an outstanding secondary. This team had a great chemistry to put aside individual accolades, as it won its fifth consecutive L.A. City title and was in the midst of a 30-game winning streak.
3. 1974 San Fernando
Coach: Bill Marsh & Hewitt Hornbeck
Key Players: QB/DB Kenny Moore, FB/DB Charles White, RB/DB Kevin Williams, RB/DB Ray Williams, OT Pedro Arreguin, OG Tommy Hernandez, MG James Criner, LB John Contreras, LB Norman White, DT David Lopez.
Won-Loss Record: 12-1
Final Cal-Hi Sports Ranking: N/A
Resume: This team lost its opener to L.A. City power Gardena (21-7), then put it together to beat a talented group of teams in the post-season, including Carson (13-7), Wilson (20-13), Granada Hills (22-15) and Palisades (12-10).
The Skinny: The Tigers ran a wishbone offense and it was one of the most devastating rushing attacks in state history. Moore was a natural leader and teams had little chance defending the dive play to White that San Fernando used to demoralize teams. On the outside, no team in the state had a faster pair than Kevin and Ray Williams. In 1975, Kevin Williams won the state 100-yard dash and Ray Williams and White had similar speed. Criner (6-3, 290) and Lopez (6-2, 259) had great size for their day and were excellent against the run. Even if a ball-carrier got past the first wave, all four players in the wishbone also played in the secondary and kept teams from breaking off big plays. The skill position players were juniors in 1974 and San Fernando opened the 1975 season ranked No. 1 in the country.
4. 2007 Lake Balboa Birmingham
Coach: Ed Croson
Key Players: RB Milton Knox, QB Exavier Johnson, WR De’von Flourney, DE Malik Jackson, DE Marquis Jackson, OL Timote Tonga, OL Erik Miranda, LB Donovan Carter, DB Evan Jenkins, TE Mychal Rivera, QB Morey Croson.
Won-Loss Record: 13-1
Final Cal-Hi Sports Ranking: No. 3
Resume: The Patriots lost to Crespi of Encino (20-6) in their opener and it basically cost them a shot at the Division I Bowl Game. Knox, the state’s Mr. Football, fumbled inside the five-yard line with Birmingham trailing 13-7 and it was returned 98 yards for a touchdown by Crespi’s E.J. Woods. Croson’s club rebounded with a big win over Long Beach Poly (20-7) and beat Notre Dame of Sherman Oaks (28-21) on national television.
The Skinny: After QB Exavier Johnson returned from a broken hand, the Patriots averaged over 51.1 ppg in their final 10 games. With that being said, their defense was the strength of the team, and gives them the nod over a couple of teams perhaps just as talented. Twin brothers Malik and Marquis wreaked havoc against top-notch CIFSS foes. What we remember most is the win over Long Beach Poly, Knox’s ability to move east-west to find his running lane and his leadership. Knox’s humility and maturity was also on display when he spoke to a FOX Sports television camera after his team was passed over for a CIF bowl berth in favor of Corona Centennial.
5. 1976 Wilmington Banning
Coach: Chris Ferragamo
Key Players: TB Freeman McNeil, QB Joey Montijo, OT Joey Figueroa, DL Polu Faavi, DE Leonard McDonald, LB Roy Rivera, WR/DB Jimmy Gasso, WR/DB Toe Tofiga.
Won-Loss Record: 12-1
Final Cal-Hi Sports Ranking: No. 1 (State Team of the Year)
Resume: The Pilots lost in their opener to defending National Sports News Service national champion L.A. Loyola (23-21), then beat St. Paul of Santa Fe Springs (17-14) in one of the best games of a storied intersectional rivalry. From there, Banning cruised to 11 consecutive wins.
The Skinny: Ferragamo’s program always took on tough competition and even fared well against CIF Southern Section foes. This team had solid size, power, and a fantastic running game led by McNeil, the Student Sports Mr. Football USA and state Mr. Football. As it that wasn’t enough, the late Ron Settles also had NFL-type talent as a ball-carrier and Stanley Wilson (Oklahoma/NFL) was also on the roster. McDonald was all-state caliber as a run-stopper and the secondary was lights out, including Irvin (who went on to play in the NFL), Gasso, and punishing tackler Jeffrey “Griff Dog” Griffin. The defense shut out three of four playoff opponents and against the one team (Monroe) that did score, Banning’s offense ringed up 56 points.
6. 1988 Carson
Coach: Gene Vollnogle
Key Players: QB Perry “Italian Stallion” Klein, RB Errol “Quicksilver” Sapp, OG Morris Unutoa, OT Moheni Toilolo, WR Michael Ross, LB Peter Hunt, DT Nkosi Littleton, FS Howard McCowan, CB Clayvand Thomas.
Won-Loss Record: 12-1
Final Cal-Hi Sports Ranking: No. 1 (State Team of the Year)
Resume: The Colts struggled early after some in-house rumblings regarding the highly-publicized transfer of Klein from Palisades. The Colts lost to Bishop Amat of La Puente (17-13) in their second game and struggled to beat Lynwood (17-15). After that, Carson went on a complete tear with one close game (14-13 in the semifinals over Dorsey) and won the city title with a 55-7 destruction of archrival Banning.
The Skinny: After the team began to jell with Klein and understand the high-octane, double-spread, quick-pass offense employed by Vollnogle and offensive coordinator Steve Clarkson, this team was an offensive juggernaut. There were offensive weapons everywhere and the defense had major big-play capabilities. Klein, Sapp and Unutoa were first team all-state selections, while Ross, Littleton, and Thomas were all-state underclass material. This team’s combination of high-level coaching and talent level (17 eventual D1 signers) was a big factor in its ranking on this list.
7. 2012 Harbor City Narbonne
Coach: Manuel Douglas
Key Players: QB Troy Williams, WR AJ Richardson, OT Atlanta Toussant, DL Paulo Lepua, LB Lejon Fisher, LB Marquis Lomax, LB Kieshawn Bierria, C Sese Tauesi.
Won-Loss Record: 14-1
Final Cal-Hi Sports Ranking: No. 3
Resume: Great L.A. City teams are not just defined by winning a city championship, but also by how many strong CIFSS foes they beat. Douglas’ club passed the test, beating five quality Southern Section teams, including a complete 56-0 destruction of eventual Pac-Five Division champ Long Beach Poly. The city title win over Crenshaw (25-0) was anti-climatic before the Gauchos lost to Corona Centennial (41-34) in the first-ever SoCal Open Division bowl game.
The Skinny: The fact Narbonne didn’t play for a CIF Bowl Game doesn’t diminish from the great season it had in 2012. This team was complete, with a great high school quarterback in Williams, a good running game, and a big-play defense that got to the quarterback often. Lepua and Bierria were all-state players, but the tendency for the defense to occasionally give up big plays drops this club a notch. Could this club be higher? Sure, perhaps a couple of spots, but father time may play a factor because the team will be appreciated a bit more down the line if some of the players go on to have fine college and NFL careers.
8. 2009 Los Angeles Crenshaw
Coach: Robert Garrett
Key Players: QB Marquis Thompson, RB Geoffrey Norwood, WR Geno Hall, WR/DB DeAnthony “The Black Momba” Thomas, WR Gregory Ducre, DE James Brock, FB/LB Hayes Pullard, LB Ronald Stovall.
Won-Loss Record: 14-1
Final Cal-Hi Sports Ranking: No. 4
Resume: The Shaw beat an eventual CIFSS Pac-Five semifinalist (Lakewood) 28-27 to open the season and beat Norco (47-44), but after that it dominated all foes until meeting up with Concord De La Salle in the CIF Open Division state bowl game. Garrett’s club was impressive in its 34-14 city title game win over Narbonne and led De La Salle 14-0 before Thomas was hurt. If Thomas wouldn’t have gotten hurt, De La Salle perhaps would have fallen to 1-3 in bowl games up until that point.
The Skinny: This club was explosive, averaging 46.6 ppg, and Thomas is one of the best broken field runners in state history. He also was a hard-hitter in the secondary on a defense whose strength was plugging running holes. Norwood and Pullard actually kept the chains moving, but at times this team’s offense was predictable and inconsistent despite the abilities of Thompson and Hall as a pass-catch combo. The threat of Thomas in space made the other players even more dangerous, but the offense fell flat against De La Salle after The Black Momba was injured.
9. 1963 Lake Balboa Birmingham
Coach: George Goff
Key Players: E Bill Hayhoe, E Marv Adamo, L Mike Scarpace, L Frank Arrigo, L Bill Brucker.
Won-Loss Record: 10-0
Final Cal-Hi Sports Ranking: N/A
Resume: This team only gave up 19 points in eight regular season games to two opponents: Monroe (26-6) and Cleveland (67-13). The Braves crushed everyone else and beat two teams from outside the San Fernando Valley in the city playoffs: Gardena (38-27) and Los Angeles High (21-14) in the city title game.
The Skinny: This team’s strength was its physicality and ability along the lines. Teams from this era were a lot smaller than now, but Birmingham just demoralized opponents at the line of scrimmage and we give them a lot of credit for that in these rankings. Adamo was a great weapon on the outside and was named L.A. City Player of the Year. In a December 2006 article, the L.A. Daily News named this the third greatest team ever from the San Fernando Valley behind 2006 Oaks Christian and 1974 San Fernando.
