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Character, leadership pave way for Garth Jr.

Kweke Garth Jr. also plays with the Silly U College Prep 7 on 7 team. Chris Jackson / Staff Photo
Kweke Garth Jr. also plays with the Silly U College Prep 7 on 7 team. Chris Jackson / Staff Photo

Kweke Garth Jr. does everything right at Skyline.

There’s nothing the Skyline running back/defensive back can’t do well. Just ask Skyline head coach Joe Bates, who has watched him mold from a youngster rolling through the football program into a blossoming star in every sense of the word in Oakland.

“Kweke is a good kid,” Bates said. “He’s a 3.0 student. He’s one of our captains. He’s just an all-star young man. He’s been playing football since a small kid. He’s been on the USA Football team. He competed with that group for awhile, so he has a wealth of experience. His mom is grooming him pretty well. She’s a nonprofit lady that’s all about the community.”

Garth Jr. has played football since he was young – at 5 years old, in fact – and his stock has only grown on both a local and national level ever since he first began his youth football days in nearby Berkeley.

Going into the summer of his freshman year of high school, Garth Jr. represented the region with the USA Football National Team – showing more of what was to come when he finally stepped on the field as a Skyline Titan.

His efforts have been an integral part in Skyline’s run from the depths of Oakland football into one of the premier programs in the city under Bates, going from five wins in 2017, to four wins in 2018 and then to a 9-3 campaign in 2019 and a trip to the Silver Bowl – Oakland’s championship game – to mark the Titans’ best season since 2004.

And Garth Jr. did it all during that run to a title game appearance, rushing for 544 yards and six touchdowns, adding another 16 tackles and one fumble recovery defensively.

“I would say, I knew I always had that chance, but what boosted my confidence and things like that were the past season we had, because I feel like coach Bates he pretty much does a lot for not only me, but all the other players on our team to do what he can to get our recruitment on the right path,” Garth Jr. said.

Now, with that help and the success he’s experienced, the recruitment has picked up for Garth Jr. in recent times.

Four college football programs have sent offers his way – Concordia Chicago, Pacific, Trine and Whittier. Concordia and Pacific each offered in the past month.

What schools will see more of, too, is Garth Jr. making an impact in the secondary as a cornerback. Skyline’s running back room is deep this season after adding a couple of transfers back there, which lessens the load offensively for Garth Jr. creates more opportunities for him on the other side of the ball.

“Just an all around good guy,” Bates said. “He’s one of our instinctual guys. He’s not really our big play guy per say, but he’s a very instinctual player. This guy – his agility is pretty advanced. One thing, though, with him, we’re trying to get him going at cornerback this year more so than running back. We’ve got a three-headed monster back there this year. Two transfers coming in. We’re going to spare him a little bit, but he’ll be one of the top three running backs getting carries.”

Plus, what Garth Jr. also boasts is character and leadership that has helped propel Skyline during its resurgence on the football field.

He’s been a captain for multiple years and makes sure he is there to help his teammates any way he can – all traits he learned around his large family.

“What makes me such a great leader is I am actually the oldest out of six siblings, so I’ve always shown them right from wrong and what’s supposed to be done and how it’s supposed to be done,” Garth Jr. said.

For his final high school season, Garth Jr. is prepping for more. He’s been there watching and keying Skyline from .500 or below seasons in his first two seasons to the nine-win campaign when he was a junior.

In what is now the 2021 season, he and his teammates want to leave a legacy at Skyline that last forever.

“Our overall goal as a team is we want a ring on our fingers, so we want to win a state championship,” Garth Jr. said. “And my goal for myself is I want to have more options when it comes to offers and things like that. I want to get more offers, and so I got to focus on that film at cornerback and just leaving it all on the field.”


  1. Laronda Sullivan-Kenney on October 15, 2020 at 6:47 pm

    Good job son!!! We are beyond proud of you!!!

  2. Rhonda on October 16, 2020 at 9:52 am

    Congratulations and may you continue to be Blessed with Prosperity

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