At first glance, there is nothing out of the ordinary about Morningside High quarterback Stais Boseman being chosen Southern Section Division VIII player of the year.
Boseman's dynamic play on offense and defense was the major reason the Monarchs (11-2) won their first-ever section football title.
But what might come as a surprise is whom Boseman beat in the voting. David Dotson, the Valley View running back who set California records for most rushing yards in a season (3,523) and career (7,246), was thought to be the favorite.
Yet when it came time for the Amateur Athletic Foundation/First Interstate Bank board of sportswriters to select a player of the year, the vote was nearly unanimous.
Dotson had the best numbers, but Boseman made the biggest impact.
"He's better than we are," said Temecula Valley Coach Bud Kane, after Boseman led Morningside to a 27-20 victory in the Division VIII title game Dec. 14 at Temecula Valley. "He was the difference in the game."
Temecula Valley, the 1990 division champion, beat Valley View and Dotson during league play.
Boseman, a 6-foot-3, 185-pound junior now starting for the Monarch basketball team, was among four Morningside players and 11 South Bay standouts named to the All-Division VIII team, which was released today. Torrance, Redondo and South Torrance each had two players selected.
Serra and El Segundo each placed two players on the All-Division VII team.
Boseman helped Morningside to its finest season through his leadership skills and all-around athletic ability. Not only did he lead the Monarchs in passing (1,173 yards and 16 touchdowns) and rushing (1,367 yards and 17 TDs), he also led the team with six interceptions as a defensive back.
Whether it was a long run, a kickoff return or a fumble recovery, Boseman always seemed to come up with a big play when needed. He scored 20 TDs and accounted for 36 TDs and 218 points either running or passing.
"It's not often you get a guy like Stais," Morningside Coach Ron Tatum said. "He's got ability and talent and a lot of other things people don't have. There's something special about him."
An anticipated matchup between Boseman and Dotson in the quarterfinals of the playoffs did not take place because of a hamstring injury to the Valley View running back. With Dotson sidelined, Boseman and Morningside rolled to a 36-9 victory.
Afterward, Boseman regretted not having the chance to play against Dotson, a senior.
"I wanted to see him run a little bit," Boseman said. "I heard all the talk about him. I wanted to see him get the ball at least a half to see if he is that good."
Joining Boseman on the All-Division VIII team from Morningside are lineman Pauliasi Taulava, a two-way player who was selected to the defensive unit, and defensive backs Jesse Swayze and Keith Long.
Other South Bay players named to the team were quarterback Jason Kendall and wide receiver Ralph Martinez of Torrance, offensive lineman Ryan Turner and tight end Jeremy Veasey of Redondo, offensive lineman Shane Daywalt and linebacker Ryan Brady of South Torrance and defensive lineman Mike Thomas of North Torrance.
The All-Division VII team included offensive lineman Corey Long and linebacker Chris Long of Camino Real League champion Serra and kicker/running back David Scanlan and defensive lineman Frank Taormina of San Fernando Valley League champion El Segundo.
Running back David Webber of Division VII champion Laguna Hills and Artesia quarterback Aaron Flowers were named co-players of the year.