10. 1994 Sylmar
Coach: Jeff Engilman
Key Players: RB/LB Durrell Price, RB/DB Gerrod Taylor, WR/DB Davon Young, OT Frank Fuentes, C/DE Brandon McGee, SS Tyrone Morgan, CB Eddie Lopez, TE/LB James Seidler, QB Greg Marquez.
Won-Loss Record: 14-0
Final Cal-Hi Sports Ranking: No. 8
Resume: Beat a good Kennedy team (16-14) it had tied the previous season and completely dominated its Valley Pac-8 Conference foes. In the playoffs, Sylmar survived a California tie-breaker overtime against Banning (28-27) and beat Carson in the semifinals (27-19) behind some clutch running by Price. In the title game, the Spartans outclassed Crenshaw (38-6).
The Skinny: Carson and Banning might have had better teams, perhaps ones that split games in the same season, but we decided to go with a somewhat controversial pick for the tenth spot. Sylmar gets credit for routing the teams it should and beating the best teams in the L.A. Basin in the post-season. Having Price is also a major plus, as he was a 6-foot, 220-pound back with that rare combination of speed and power. He’s a legit two-time all-stater and coach Engilman rode him verbally to push the rest of the players on the team. One advantage this team also has was its emphasis in the weight room and a defense full of big-hitters such as McGee and sure tacklers like Morgan. The Spartans didn’t even have to use a potentially good passing game much, as Young was a big-play maker on offense, at safety and special teams. Sylmar went 86-18-2 between 1987 and 1995 and this was Engilman’s best team.
1990 Carson 12-1
(QB John Walsh, WR Latario Rachal, WR Fred Sims, WR Theron Hill, WR Abdul Muhammad, C John Soto, OT Ma’o Niko, DE Marcus Long, DE Bob Tuitau, SS Tariel Hopper, CB Shawn Parnell, coach Gene Vollnogle.)
1991 Los Angeles Dorsey 10-1-1
(TB Sharmon Shah, WR Antonio Carrion, OL Santonio Turner, OL Byron Kimbrew, DL Dwayne Sanders, DL Cedric White, LB Robert Beard, DB Ghalee Wadood, DB Winfred Samuels, coach Paul Knox.)
1970 Granada Hills 11-1
(QB Dana Potter, WR Jim Snowden, WR Tom Weinert, WR Jim Mitchell, OL Phil Factor, DL Chris Byrne, LB Jim Masters, LB Mark Hicks, coaches Jack Neumeier & Jack Mathias.)
1987 Granada Hills 9-3
(QB Jeremy Leach, TE Sean Brown, RB Jamal Farmer, WR Kevin Chan, coach Darryl Stroh.)
1965 Los Angeles 11-0
(FB/DB Charles Moch, HB Kenny Williams, HB Lamar Mills, E Dave Henderson, OT/LB Mike Ballou, OG/LB Reggie Lowe, OG/DL Clifford Broadnax, DB Malcolm Gilliam, PK Gilbert Ledezma, LB Curt Simmons, coach Jim Pendleton.)
1961 Los Angeles Manual Arts 10-1
(B Michael Jones, B Clayton Calhoun, B James Williams, E Jerry Lewis, DB Eddie Lynn, L Orlando Miller, L Perry Parks, L Harry Wells, coach Jim Blewett.)
1967 San Fernando 10-0-1
(T Keith “Diesel” Robinson, G/LB Jay Ransom, FB/LB Mike Vickers, DE Michael Oliver, T Allan Graf, MG Mua Sua, ROV Bobby Hernandez, B Manfred Moore, coaches Phil Lozano & Howard Marcus.)
1996 San Pedro 14-0
(QB Melvin Yarbrough, RB Holman Wiggins, DB Steve Smith, coach Mike Walsh.)
1947 Los Angeles Washington 8-0
(FB/DB Hugh McElhenney, QB/DB Bob Cameron, L Dave Beech, coach Bill Sloan.)
1977 Los Angeles Wilson 13-0
(QB Ron Cuccia, WR/DB Steve Martinez, WR Brian Apodaca, LT Mike Ramirez, DE Conrad Rodriquez, DT Sergio Villasenor, WR/LB Eddie Martinez, coach Vic Cuccia.)
Editor’s Note: Special thanks to publisher Steven Clark of jimmychitwood.com for providing to this story some of the commentary he published as a preview to his simulated tournament. One team that we would have ranked near or in the top 10 had it been in the tournament and we had more research for was the 1925 Los Angeles High team that went 10-0. That team was led by State Player of the Year Francis Tappaan (T) and State Athlete of the Year Louie Almada (E).
Ronnie Flores is the managing editor of CalHiSports.com. He can be reached at email@example.com. Don’t forget to follow him on Twitter: @RonMFlores
So the SoCal program with the most tradition, the most NFL players, and most consistent level of success does not have a single team that can crack this list? Where in the h_ll is Long Beach Poly?
This was a LA City lost
As Mark mentioned, this list is for L.A. City Section teams only. Hope you enjoyed the article.
Leroy Holt became SC’s fullback and he played tight end at Banning. Stephen Keith went to SC, I think Mark Tucker went to SC,. They were loaded that year and they had the all time best wishbone QB in Holloway.
How could you leave off the 95 dorsey team… #1 defense in the city… did not loose a game in los angeles only loss to torrey pines in a 35-37 shoot out…8 players went D-1 and 5 went to NFL
nail digg ohio st… che britton ASU
dennis northcutt U of A … calvin Carlye oregon st
ramont Skaggs Flordia st…anthony white UNLV…adoullah noah San jose st…Lakaki malaki Hawii.. Roderick foreman BYU… and list goes on and on…… but wait ur telling me one of the top high scholls in America ranked in top 5 in nation with Draft Picks didnt make a top 10 in LA this is horse shit
Thank you, T.J.!!!!
Antonio Chatman- Cincinnati
Juan Jimenez- Cal
“Breeze”- Washington State
The list goes on if you include non Div I-A football scholar athletes.
You answered your own question. ’95 Dorsey lost. They lost to Torrey Pines, which was not an elite California team. It’s great they had a bunch of D1 players, etc, but that’s not the criteria here.
Yes Teejay, that’s what I’m telling you, L.A. football is historically that good. For all it’s great tradition, Dorsey has won 1 City title the last 20 years.
Nice article should have the 1995 Dorsey Don’s on list
I think the 1969 Gardena team deserves mention. They shut out the Marine League 177-0.
I just happen to play against this 69 Gardena team. They were the best high school I’ve ever seen. I went to Narbonne we didn’t score just like nobody else in the league. Solid offense and defense with several future division 1 players.
L.A. High 1969. We had a dominating defense! My letterman jacket included the phrase “23 Consecutive Scoreless Quarters”! Washington broke our streak on a fluke. Versus Gardena in the city semifinal both teams had 300 yard+ offenses. In that game Gardena held LA High to 169 yards total offense – 0 points. LA High’s defense held Gardena to 129 total yards and 16 points. HOWEVER! LA’s defense scored 14 points! A defensive effort could hardly get any better. That was actually the championship game. I believe they played lower bracket Roosevelt and as expected – no contest!
I played on the 69 Gardena team. Lost our first game to Lakewood cif preseason
Coach Enright told us after the game “Were going win LA City”
Shut out our league, Carson and Banning included .
What a fun ride
For anybody who says Wilson could not play with the big boys they were part of the big boys remind me Muse barely lost two teams that made the championship for the city for a divisions Rick hollenback Steam 1970 losing to Granada Hills weather 2134 lead only to get stunned Granada Hills came back to beat them 3435 and went on to take the city championship Wilson with Randy Garcia team quarterback who went to Nebraska play Carson for the semi-finals final score 14-7 Carson went on to take the city championship Wilson 1974 losing in the last 2 minutes to a San Fernando team 21 / 14 and let’s not forget the infamous Wilson for a team who went to the semi-finals complete such great team as Crenshaw making it to the semi-finals and Wilson playing Darcy five times and only losing once Wilson what are the three championships could have played against anybody’s because they did and they prove they are a power
2002-2003 taft high school… we was tough at least 3 nfl players on that team 1 super bowl winner Steve smith national track champs only allowed 1 100 yd rushing game 12-1 record went to back to back LA city championships
What about the 2002 Taft team all American track star wide outs that won the national championship in the 4×100 we held every team to under 100 rushing only loss in a championship to Birmingham… Blew Carson out like 42-7 that was supposed to be game of the year idk how many sacks I had that year but we went crazy
Franklin went undefeated from 1940 to 1947 when they finally lost one game to Lincoln. There has never been a streak like that in L.A. history. A couple of the players were consensus All Americans including a Salata for USC.
I have a lot of respect for Franklin football! They won state back in 1920 I believe, and had state player of the year Bob Lee. Then the era you mentioned, and then the era of coach Gonzales. Mando beat Perry Klein his junior year at Palisades for the city championship.
The 77 Wilson team was insane! I have never seen a quarterback as quick as cuccia, and could throw 50 yard passes scrambling to his offside. And his backup was Steve Clarkson. Wilson also had two all-city receivers and beat most teams by 30 points
I agree on 1977 Wilson. That was their third straight 13-0 season and Cuccia was a Parade All America. He was also the coverboy for Joe Namath’s Prep Sports High School football magazine.
This is a list of L.A City Teams.
