San Marcos quarterback Will Freed passed for 1,546 yards last season.
Last year: 5-6
Coach: Leigh Cole, 4th year
Key players: Quenton Meeks (WR-DB), Parker Lappin (QB), Kayden Clements (RB-DB), Anthony Forte (OL), Chris Labrador (LB), Jack Packwood (DE), Grayson Farnham (PK-P), Montrice Johns (TE-DE).
Scouting report: The Nighthawks move into a new league with 13 returning starters — seven on offense. Three-year starter Lappin returns at QB after throwing for 1,873 yards. Meeks caught 37 balls and had 35 tackles. He’s a top-flight college recruit on both sides of the ball. Clements was among the team leaders with 59 tackles. He and Labrador, who has 74 tackles, are drawing college interest. Johns is a big, strong, fast player who has a chance to blossom. Farnham averaged 46.6 on 18 punts and made all 29 of his PATs.
Aug 29: at Horizon Christian, 7 p.m.
Sept. 5: Rancho Bernardo, 7 p.m.
Sept. 12: at Westview, 7 p.m.
Sept. 19: Mt. Carmel, 7 p.m.
Sept. 26: Escondido Charter, 7 p.m.
Oct. 10: Vista, 7 p.m.
Oct. 17: at San Marcos, 7 p.m.
Oct. 24: at Mission Hills, 7 p.m.
Oct. 30: Rancho Buena Vista, 7 p.m.
Nov. 7: Fallbrook, 7 p.m.
Last year: 12-2
Coach: Chris Hauser, 10th year
Key players: Dechaun Holiday (WR-DB), Martrel Holmes (WR), Jared Cheatwood (TE-DE), Griffin Gullotti (OL), Chris Mann (OL), Justus Te’i (TE-LB), Troy Warner (WR-DB), Will Stricklin (RB-DB), Joe Kaletta (DL), Kameron Canteen (RB).
Scouting report: Holiday is an excellent receiver and also one of the top DBs in the country. He was first-team all-county. Warner and Cheatwood were first-team all-league, Te’i was a second-teamer and Gullotti was honorable mention on offense. The QB job is between junior transfer Dakota Miller and freshman Jake Tuttle. Holmes is an athletic target. Canteen is an experienced runner where the Grizzlies have quality depth. Both lines should be a strength of the team while the secondary has the ability to make big plays.
Aug. 30: Timpview (Utah) at Cathedral Catholic, 5 p.m.
Sept. 5: Torrey Pines, 7 p.m.
Sept. 12: at Bonita Vista, 7 p.m.
Sept. 19: Poway, 7 p.m.
Sept. 26: at Escondido, 7 p.m.
Oct. 10: at Oceanside, 7 p.m.
Oct. 17: Rancho Buena Vista, 7 p.m.
Oct. 24: Del Norte, 7 p.m.
Oct. 31: at Vista, 7 p.m.
Nov. 7: at San Marcos, 7 p.m.
RANCHO BUENA VISTA
Last year: 9-4
Coach: Paul Gomes, 3rd year
Key players: Malik Taylor (QB), Zach Gallina (RB-DB), Diego Rodriguez (WR-DB), Jose Rosales (OL-DL), Jordan Fisher (WR-DB), Nathan Terhune (TE-MLB), Francisco Curiel (FB-LB), Corban Taumaoe (OL), Gabe Salazar (DL), Dominic Taylor (RB-LB).
Scouting report: Malik Taylor is coming off ACL surgery but is 100 percent healthy. He’s a threat with his arm and legs. Gallina and Rodriguez are the other offensive threats. Taumaoe is the big man of an athletic offensive line. On defense, Rosales and Salazar anchor the line. Terhune is the middle linebacker, teaming with Curiel and Taylor. Fisher plays one corner with Gallina at the other. The Longhorns have speed on both sides of the ball, but lack size.
Aug. 29: at Poway, 7 p.m.
Sept. 5: Westview, 7 p.m.
Sept. 12: San Pasqual, 7 p.m.
Sept. 19: at Steele Canyon, 7 p.m.
Sept. 26: Oceanside, 7 p.m.
Oct. 10: San Marcos, 7 p.m.
Oct. 17: at Mission Hills, 7 p.m.
Oct. 24: at Valley Center, 7 p.m.
Oct. 30: at Del Norte, 7 p.m.
Nov. 7: Vista, 7 p.m.
Last year: 9-5
Coach: Jason Texler, 3rd year
Key players: Kevin Estes (OL-DL), Cody Meyer (OL-DL), Will Freed (QB), James Harwell (QB-PK), Joah Robinett (TE-DE), Anthony Zuniga (OL-DL), Chase Olson (WR), Tyler Nix (WR-DB), Johnny McWilliams (WR).
Scouting report: The Knights have 13 returning starters — eight on offense. The biggest decision is at QB where Harwell and Freed are back. Harwell threw for 1,613 yards, Freed for 1,546. Harwell is also the team’s kicker. Nix caught 58 balls last season. McWilliams, a basketball player, is a great athlete. The lines are big and athletic, led by Meyer (6-3, 260), Zuniga (6-0, 230), Robinett (6-8, 220) and Estes (6-6, 280). Estes has no less than 17 Division I college offers. The Knights will rely on several sophomores and freshmen to come through.
Aug 29: Scripps Ranch, 7 p.m.
Sept. 5: at Chula Vista, 7 p.m.
Sept. 12: at Escondido, 7 p.m.
Sept. 19: Fallbrook, 7 p.m.
Sept. 26: at Westview, 7 p.m.
Oct. 10: at Rancho Buena Vista, 7 p.m.
Oct. 17: Del Norte, 7 p.m.
Oct. 24: at Vista, 7 p.m.
Oct. 31: San Pasqual, 7 p.m.
Nov. 7: Mission Hills, 7 p.m.
Last year: 2-8
Coach: Dan Williams, 11th year
Key players: David Fa’atu’iese (TE-LB), Ryan Lasua (WR), Nate Johnson (Athlete), Zach Morel (WR-DB), Davin Lemon-Rodriguez (QB), Patrick Renner (OL-DL), John Flores (RB-LB), Anthony Kuchinsky (RB), Bryson Parker (LB).
Scouting report: Back-to-back 2-8 seasons should be a memory as the Panthers return 14 starters — eight on defense. Lemon-Rodriguez threw for 477 yards and appears ready to blossom. Kuchinsky is a tough runner, who had 386 yards a year ago. Lasua had 20 catches. Fa’atu’iese (68 tackles), Flores (67 tackles), Parker (40 tackles) and Morel (28 tackles) head a deep and talented defense. Johnson can be a star on both sides of the ball.
Aug. 29: at Bonita Vista, 7 p.m.
Sept. 5: Eastlake, 7 p.m.
Sept. 12: at Steele Canyon, 7 p.m.
Sept. 19: at Carlsbad, 7 p.m.
Sept. 26: La Costa Canyon, 7 p.m.
Oct. 10: at Del Norte, 7 p.m.
Oct. 17: at El Camino, 7 p.m.
Oct. 24: San Marcos, 7 p.m.
Oct. 31: Mission Hills, 7 p.m.
Nov. 7: at Rancho Buena Vista, 7 p.m.