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25 Days of Christmas: No. 7 Menlo-Atherton

Menlo-Atherton receiver Jalen Moss works out in Menlo Park on Nov. 24, 2020. Chris Jackson / Staff Photo
Menlo-Atherton receiver Jalen Moss works out in Menlo Park on Nov. 24, 2020. Chris Jackson / Staff Photo

It’s the 19th day of the 25 Days of Christmas preseason rankings for West Coast Preps, this time with the No. 7 team.

The rankings, which will tab the top 25 football teams in the Bay Area, announce one team each day through Christmas Day. The No. 1 team will be unveiled on Dec. 25 at WestCoastPreps.com.

Only schools located within cities on the Bay Area Census are eligible for the poll.

West Coast Preps unveiled the No. 25, No. 24, No. 23, No. 22, No. 21, No. 20, No. 19, No. 18, No. 17, No. 16, No. 15, No. 14, No. 13, No. 12, No. 11, No. 10, No. 9 and No. 8 football teams in the Bay Area earlier this month.

No. 7: Menlo-Atherton

Menlo-Atherton is ready for another special season on the football field.

Coming off a 7-4 season in 2019 and a league title – which followed up a 2018 state crown – the Bears are one of the top teams once again in the Bay Area, and their roster up and down the board under head coach Chris Saunders speaks for itself.

Despite U.S. Army All-American receiver Troy Franklin enrolling early at the University of Oregon next month, Menlo-Atherton’s offense is loaded. 

Junior quarterback Matt MacLeod threw for 1,834 yards, 19 touchdowns and just two picks en route to first team all-league honors. Next to him is a junior receiving Jalen Moss, who has six offers – Arizona State, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oregon, Oregon State and UNLV – and led the team in receiving yards (541) and receiving touchdowns last season (nine).

Moss isn’t the only junior to watch for, though.

Running back/defensive back Thomas Taufui holds an Arizona State offer and totaled 500-plus rushing yards and 26 tackles last season. Junior linebacker Andrew Buck had 67 tackles in eight games, which was the second-highest total on the team. Another junior to keep an eye on for is receiver/defensive back Jeremiah Earby, who has been a top performer this offseason.

Senior Jayden Stanley signed with UC Davis on Wednesday following a junior campaign when he 

A challenging schedule awaits for the Bears, who face teams like Serra, No. 12 McClymonds, No. 17 Half Moon Bay, Clayton Valley Charter and No. 21 King’s Academy this season.

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