Long Beach Poly is a CIF-Southern Section School
You forgot me and Carson. I’m still the best passing qb ever. Remember Carson 33 20 la city champions threw for 333 and 2 tds and ran for 2 in the championship December 14 1984. Let everybody know I’m training again. I’ll put on a clinic July 30 at Scott park. That was a top historical team with d thrill hill Pittsburg Steelers m Smith az wild cats myself new mexico lobos!! Please watch my training videos soon!
Great info. As a city football guy I really appreciate what you put together. I do think you left a few really great teams off. Here’s some I would have considered: The 1982 Dorsey team with Hue Jackson, Vincent Weathersby, Larry Mcglothan, Aaron Cox, Carver Russo and about 10 others who played college football. The 1983 Manual Arts team with Jeff Joseph, Steve Broussard, Tilton Gray, Dorsey Brown and another 8 who played college football. The 1983 Banning team with Jameile, Sam Sutherland, Joe Scott and another 8 or so D1 kids. They also had Anthony Simeon, the kid that went on to be USC’s fullback and their center that went Rice and played many years with the chargers. Just my thoughts
Mark, it was fin putting this together. There is no doubt I did leave some good teams off. Can’t argue with that. ’66 Carson, probably ’78 or ’79 Banning, ’86 Carson, and the Dorsey and Manual Arts teams you mentioned. No 3A or Division II champ made the top 10. Those Manual Arts teams under Jeff Engilman were underrated and perhaps a bit under appreciated. Thanks for commenting.
Yes the 1982 Dorsey team and 83/84 Manuel teams were legit. The marine was a great league.
Yes, the Marine League was great, but in the end, I decided not to add any 3A or 2A teams to the top 10. It would just open up a can of worms from the 4A champs. I listed 77 Wilson from 3A from what they did is historical, but I’m not sure if any 3A team is top 10 material unless it beat Carson and/or Banning.
Great list! But one of your honorable mention teams should be in the top 10. I saw the 1977 Wilson team play, and I saw some of the great Banning and Carson squads along with the newer teams listed. I have never seen a team like Wilson. I know they were in the 9A Cuccia’s senior year, but no one had an answer for them. Their closest game was a 21-14 win over Powerhouse Franklin back in the day and their margin of defeat on other teams was like 35 points. Some teams they beat by 50 points to end a perfect season. Their biggest claim to fame was the 63-0 Halftime score against rival Lincoln, and Lincoln got on the bus at half-time and went home. I really don’t think there was a team out there that could have beat them.
I think you should research Alain LeRoy Locke High School 1984-1985 Football Team Stats.
They went 11-0 lossing a tough fought game to Manuel Arts for the Championship .
They had on of the most powerful, strong and fast offensive attacks in the City that year. Along with a tough no holds bar defense.
Players: TB Bruce Williams, QB Leon Otis, WR Eugene Clark, OL Roland Pumphries.
DT Shawn “Moose” Campbell, DT Dwayne “Animal” Johnson, MLB Michael Humphrey,
Tony, please stop it! Wilson high school of the 70’s was a big fish swimming around in the small fish bowl they called 3A back then. Wilson can never be compared to the 4A times of it’s time. Had Wilson stepped out of it’s 3A safety blanket and took pre-season games against 4A powers Banning, Carson, or top flight CIF programs like Saint Paul or Bishop Amat, Etc.. Maybe then you can say they had something. Lets be honest here, Most of the 3A teams Wilson settled on playing were nothing more then soccer teams in football uniforms. So for the record lets just say no one really knows how good Wilson was because they refused to play anyone who would threaten them… Coach Cuccia did all he could to protect his kid, and make sure his kid ran up records against inferior opponents (Classless I must say). To me that’s weak and undeserving of any label of greatness. BTW unrelated to this, Michael Alo of Banning HS 78-80 was the most dominant player who ever played in the LA city past or present. If you ever seen him play you know, if you never seen him play you missed something great!
’77 Wilson still brings up strong opinions. Wish the Mules would have played St. Paul or perhaps even Amat. That would have been something.
I know a lot about ’84 and ’85 Locke. Leon Otis was a special player. Too bad he didn’t stay at Nebraska.
I agree with leaving Wilson 3-A Team Out. After Banning made its 4 Straight trip to the 4-A City Title Winning #3 on the way to 6 Straight Wilson had 3 Straight 3-A peat. They Plzyed us in pre Season at Banning When I was on the B Team at Banning We and the Varsity Slaughtered Wilson easily.
The 77 wilson team with cuccia would have have kicked any team in the 4A division ass it wasn’t there fault they were in 3A.
IT IS OBVIOUS THAT THIS WRITER TRUELY DOES NOT KNOW HIS HISTORY OF CITY FOOTBALL. HELL, WE DON’T EVEN KNOW IF HE PLAYED A DOWN. I DO KNOW THAT THIS RANKING IS A BIT SUSPECT….NOT TO HAVE NOT ONE DORSEY TEAM IN THE TOP TEN? LOL…UMMMMMM I THINK THIS WRITER EXPOSED HIMSELF IN SHOWING HE KNOWS NOTHING!!
Darius, I went to a LA City school and did play football there. I was just an average players, but I know the history of city ball and always support it! Dorsey has won four 4A city titles. Ain’t gonna count the 3A/2A ones. I’ll break it down over on Facebook. Thanks for checking the article out.
Well that Carson Team You Posted as 1988 would Ve Considered 89 Because I Graduated C/O 88 from Dorsey And Perry Klein Was Still at Palisades With Keshawn Johnson
Desmone: The ’88 team had Perry Klein on it. It’s considered ℅ ’89 but 1988 football season. Perry was at Pali in ’87 football season.
In 88-89 you had Crespi with Russel White.. Derek Brown -Servite… The darling of Cali Curtis Scott of Monroe high.. All great highschool RB
@Ronnie Flores I would love to hear more about the 84 85 Locke Saints
I did not go to school in LAUSD but grew up in Los Angeles and graduated from Daniel Murphy Catholic HS in 1984. I became an elementary schoolteacher and high school baseball/softball coach in Catholic and LAUSD schools, so I heard and read about all these rivalries back in the LA Times. One can debate the best of the best but in my opinion a true test would have been if some of the 4A schools back then would have played more non league intersectional games. Growing with sports in the 70s and 80s, all I heard was “Banning, Carson, Wilson, Long Beach Poly, Mater Dei, (now) St. John Bosco, St. Paul,” etc. Then there were schools that had one or 2 good years then nothing after that. Incidently, where does the Granada Hills HS John Elway team fall into the mix?
I still think the Dorsey team Hue Jackson’s senior year had some of the most individual talent I’ve seen. The 1982, 83 and 84 3A city champs could have played with a lot of teams.
I believe that Mark, but I decided against any 3A/2A teams, would have created a firestorm!
I Play for Locke in 1982 Dorsey beat us 13-0 but they wasn’t all that we had 2 T.D. B.S. call back including Opening Kick off Return in the beginning of the Game
Great memories. What was EC Robinson’s first year as coach?
I’m an alumni from Locke High. I was at this game at the Coliseum, and I remember that game -opening kick-off return by Darnell Christman. No doubt, if it weren’t for those costly penalties they would have beaten Dorsey.
Oh Ronnie, Coach Robinson’s 1st year as Locke coach was in 1980, with Junior Quarterback “Gunslinger” Washington Brown.
My Bad Ronnie. Not 1980, but 1979.
Great write up Florres. Unfortunately, 2A,3A means nothing. Well it does for all of us who knows the city football. 16 teams in 4A , fight for the best #1 city team. 3A even with a undefeated record means your fighting for #17 best in the city. 2A well 33 best means, someone felt sorry for you.
there have been some excellent 3A and 2A teams, but none good enough to make this list.
I played for bishop amat in 75 and 76 started as a sophomore then transferred to Wilson. Wilson team would have stomped amat. Wilson players had more heart. Wilson passing attack could not be stopped.
I saw the 1974 San Fernando team that had Heisman winner Charlie white who also won the 300 hurdles and had a 46.5 split in the mile relay. Unreal team that ran the bone. Also, Stanley the steamer Wilson’s teams at Banning were tough. I still think that the banning/carson teams of the late 70’s and mid 80’s had the most talent. Most excited team ever for me personally LA Wilson Cuccia era and the year Clarkson was there. Vic was a great motivator and coach. I’m from El Sereno and went to 90% of Cuccia’s games.
man, what a show air cuccia was. That ’77 Wilson team is a legendary team. I would agree with you overall, from about 76-90, Carson-Banning were just unreal with the amount of talent they had. Great teams, great rivalry. One factor is I didn’t want to overpopulate the list with a bunch of Carson-Banning teams. The three great teams of this era do deserve some props, too.
Wilson’s offense was way before it’s time. Kind of a combo of the run and shoot and what is known now as the spread.
Wilson got alot of attention. Vic Cuccia and Jack Neumeier were way ahead of their time. When Jack Elway moved to Southern California, he looked around to place John in a school that passed a bunch and GH was that one school!
Please stop it! Wilson high school of the 70’s was a big fish swimming around in the small fish bowl they called 3A back then. Wilson can never be compared to the 4A times of it’s time. Had Wilson stepped out of it’s 3A safety blanket and took pre-season games against 4A powers Banning, Carson, or top flight CIF programs like Saint Paul or Bishop Amat, Etc.. Maybe then you can say they had something. Lets be honest here, Most of the 3A teams Wilson settled on playing were nothing more then soccer teams in football uniforms. So for the record lets just say no one really knows how good Wilson was because they refused to play anyone who would threaten them… Coach Cuccia did all he could to protect his kid, and make sure his kid ran up records against inferior opponents (Classless I must say). To me that’s weak and undeserving of any label of greatness.
