Without trying to make fun of anyone, here is a look at what we found to be the most unusual names of players on California high school football rosters for the 2022 season. Three players in particular inspired this feature, OL King Large of St. John Bosco, QB Hype Grand of Orange and one player we talked to last week, QB Tre Dimes of Fairfield Vanden.
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Back in the days of Student Sports Magazine and Cal-Hi Sports as a weekly tabloid before the internet, there were several all-state all-name teams that were selected. We stopped doing them with a sense of only writing up players with names that were unusual to us, but may not be unusual for them or to people of a different ethnic background.
This year, we’ve done them again, but with different criteria. We instead looked for players with names that have a double meaning or players with an unusual first name-last name combination.
These were compiled through all of the rosters that were available on MaxPreps.com. Thanks to correspondents Daniel Poulter and Chuck Nan for scanning a lot of them. Yes, we looked through more than 1,000 over a few weeks, but still might have missed some. And in some cases we’re assuming a player’s name on a roster is a real player and not a test done by a coach inputting a roster.
Perhaps one of the reasons unique names became of interest is that two people with the last name Tennis, late uncle Nelson and myself, started a high school sports publication in the late 1970s. There also was the legendary Key & Peele routine with all of the crazy, made-up names plus the ads from Wienerschnitzel right now featuring Barb E. Que and Lou Ow.
Two players in particular got the juices going to do the work for this team. At national powerhouse St. John Bosco, one of the top offensive linemen has been junior King Large. He is living up to that name so far this season. And then there’s a transfer QB at Orange High, Hype Grand, a sophomore and one of several top-ranked sophomores or juniors at that school this season.
There’s also the aptly named Tre Dimes playing QB at Vanden High of Fairfield, who led his team to the 2021 CIF D3-AA state title. Tre does throw his share of dimes and can tuck it and run for yardage if he has to.
“A lot of people come up to me about the name and give me compliments,” Dimes said after leading the Vikings to a win last Friday over Foothill of Pleasanton. “I take some responsibility for the name and try to fulfill it.”
With respect to some of the great state names of the year from the past, like Monrovia’s Fair Hooker (yes, a receiver) 1963, Chino’s Teddy Bare (1942), Manteca East Union’s Vladimir Kabingabang (1982) and Sanger’s Atomic Torosian (1966), here’s an alpa list of our 2022 all-state all-name team.
Kapule Academia (Olympian, Chula Vista)
Senior HB/LB has changed numbers this season for the Eagles.
Oluwasemilore Akinleye (Tracy)
He’s a junior kicker for the Bulldogs, who have begun 4-0.
Tiger Bachmeier (Murrieta Valley, Murrieta)
Stanford-bound receiver’s name isn’t that unusual, but has to be on this list now that he is catching passes this season from his younger brother, Bear.
Holden Beers (Justin-Siena, Napa)
His older brother, Hudson, was one of the Braves’ best QBs ever. Holden is a senior QB at the school this season.
Sailor Bein (San Clemente)
The junior TE/C should probably be going to Newport Harbor of Newport Beach (which is the Sailors).
Sirr Bible (Los Alamitos)
Sophomore LB is the son of Los Al assistant coach Bruce Bible.
Timmy Blocker (Live Oak, Morgan Hill)
There was a Mark Blocker at Leuzinger of Lawndale a couple of seasons ago and another player we found named “Blocher.” Timmy is a fullback/linebacker for the Acorns.
Remington Blue (Fall River, McArthur)
He’s actually a 6-4, 290-pound junior lineman who started for last year’s CIF D7-AA state champions.
Dallas Carolina (Eastside, Lancaster)
Sophomore WR/DB makes one wonder if there’s anyone out there named Denver Wyoming or Salem Arizona.
Tyler Cobb (Vista Murrieta, Murrieta)
It doesn’t look like this junior defensive lineman plays baseball.
Landen Date (North, Torrance)
Junior plays OL and DL for Saxons’ team that won three of its first four games.
Tre Dimes (Vanden, Fairfield)
One of Tre’s teammates, defensive end and sack leader Orion Null, also definitely qualifies for the all-name team.
Freezandier Dosty (Edison, Stockton)
He was a key player for Edison’s Sac-Joaquin Section D1 playoff team last season and is looking to have another strong year.
Gentle Edwin (Rodriguez, Fairfield)
Back-up RB had some rushing yards last week in the win vs Napa.
Applebaum Faaliga (Mira Loma, Sacramento)
Big nose guard was listed with nine tackles last season.
Tyler Ferrari (Foothill, Palo Cedro)
Junior DB also plays baseball for the Cougars.
