There was no hiding this season for Damien Mama, the 6-foot-5, 360-pound senior tackle at Bellfower St. John Bosco.
From the summer, when he was the anchorman in tug-of-war competitions, pulling the rope against helpless opponents, to stepping onto the field and blocking for 16 weeks of football action, Mama was the focus of attention.
And he delivered repeatedly. Mama has been named The Times' lineman of the year.
He used his size to great advantage and was physical and dominant as part of an offensive line that was recognized as the best in Southern California. The Braves went 16-0, won the Pac-5 Division championship — the first in school history — and the CIF state championship Open Division bowl game.
He's being recruited by USC and UCLA, among others, and is viewed as a future college and possible NFL player.
"The best attribute he has is his leadership ability," Coach Jason Negro said. "That's rare coming from a lineman. The kids kind of gravitate to him. It's remarkable."