Just curious, did you ever see that Wilson team play? I did. And I saw banning and Carson also. Wilson was the real deal.
They also had seven players in the shrine game that year! I don’t know of too many teams that ever did that. And the big money maker at the Shrine game was get Cuccia! I don’t know about you, but that convinced me enough. And if you call Franklin a weak opponent back in the day, then there is no more I can say!
I was on the 1970 Wilson football team, last years of the incomparable Rick Holoubek…before Cuccia’s son Ron would lead the Mighty Mules to the City Championships back then…what an athelete Rick Holoubek was he truly gave his all!
Rick was said to be the best all around football player in Wilson mules history and the was said by Vic Cuccia.We all remember 77 season when Lincoln forfeited at halftime losing 63 ~0
please stop it! Wilson high school of the 70’s was a big fish swimming around in the small fish bowl they called 3A back then. Wilson can never be compared to the 4A times of it’s time. Had Wilson stepped out of it’s 3A safety blanket and took pre-season games against 4A powers Banning, Carson, or top flight CIF programs like Saint Paul or Bishop Amat, Etc.. Maybe then you can say they had something. Lets be honest here, Most of the 3A teams Wilson settled on playing were nothing more then soccer teams in football uniforms. So for the record lets just say no one really knows how good Wilson was because they refused to play anyone who would threaten them… Coach Cuccia did all he could to protect his kid, and make sure his kid ran up records against inferior opponents (Classless I must say). To me that’s weak and undeserving of any label of greatness.
Apparently Micho is confusing teams of today with the great teams of yesterday! How old are you Micho? Did you ever see Cuccia play? Those two questions will tell me everything about you and your knowledge of city sports. This should be very interesting!
This is very interesting. People will always complain and have different opinions, but this is well thought out. Hard to put 10 teams in, as it of course is subjective. I played in 1966 at Palisades in the Western league. I saw the 1963 Birmingham city finals in Encino while in Junior high school and they were great. Also I saw the Los Angeles High 1965 City championship game. They were honorable mention but also a great team. Great job!!
thanks or reading and commenting
I think Alo was more like 240. He and Danny Andrews were sick. Greg Battle was the best 195 Pac 10 Inside LB f all time.
Alo and Danny Andrews are probably the best 1-2 combo in state history. What a HS player Alo was.
Alo would have had a great NFL career if it wasn’t for Chip Banks breaking his neck.
yeah, that’s too Bad. Vollnogle said he should have just gone hardship out of high school!
Pinch nerve. You die from a broken neck
Mike had a severe pinch nerve which unfortunately ended his playing career.
Mark, never knew what actually happned to Alo. He passed two years ago. one of the most saddest stories in high school football.
BIG MIKE ALO , RIP
Not just a Good Football player but a Good Man ,
Humble too ,
I SAW THAT CARSON VS. BANNING GAME AT LONG BEACH VETERAN STADIUM..MICHAEL ALO (WHO I SAW ON A CARSON PLAYGROUND AS A 6 YR.OLD RUNNING CIRCLES AROUND HIGH SCHOOLERS )..KNEW HIS FAMILY.ANYWAYS…THAT GAME….ALO’S KICK-OFF..5 YARDS DEEP IN THE END ZONE..HIS 1ST PUNT..66 YARDS!…HE BLOCKED ON A LEAD PLAY FOR ANDREWS..BLEW THE CARSON OLBER AWAY!.. I BROUGHT 15 PLAYERS FROM CAPISTRANO VALLEY HIGH (MISSION VIEJO-SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO) WHERE I COACHED FOR 15 SEASONS ,FOR THEM TO SEE MY ALMA MATER CARSON HIGH VS. THE PILOTS.(EYE OPENER! HAD OUR QB BURT CALL,NOW MATER DEI BASEBALL COACH ON SIDELINE..TO SEE THE L.A.CITY “INTENSITY AND TALENT”!!! BTW MICHAEL ALO.. ALSO THREW THE SHOTPUT 61 FEET..AND IN THE STATE QUALIFYING..NEVER THREW THE DISCUS UNTIL THE END OF THE YEAR (L.A.CITY DOES OT HAVE DISCUS FIELDS) HE THREW 165 FEET..1ST TIME!!! AT COAH FERRAGAMO’S RETIREMENT PARTY..HE SAID..THE “BEST ATHLETE” HE EVER COACHED..WAS BIG FRANK MANUMALEUNA (UCLA..1ST FROSH TO START LBER AND JOHN WOODEN’S MVP JV TEAM…TO JC.TO SJS-KC CHIEFS..SON BRANDON SD CHARGERS) NOT DANNY ANDREWS, OR HOLLWAY.OR REECE BROTHERS..OR FREEMAN..AND HE SAID HIS “BEST FOOTBALL PLAYER ” HE EVER COACHED WAS “MICHAEL ALO”!
BTW.THANKS FOR MENTIONING THE 1966 CARSON COLTS 11-0 1ST UNDEFEATED TEAM FOR COLTS (WHICH I WAS A PROUD MEMBER)IN 4TH YEAR..AS COACH VOLLNOGLE CAME FROM BANNING HIGH WHERE HE WON CITY TITLES IN 1958 & 60 WITH COACH PAUL HUEBNER..AND WON “8” CITY TITLES AT CARSON…LAST ONE IN 1990..DOWN AND LOSING 16-7 AT HALF TO YES..BANNING..MADE THE “GREATEST HALFTIME SPECH EVER! (I TAPED IT..I WAS HEAD COACH AT SAN CLEMENTE HIGH THEN..AND WANTED MY PLAYERS TO SEE THE ‘RIVAL”..FINAL SCORE 37-16 CARSON..COACH VOLLNOGLE WAS THE “WINNINGEST COACH IN CALIFORNIA HISTORY WHEN HE RETIRED IN 1990! JUNA L.A.CITY FOOTBALL! I WAS LUCKY TO BE ON STAFFS THAT WON THE CITY & THE CIF!!!
Who was the QB on that 66 Carson high team
Jimmy Sander was the QB on the 1966 Carson team. First LA CITY CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM. 11-0. Beat a very good SAN Fernando team coached by Phil Lozano and Howard Marcus in the final game.
San Fernando did return in 1967 and defeated Westchester Comets for L A City Title under guidance of Phil Lozano & Howard Marcus.
On another note, Jimmy Sander from Carson High did go on to play at LA Harbor College in ’69 and was 2nd team All American.
when you discuss High School Football , LA City Ball , Carson-Banning ,
one must mention from Banning , the Monster and Dominating Big Frank Manumaleuna RIP. Ave over 11 YPC at FB! 1200 yrds
Mark, it is Tony from ER.
CHreg Battle was closer to 180 when he started at MLB as a true freshman walk on for an Arizona State defense that led the nation.
Walk on- Greg signed with AZ St.
My Dad took me to see that 1980 Banning team play against Carson. I was a High School Freshman, and my eyes were opened to big-time High School Football with a huge crowd at LB City College (I believe), Big Bands, and “tear-away jerseys” that Michael Alo wore. Thanks for writing the article, it was fun recalling that memory.
It was sold out, and we were there 20min, before kickoff. Thirty of us jumped the wall. Maybe, 10 were caught. Great college game!!! Oh wait, this was High School?! Amazing
Michael Alo is the best all-around player in City history. Bet some Dorsey Dons fans won’t agree! Alo could do it all.
I would go with DeAnthony Thomas. In 2010 I was lucky enough to see him play when Crenshaw crossed the country to play Suwanee (Ga) North Gwinnett literally in my backyard in a game televised nationally on ESPN.He put on a show before humidity caught up with him in the second half.
list is solid …played against the 80’s Banning teams and I think that they should be no .1…… the recent teams I don’t think could compete because of the dilution of talent in city football ….. the increase in lausd schools ,private schools ,charters have made a comparison in era’s impossible….I take a great deal of pride in the caliber football and athlete’s the City use to produce …..the evolution has been sad to watch and gives a truly false sense of the legacy of high school sports in the state….. lausd leagues had the greatest athletes in the country…..I don’t think any other area nationally could compare
It is really hard to compare ERAs Nick, that’s why I didn’t include 1925 Los Angeles High School. 10 years ago I never would have thought we’d see any other teams like Carson-Banning. Let’s give Birmingham, Narbonne and Crenshaw credit, though. There weren’t that many great teams to compare them to in the city, but B-Ham and Narbonne stepped outside and beat some very good CIFSS teams. I agree with your assessment, LAUSD does have greatest athletes in the country historically, but that has slowed down dramatically last 20 years. Once in a while, however, a great team does emerge. Not sure when we’ll see one next.
I agree, the 80’s Banning and Carson teams were loaded. The biggest upset back then was when Crenshaw beat Banning in the City Semis at El Camino College. That was Ronnie Barbers senior year. Then Barber beat threw up a last second 25 footer to beat Crenshaw and big John Williams in the city championship basketball game. Great memories!
Ronnie Barber’s dad, Ronnie Barber I from San Pedro, has got to be a top 10 LA City RB of all-time. What a great year/memory by Barber II!
