Column: Once unthinkable, three high school SD teams would win state championships in the same season


Serve me …

As wonderful Encinitas songwriter Hugh Martin wrote, “in the heyday of yore,” I covered San Diego high school sports for the very professional yet fun Evening Tribune.

Since then in the 1970s we’ve had a lot of changes in our sports – the NFL, the NBA (twice) and everything else hasn’t worked out – so most of them have been negative.

Perhaps it’s only fitting that in a city that has grown immensely and continues to think small (and often badly), a big exception is high school sports. Especially football.

As recently as last week, three local schools – Cathedral Catholic, Mater Dei Catholic and Scripps Ranch – won state football titles. Congratulations. A major achievement.

Back when I was covering the build-up, the idea that it would be as far-fetched as San Diego State getting good at basketball.

Not that we didn’t have great teams. If the state championships were then available, a few might have been successful. Certainly not three in a season.

But when our schools played against teams from the Los Angeles area or elsewhere, success did not come consistently, if at all. Most of our coaches didn’t want it anyway.

And we had a few players – Lincoln’s Marcus Allen, the best to come out of here, was one.

But, again, it was not difficult to count the number of players who went to Division I schools.

Now it is difficult to follow. The other day our John Maffei wrote an article about San Diego kids bowling. There were at least three dozen. And that number does not include those whose teams did not advance to the playoffs.

Three Aztecs who played ball in high school here made AP’s All-America teams – rancho Bernardo punter Matt Araiza (first team) and two second teams, defensive end Cam Thomas (Carlsbad) guard William Dunkle (Eastlake) ).

San Diego has become one of the nation’s recruiting destinations. No other city can claim four Heisman Trophy winners – Allen, Rashaan Salaam, Ricky Williams and Reggie Bush – and Allen and Terrell Davis (Lincoln) and the late Junior Seau (Oceanside) have been inducted into Pro Football Hall.

Why the change? Well, on the one hand, the number of people. Metro San Diego had a population of 1,442,000 in 1975. It is now 3,272,000. More kids, more good players – and many, many more schools.

And of course better supervision and better training.

John Shacklett, one of our all-time prep coaches, worked at El Capitan and San Diego as an assistant in the ’60s and was a head coach at Morse from the’ 70s to this century. His 1991 Tigers team was ranked No.2 nationally.

He says: “Coaching is really a lot stronger now. There is so much experience. Few people walk in the cold. They stay and make it their job. They are very dedicated and more and more kids, starting with Pop Warner, are interested in playing.

“I’ve always had recruiters come into my office, but San Diego really became a strong recruiting area about 15 years ago. We have kids playing everywhere and a lot of them are training everywhere. And we have schools that play LA schools regularly. The cathedral must hurry to find 10 schools to play.

“When I was a coach I never thought we could have three state champions in the same year.”

That’s at least two of us. …

My understanding is that Urban Meyer heads to USC. As a kicker. …

Urban blight: if Meyer was a centipede, he would have pointed 100 fingers. The man arrived in Oz and thought he was still in Kansas. …

Was i the first to say Trevor Laurent should have stayed in school? …

Meyer is now free to run for office in Florida. …

If a dog has ever eaten homework, it was Clueless, owner of Jax Shad Khanthe best friend of. …

I’m all for Brandon staley bet on fourth downs, and he says that’s how he’s going to play it. But know your opponent. He needed this basket at the end of half-time. …

Why didn’t the scan say “Go for two” when she was leading 27-21, Brandon? As easy as going to seven.…

His team are better than KC except the Chiefs know how to win. …

Derwin James Jr. it counts: with James on the field for 26 defensive snaps, Travis Kelce caught a pass for 14 yards. When he was out, for 46 snaps, Kelce had 9 for 177.…

Rex ryan, genius, on the analysis: “Go ruin another sport, like you did baseball.” I hate analytics.

Yes, I remember when people coached sports. …

The longest normal punt return in history is expected to be 91 yards at most. …

The end Vincent jackson had stage 2 CTE. The NFL won’t admit it, but the only thing it fears, the only thing that can possibly derail the mighty train, is brain damage. …

Yes Baker Mayfield feels “normal” after testing positive, is that okay? …

There are giraffes that don’t have neck strains longer than Daniel jones. …

The NFL team that was here has a presale of playoff tickets – starting in 1980.…

USC Kedon Slovis, the best true freshman quarterback I’ve seen, entered the transfer portal. It was a kid Joe terrier. That’s a shame Lincoln riley did not get there sooner. The Trojans didn’t help this kid. …

I’m hardly a dunk, maybe Joe DiMaggio in Dinky Donuts – but the most exciting slam I saw in person was from the San Diego Clippers Tom chambers. Bring down the house – in Oakland. …

Is anyone watching ESPN’s World Chase Tag USA? You are. …

“The Juice Is Loose” was an SI 1967 cover title. Now JO is cowardly again, released by the Nevada Parole Board. He got stronger as the sentence progressed. …

Six Moroccan tennis players have been suspended for a match-fixing. I guess the usual suspects were arrested by the prefect of police in Casablanca Captain Renault. …

Super Bowl 2024 goes to Vegas. A thing. If we don’t see it, how are we supposed to know what’s going on there? …

High school recruits are now making business decisions. …

After learning Lou costello died in 1959, the creators of the Netflix biopic cast “Home Team” Kevin james like Sean payton. …

Said it at the start of The Pandemic, that the hardest group to keep away from COVID would be the athletes – not the playing fields. One of the main reasons is that so many consider themselves invincible. …

Stink O ‘The Week Sezment: The Pantry, my favorite restaurant in LA / North America, has gone 97 years without closing its doors. Now it’s open until 3 p.m. Oh, mankind! …

It seems that there are a lot of counterfeit vax cards circulating in the NFL. Violators are expected to be suspended for 17 games. …

NFL relaxes rules on COVID. Best for drawing a line in the sand and moving it around according to its goal ($$$$$), creating rules as you go. …

A NASA probe hit the sun. First report: “Not too bad. It is a dry heat.

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