Football: The 2009 top running backs in the WSGV …


Gone are the days when the WSGV was heavy with stellar running backs. Marquise Williams, Tra Sumler and Todd Golper have since graduated, and Duarte’s Jordan Canada transferred to South Hills. This year’s list of the top running backs won’t be as loaded but the five who make the list are ready to go on a tear. And if you really think about it, any list can start with the one and only Dietrich Riley.

1. Dietrich Riley, Senior, St. Francis — Like my boy Jay-Z said in his “Black Album”: What more can I say?

2. Max Ruckle, Senior, Temple City — Ruckle is just as deserving to be at the top of the list. He rushed for 1,599 yards and 17 touchdowns. He averaged 123 yards per game last season for the Rams in nine games as a starter (including the playoffs). He rushed for at least 100 yards in each game. Joey Stewart was designated the starting running back to start last season and then came Ruckle stealing the spotlight. I wonder if Ruckle, now knowing he’s the starting running back heading into camp, has a different mentality compared to last year when things were still a bit up in the air.

3. Fabian Amaro, Senior, San Gabriel — Amaro was the second-leading rusher for the Matadors (five yards shy from Issac Valdez) with 610 yards and 11 touchdowns. He was limited to action because of injuries. If you thought San Gabriel was loaded with running backs last year (Arthur Brown was third on the depth chart) then you haven’t seen nothing yet. Not only do the Matadors have Amaro, Brown and Valdez, but San Gabriel is expected to add another running back with the additino of a JV call-up.

4. D.J. Cole, Senior, Monrovia — Rushed for 580 yards and had a season-high 121 yards and three touchdowns rushing, albeit against Blair. Cole was largely behind the shadow of the great Marquise Williams. But Cole’s speed was evident early in the season, enough that Monrovia coach Ryan Maddox said Cole’s presence gives the Wildcats’ an added element to the rushing attack.

5. David Maldonado, Junior, Arcadia — He rushed for only 354 yards all season but he was a late-season callup to the Apaches squad. He rushed for 198 yards against Hoover and 106 yards against Glendale. Sure, Glendale and Hoover are not the most inferior teams in the Southland, but for a sophomore with no varsity experience to come into a tough situation and help the starving Arcadia offense proves Maldonado was ready to take on the situation head-on.

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  • Anne Onimus


    DJ Cole already graduated.

  • Miguel Melendez

    I knew it! Dang! I couldn’t find an updated roster or find past articles that stated he was a senior last year, but my gut feeling said he was a senior-to-be. My bad. I’ll revise the list tomorrow and add San Marino’s Benny Hung.

  • Miguel Melendez

    I knew it! Dang! I couldn’t find an updated roster or find past articles that stated he was a senior last year, but my gut feeling said he was a senior-to-be. My bad. I’ll revise the list tomorrow and add San Marino’s Benny Hung.

  • Anonymous

    the jv “CALL UP” for the matadors is THOMAS NEIBLA..
    the kid has size and speed. matadors are stacked this year ready to bring back the leauge tittle and make a run in the playoffs.

  • Bruin Eagle 4

    What a joke. Losing credibility MM

  • Anonymous

    No Almont teams will make a run in the playoffs. Especially SG!

  • curiousgoerge

    I just love me some Almont hater’s!LOL
    Anyways I agree with Riley, and Ruckle,
    Vailele Peco should be somewhere on this list
    but hey, he’ll be on by the end of 2009 season!

  • !stang!

    MM , what is Game of The week for week 0 ?

  • Sam32

    Vailele PEKO was a varsity starter as a sophomore for the Moors. He was used as a receiver to start the season. He ended up splitting time between running back and slot because of injuries to the starting tailback. With his speed and elusiveness he should make a big impact this season.

  • breakout year for Arthur Brown , keep an eye out

  • SgvUlumni

    Vailele Peko will be 1st Team All-CIF R/B
    when it’s all said and done for 2009!
    How many player’s on this list will earn that honor?
    1 or 2 maybe?

  • Apache Joe


    I don’t even think David Maldanado is the best RB on the Arcadia squad right now. I would put sophomore-to-be Rodney Arnett ahead of him in terms of talent. Maybe considering his experience which is a major factor in HS football, but in talent alone Arnett has him.

  • The Stang Fan

    Apache Joe,

    I completely agree with you. As a matter of fact, there are SEVERAL area RB’s in the making that we have yet to hear about that are better than #’s 3-5. No biggie though, no one outside of their schools has really heard of them yet. This list is merely a relflection of what these guys did last year. It’ll change before the year’s out.

    Btw, there is NO WAY that the 1st team All-CIF RB is coming out of Alhambra, and not because the kid isn’t any good…but have we forgotten about Muema (CO), Golden (CO), and Canada (SH)? All of these guys have D-1 offers and Muema is the returning All-CIF RB. Again….too funny!

  • blueberry

    keppel will make a run in the playoffs this year. 🙂

  • Goldenarm


    I never cared much for Keppel, but they have paid their dues and more…at the Well of Misery and Woe.

    With the aggressive energy of their coaching staff, a solid QB and a smattering of linemen willing to give what they got…Keppel is going to look better this year, and may bring a smidgeon of respect back to that program.

    It is easy to look at another schools misery and poke fun at their incompetence…but it ain’t easy for any kid (or parent, or coach) to go winless 2,3 or 4 years straight. I think their is some light coming out of that black hole.

    Good luck Keppel…win some games.

  • Goldenarm

    I am sure the 8-0 Titans would like to forget the first play of the game at TC last year- an 80 yd TD run by Max Ruckle that just about blew the crowd out of the grandstands. It was insane.