I understand this is about the City teams and not the CIF. It is funny though that you mention Banning beating St. Paul in ’76, but don’t mention that it was their only win over them in the decade plus. St. Paul played Carson or Banning nearly every year during the 70’s hey day of City football and lost only that one time. The ’79 game was billed as #1 City vs #1 CIF. Danny Andrews ran back the opening kick off 95 yards for a TD for Banning’s only score. St. Paul scored 17 unanswered points to win 17-7. Andrews was a back up running back in that game until the starter got knocked out. He then became the starter. He and Alo were extremely talented individual players, but couldn’t beat that St. Paul TEAM.
Hence, that’s even more reason Mike, to list 76 Banning on the list. That’s a great statistic, I didn’t know St. Paul was so successful against Carson and Banning. St. Paul has such pride and gritty tough players. Ancich has got to be a top five coach in the state all-time. His coaching tree is tremendous. The Angulus League was just loaded. Yeah, too bad Banning and St. Paul couldn’t have met in 1980.
you need to remember that St Paul and Bishop Amat players back then were doin’ the same thing Catholics schools are still doing today…….accepting numerous transfers from other Catholic Schools. Hence; De La Salle’s success City schools had strict rules in regards to living in the district back then, not sure about now with the congestion with the city schools. Most if not all Carson and Banning kids are neighbors, where the kid from across the street goes to Carson and you’re going to Banning. To think if Carson wasn’t built back in the early 60’s, just how much of powerhouse Banning would’ve been…..and most of the games between Carson, Banning and their CIF counterparts were close. Fontana, Fountain Valley weren’t pushovers either. I actually attended that Banning, St Paul game where Banning squeaked out the win. I think their RB at that time was Hiawatha Franklin,.
COACH ANSICH, AMAZING COACH & PERSON…HOWEVER..THAT LOSS TO BANNING AND FREEMAN MCNEIL IN 1976..WAS 1ST LOSS ON ST. PAUL FIELD IN “10 YEARS’…IN 1973..CARSON COMING INTO THAT SEASON WITH 24 GAME WINNING STREAK..ST.PAUL BEAT US 7-0! ST. PAUL WON THE CIF-SS…HOWEVER..YOU FAILED TO MENTION..THE GREAT GARDENA TEAMS..AN IN THAT YEAR, 1973..GARDENA MOHICANS..BEAT CARSON 9-0..LEAGUE TITLE AND 28-0 IN THE CITY FINAL..WITH THEIR 24 FOOT LONGJUMPER RUNNING BACK “COLE”..I BELIEVE THEY WOULD HAVE BEATEN ST. PAUL…& REMEMBER..CARSON BANNING BOYS WERE HOME GROWN..NOT FROM ALL OVER SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA LIKE THE ST, PAUL AND MATER DEI PLAYERS!!! ..NOT MENTIONED..THE GREAT 1969 CITY CHAMPIONS GARDENA MOHICANS..COACHED BY MOSTLY DICK ENRIGHT..SHUT OUT THE MARINE LEAGUE..”0″ POINTS..GREG HERD 240 LB. RUNNING BULL…1965 & 66 CHARLIE EVANS..2 TIME CITY PLAYER OF THE YEAR..(I BELIEVE) USC STAR , NEW YORK GIANTS NFL STAR! MANY PROS..AS DID CARSON “18”+ NFL PLAYERS…BUT L.B. POLY TAKES THE CAKE..41 NFL PLAYERS!!! THANKS FOR READING!
Thanks for mentioning those great Gardena High School teams of the past. RB Kevin Cole (’76 Champs) and his brother Paul Cole (D lineman) on that ’69 team that shut out the entire LEAGUE lived across from me. I graduated in ’79 from GHS and played ball with their younger brother Scott. Unfortunately we didn’t live up to their legacies on the field but we did the best we could with what we had. We did be Stanley Wilson and his Banning (eventual City Champs) team our Junior year, 14-0, at El Camino College. Highlight and biggest win of our H.S. careers.
1969 gardena mohicans should have been in top ten
I remember St. Paul back in the day. Kind of like Fontana and Eisenhower later on. I just wish Wilson would have played better teams back in the day! I met Vic and he was all about his son Ron’s records. They were a great team though.
I know you do not think wilson could have compete with banning. We would play them in passing leagues and beat them. They were a lot bigger team on the lines. Unless you played on those teams.you cants say wilson could not have competed
Mike Alo and Danny Andrews were the best combo I ever seen. Not just because I went to Banning but because they were just that good….period! They also lived in my neighborhood and still have family that lives there to this day. True Pilots!
They were good, no doubt about that. Too bad Banning backed out of playing St. Paul in 1980 when those two were seniors. Their offense could’t score in the ’79 game and the St. Paul defense was the most dominate in the state in ’80 only giving up 26 points in nine regular season games. Would have been a great match up.
Mike where is Saint Paul today? Last I heard they were thinking about dropping down to 8 man football… Stop huffing and puffing about the past and go and fix your alimni, whats after 8 man football, flag? LOL Saint Paul is a has been….
Once again, Micho, you are looking at the school’s in present day. You don’t know what it was about back in the day. Keep quiet pal, and I am being nice saying this. If you keep posting, I might not be so nice! Sorry to the rest of the room, but as an athlete and coach, I cannot listen to this kind of stupidity.
WRICH..WASH DALE HIRAYAMA ONE OF YOUR COACHES?BTW..KEBVIN COLE WAS ON THE UNDEFEATED MOHICAN TEAM OF 1973..THEY BEAT US AT CARSON IN LEAGUE 9-0 AND WE LOST IN THE CITY FINALS 28-0..WE LOST TO CIF-SS CHAMPION 7-0 1ST GAME OF THE YEAR ..GADENA WAS BETTER THAN THOSE SWORDAMEN..FROM SANTA FE SPRINGS!
ALSO PAUL COLE WAS A S’68 GRAD OF GARDENA ..I KNOW BECAUSE I PLAYED AT HARBOR JC IN 1968 AND HE WAS ON OUR SEAHAWK TEAM..I KNOW THE YEARS BLEND TOGETHER SOMETIMES!..KEEP THE ‘MARINE LEAGUE FAITH!
Sylmar HS 1992
The Sylmar HS 1992 team was 13-1. This team went 13-0 during the regular season. They beat Venice, Garfield and Crenshaw in the playoffs. The Spartans beat a great Carson Colts team 17-0 in the 4A City Championship Game at El Canmino City College. The team’s on loss came in the 1st and only CIF Reebok Bowl. The 13-0 Sylmar Spartans played the 14-0 Bishop Amat Lancers at Anaheim Stadium. The Spartans lost 35-10 to a Bishop Amat team thet had Rodney Sermons, Daylon McCutchen, & Trevor Woods. It was a game for the ages, City Section vs Sothern Section what could be better.
Sylmar HS key players
QB – Dion Price
RB’s – Tyrone Crenshaw, Ibin Bilal
WR’s – Dwight Patton, John Gitanis
LB’s – Tyrone Pierce, George Brazil, Anthony Murry, Michael Anderson
DB’s _ Gabriel Rodriguez, Robert Camacho
O-line – Atr Lorrea, John Gonzalez, Lewis Mack
Robert, I know alot about the 1992 Sylmar team. Wonder how they would be looked at if they would have never played Bishop Amat? At 13-0 they would have been considered. I just think 1994 Sylmar is a tad bit better. Price was just a monster in high school and alot more physical than Crenshaw. Really like those backers, with Pierce Brazil and the San Fernando transfer Murry. Just thought the ’94 team was a bit better, but it’s close.
Please get your facts right on your youtube page. Tyrone Crenshaw was the Two Time City player of the year 92 and 93. Not a lot of players have that honor. So when they EARN it please give credit where it is due. Not Price but Crenshaw. Do your homework.
Did Crenshaw share it with Seka Edwards? Tyrone Crenshaw was a very good back, but not as good as Durell Price and not as good as Jerome Casey.
Jerome Casey is the best back to play at Sylmat
Yes he is.
Wow…way to take me down memory lane! I left for the Bay Area (Cal) the day after graduating Carson HS and have never been back to live. Every time I come home and visit with my dudes or see someone from high school, Carson and LA City football dominates the conversations. Honestly, I felt I missed out on some of the “celebrity status” that was given to those LA City teams that won a championship. You were exalted because everyone knew how much competition you had to go up against in order to win one. Outrageously competitive and so many good athletes. I don’t even want to name off any because I don’t want to do anyone a disservice. I can sum up LA City football like this. Growing up in LA, specifically Carson/Compton, you had to make a choice and it had to be made as early as you could walk and talk…Carson or Banning…USC or UCLA…Rams or Raiders. Be careful how you choose too! I’ve seen households broken to their very foundation because someone went against the grain or against family tradition in who they chose to side with lol! What made Carson and Banning such a heated and contested rivalry, LAUSD decided to split the Del Amo (DA) or Northside of Carson into two. Half of the neighborhood went to Carson and the other half to Banning, which I never understood since Banning is in the next city (Wilmington). We grew up playing together and then had to play against each other only in high school…when cats were hungry as wolves to get on and earn a scholarship. My team’s success and my future depended on me going hard against some of my best friends. Friends I had since I was 3-4 years old. If every kid in Carson went to Carson, it would have been illegal to play HS football vs. anybody in the country. I don’t think anyone would dispute that!
