Note: The No. 1 Mater Dei vs. No. 2 St. John Bosco game has been postponed to 7 p.m. PT Saturday night due to rain and lightning.
No matter how you cut it, Friday night’s meeting of Super 25 No. 1 Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.) and No. 2 St. John Bosco (Bellflower, Calif.) is among the best we’ve seen this decade. Just the school names alone bring to mind great football teams of recent vintage.
These two programs, however, did not get to be the nation’s best on reputation alone. The young men wearing Mater Dei’s wings and Bosco’s spears on their respective helmets have earned the right to be considered among the best players in California, if not the nation.
In total, the 247 Sports Composite lists … wait for it … 45 players between the two schools. That’s right – there are more ranked recruits than if you made up a starting offense and a starting defense for each side.
Here, you can see 247Sports’ rankings of the Calif. Class of 2019, 2020 and 2021. As you can see, there’s a heavy dose of talent across the Golden State, but a healthy portion of those players attend school in either Santa Ana or Bellflower.
The breakdown goes like this: Bosco has 25 ranked players to Mater Dei’s 20. In the Class of 2019, Bosco has 15 recruits ranked, while Mater Dei has 12. For the junior class, Bosco has the edge, 9-8. And in 2021, Bosco receiver Beaux Collins is the lone ranked player from either side, at No. 5 in the state.
But while Bosco may have the edge on total ranked recruits, the Monarchs have the slight edge in terms of top-tier talent, as seen by one of the country’s premier recruiting services. Mater Dei has six players (seniors Bru McCoy and Oregon commit Mase Funa; juniors Elias Ricks, USC commit Bryce Young, Myles Murao and Oklahoma commit Darion Green-Warren) who are among the state’s top 12 players in their class, per the 247 Sports Composite.
Someday, we will see many a player from Friday night’s epic tilt doing work on Saturdays in the fall and, perhaps, Sundays.
For now, we can simply marvel at the amount of talent Mater Dei head coach Bruce Rollinson and St. John Bosco head coach Jason Negro have brought into their programs. It’s no small feat, and the clash of talented titans should make for a memorable matchup.