    We are a different team now…though I had come to love the “one dimensional” insult which was hung on TC every season. It was the challenge to not be stopped – that first motivated, then spurred on our linemen to work harder and get better…once we stepped away from the pocket protectors we started as.

    I think we will see a more diversified attack, rather than Ruckle left, Ruckle right, Ruckle up the middle.
    We have some hungry kids who will making their first mark under the lights this season…and the QB is going to……….

  • !stang!

    Can someone stop selling drugs to the moor fans! They are on something

  • Reno Hightower

    I like that you listed DJ Cole who already graduated. This is better than a Chicago primary where dead guys get elected to six year terms. GA, instead of the desert Melendez should of attended a journalism seminar @ LA Valley College. Does DeVry offer a degree in credibility? As Bill Murray said in Stripes, “Thats the fact, Jack!”

    The Johnny O list:
    -Riley (SF):Best of the WSGV by far. Riley could play a wide variety of positions (QB,RB,WR,CB,SS) and be a major impact player
    -Ruckle (TC):Put up Jonnhy O numbers last year. Will be hard to match those numbers in the new fangled spread. Some spread teams top rusher is the QB.
    -Peika (Alh):Combined w/ the big TB that the Moors have, Alhambra might have a Thunder and Lightning attack. It works in the NFL with the Panthers and Titans.

  • What gives?

    Said Miguel: “I knew it! Dang! I couldn’t find an updated roster or find past articles that stated he was a senior last year, but my gut feeling said he was a senior-to-be.”

    You covered the team and area all last year didn’t you? Stop making rookie mistakes, you’re not a rookie anymore. Blaming the rosters? C’mon dude, you’re a pro right?

  • GHS

    Moreno and Rivas from Gabrielino will be the biggest surprises from the WSGV. Not to mention their line that averages 6’2” 300lbs. Now if we can just get the coaching staff to get rid of that offense

  • Goldenarm


    It is tough to get a 300lb AVERAGE LINE at the prep level, without one or two dudes who are slugs….and weigh in excess of 350. Remember, your guards have to move in most blocking schemes, and you want to get somebody out in front on screens, pitches, most traps, etc, even your OT’s – you want to have them do more than just barricade the front door.

    If these kids you talk of have such agility – you are in great shape.

  • JFMatador


    your absolutely right all almont league teams are going 0-10….mooron.

  • GHS 2012

    MM this is just for you!!!

    open your eyes!!! look whats comin!

    Give these kids some credit thats way overdue!!!

  • Goldenarm


    I absolutely agree.
    It is way too early to come out swinging about players already being fitted for their ALL-CIF 1st team shoes.

    It is a loooong season ahead, and every year at this time I come to realize – I don’t have a clue about what lies ahead.

    At this stage, my team of choice might open 0-4 based on schedule. Then again, we could go 4-0.

    After week 4 we may all be surprised where we stand.

  • SgvUlumni






  • JFMatador

    GHS 2012

    Nobody cares!

  • GHS

    JFAG Matador,

    If nobody cares, then when why are you wasting your time writing. You’d better hope and pray nothing happens to your peewee qb, or else its gonna be a long…year. I’d like to know your real name JF, probably some bench warmer from the JV team who never played. Loser!!! Go Tongva Nation!!!

    Ps. the line is that good

  • King

    When was the last time Gabrielino football was good? I haven’t heard much of anything from them the past few years…maybe they were going in a different direction and are now back.

    But I agree its nice to have a line of 300+ lbs, but you need those guys to move like GA said. Its one thing to have them sit back in pass pro but in order to have any type of diverse offense you need them pulling, trapping, counters, screens, the whole shabang! Cantwell had a lineman who was well over 300+ but he wasn’t worth a dime since he couldn’t move anywhere.

  • Anonymous

    When are you going to do the top defensive returners?

  • JFMatador


    yeah I wasted 3 seconds and you 10 minutes ha loser!
    Crapelino eagles who? more like the sea gulls lol!

  • Desert Rat

    GHS et al:

    Good for the Gabrielino freshman….er sophomores. But varsity is a whole other level partner. Like many, I can’t remember when you guys were actually relevant when it came to football. So seeing is believing because you haven’t established ANY credit in the SGV let alone CIF.

  • Coach Prado-SGHS ’98

    I nominate Arthur Brown.

    JF Matador,
    Watch yourself! keep it clean!

  • JFMatador

    Coach Prado-SGHS ’98

    Good luck at TC!

  • Sirius?

    Prado i hope you coach better than you evaluate talent. Brown doesnt even start at RB on his own team. shouldnt you be coaching your own players instead of hyping SG

  • Dear Sirius,

    Are you following me?

    For the record Arthur Brown is my nephew! Why wouldn’t I pump him up, he works extremely hard in the classroom and on the field.
    Your right He doesn’t start at RB. But, Obviously you heard of him. No one cares!

    Second, Ohhh!, Don’t worry the Green and Gold will be ready. The boys have been working hard and are ready to compete in the RHL.
    And plus its illegal to coach during the dead period. Where have you been? Are you new? Welcome to PSN.

    Sirius, are you serious. Your a blogger with zero credit and integrity. Put your work in before you decide to evaluated my resume.

  • blueberry



  • Sirius?

    Brown Rushed for 300 Diaz from the mead sat in back on sumler and rushed for 5 TD.

  • clarence lockett

    Hey Guys, You need to check out this running back at Bear Creek High School in lakewood co. He has had two games this year for over 200yd. One against the number 3 team 27 carries for 227yd and first round of playoff highland ranch 31 carries for 251yd. Both games combined 7rushing td. And 1576yd for season check him out in

  • C Lockett

    You must check out Lukas Lockett Bear Creek High School
    Lakewood Co. 80227

  • C Lockett

    Check out Lukas Lockett at Bear Creek High School in Lakewood Co. 80227

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