There have been so many quarterback transfers during the offseason that using a pencil with an eraser is a must to keep track of the movement.
Call it the annual musical chairs at the most important position in football.
To start a new weekly summer preview of the high school football season position by position, let’s look at the quarterbacks who will be so important in deciding the top teams for 2023.
Everything starts with Elijah Brown of Santa Ana Mater Dei. He has been starting since his freshman season and is 29-1, a better record than three Heisman Trophy-winning quarterbacks at Mater Dei. Every season he has gotten better and there’s no reason to think his senior year won’t be his best.
Perhaps the biggest transfer was Husan Longstreet going from Inglewood to Corona Centennial. The Class of 2025 standout came close to leading Inglewood to the Southern Section Division 2 title, passing for nearly 4,000 yards. Now he joins a program that could challenge Mater Dei and St. John Bosco for No. 1 status.
Caleb Sanchez was the backup to Pierce Clarkson last season at St. John Bosco, which won the Southern Section Division 1 championship. He’ll get the first crack at being the team’s No. 1 quarterback. He has the size and intelligence but will be facing tough nonleague opponents, so this summer will be critical to gaining confidence and comfort in his new role.
Bear Bachmeier of Murrieta Valley passed for 2,873 yards and 26 touchdowns as a sophomore. He’s working on his speed and strength, so the sky’s the limit. His brother Hank is now the quarterback at Louisiana Tech, and another brother Tiger will be a freshman receiver at Stanford.
Darius Curry of Long Beach Poly was finally healthy and helped the Jackrabbits win the Moore League championship. He’ll be surrounded by outstanding receivers.
Class of 2025 quarterbacks looking to improve on promising sophomore seasons include TJ Lateef at Orange Lutheran, JJ Bittner at Rio Mesa, Jackson Kollock at Laguna Beach and Kingston Tisdell at Birmingham. Madden Iamaleava takes over for his brother, Nico, at Warren.
As for the transfers, there are big expectations. Wyatt Becker went from Sherman Oaks Notre Dame to Sierra Canyon. Michael Tollefson went from San Juan Hills to JSerra. Steele Pizzella went from Simi Valley to Notre Dame. Bryan Wilson left Ayala for Eastvale Roosevelt. Alonzo Esparza went from Sierra Canyon to Los Alamitos. Jaden O’Neal left Los Alamitos for Newport Harbor.
Who isn’t excited to see what Class of 2026 quarterback Brady Smigiel can accomplish in only his second season at Newbury Park? As a freshman, he passed for 3,479 yards and 46 touchdowns.
Seniors Alonzo Contreras of Calabasas, Boone Lourd of Brentwood, Anthony Wolter of St. Bonaventure and Nate Bennett of Oaks Christian should have outstanding seasons. Junior Tagg Harrison has shown promise at Westlake. Sophomore Luke Fahey could be the next star quarterback at Mission Viejo.
Senior returnees Aidan Houston of Cypress and Anthony Lunas of Western passed for more than 3,000 yards.