Let’s talk APU Football: Here’s the recruiting class so far … I need to see me some Santiago and Rivera before I get really pumped …

As most of you know, it’s an exciting time for APU. The football program is going D-2 starting next year and that means things are getting bigger and bigger. Hopefully, our locals start realizing that a great opportunity is sitting right in their own backyard. Not to mention, the women. I’ve heard estimates as high as 6-to-1 girls to guys.

JoJo Bones, LB/DE; 6-1, 260
Lincoln HS (Stockton, Calif.)

Noah Ciccel, DB; 5-11, 165
Crespi Carmelite HS (Encino, Calif.)

Van Dennis, LB; 5-11, 210
Centennial HS (Corona, Calif.)

Sam Flemming, DB; 6-0, 210
Etiwanda HS (Etiwanda, Calif.)

Matt Hackett, LB; 6-0, 235
Enochs HS (Modesto, Calif.)

Michael Martens, WR; 6-2, 190
Centennial HS (Bakersfield, Calif.)

Nick Owens, QB; 6-0, 210
Moorpark College (Westlake Village, Calif.)

Talaiasi Taueli, DL; 6-1, 270
Mesa HS (Mesa, Ariz.)

Jonathan Thropay, DB; 6-4, 200
Charter Oak HS (Covina, Calif.)

Mark Urtz, DB/WR; 6-1, 190
Ontario Christian HS (Ontario, Calif.)

Corey Victoria, RB; 5-10, 180
Glendora HS (Glendora, Calif.)

Jordan Wernet, OL; 6-4, 280
Decatur HS (Federal Way, Wash.)

Aram’s take:
Great to see Victoria and Thropay on the list. But where’s Travis Santiago and Steven Rivera? I’m sure the APU staff has seen the film on both, but if they haven’t, I suggest they take a look at Rivera’s reel further down this blog. Height is not good enough reason to tell me he can’t play QB at the next level. Anyway, I just want to see as many locals as possible playing at APU. By the way, what an epic name — JoJo Bones. With a name like that, dude must be bad.

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  • Sgv fan

    I heard they love Santiago and venegas from covina but both may not be qualified as of yet.

    It would be great for the baseball program as well.

  • MonroVian

    I hear Marquise Bias is being looked at possibly by API. Would be great to see all these local guys play near home. Good luck to them all!

    ” You Don’t Want No Green And White “

  • DO NOT be fooled

    I was recurited and played at APU and they used that line during recuriting about the women to men ratio. They forget to tell you that it is really a ratio of 5.5 ugly women to every man! But let me tell you you find it out really fast when you get there LOL!

  • Are you serious?

    DO NOT be Fooled: You are crazy! I’m not sure what the ratio officially is, and I don’t know what school you went to…but I do know that APU is known for some of the best looking coeds in the country!

  • sgv scouting

    Aram — I just took a 2nd look at Rivera and compared him to the QB from Moorpark JC that APU signed, and I have to agree with the APU coaching staff in chosing Nick Owens. He makes all the throws and every throw that is shown in the first 15 clips, he just dropping dimes every single time. I think with a little nurturing, Rivera could be good, but when you take a JC QB, you need him to start now… and I think Owens will be just that — the next starter at APU.

    He is legit….

  • No sat scores

    Rumor has it that Santiago has not taken the SATs. Which puts him over at Mt. Sac unless he gets rolling this month.

  • Go Cougars!!

    APU should absolutely clean house in SoCal. It’s a decent school but the student body is very involved in the campus life. I would imagine that most non-DI guys should take a real look there unless they are academic kids that are looking at DIII’s like Pomona/Claremont, etc.

  • Coaches Coach

    What are the qualifications of this sgv scouting guy to come on here an openly critique one kid v another…?

    This guy has no experience and no ability to recognize talent if it punched him in that ugly fat face! What is your resume agv scouting? Where did you play ball? Who were the coaches that you learned from? What level of “College” football did you play at?


