CCSF Preview

One of the more storied programs in the California Juco ranks is City College of San Francisco. Annually they produce tons of talented four-year prospects and they've parlayed that into three national championships this decade. Head coach George Rush was gracious enough to speak with recently and he previewed his top prospects heading into the 2007 season.

"We were pretty young last year on offense, but this year we're going to be pretty good I think," Rush said. "At quarterback we're going to be young though.

"We'll have a battle at that position this year. We have two greyshirt quarterbacks on campus right now. Jeremiah Masoli and Chris Forni will both be on campus and we have a couple of high school freshman that are coming in to compete with both of those guys.

"The two who are already here have a different skill-set, but they are both mobile and can throw on the run. We like both of them and I'm looking forward to watching them battle this summer to see who steps forward."

The Rams feature one of the more athletic wideouts in the state this year in Adrian Hilburn and he's already committed to the University of Nebraska, but he isn't the only playmaker on the CCSF squad.

"Our top guys at wide receiver are Adrian, Deric Davis, Carlton Sanders and Andre Wells," Rush noted. "Three of them started last year and Carlton transferred in from another junior college. They all have great hands and great speed and three of them have been in our system for a year and we expect big things from them."

Hilburn posted 27 receptions for 366 yards and six touchdowns in 2006. Davis (29 rec. for 521 yards and 9 TDs) and Wells (29 rec. for 443 yards and 3 scores) had huge seasons as well.

"At tight end we have Fred Sanders who is a sophomore and Melvin Blue who is a greyshirt guy for us. Both are physical players and we really like what they bring to the offense."

CCSF constantly produces excellent offensive lineman and Rush said it begins and ends with his sophomore center Ben Contreras.

"Ben is without question the leader of our line and he's one of the captains and he just has a complete understanding of the offense and what we're trying to do," Rush said. "He's smart and he's already being recruited by a bunch of schools.

"We return our starting guards in Peter Lenz and Eric Levy. I think we've had some good tackles come in too. One is a player we had last year, but he missed it due to injury and his name is Erik Howard."

In the backfield, Rush says things are "wide open" but he's hopeful some talented incoming freshman will be able to step in and be playmakers for the Rams offense. He also has a couple of returning backs – Austin Curran and Darnell Quinney – who will battle for time as well.

Defensively, Rush says the team's secondary is going to be pretty strong and he mentioned the return of strong safety Rashad Swanson as a key to the deep patrol.

"Rashad is a big-time player and he's a key for us back there," Rush said. "He's big and strong and fast. He's a very good player.

"At free safety it appears that we will have a greyshirt starting. His name is Jarrell Harrison and we are expecting big things from him. He had a really good spring.

"Our top corner will be a greyshirt freshman named Devin Mays and Devin is a very good and very fast athlete. He's a 200 meter guy and he can flat out fly."

The Rams have several talented players coming back at linebacker and Rush said the unit should be the strength of the defense.

"At linebacker we're going to be really strong," Rush said. "We have Nick Thurston who was the defensive MVP of our bowl game and then Jake Heun and Jerrell Williams who is a greyshirt.

"All of them can run pretty well and they make plays all over the field. Nick is our leader though."

Along the defensive line, Rush has several players who will be on four-year schools' radars this fall.

"At defensive end we have Donny Phelps and he was all conference and all state as a freshman last year," Rush said. "We also have a transfer from Palomar College named Kyle Thomas.

"Both have really good quickness for their size and they are going to be counted on this fall.

Blake Ferras is the leader on the inside and at 6-5, 285 he's got the opportunity and ability to be a big run-stopper inside.

The specialists are also going to be on several lists this fall.

"Our punter will be Phillip Zuvala and he's an excellent punter," Rush said. "He had a 77-yard punt in the bowl game and that wasn't a roller…it was in the air. He's a fabulous punter.

"Matthew Wigley is an outstanding long snapper and he has a lot of teams after him already. I think he's already got a few offers from some programs."

The Rams kick off the 2007 season on September 1st against Solano in Fairfield, Ca.

Other CCSF players to keep an eye on this fall: DE Andre Davis, DT Mack Lafaele, WR Chaz Morales, CB Terence Webster, S Scott Holton and S Everett Johnson.

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