True that. I was part of those great Banning teams and how they split us up in DA wasn’t right. If we all went to Carson, lights out. Shout to my boy 1980 Co City Player of the year Darrel Hopper. He was the original Deon Sanders. Played both ways, punted. A big corner (6-1 200) and run 4.2 forty
Lastly the Banning and Carson teams in the 70’s gave John Elway the blues
Darrel Hopper is the 1979 Cal-Hi Sports Defensive Back of the Year. What a great all around player. His bro Tarriel was good, too.
And since I’m here…BIGTIME SHOUT OUT TO ALL MY C-HOUSE FAM WHO WORE THAT BLACK AND (POWDER) BLUE LIKE NO OTHER…ESPECIALLY THE LATE GREAT COACH VOLLNOGLE OR COACH VOL AS WE CALLED HIM! He truly cared about his players, his staff, and Carson HS. I learned so much from him. Heck I still say “geezo peezo”…especially on the football field lol. Thanks so much for doing this list! Of course I’m biased and think our 1988 and 1990 Carson teams were loaded. Tell me who else had 4 WR’s running 4.4 or faster in a run-and-shoot offense with John Walsh slangin that thing for over 4,800 in one season. And our defense…wow! We had 2 safeties and a rover all 6’3” and over head hunting every Friday night. We had a corner with 16 INT’s, the other corner was 1 of only 7 to start varsity at Carson since Coach Vol had been there in 1965, and only 1 dude went both ways. Not to mention, we should have eclipsed the 17 DI scholarship mark set by our 1988 team. Soooo much talent! I might have to start naming names in a minute LOL!!!
Fred, yeah, I know the 1990 team was just loaded almost everywhere. Would have made the list if they didn’t lose to Eisenhower, a team made up mostly of juniors. What talent in that game! The receivers on ’90 Carson were just sick!
It’s nice that the 1996 San Pedro team got honorable mention… that was during my senior year in high school. Melvin Yarbrough seemed brash before the season in predicting that the Pirates would flat out go undefeated, probably because the Pirates came so close to winning the championship in 1995, losing 10-8 to Dorsey due to a field goal at the end being blocked. Somehow, some way, San Pedro backed up Yarbrough’s claim. And they went by the motto of “Losing Is Not An Option.” Best game of that season all year was the first Southern Pacific Conference game against rival Narbonne. The Gauchos had that game won, until a pass interference penalty on the final play gave San Pedro one final chance. Yarbrough’s five-yard touchdown pass to Jose Bojorquez gave the Pirates a 16-14 victory. First title game at the Coliseum had the Pirates clinching the school’s only undefeated and untied team with a 22-20 victory over Taft, who also came into that game undefeated. What a great season it was. It was the third of four City titles in either Division 3A or 4A that San Pedro claimed in the 1990’s era, winning two in each division. Thanks again Ronnie!
You’re welome Jamal. Still trying to get Melivn’s final career statistics. Hope I can one day!
Jamaal, the SPHS team of 1996 would have been in the top 10 had coach walsh played someone note worthy, but then again he has always played a weak non league schedule, and this is exactly why the 96 team isn’t in the top 10… Hey I remember you the following year in the playoffs at Fremont when you threw down your tape recorder thinking Pedro lost only to have them come back and win. the 97 team was pretty amazing having to beat 3 undefeated teams Westchester, Fremont, then Taft for the 4A title. Pedro never been blessed with the type of athletes other schools have, but they sure do play with a lot of heart. Hopefully their new coach will bring them back to championship level…
THat’s what I love about San Pedro, they have never changed their style. They never wavered under Walsh. Great program.
I played in that game for narbonne, till this day we all feel robbed with that bogus call!!!
Thanks Ronnie and crew! I’m not qualified to even comment on whether or not this listing is valid and accurate considering the lengthy history of the LA City area. The fact, you guys put this together takes a lot of courage and knowledge knowing the criticism and feedback you’ll receive.
I played on that 88 Colt team, and alot of folks didn’t realize we introduced a new Offense (run & shoot) that year in a system that was already proven (veer-option) to win championships. Unfortunately, for us we faced a sound Bishop Amat team in the early season and recorded our only loss. We really gelled later on into the season and really perfected the two offenses. It was apparent the 1990 Colt honorable mention team exhibited a glimpse of the Voll/Clarkson era.
Again, much props to Cal Hi sports staff on putting this together. I could imagine how many hours, days, or months it took on putting this together. In the end, we all know the great players and teams not mention here will always be remembered in some form or fashion. But, this is definitely a good start.
Again, great job Ronnie on compiling this info.
Thanks Pete and Mark.
it was fun putting this together.
Carson always had great special teams and all city kickers. (i.e. Ernie Villareal (Arkansas), Ishmael Ordonez (Arkansas), Louis Perez (UCLA, LA Rams, San Diego Chargers, Washington Redskins).
ISMAEL ORDONEZ..GREAT “CARSON COLT 1976 KID”..KICKED “NCAA LEADING & RECORD 15 FIELD GOALS ONE SEASON FOR THE ‘RAZORBACKS ” OF ARKANSAS!
Crespi 2005 Randle Harris almosy 3, yards rushing and Daryl fields a all decade lb along with Cal standout and redskin player DJ holt
Carson was untouched in the late 80’s early 90’s woo…..
The 1973 Bell High purple Eagles were one of the best city section teams of all time ,losing only to city champs Carson in the championship game.after their Q.B. Keith Minton was injured early in the championship game. Bell was lead by running backs Dwight Ford and Lamont Montgomery they also had outstanding lineman Gene Lawyrick
Thanks for the info on 1973 Bell, Larry. Had they won the title they would have gotten more consideration.
I see no mention of Bell High playing San Fernando in the semis in 1974-they say that SF team was so great-I was on the field for the Bell team and Bell had a 6 Pt lead with less than a minute to go-Bell had SF beat and on 4th and 35 SF did some end around and Bell in prevent screwed up and let them score-but-the runner had stepped out of bounds never to be called-Bell got the ball back with 50 seconds and little chance at that juncture-
Sometimes the difference between greatness is mere inches. Bell is not the only L.A City Section team that feels it was robbed of greatness by referees or weird calls, no-calls.
Not many poeple even know about Bell High mid to late 70’s. I was a junior on the BB team that lost to Fremont at Pauly. My Sophmore year we lost to Carson in the LA City football championships. My Senior year, I played Football as well, we were 10-1-1 and beat Gardena when they were ranked number 1 in the city. 76 and 77 our football teams lost to “Air Cuccia” in the LA 3A city championships.
Unlike some of the other schools we were a hodge podge of Black, White, Hispanic and polynesians thrown together and having a geat time beating people who never heard of us! When we told them we were from Bell they instinctively thought we meant Bell Gardens.
Just a little tid bit from a 1975 Bell High Eagle
yeah, people not familiar with the Southeast Region definitely don’t know if Bell or South Gate are City or CIFSS. Bell has great tradition.
This was the 1971 Bell High football team. An epic year! RIP Gary Turner.
I agree, Bell had real depth and some stars along the way. I went to Garfield in the late 70’s. I had a solid 3 year Junior All-American education under Ray Galarze who became Bell’s Head Football Coach a few years later. In my 10th grade debut I started at Defense of End, one particular game Dwight Ford was across the line of scrimmage, Bell was awesome.
Correction, it was the little brother Alonzo.
From 71-75 Bell had a team that could beat any team – ever…yes, dwight ford and unbelievable talent all around..not mentioned was Big Bad Leon White 6’4″ 280 ( Colorado, LA Rams) and world professional wrestler VADER!) -the baddest dude ever to come out of California yep we lost Carson 73 and that great San Fernando team 74… but we were really good..
In the past decade we have seen some of the top talents ever
Some of the running backs coming out of cif and city
Section are arguably the best running backs in the history of the golden state
Such names as cj gable a bonifide star headed straight for the nfl
To Milton Knox of Birmingham 2008 mr football
Running for over 2,000 yards every season except his freshman year
In which he started on a championship caliber team
Are who can forget the likes if crespi’s randle harris who’s is believed
To be the fastest high school running back in California
Ever rushing for 2,988 yards and recording the most touch downs
In one half (7) running a 4.2 at under armor elite camp and matching
At nike spark .also being number one ranked 100 runner in the state.
D Anthony Thomas ,Javid best
You have no mention of Russel white … Derek Brown …. Jerome Casey or Curtis Scott .greastest backs in the City Section class of 89 and 90
Carson needs to get back to hiring past alumni that know the program. There are plenty of qualified coaches out there! Most of the pool of talent in Carson, is being lost to the neighboring private high schools.
The city of Carson rivals the city of Pacoima for producing raw talent, per capita. PacTown isn’t producing like it used to. however.
So Wilson gets left on the list and just gets a mention at the bottom ? because they were a 3A school ? they were undefeated from 75 -77 and city champs 4 years in a row 75 – 78 SMH
Wilson Mule class of 77
It’s a tough list! Tough to crack it Steve. No 3A champs on this list! Too bad Wilson couldn’t have played St. Paul, Carson or Banning.
No……it’s a good thing they didnt. They wouldn’t have been mentioned at all. Sorry, 3A. 17th place.
I would like to shout out the 1978 LA Jordan Bulldogs. Only 2 teams scored on them the whole season. I believe it was 10 or 11 shutouts. Franklin scored 3 points in the playoffs on Jordan. Unfortunately, LA Jordan Bulldogs loss top LA Wilson 12 to 15. I’m from Watts and I think the referees were not nice to the Bulldogs. 10 to 11 shutouts, just remember that. My odlest brother was the nose tackle on that team. Raymond Collins. Coach Henry Washington. Look it up!!!!!!
