Long Beach City College Preview

Long Beach City College has a deep tradition of producing top teams, but last year they struggled to a 3-7 record. Head coach Jerry Jaso, now in his fourth season with the Vikings, has assembled some talented players and he took the time recently to talk to us about his top prospects and some others to keep an eye on this fall.

OT Jessie Taufi "He's committed to BYU right now and he's probably one of the top lineman in the state this year. He's 6-5, 305 and he'll play tackle for us and he's got the feet and smarts to play almost anywhere along the line.

"He came back from his Mormon mission and he's just mature and really focused on what he has to do.

"He had an injury to his left ankle last year that he had to deal with, but he's fully-recovered now and he's going to be a real gem for us this fall."

QB Josh Powell "Josh is a 6-3, 225 pound quarterback with 4.6 speed and that number is legit. He can really run well, but he's not a guy who likes to scramble much. He wants to drop back and make plays with his arm and he's got a really strong arm so he can make all the throws you want him to.

"He's got excellent football smarts and he manages the game really well and that's really what you need in a quarterback. He started six games for us last year and I think we'll see him get quite a few offers by the end of the season."

OG Kyle Schaper "He'll play right guard for us this fall and he's just a big, nasty mauler inside. He's 6-4, 310 and he played tackle last year for us, but we feel he can be a better guard so we'll use him there.

"He's a good pusher and he's got excellent feet which allows him to really get out on guys in space and to get to that second level."

WR Curtis Thompson "He's a little guy (5-9, 178) but he's got great speed and quickness and he can beat the jam really well because of his strength and his ability to make quick moves.

"He's a really good athlete. He came to us as a baseball player, where he played second base and batted .300 for the team. He's just a solid all-around player."

C Phil Vournazos - "He's going to be our center this fall and since he was a full-qualifier out of high school, we think he's probably only going to be here a year. He's a very talented player who has good size (6-3, 310) and he's really strong. We feel he got overlooked last year, so this year, with a big season he could leave with four to play three."

WR Aron Lewis "He's an excellent receiver. He's 5-11, 180 and he really understands the game and how to find the soft spots in zones. He's going to have to go D-2 because of his clock and grades, but he'll be a really good player at that level."

RB Johnny Toloumu "He's a physical inside runner for us. He's big and strong and he'll help us move the chains really well.

RB Justin Robertson "Justin is another one of our ‘two-headed' monster at running back this year. Just like Johnny he's physical and tough and he's a good downhill runner."

LB Jason Brown "He's a bounceback from Idaho and he's an excellent player. He'll have to go D-2 because of his clock, but he's definitely a guy who has D-1 talent. He ‘s got the size (6-2, 220) of a linebacker, but he can run well enough to be a safety (4.5 forty time).

"Actually he could play anywhere you want him to play. Receiver, running back, linebacker or safety. He's really versatile."

DE Brad Brannan "He's an outstanding athlete. He's 6-7, 240 and he runs a 4.6 forty so he can really move for a guy his size and then in high school he had a 240 foot javelin throw, a 6'10" high jump and he ran a 10.9 100 meters as well. He's just an all-around athlete.

"He's a bounceback from Idaho so I think he might need to go D-2 because of his clock, but he's definitely got D-1 talent and ability."

LB Jonte Stroud "Jonte is an excellent linebacker. We're really lucky to have him because he's so versatile. He could play inside with his size (6-2, 230) or outside because of his speed (4.6).

"He plays the run and the pass with equal effectiveness and he led us in tackles last year (60). He'll have to play D-2 because of his clock, but he's another one with the ability and talent to play D-1."

LB William Alo "He started out at Northern Arizona University and he'll play inside linebacker for us because he's really strong and aggressive and he's great at reading plays and he just loves to play the game."

Other Viking players to keep an eye on this fall: DE John Fasavalu (Fr.), DT Shareff Tavaga and DB Scott Marada

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