Monday, August 03, 2009

PrepNation 101 Preseason Countdown: No. 15 Oaks Christian continues the most comprehensive package of preseason high school football rankings ever published. We are counting down the PrepNation 101 Preseason High School Football Rankings, from No. 101 to No. 26, leading up to the release of the official preseason National Prep Poll on August 3.

15. Oaks Christian (Westlake Village, Calif.)
Last season: 14-0, CIF-SS Northwest champion
Coach: Bill Redell
Key players: QB Nick Montana (6-2, 190, Sr.), RB-LB Malcolm Jones (6-0, 220, Sr.), DE-TE Alani Fua (6-6, 200, Sr.), OT Erik Kohler (6-5, 280, Sr.), LB Zac Stout (6-2, 225, Sr.), DT Cassius Marsh (6-4, 280, Sr.), WR Jordan Payton (6-2, 190, So.)
Outlook: With eight starters returning on both sides of the ball, the Lions begin the year nationally ranked for the second time in four years. Optimism is usually high when an offense that averaged 48 yards per game returns its quarterback. When the QB happens to be the son of an NFL legend, then optimism tends to fly off the charts. Montana, son of Hall of Fame passer Joe Montana, completed 132 of 241 passes (55 percent) for 2,394 yards and 33 touchdowns last season. He virtually had his pick of any college from which to accept a scholarship offer before settling on the Washington Huskies. Montana will lead the Lions to his future home city of Seattle on September 18 to play No. 9 Skyline (Sammamish, Wash.). Another key returnee is Jones, a four-year starter who is capable of dominating a game on both sides of the ball. As a junior, he ran for 1,504 yards on 149 carries (10 average) with 26 touchdowns. Look for big things from Payton, a young receiver who possesses tremendous athletic ability. The top returning offensive linemen is blue chip recruit Kohler. Future BYU Cougar Stout, who led the team in tackles last year, returns to anchor the Lions’ defense. He is aided from outstanding play up front in the trenches by Marsh and Fua.

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