I was starting OLB in the 11th grade for Garfield. Jordon’s QB Anthony Buckley Offense gave Wilson a run for there money.
Steve, just stop it… Wilson of the 70’s deserve absolutely NO consideration, Coach Cuccia was too cowardly to play anyone who could threaten his team and his little son… Beating up on inferior 3A teams who were nothing more then soccer teams in football uniforms deserves no consideration, if fact it only showed how little class Cuccia actually had for his opponents. I WISH he would have stepped up and played someone good of that era 4A or CIF just so that all you Wilson dreamers would know the truth.
I’ve looked over your Carson Colt bias. The 1988-89 Dorsey team was
legit. Outscoring opponents 326-0 in its first 8 games. We played
Carson in the Semi-Finals and were handing them a beat down!!!!!
It was 13-0 in the bottom of the 3rd quarter at the LB Vet’s stadium.
The lights mysteriously go out and we wait over an hour and a half to resume play. Officials call back FOUR touchdowns……..Dorsey loses
14-13. Can we say cheaters…………After an hour and a half, you got time to to change your scheme…..call in some favors……and win……
The Dorsey 89-90 team takes revenge on Carson after the loss of Kevin Copeland (Greatest High School Wide-Out Ever) and win the City Championship. Just on character these two teams should be mentioned. DDP
I totally understand what happened in 1988 and 1990, Dorsey feels they were robbed by South Bay refs. Perhaps Voll had a little more weight and power than other schools believed. however, the 1989 team can’t be included, it lost 3 games leading up to upsetting Carson, even though KC had already passed. the 1988 team laid the foundation for Dorsey’s run. Much respect to the DDP.
Hey Ron I’m a Dorsey alumni c/0 1980. I was there for all of the aforementioned Dorsey games in this forum. As a fellow journalist, great job. Sometimes, guidelines have to be established. Keep up the super work!
I saw that comment on how 1973 Bell High Eagles were one of the best and they were then and for about a 4 year period-that 73 team almost beat Carson in the Championship game even though their starting QB a future Az State commit was hurt in the game Bell almost won using a back up QB who had not taken an in game snap the whole year *** LITTLE TRIVIA*** in that Championship game Bell kicked off and Carson took that kick off like 90s yards to touchdown-but-called back on penalty-they kick again and the now take it like 99 yards again to touchdown-that player future NFL hall of famer Westley Walker-******MORE TRIVIA****** Bell beat Banning in the semi finals that year to get to Carson and that Banning QB was one the best in the nation future Los Angeles Ram Vince Feragamo!
*****MORE TRIVIA****** that 73 Bell team had the famous wrestler and ex LA Ram Leon White who was famous as “VADER”!
**********MORE TRIVIA********** Bell High had one of the greatest running backs in LA School history who broke all the rushing records and he started 3 years straight and went on to play at USC- Dwight Ford! Injuries ended his career and without those injuries he may have been another USC Heisman winner-for real
MORE TRIVIA***** Bell Eagles 1975 team playing San Fernando with Charles White and Kenny Moore in the semi finals Bell ahead by 6 with 45 seconds left -San Fernando has ball on the 40 and its 4th and 25 Kenny Moore runs down the sidelines 70 yards for the winning score-later film reveals he stepped out of bounds and SF should have lost the game!
Great stories, trivia. Thanks for sharing.
MC, I’m a RAM and at one time a Bell Eagle Assassin, but i gotta give it up, that’s some bad ass info you just dropped!! n1
Going into SG was a cake walk compared to 1973 when the Bell JV Bee team takes the bus into Watts to play Jordan HS on their home field-Bell students and followers are advised not to attend the game due to probable trouble-the field is all brown and dirt dusty and seems to sit between a metal factory and junk yard on both sides-the stands are empty-Bell wins-the bus ride out is a bone shaker when Jordan students rock the hell out of the bus rolling out and the driver yells HOLD ON!-
That’s LA City ball for you. Has happened to many!
john Ioane, Bell Eagle class of 75
Knock it out the park! MC. Thanks!
Mc ur facts are wrong
Yep i was on the field #17, when Sarpy threw that end-around pass for the td right at the end…charley white and co. Were bad ass…
Bell High Alumn here. Class of 93. Thank you for sharing these stories MC. It’s great to hear about not only stories about my own high school, but other notable teams and players. We had our own story my Senior year in 1992 when we lost our opener to Bell Gardens then won 8 straight. Needing one more game to finish the season, the starting QB, RB, FB, WR and backup LB get caught at a ditching party and get booted off the team by Head Coach Ray Galarze. That moment changed people’s lives. But as we all get to experience, Life is all about the decisions you make. We would win our next game and finish the regular season 9-1 but would get beat by Chatsworth in the 2nd Round. People in our area still talk about that team and what could have been.
There were some very questionable calls in that 1988 Dorsey vs Carson semi final game. The officials took 2 Dorsey td’s off the board and a ticky tac personal foul call that extended Carson’s winning drive after Dorsey sacked Klein on 3rd and long, which would have ended the game, had they let the play stand. However that was a very good Carson team that featured 2 d1 qb’s Fred Gatlin (Nevada) split time with Perry Klein that year.
THat’s the city for you, crazy things happen. Look what happened to ’87 Carson. Way overconfident versus Granada Hills.
How could a top #5 ranked school in the nation putting out NFL drat picks did not make a top 10 list in its own city….wtf are these writers thinking about… how do they come up with a list compiled up with horse shit
Easy Teejay, Dorsey lost to a average team. It is what it is, can’t change history. 1991 Dorsey also lost and tied in regular season if I recall. 1989 Dorsey lost 3X. love your passion, thanks for chiming in.
How can you leave out Taft School with Coach Troy Starr.
Lost more big games than they won. 01 and 05 were heart-breakers.
How about 2002 and 2004 Birmingham Teams should at least received honorable mention? With what Croson did with a bunch of valleys kids is pretty amazing . 2002 Team had 3 loses but they beat probably the best team in California Taft High school in the first all valley bowl 35-7.
2004 Team was pretty sound team that ran through some stiff competition in the playoffs . Maybe NOT the TOP 10 but at least give them praise.
07 Birmingham clearly better than 02 and 04.
That 82 Dorsey team could go down as one of the best. So much talent! They demolished 4A Carson in their scrimmage.
Scrimmage? Isn’t that when you send in third string to see what he has? Then, the season starts and you bench him?
can’t consider Scrimmages in these rankings.
Did he just mention scrimmages? LOL! If that’s the case, Locke is the greatest football team of all time.
It was an honor to play for a genius coach Vic Cuccia & the most EXCITING atblete in high school football in the 70s,Ron Cuccia the “Italian Stallion”.BTW We beat all the 4A teams every summer in the Watts Summer Games at Cal State L.A. and ALL the different summer passing leagues.We beat all the San Diego schools even the S.D.champs Lincoln High led by some guy named Marcus Allen.BTW I had 4 TDs by halftime vs. Lincoln before they rolled it up & quit at the half.(63-0).L.A.City player of that week.Just sayin.With Ron Cuccia,we were UNSTOPPABLE. & UNBEATABLE in our high school careers.39-0. 1975-78 L.A.CITY CHAMPS
Brian, PLEASE WAKE UP FROM YOUR FANTASY… just stop it… Wilson of the 70’s deserve absolutely NO consideration, Coach Cuccia was too cowardly to play anyone who could threaten his team and his little son… Beating up on inferior 3A teams who were nothing more then soccer teams in football uniforms deserves no consideration, if fact it only showed how little class Cuccia actually had for his opponents. I WISH he would have stepped up and played someone good of that era 4A or CIF just so that all you Wilson dreamers would know the truth. BTW Brian, summer passing leagues isn’t real football, son… Real football is played with 11 players in helmets and pads… Wilson and Cuccia was small time at best, accept it….
Micho the Wilson hater, cmon hater its time u give credit where credit is due.. The Great 3A Cuccia era teams could have definitely competed with the 4A teams of that time, their complete dominance of the 3A was a tell tale sign…FYI Wilson did in fact play the 4A Powerhouses of that era 2 years after Quarterback Ron Cuccia graduated and Coach Vic Cuccia retired.. In the 1980-81 year Wilson was placed into the 4A division because of their dominance of the 3A, the only problem was that all the great players had graduated, yet Wilson still made it to the 4A semi final game vs El Camino and lost a close game. That 80-81 team had upset and beaten the #1 seed Kennedy as well as a host of other 4A ranked teams San Pedro and Crenshaw and they did it with players that nobody has ever heard of, imagine if they had played these 4A teams when they were stacked with the Cuccia era players…cmon Micho ur 4A teams would still b trying to figure out how to stop the Spread offense Cuccia introduced to High School football… At that time High Shool Football had never seen that type of Offense so u need to face the facts and get off the 4A schools of that eras Nuts and give L.A. Wilson their props, they deserve to be mentioned in the All Time best conversation!!
