Eric Sondheimer has been covering high school sports for the Los Angeles Times since 1997 and in Southern California since 1976. Get his latest from the field and follow all our prep sports coverage and analysis here.
For those who enjoy watching linebackers this season, the Narbonne-Gardena Serra season opener on Aug. 25 at Narbonne will be linebacker heaven.
Narbonne All-City linebackers Raymond Scott, Darien Butler and Julian Lewis will get to match skills against Serra linebacker standouts Merlin Robertson, Justin Houston, Justin Patterson and Taelenuu Tua'au.
Spectators should pay particular attention to Jack Lamb of Great Oak. He's committed to Notre Dame.
Bo Calvert of Oaks Christian, like Scott, is committed to USC. Mater Dei has Solomon Tuliaupupu, Mase Funa and Jack Genova.
Clyde Moore of Corona del Mar is committed to Colorado. Christian LaValle of Mission Viejo is headed to Arizona State. Halid Djibril of Cathedral is a tackling machine, as is sophomore Justin Flowe of Upland.
Blake Antzoulatos of Chaminade had more than 100 tackles as a sophomore. Isaiah Johnson of Los Alamitos is an Arizona commit with speed. Spencer Lytle of Servite is a rising junior prospect. Camron Pitcher of Corona Centennial makes tackle after tackle. Matthew Tago of Quartz Hill is a UCLA commit.
Reggie Hughes of Calabasas and J.D. Hernandez of Sierra Canyon will be standouts on defense for their respective teams.
Note: The Times begins its nine-part series previewing Southern California's top players on Wednesday.