NorCal title at stake for CCSF 

If you’re a football fan tired of watching the 49ers and Raiders break your heart week after week, try watching some college football — community college football that is.

City College of San Francisco hasn’t let a single fan down this season as they’ve cruised to a 10-0 record and are headed into the Hawaiian Punch Community College Bowl this Saturday against Fresno City.

The winner of the game will be crowned Northern California Regional Champion and will go on to play for the state championship against the victor from the Southern California Region.

San Francisco already has a rich history, with six state championships and 10 Northern California titles. The Rams hope to add their 11th on Saturday.

“We feel great about it,” coach George Rush said about his team’s chances. “Fresno’s a quality team, they didn’t get there accidentally. ... Their skilled athletes are excellent, they have a real strong quarterback and give you a lot of looks on defense. So we expect a real good football game.”

San Francisco has been no slouch this season either. They’ve beaten their opponents by an average spread of 26 points per game and are ranked No. 3 in the state for points scored per game (40.1).

The Rams have looked impressive on the other side of the ball as well, giving up the fewest points per game of any team in the state (14.1).

“They rose to the occasion,” Rush said of his team’s offense and defense. “They made big plays when they had to make them, made big stops when they had to make them. We’ve been a very balanced team and I think that’s one of the reasons we’re pretty strong.”

The team has been able to move the ball very well, ranking first in the state in offensive yards per game.

“I think our offensive line in particular is the real strong point of our offensive unit and gives our quarterback and our backs and receivers an opportunity to showcase their skills,” Rush said.

Fresno City has a dangerous offense as well, and Saturday’s game could come down to which team’s quarterback has a bigger day.

San Francisco’s Steele Jantz and Fresno’s Lance Orender each rank among the state’s top 10 quarterbacks in passing touchdowns, passer rating and passing yards per game.

Orender also ranks third in passing yards per completion and has built a reputation upon making the big play.

“You’d like to take away the deep ball,” Rush said. “They’ve been very effective throwing the ball deep and you’d like to take that away.”

What could tip the scale in San Francisco’s favor, however, is Jantz’s favorite target, Aaron Horne. Not only does the sophomore have a team-high 12 touchdowns this season, Horne also has more yards per catch than any other receiver in California.

Hawaiian Punch Bowl

CCSF (10-0) vs. Fresno City (8-2)

WHEN: Saturday, 1 p.m.

WHERE: Rams Stadium, City College of San Francisco

AT STAKE: The winner will be crowned Northern California champion and earn a spot in the state championship game on Dec. 11

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Chris Middleton

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