A bit of retrospect is in order re the Wilson juggernaut. One school that gave Coach Cuccia fits in the early seventies was the Franklin Panthers, coached by the late, great Jim Bogle. This was at a time prior to the gradation system when the Northern League existed as an equal entity to the rest of the city leagues. During the time 1969-1973 Franklin was 4 & 1 against the Cuccia led teams. An ongoing trademark of Vic Cuccia was to run up scores against lower level teams by as much as 80+ points. This was at a time when Rick Houlobeck was running wild over every team that Wilson faced. But, the 1970 game at E. L.A. J.C. field saw the Panthers shut down Wilson 9-0. Coming into that game Franklin’s record was 1-2-1. The L.A. Times described this game as “The Upset of the Century”. As a result of that game, and Franklin’s record for the rest of the season, the Northern league title ended in a tie between those two teams. As a footnote to that season, Wilson made it to a semi-final game with Granada Hills; a game that they lost primarily because of a late 4th down penalty for too many men on the field. That penalty gave GH a first down, thus allowing Dana Potter to move his team down the field for a late game-winning touchdown.
Just mention the southern league the greatest ever in California history the had to break it up
they had to break it up sorry
Lil Tj let’s comment on that your dad the Bone man never told you the history. sorry about leaving the y out in they in last message.
Tyrone SperlingOn the banning 1976 team, has to be mentioned
With the quickness of a average running back and all of the weight lifting records at banning
With the quickness of a average running back and all of the weight lifting records at banninZg Tyrone Sperling with the man
I BELIEVE FREEMAN MCNEIL BENCH PRESSED 350 LBS. IN BANNING CONTEST..WHAT WAS SPERLINGS BENCH IN CARSON CONTEST? ..GREATEST .STRONGEST TEAM IN 1970’S..WAS CARSON’S 1971 TEAM ..LED BY KISE FIATOA..BENCH PRESS 390 LB.S..AND BEAT GARASMACHUCK (280 LB. NARBONNE LINEMAN WHO WAS ALL SEC LINEMAN FOR ALABAMA CRIMSON TIDE) , WHO BENCHED 435 LBS.IN CARSON CONTEST.WELL KISE BEAT HIM IN FULL SQUAT WITH A LAST LIFT OF 550 LBS..’THE ROAR OF THE CROWD” IN THE CARSON GYM WAS LIKE THE CARSON-BANNING GAME IN FRONT OF 20,000 ..29-28 WIN FOR CARSON AND WESLEY WALKER (10 YEARS ALL-PRO N.Y. JETS, JOE SHIPP. BUF. BILLS..VS.BANNINGS FERRAGAMO ..SUPER BOWL QB FOR L.A.RAMS AND STEVE RIVERA 200 YARDS RECEIVING)).IN THE SQUAT …GERASMACHUCK 540 LB. SQUAT..FOR 975 LB. TOTAL FOR BENCH & SQUAT1ST PLACE HEAVYWEIGHT DIVISION!..MANY SAY THEY BENCHED THIS AND SQUATTED THIS..BUT PROOF IS IN A “CONTEST WITH SAID RULES IN FORCE”BY COMPETENT JUDGES!
Did I miss something? Gardena 1969. City champions, shutout the entire league. 1 loss to CIF power Lakewood.
I AGREE NICK…HERD, GUY..ETC WENT WITH THEIR COACH DICK ENRIGHT..TO UNIV. OF OREGON..STARTED AS FRESHMEN..I BELIEVE..
How can the 69 Gardena team which shut out the league, including Carson and Banning, not be in the top ten teams in the city. They won all the playoffs games easily? Gardena won 3 city titles in ten years and from 1963 to 1969 lost one game in league play (3-0 lost to the great Carson team). The winner of that epic game would win it all, was the consensus.
Correct. Came to UO and bombed; gone after two seasons.
South Gate RAMS 1988 14-0 3a City Champs…….Defense Baby!!!!
Would have liked to have seen Ivan Wilson against a real 4A defense..
1988 South Gate was a great 3A team. They beat a very good Sylmar team in the quarters on a fg 3-0. I was there. Ivan was one of the best backs in the state. Deserved all the accolades he got. He was a true football player who could help the team in many ways.
Thanks, good list.
I remember the 1974-75 San Fernando wishbone offense. Wow.
Now I wonder, however, if they should have instead run the I formation with future Heisman winner Charles White as the tailback? USC stuck him at tailback and he rushed for over 6,000 yards, leading the NCAA twice.
It was kind of like the U. of Texas in 1976 took Earl Campbell out of tailback and made him fullback so that super-speedsters Johnny Lam Jones and Johnny Ham Jones could play halfback. That was amazing, but less successful on the football field than just giving Campbell the ball 30 times game. So in 1977 Texas scrapped the wishbone and put Earl Campbell back at tailback and he won the Heisman.
On the other hand, all four San Fernando backs in 1974-75 were pretty much unstoppable by anybody in high school, so the wishbone must have given defenses nightmares.
Sna Fernando has so many weapons, I think the wishbone was suited perfectly for them. why not use the state 100-yard champion if you have him and a future NFL DB? the dive to White was the best play in the amazing offense.
I was on the two time 1974 and 75 City Championship San Fernando football teams. What people don’t know is that there was no recruiting going on by Bill Marsh and Bill Hornbeck. We were all friends from the neighborhood that had speed and could flat out play. We didn’t realize we were that good until we won it all in 1974. Then in 1975 we were expected to win again and we did. I miss all my teammates and hearing “Skintight” by the Ohio Players as we took the field. We were the best in the Nation at that time. Bill Benjamin straight outa San Fernando.
A lot of Tigers still around from that 74 ,75 team We were just neighborhood kids playing ball for our high school . All the teams mentioned had great players .I coached for 30 years city football has changed quite a bite not the same what a shame
Think you need to update it a little with Narbonnes 2016 team 15-2 D1 state champions which a LA team hasn’t won in 99 years!! Something like that trumps all…
Team from Narbonne that lost in the SoCal Open Division bowl game a few years ago was much better than 2016.
A D1-A state title does not trump all because it’s not Open Division and Narbonne didn’t even have to beat Mission Viejo or Helix (which were ranked higher) and in D1-AA.
I’m with MT on this one, 2012 Narbonne is better than 2016 Narbonne.
ANY TEAM THAT BEATS CIF CHAMP L.B. POLY 56-0 DESERVES MOST OF THE ACCOLADES! THE NARBONNE GAUCHOS!
Not have any Dorsey team on this list especially the 95 team which beat your 96 San Pedro team for the 4A city championship. Come on now really?? That teams was loaded head to toe like any other Dorsey team that were city legends!!!!!!!!
Jordan Bulldogs (Los Angeles) 1978. The senior on that team graduated in 1979. I just want to get the year correct for that team the shutout 10 or 11 teams that year.
It’s not close the Gardena Mohicans 1969 Team was the Greatest Of California. The team beat every team in the tough Marine League that consists of Carson , Banning, San Pedro , Locke and Narbonne and what made them special was they didn’t allow them to score that’s right O , SHUT OUT THE ENTIRE MARINE LEAGUE. Went undefeated and won the City Championship. The head coach was Dick Enright, after Gardena won the City Championship he was promoted to Oregon and after that head football Coach of the Suns in the World Football League. Several players from the 1969 team join Coach Enright and played for the Suns.
People are still commenting on this list years later! Nothing gets people riled up like the Marine League and if ’77 Wilson is legit.
Wow! People had so much pride back in the day for their teams.
How good are the recent Narbonne teams in comparison?
no one mentions the Gardena High football teams of the late 1960″s Early 1979″s Particular the 1969 team
which shutout. the whole marine league , thats right shut-out the whole league
and captured the city championship. this team was Coached by Dick Enright and Ralph Vidal
OK. Lots of good comments and lots of good players, teams and coaches in LA City football. How about Huntington Park HS team of 1959. Lost to Banning in first game of the year but came back to destroy every team, including Banning in the playoffs, to win 1959 City Championship. They beat Reseda 46 to 6 in the championship game in front of 25,000 at the LA Colliseum. Reseda QB was Hal Bedsole, later USC all american at tight end. HP Quarterback was Craig Fertig later QB at USC team that beat Notre Dame in one of the greatest games ever played in SoCal. HP backs Larry Bryan played at Utah State, Jon Ives played at USC, center Skip Husbands played at Utah State. Ray Vernoy was head coach and legendary Narbonne coach Jack Bobbinette was the sole assistant. There were no 3A or 4A classifications in those days. You had to beat everybody. HP had half the enrollment of Banning, Reseda and others they destroyed. Ray Vernoy was a great coach. I was a sophomore bench warmer on that team and All City running back as a senior. A true team win. Great players at every position.
Banning Pilots will always go down as the best LA City team!
That Jake Otto got the Pilots back in the mix. Watch out Marine League
That 71′ Carson team was Outstanding. My oldest brother Fili started on that team. Wesley, Kise, Marvin & Randy Morris, jimmy Vaipou, Kim Wise, McClure etc….. so many awesome athletes. 71′ LA’s Best
As starting QB for the 71 CHS team, it was pure pleasure to play with them. 11 of the 22 All City selections came from that team in 71. I’d say we were pretty loaded with talent comparable to some of the teams discussed above.
[…] Cal Hi Sports gives the 1965 LA High School Romans the honorable mention nod as one of the city’s 18 best high school football team’s in the city’s history. Greg Diles was named 2nd team all-city that year. The year before, they lost in the playoffs, but in ’65 they won the city championship (California didn’t start doing state championships until ten years ago). Sadly, I have not been able to track down any living members of the old team: […]