Friday, September 26, 2014

CGM returns to Your Central Valley news

Cali Gold Mine's Lorenzo J. Reyna on the Thursday, Sept. 25, live edition of Sports Central on CBS 47 in Fresno (photo by Lorenzo J. Reyna).
I had the privilege of returning to television on Thursday, Sept. 25, as Scott Bemis, Amy Gill and the rest of the great people at CBS 47 welcomed me back to their station to talk more high school football!

In case anyone missed the segment, here's some of what Scott and I discussed:


Clovis North at Merced - The final non-league hurdle for the Broncos and this time, CN has to deal with highly-touted Merced quarterback Tyrone Williams, who's being courted by some PAC-12 schools.

Immanuel at Avenal - A rare battle between two teams sitting at 3-0. Avenal, who plays in Division VI of the Central Section, has relied on a committee at running back. The Eagles - who compete in DV - have impressed on offense especially with the play of tight end Aaron Wilson. The 6-foot-3, 220-pound Wilson has received interest from the University of Wyoming of the Mountain West.

Tulare Western at Madera - Probably the best game to attend on Friday. Tulare Western - once 0-10 in 2012 - has followed its stunning 7-4 turnaround from 2013 with a 3-0 start. Kobe Portillo and Jordan Padilla are a deadly quarterback and wide receiver combo when they connect. Padilla averages 19.3 yards per catch. Madera is a machine on offense with Alec Gamboa and Jesus Jimenez leading its fast-paced Pistol Wing-T scheme. The Coyotes are 4-0 with both running backs combining for 619 yards and nine touchdowns.


1) Hanford - It's one thing to start 4-0, but the Bullpups have taken down section monsters Kingsburg, Dinuba and Porterville with a young, hard-nosed squad. Joseph McDaniel, Class of 2016 prospect, leads a resurgent running attack.

2) Lemoore - The Tigers have knocked off Clovis and Buchanan of the ultra competitive Tri River Athletic Conference (TRAC) then escaped the always hostile Tom Flores Stadium with a 27-22 road upset of Sanger. Lemoore's defense has been a hot topic among high school football followers in Kings County. Zack Frazier leads the pass rush with seven sacks during the 4-0 start. Rising junior Allen Perryman has seven interceptions.

3) Immanuel - The Eagles have been to the playoffs in back-to-back seasons, but this could be head coach Matt Armstrong's best job yet. His unit has won with small roster numbers (21 active players), lack of depth at each position and having just eight seniors. But the Eagles have knocked off traditional section powers Dos Palos, Lindsay and Chowchilla. Along with Wilson, quarterback Caleb Paulson has seen his stock rise with 568 yards, seven touchdowns and one interception during the fast start. Edison-Fresno transfer Robert Grier has 418 yards and averages 4.7 yards per carry for the Eagles' running attack.


1) Bolu Olurunfunmi, Clovis North - I've never seen a running back more prepared for the college game. The Central Valley's version of the Nigerian Nightmare runs through, around and over defenders. At the right moment, he flips a switch and takes over a game with his big-play capability. This locomotive is still UCLA bound after getting flooded with scholarship offers by other marquee college programs.

2) Michael Wright, Dinuba - Wright has got to have the best stamina in the section. I haven't seen him wear down in a game and when he gets an increase in carries, he gets stronger. Of course, his wrestling background keeps his lungs fresh and his stamina going. The hard-nosed Wright has picked up interest from UC Davis and other Football Championship Subdivision schools.

3) Romello Harris, Tulare Union - Already the most wanted Class of 2016 running back in the Central Section, Harris elevated his stock with a 357-yard night against Kingsburg and the Vikings' massive defensive line. Harris holds four offers, including a recent pledge from Duke.

4) Khai Williams, Edison - At the right moments, Williams punishes his way down the middle of the defense to help keep drives alive or seal victories. His breakout night of 161 yards against defending state champion Bakersfield is one highlight from the senior this season.

5) Malcolm Williams, Sunnyside - "Smash" electrifies his team with his elusiveness and breakaway speed. His best night was his 340-yard, five touchdown evening against Mt. Whitney-Visalia.

Honorable mentions:

Stevan Johnson, San Joaquin Memorial - He's off to a fast start with 10 touchdowns in three games, and picking up interest from a few PAC-12 and Mountain West programs in the process.

Jesus Jimenez, Madera - He's a force of nature who's capable of getting 200 yards on any given night.

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