Preseason all-BANG high school football 2023: Running backs/Athletes

Preseason all-BANG high school football 2023: Running backs/Athletes



Elias Antillion, Branham,  5-9, 160, senior

Led playoff team with 1,219 rushing yards, and had 32 receptions for 393 yards out of the backfield. Scored 10 TDs from scrimmage, and had a team-high three INTs as a DB. 

Micah Avery, El Cerrito,  5-10, 180, senior

All-EBAL Mountain Division first-team selection at running back rushed for 732 yards and 10 touchdowns for Clayton Valley Charter last season. Joins a talented El Cerrito team that reached the NorCal final. 

Monte Beam, Concord,  5-10, 175, senior

First-team all-DAL Valley selection carried Concord’s offense as the Minutemen went from 1-9 to 9-1. Rushed for 1947 yards and 20 touchdowns, and is the favorite to win league MVP. 

Elijah Bow, Pittsburg,  5-9, 205, junior

Part of Pittsburg’s vaunted junior class, Bow was named first-team all-BVAL after rushing for 1195 yards and 16 touchdowns for the NorCal Division I champions. Rushed for 163 yards and two touchdowns in the regional final. 

Uchenna “Clinton” Eke, Valley Christian,  5-10, 210, senior

WCAL RB of the year was one of the few bright spots in VC’s wretched 1-9 season. Rushed for 923 yards and 11 touchdowns, and should have a much easier time running behind a retooled O-line. 

Tajir Golden, McClymonds,  5-10, 185, senior

Rushed for 376 yards and four TDS on 19 YPC and had 313 receiving yards and three touchdowns despite rarely being healthy last season. Is switching to RB fulltime and will be asked to replace graduated Alameda County player of the year Jaivian Thomas. 

Jalen Harris, Berkeley,  6-0, 170, senior

Berkeley’s leading rusher ran for 660 yards and eight touchdowns. Three-star recruit has offers from Cal and San Jose State, Caught three touchdowns and returned one punt for a score, will be an even bigger part of the offense with all-BANG WR Jackson Harris now at Stanford. 

Kingston Keanaaina, St. Francis,  5-11, 190, junior

In line to be the Lancers next great feature back in the school’s power-running offense, he rushed for 785 yards and 10 touchdowns despite only starting the final four games of the season. 

Dominic Kelley, De La Salle,  5-11, 190, junior

The junior rushed for 204 yards against Amador Valley, and those kinds of games should be more common as the team’s featured back. Averaged 6.9 YPC, has offers from San Jose State and Nevada. 

Aaron Lipscomb, Fremont-Oakland,  5-10, 185, senior

An all-Oakland Athletic League selection and one of the few returning players with experience for Fremont will be asked to put up another great statistical season. Lipscomb rushed for 812 yards last season. 

Devan Love, California,  5-10, 170, senior

First-team all-EBAL Mountain Division selection had 803 total yards, 21 tackles and two interceptions. Will team up with QB Jayden Macedo to give Grizzlies an experienced backfield. 

Jeremiah Madrigal, Palo Alto, 5-7, 170, senior

First-team all-SCVAL De Anza Division selection rushed for 803 yards and 10 touchdowns for team that reached the 6-AA state title game. Rushed for a touchdown in Paly’s come-from-behind victory in the CCS Division V title game.

Julian McMahan, Monte Vista,  6-3, 210, junior

Three-star recruit with offers from Cal, Arizona and other FBS schools. Led team in rushing yards despite playing in only four games, and can also play linebacker. 

John Pau Mendoza, San Ramon Valley,  5-8, 180, senior

Second-team all-EBAL selection at DB stuffed the stat sheet for the NorCal Division II champions. Rushed for 868 yards and 10 touchdowns, caught 24 passes, had 14 pass breakups as a DB. 

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Preseason all-Bay Area News Group high school football 2023: Defensive backs

Shayan Shariat, Leigh,  6-1, 220, senior

The powerful running back and BVAL Valley Division junior of the year rushed for 1,011 yards and 12 touchdowns, and also led the squad in receptions and receiving yards. Also had 38 tackles as a linebacker. 

Jaylen Thomas, Los Gatos,  5-10, 180, senior

The RB/WR/DB hybrid was named the PAL De Anza most valuable player had 1,046 total yards and 11 touchdowns. Also three two TDs, blocked two punts and was 6-7 on PATs for the Wildcats. 

Herschel Turner, Mt. Diablo,  5-10, 185, senior

Three-star recruit with offers from Utah and Washington State named second-team all-BVAL for Freedom last season. Rushed for 911 yards and 14 touchdowns, put up 280 receiving yards and two touchdowns as a junior. 

Jeaden Underwood, The King’s Academy,  5-7, 190, senior

Reigning PAL/SCVAL El Camino MVP rushed for 1,312 yards and had 16 total offensive touchdowns on offense for TKA. The versatile athlete had an interception, fumble and kickoff return for a TD too. 

Evan Usher, Woodside,  6-1, 185, junior

Named the PAL-Lake Divison’s most valuable player after rushing for 1,749 yards and 23 TDs as a sophomore. Had a stretch of four consecutive 220-plus-yard rushing games last season. 

Elijah Walker, Wilcox,  5-7, 155, senior

PAL De Anza Division running back of the year produced 1,156 yards and 11 touchdowns in Wilcox’s veer attack. Should be the top back with the graduation of prolific runner Andrew Palacios.

Coming the next two weeks

The Bay Area News Group’s high school football preview package will roll out over the next two weeks. If you have not already, please subscribe. Your contributions keep us going.

Correspondent Mike Lefkow contributed to this report.