Editor’s note: SBLive Washington’s preseason Top 100 was compiled by reporters Todd Milles and Andy Buhler.
The 2020 Washington high school football season is somewhere on the horizon, which means it’s time to start looking at the top returning players in the state.
SBLive’s preseason Top 100 is not an all-star recruiting list, but combines performance and pedigree. The list spans all classifications and is in alphabetical order. After the season, we will rank the 100 most impactful players.
Here is part 3 of our Top 100, numbers 51 through 75:
QB/LB Tom Lambert, La Center, 6-0, 210, sr. (1A)
The 1A Trico League Offensive Player of the Year returns as a leader of the offense under center, and on defense as a linebacker. Lambert is a tough-nosed all-around football player who has picked up offers from Valparaiso and Graceland University.
RB/LB Will Latu, Bethel, 6-2, 220, sr. (3A)
He sent a strong message in his junior campaign with 19 touchdowns and more than 900 all-purpose yards. Latu, who is one of the most powerful players in the state, committed to University of Washington in June.
DL/OL JP Leahy, West Valley (Yakima), 6-3, 260, sr. (4A)
He added nearly 50 pounds to an already-solid frame and, as a junior, came into his own as a pass rusher. And Leahy has great lineage — his grandfather was legendary Notre Dame football coach Frank Leahy.
WR/DB Desmian Licon, Pasco, 6-0, 175, sr. (4A)
He had the fan-vote play of the year last season when he ran back a 70-yard kick return for TD to beat Richland. Licon returns as one of the best athletes in the Tri-Cities.
WR/DB Jatavious Magee, Federal Way, 6-1, 180, sr. (4A)
A two-way All-NPSL Valley choice on offense and defense, Magee is coming off a breakout junior season where he netted 545 receiving yards, six touchdowns and three interceptions. He verbally committed to Florida Atlantic in June.
DL Matulino Masunu, Bellevue, 6-0, 280, sr. (3A)
He’s been an all-state selection since his sophomore season, and is a two-time All-KingCo defensive tackle. He caused chaos on offensive lines as Bellevue scrapped together a run to the 3A state quarterfinals in 2019.
RB/LB Myles Mayovsky, Kennewick, 6-1, 190, jr. (3A)
After a breakout sophomore season that ended in the 3A state semifinals, hard-running Mayovsky, a two-way standout, is the key to another Kennewick playoff run.
DL/TE Josh McCarron, Archbishop Murphy, 6-4, 215, sr. (2A)
Fast, limber and tough, McCarron is an imposing force on the defensive line and has solid hands at tight end. The first team AP all-state selection helped lead the Wildcats to the 2A state quarterfinals last year. He committed to Virginia in April.
QB Chance McDonald, Steilacoom, 6-1, 205, sr. (2A)
The Western Kentucky commit is so much more than the quarterback who heaves dimes to Emeka Egbuka, the nation’s top athlete. He’s coming off a school-record 3,812 yards passing as a junior and has Steilacoom in position to contend for a 2A state title.
DB Hayden McDonald, O’Dea, 5-10, 170, sr. (3A)
Few DBs were tasked with stopping the caliber of receivers McDonald was lining up against last season, and 3A state runner-up O’Dea’s boundary corner seldom got beat.
LB Ben McGourin, Cheney, 6-2, 220, sr. (2A)
The tough-nosed first team all-GNL linebacker is one of Spokane’s top recruits, and the younger brother of former Cheney standout Jacob McGourin, who plays for Montana.
QB Ryan McKenna, Gonzaga Prep, 6-0, 190, jr. (4A)
He stepped in as starting quarterback in the Bullpups’ triple-option system as a sophomore and didn’t take long before establishing himself among the Greater Spokane League’s top athletes. The son of G-Prep coach Dave McKenna, Ryan is also a standout hockey player for the Spokane Braves.
DB Daniel McKeirnan, Gonzaga Prep, 6-1, 180, sr. (4A)
Daniel McKiernan’s impact on the game is hard not to notice. The Bullpups’ top two-way player is a free safety and wing back, and was an all-GSL honorable mention choice as a junior.
DB/RB KeeKee McQueen, Spanaway Lake, 5-10, 175, jr. (3A)
McQueen does a little bit of everything for Spanaway Lake, and has since he was an underclassman. The junior is primarily being recruited at corner, and will continue to impact the game in many ways.
WR/DB Tobias Merriweather, Union, 6-4, 180, jr. (4A)
Didn’t Union just graduate a blue blood receiver? Merriweather has lightning speed and rare athleticism, and a growing list of power five college offers.
OL/DL Bailey Meek, Ridgefield, 6-5, 255, sr. (2A)
What separates Meek is his mobility and foot speed considering his massive frame. That’s what college programs saw as last year’s 1A Trico League D-PLOY’s recruiting has taken off in recent months. After King’s Way hit the pause button on its football program, Meek said he’ll play for Ridgefield this season under up-and-coming second-year coach Scott Rice.
LB/RB Cooper Miethe, Mount Spokane, 5-9, 190, sr. (3A)
Miethe led a strong defense that held O’Dea to 10 points in the 2019 3A state quarterfinals. What Miethe, a standout 5-foot-9 middle linebacker, lacks in size, he makes up for in technique, high understanding of the game and aggression.
QB Clay Millen, Mount Si, 6-3, 185, sr. (4A)
Mount Si’s remarkable run to the 2019 4A state semifinals was in no small part thanks to Millen. The Arizona commit has an impressive deep ball, uncanny ability to make plays on his feet and is in good company as one of the state’s top players.
LB Dishawn Misa, Eastside Catholic, 6-3, 220, jr. (3A)
Misa logged 54 solo tackles as an outside linebacker on Eastside Catholic’s run to a repeat 3A state championship. A four-star recruit, according to 247 Sports, Misa is one of the top players in the state.
QB Kobe Muasau, Eastside Catholic, 6-2, 205, sr. (3A)
Want to know just how effective of a leader the transfer from Hawaii is under center? Ask his coach, who witnessed more than just his 3,035 passing yards and 34 total touchdowns. Whenever Muasau speaks up, teammates listen. “Having a conversation with him it’s like talking to Spicoli from Fast Times,” EC coach Dom Daste said. “He’s so laid back. It’s like you’re on a beach. He’s so positive.”
OL/DL Mark Nabou, O’Dea, 6-4, 305, jr. (3A)
When O’Dea took down its nationally-ranked rival Eastside Catholic on the road, Nabou had his best game of the season. And by the time he leaves O’Dea, the offensive lineman could be considered among the school’s best ever.
WR/DB Leon Neal Jr., Garfield, 5-10, 170, sr. (3A)
The son of former University of Washington and NFL running back Leon Neal, Garfield’s “Jr.” was a first team all-league selection as a receiver and corner in the state’s toughest league — the Metro.
LB/RB Davon Nofoa-Masoe, Lakes, 6-1, 205, jr. (3A)
Lakes’ power back averaged nearly 10 yards per carry last season. On defense, he logged 44 tackles and stands out for his toughness and quickness sideline-to-sideline. He was a first team all-PCL selection as a sophomore.
RB/DB Cole Norah, Mount Si, 5-11, 190, sr. (4A)
After an all-league campaign as a sophomore, Norah missed five weeks of his junior season recovering from ACL surgery. He returned with a fury, helping provide Mount Si a spark out of the backfield deep into the playoffs.
OL/DL Keith Olson, Napavine, 6-6, 300, jr. (2B)
He’s the prototypical lineman with athleticism that will take him far. Olson was a two-way all-state lineman and played a key role in Napavine’s run to the 2B state semifinals.