  • You can also add former San Dimas WR Kevin Kolbeck to APU’s list. He’s going to be attending APU after starting his college career at Long Beach State. He missed football, from what I hear. Watch out for this kid!

  • Hey Aram, does this mean I can get you to cover some games next fall?

  • Steve,


  • Next Level

    This Rivera kid is no college qb he has no arm strength, maybe La Verne. His numbers look good but his hi~lites are the telling story. There is nothing to work with when it comes to this kid, he max. out in high school. Size and arm strength killed this kid.

  • Matt Hackett

    Why do you guys have me at 6″0 lol I’m 6″2.

  • Next Level,

    You’re lost. No arm strength? Haha. Top 10 all time in CIF Southern Section in yards and TDs and he was doing it with soft tosses.

    Nothing to work with? The guy has had ZERO specialized QB training with a QB coach and he’s already this good?

  • You can’t teach height or arm.

    Next level, I am going to have to agree with you. The Kid balled out, his stats are crazy. But 5’8 Qbs with an average arm equals DB. Once you get to college, there are going to be Qb’s on the roster with his skill but more size and better arms. I see him being converted to safety. There are not too many specialized training drills that can improve arm strength. Either you have a arm or you don’t. It’s like the small kid who steps on the pitchers mound, and brings 93+ fastball. Santiago has a much better arm than Rivera. However both are small, and probably get beat out by a bigger QB with a better Arm. Look for both of these guys to be converted to DBs. Which is not a bad thing. Both of these kids are spectacular athletes. But when you factor the Amount of Money invested in a scholarship, teams are going to recruit guys that have the tools to be developed. You have a better chance of making a player faster, than you do attaching a rocket to his arm. Both of these kids should go to JC’s Bulk up, get faster, Use their knowledge of routes and Coverage reading to become excellent FS. Then they may be able to go D1. However, if they want to go DIII be converted to DB there, that’s fine too. A Free ride is a free ride. If Santiago is not a good student then D2-3 is not a good option. Most of those schools are academic institutions, with huge work loads. When all the hype is done, you really can see what scouts thought about certain players. From jump street, Plenty of people said these guys would have a tough time getting to the next level. Well here we are. They are barely getting to the next level.

  • Aram your so wrong


    Lets take “Next Level” comment then apply your comment. Rivera is top 10 all time in CIFSS.

    The kid cant even get a D2 ride.

    Where is Pat Haden on that list.

    If those numbers were relative to his ability to play at the next level you would assume scouts would be knocking bis door down.

    Maybe you know more than those 100’s of scouts that have passed over this kid.

    Rivera is a good high school qb and thats it.

    Now Santiago that kix can play, put in the same situation Rivera was in he would have.been number one in CIF.

    Soft League
    Soft Schedule
    Soft overall Division

    This kid over at Charter would have never even played the.position.

    Aram you have no clue what you are talkkng about.

  • Don’t believe the hype.

    This goes to show you Recruiters Recruit players not Teams. It does not matter if you play Pac 5, inland or South East midvalley. Almost All of the Lower Division SGV players went Big time. The upper Div players went well…we all know. I am not saying this to belittle the kids rides, however a lot of bloggers are always ragging on the little guys from the SGV. They say there are no players, no comp, etc…Well I beg to differ. Parents keep your kids where they are, and if they are good, they will get a ride. You don’t have to Go to CO or BA. It does not increase your chances of going anywhere. That’s all hype created by those who remain to be named.

    Lower Division players Divisions 6-11

    Ellis McCarthy-UCLA
    Kevon Seymour-USC
    Tarien Owens-UCLA
    Jared Kough- Colorado
    Luke Williams- UC Davis
    Myles Carr-Fresno State
    Chris Solomon-Nevada
    Chris Miller -Oregon State
    Adrew Fisher-Harvard
    Nick Enriquez Cal Poly SLO
    Jr Nelson-Montana
    Aaron Porter – UCLA
    Sean Wale – Boise St
    Brett Bartelone Wazzu

    Divisions 1-6
    Travis Tailanko SJSU
    Chris Gilchrist FIU
    Jaylen Moore Eastern Washington
    Ajee Montes SMU
    Travis Santiago APU???

