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Darius Fonteno wasn’t into football when he was younger.
The Skyline junior defensive lineman instead liked hiding behind trees. He didn’t like the contact involved with football.
But one close person close to Fonteno saw something in him. He was up the block and saw Fonteno playing football in the streets with some of his friends, which soon opened the door to something far greater.
“He was like, ‘Oh yea, I like the speed.’ So when I first started football, I was a running back and then I turned into a linebacker and then they put me as a D-end, and I was balling as a d-end,” Fonteno said. “After that, I got my 15 pounds and then bam. That put me at defensive tackle. I love fighting. I love it. You see this. This is what I got to go through.”
From that point forward, Fonteno could never get enough of football, and his performances since he started playing for Skyline have turned heads everywhere he’s gone.
Fonteno’s sophomore season saw him record 28 tackles in Skyline’s 9-3 campaign and a trip to the Silver Bowl, but that was only the beginning of what has turned out to be a monstrous offseason immediately following his first year playing Titans football.
Skyline head coach Joe Bates remembers when he took Fonteno to a Raiders camp last year, and those in attendance couldn’t believe their eyes when they watched Fonteno up close.
“They were looking at him like, ‘You’re in high school still?’ Off the charts,” Bates said. “I’ll rave about him all day.”
At the first Xclusive Speed Bay Area Top 100 Showcase in July in San Ramon, Fonteno did the same thing as he shined throughout the entire event and earned himself Defensive MVP recognition – a moment that made Fonteno realize just the limitless potential he possesses up front.
“Because it was my first time being surrounded by a whole bunch of people like that, and showing off what I got in front of them and I was just like when I first got into there into the circle,” Fonteno said. “I’m at the showcase, combine. I’m at my first time. I watch it on YouTUbe a lot, but I hadn’t been in one until now. I better show what I got, and then when I did I beat them. Everybody got hyped, and I never had that before like that really. Everybody got hyped on the field. It was amazing. I was looking around like ‘Wow. This is very, very cool. Awesome.’”
Less than two months later, Fonteno decimated everyone in his sight at the second-ever Xclusive Speed Bay Area Top 100 Showcase on Saturday, and his performance there once again earned him recognition in the end.
The coaching staff handed Fonteno Defensive Line MVP honors to make him a back-to-back award winner this summer at the Bay Area Top 100 Showcase (there were no overall Offensive and Defensive MVP awards handed out this time).
What Bates loves about Fonteno is his mean streak and how he stands up for everybody.
“Someone is getting bullied and he’ll swing that guy around like a rag doll just to prove a point, like you don’t pick on people,” Bates said. “He’s one of those guys. He’s just a nice guy, but he’s unstoppable. The guy, if he gets going, he’s unstoppable.”
In addition to the MVP awards Fonteno has already won twice this summer at Xclusive Speed’s events, Bates posted on social media that Fonteno has won an MVP award at every showcase he’s attended the past two seasons.
More recognition appears to be on the horizon soon, and Fonteno is focused on doing whatever he can to be a role model and leader to those around him
“Work hard, play hard, be a captain, captain of the football team, be a captain, be a brother, be a good influence for all the kids out here,” Fonteno said. “I’ve got people looking up to me. I want to keep that as it is right now.”
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