Dylan Flippin (Tesoro, Las Flores)
Headline writers would love it if Dylan has a big game. It would only be better if he went to Dana Hills and was a Flippin Dolphin.
Prince Gentle (Chaminade, West Hills)
Sophomore is on the roster of the undefeated Eagles as a WR/DB.
Battle Gideons (St. Margaret’s, SJ Capistrano)
He was recently featured in the Orange County Register by columnist Steve Fryer.
Hype Grand (Orange)
Sophomore QB has FBS offers and came to Orange from Pasadena.
Streak Honey (Poly, Pasadena)
Senior WR/DB looking to make some sweet plays for the Panthers for the rest of the season.
Longevity Khanrad (Lutheran, Orange)
Senior receiver had three TD catches for the Lancers in their first three games.
Ryder Knight (Pleasant Grove, Elk Grove)
Senior lineman may have parents who enjoyed the 1980s TV series Knight Rider.
King Large (St. John Bosco, Bellflower)
Listed as a 6-4, 310-pound junior, King has two reported D1 offers. Also a 3.5 GPA.
Solemn Lincoln (Simi Valley)
He’s a top senior DB for a Pioneers’ team that was No. 24 in the state until taking an upset loss last week to Saugus.
Leighton Line (Loyola, Los Angeles)
Yes, Leighton is a lineman for the Cubs. Listed at 6-4, 270.
Brittain Livings (Tennyson, Hayward)
No word on whether the senior linebacker is interested in ever living in Great Britain.
Legend Lyons (Charter Oak, West Covina)
Sophomore receiver is one to watch for the Chargers.
Kreet Makihele (San Marcos)
Freshman QB had seven TD passes last week so get used to hearing his name.
Gino Marchetti (Foothill, Tustin)
Sophomore QB has the same name as Hall of Famer from Antioch (the late Gino Marchetti), who is still the best defensive lineman in the NFL ever to come from a California high school.
Maxim Newbegin (University City, San Diego)
Junior QB has a TD pass and TD run in back-up role for Centurions so far this season.
Arial Pal (Panorama City)
Listed without a position or year in school on MaxPreps’ roster, but sure hope he’s a receiver.
Romulan Phetvixay (Sunnyside, Fresno)
Sophomore DB may or may not have ever heard of Star Trek.
Ah-Zaire Piggee (St. John Bosco, Bellflower)
Senior DL is a 6-foot-3, 275-pounder who plays for the Braves.
Saxon Plasterer (El Capitan, Lakeside)
He is a defender who can “plaster” opponents. Saxon, a junior, had 14 tackles in the first four games.
Titan Popp (Morro Bay)
Senior two-way lineman also was on the roster last year when the Pirates won CIF SoCal D7-AA regional title.
Taejon Primitivo (Chavez, Stockton)
He has rushed for 400 yards so far this season for the Titans. We didn’t find anyone named Zinfandel or Chardonnay.
Foxx Redd (Artesia, Lakewood)
He’s one of the top offensive players for the Pioneers. The late comedian and TV star, Redd Foxx, was born with the name John Sanford. Foxx’s name isn’t made up.
Rykin Resurreccion (Monte Vista Christian, Watsonville)
Sophomore linebacker also is a promising wrestler.
Eyezik Ruppert (Canyon, Canyon Country)
Junior WR/DB has the most unique spelling of first name “Isaac” we’ve ever seen.
Dylan Stallions (Colfax)
A senior leader of the Falcons, Dylan and Colfax don’t play any team named the Stallions this season but he would if it was Madera South or San Juan Hills. Teammate is fellow senior Amadeus Alcala.
Hush Stanford (View Park, Los Angeles)
Junior WR should be immediately offered by Cal just because of his name alone.
Jet Steele (Vista del Lago, Folsom)
Junior RB/DE working to be tough as steele for the Eagles.
Style Turk (Los Alamitos)
He’s a junior defensive end for the highly ranked Griffins.
Aitor Urionabarrenechea (Chaminade, West Hills)
Senior lineman with super-long name was all-state underclass second team last season at his previous school (Alemany of Mission Hills).
Ethan Warrior (Palmdale)
Believe it or not, but found a college player in Tennessee with the same name.
Marcus Works (La Habra)
Talented DB works hard to get better. He had five interceptions last season for the Highlanders.
Let us know of any additions or similar names you like by emailing email@example.com.
We were actually surprised to see as many first names with Anakin as there were plus there were more Cinceres and Sinceres than we thought there would be.
Mark Tennis is the co-founder and publisher of CalHiSports.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Don’t forget to follow Mark on the Cal-Hi Sports Twitter handle.