  • Unless ANY of you were standing out there with a radar gun to gauge Rivera’s arm strength, your opinion is garbage. Were you even at any of his games? Probably not. So you’re gauging arm strength by his YouTube clip?

    Absent of a radar gun clocking, I will defer to the next best thing — his stats. Nothing lacking there. All those passes must have barely gotten there. Yeah, all those passes that made him one of the top all time in Southern Section history in career yards and TDs.

    Santiago’s stats were he the QB at Arroyo would not have been that much better or worse. And I’m saying that having been on record that Santiago is the best passing QB I’ve ever covered in the SGV.

    If what Rivera did was so easy, everybody would be doing it. And they’re not.

  • just another opinion

    D1 vs D3: Going D1 is great! There are other things to look at besides playing on TV, what about quality of education? Unless your playing at one of the Top D1 schools it might not be worth it passing up a great education from claremont, oxy, chapman so you dont go pro after what are the odds anyway? I would rather see these boys become successful SMART members to society rather than ignorant jocks that only had one thing in mind and didnt focus on education. What is going to look better on the resume? Playing football at a D1 school or having a degree from a top ranked academic college? Whats going to best suit you in the future? Besides isnt going to college PERIOD a great accomplishment?

  • Don’t Believe the hype

    Aram I think no one will deny these are two of the best Qbs in SGV History. However, Whether their skill set translates to the next level is TBD. They both are exceptional athletes, who could play different positions on the next level. It may not be QB. They can prove everyone wrong and do well at QB. However, College recruiters are looking for guys Like Carr, Lebowitz, Cox, Heyworth and Elfers. all of these guys were in the 6-2 to 6-3 range, with good Arms, Decent Mobility, (Cox and Carr have great Mobility) and good stats(Not record setting But good stats). When you go to college and line gets bigger, and the passing windows get smaller, you have to be able to see the field. It’s hard for small QBs to see. Flutie, and Brees are far and few. Besides all of those QBs had full rides to BCS schools too. These guys could still grow in college, but as of now, they are just small, and the odds are not in there favor to play QB at the next level. I’ll ask you this Aram, what could be some of the reasons, why neither one of these QB’s have offers from D1 or D1AA schools? Why are D2 schools on the fence about these two if they are college QB material? I would like to know your thoughts?

  • Don’t Believe the hype

    Put it like this Rio Ruiz was on the Market as a QB, He would be getting a offer from a D1 school. I would not be based on his stats alone, It would be base on size, arm strength, and mobility. If you grade out on all of these things, you get the offers.

  • Knowledge

    Your wasting your time, your talking over Aram’s head. Whats really sad about it is Aram really has no clue and he is suppose to be the SGV tribune expert.

  • BraveDad

    @ Dont Believe the Hype,

    Whats your point? If you think playing at a D1/PAC5 school does not improve a kids chance at a NCAA D1 scholarship youre an idiot! How many PAC5 games do you attend per season? Attend one and take a look at all the D1 recruiters on the sidelines. Ive been to many, and I mean many, SGV games over the years (h#ll I played at a SGV school) and there were more instances than not where there was not a single recruiter in sight, DI, II, or III. And as far as your list, it is so skewed; of course there are more lower division players than higher division players recruited from the SGV. Thats because there are very few higher division programs in the SGV! Dont even get me started on the number of PAC5/D1 schools; last I checked there was one. I respect SGV programs, but they are what they are so stop with the hyperbole and BS. I guarantee you that there were more PAC5/D1 players given scholarships to DI and II NCAA programs than any other CIF division; in fact I venture to guess that there were more scholarships given to PAC5 players than CIF divisions 6 11 combined. As far as your list the best D6 11 player who stands to succeed at the D1 level in college is Aaron Porter, but I can tell you this I saw him play once in 2011 and he did not do a thing so even he has a huge mountain to climb.

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