Participation in high school athletics in the California state has hit an all-time high for the seventh straight year, according to statistics published by the California Interscholastic Federation. Data reveals that with higher wages, individuals who play high school sports get better jobs reports in The New York Times. Combined with the understanding that student-athletes would do better in school to participate, the lessons gained in sports fuel their persistence and desire for achievement. There are hardcore sports fans who enjoy football at every level, be it professional, college, high school, etc. Therefore, because they enjoy the sport around them, they love football in high school only because it’s football.
In an attempt to further the reach of the importance of school sports and in particular football, we have compiled a list for you with the top ten high school football teams in the California region. Hope you enjoy reading this article, and good luck!
De La Salle High School
There’s a good soccer tradition at De La Salle High School. The subject of two 2003 books was the De La Salle football team. Written by Don Wallace, “One Great Game: Two Teams, Two Dreams, in the First-Ever National Championship High School Football Game” is one of them, and “When The Game Stands Tall” by Neil Hayes is another. After the program’s winning streak, the 2014 film Where the Game Stands Tall follows the team. The team has won the California Open Division State Championships six times in recent years (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, and 2015). Every year since the division was formed in 2008, they have participated in the Open Division state title game. Before that, they had played in Division I, where they were State Champions in 2007 and runners-up in 2008. Since 1992, with the reform of the League, they have won the North Coast Section Championships each year. At present, they hold a record of 300-0-2 against schools in Northern California dating back to 1991.
Founded In: 1965
Location: Concord, California
St. John Bosco High School
The Braves went from a 5-5 team in their head coach Jason Negro’s first season in 2010 to a three-time champion in the highest division of the CIF Southern Section. The St. John Bosco football team is one of the only CIF titles in the history of the school. There were others in the years 2013 and 2016. In 2013, there was a state title as well. In 2016, St. John Bosco won their second state Open Division Bowl game-defeating Concord De La Salle again. The Braves finished sixth in the US Today poll of that season and No. 5 in MaxPreps.
Founded In: 1940
Location: Bellflower, California
Centennial High School
In the town of Corona, California, Centennial High School (commonly referred to as CHS or CeHS) is a California Distinguished public high school. The Corona-Norco Unified School District is one of eight high schools and is the only high school in the district that offers the study program for the International Baccalaureate. Centennial High was a Mountain View League member, but the Mountain View League merged with another league in the 2007-2008 school year and is now the Big VIII League. In 2008, the Centennial football team won their first State Championship title.
Founded In: 1989
Location: Corona, California
Mater Dei High School
In 1950, Mater Dei High School opened its doors to 120 students and 20 footballers for the first time. The school hosted its first varsity football matches the next year, and in 1956 and 1957, the Monarchs won their first two CIF championships. Monarch football has been the staple of an athletic program for more than six decades and has recently led Sports Illustrated to name Mater Dei the Number 2 High School Athletic Program in America. Competing annually against Southern California’s strongest competition, Mater Dei has accumulated an enviable record for success in football. Mater Dei is one of only two American high schools that have produced two winners of the Heisman Trophy.
Founded In: 1950
Location: Santa Ana, California
Sierra Canyon School
In the Los Angeles community of Chatsworth, the Sierra Canyon School (SCS) is a residential, coeducational day school. Sierra Canyon enrolls nursery students to grade 12. The California Association of Independent Schools (CAIS) accredits Sierra Canyon Academy. SCS is a member of the National Independent School Association (NAIS) and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). The Trailblazers won the CIF-SS Division 4 Championship in Football in the 2016 fall season. As the Trailblazers won a school-record eight league championships, including football, the 2016-2017 school year was really good.
Founded In: 1978
Location: Chatsworth, California
Folsom High School
Folsom High School, located in Folsom, California, a suburb east of Sacramento, is a public secondary school in the western United States. Established 99 years ago in 1922, it is a part of the Unified School District of Folsom Cordova. In 2010, for the CIF Division II state championship, the football team beat Gardena 48-20. Future NFL safety Jordan Richards and star quarterback Dano Graves were in charge of the team. In 2014, for the CIF Division I state championship, the football team beat Oceanside 68–7, their second state title in four years. The team went through the season unbeaten. On the Xcellent 25, offered by the Army National Guard, the Bulldogs finished fourth in the country.
Founded In: 1922
Location: Folsom, California
Mission Viejo High School
Mission Viejo High School Football has been one of the country’s most popular high school programs over the past three decades, with a long history of success on the field and in the classroom, culminating in a .697 winning percentage since the school opened in 1966. The Diablos have been nationally ranked year after year by USA Today and MaxPreps with a California State Title in 2015, 7 CIF Southern Section Championships, and 24 South Coast League titles since 1975, and have seen a steady number of student-athletes go on to compete at the college and professional level. The program entered a new period under Coach Chad Johnson for the 2018 season, where the legacy and dedication to success continues, with Coach Bob Johnson moving on after the 2017 season.
Founded In: 1966
Location: Mission Viejo, California
In Anaheim, California, Servite High School is a Catholic college preparatory high school for students. In 1960, when the small, all-boys school became the CIF Southern Division, Small Schools co-champions, the first Servite football team was back. It has never stopped the winning tradition. In fact, counting only the traditionally top CIF division since 1960, Servite, at four, has the fourth most CIF-SS championships. If you add their CIF championship at Small School, then make it five. The only ones ahead of them are Long Beach Poly (9), Mater Dei (8), and Loyola (6). Servite competes in the highly acclaimed Trinity League.
Founded In: 1958
Location: Anaheim, California
Long Beach Poly High School
Long Beach Poly, with an enrollment of 4,750, is Southern California’s most celebrated prep football school. They have a 110-year long tradition of winning, and the school still dreams about state championships. LBPHS’s football alumni are solid, from DeSean Jackson to Willie McGinest. Snoop Dogg, Poly’s biggest fan, can be seen on the sidelines of any game. That would make any soccer star want to play there anyway.
Founded In: 1895
Location: Long Beach, California
Orange Lutheran High School
A well-known statement in all sports is “Defense wins championships”. The statement remains true in this situation. For their excellent defense, the Lancers have always been known. They have been rated by USA Today as the best defense in the State of California since 1995. In the state of California, OLHS is the first school ever to score less than 17 points in a single season, but they accomplished it this year. Orange Lutheran will start the season ranked No. 9 and has the same hopes as last season after beating Palo Alto High School in the CIF 5A title game, ranking 13th this past season in the USA Today top 25.
Founded In: 1973
Location: Orange, California