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Pearson becomes household name in Pittsburg backfield

Daytuawn Pearson carries the ball at a Pittsburg practice. Gregory Moreland-Tuhn / Staff Photo
Daytuawn Pearson carries the ball at a Pittsburg practice. Gregory Moreland-Tuhn / Staff Photo

Entering the season, Daytuawn Pearson was largely an unknown name on the Bay Area high school football scene.

Pearson, a senior running back and defensive back for the No. 3 Pittsburg Pirates, was behind a 1,000-yard rusher in Avant Muldrow who also totaled 13 touchdown runs in Pittsburg’s run to 11 wins, a Bay Valley Athletic League title and a runner-up finish to De La Salle in the North Coast Section playoffs.

On that squad, Pearson touched the ball 24 times for 140 yards and one touchdown. He showed some flashes of what was to come in a pair of 30-yard efforts.

But he was searching for more, and it didn’t take long for his teammates to notice just what he could do during the preseason.

“He’s crazy because a lot of people – they didn’t know who he was,” said Pittsburg sophomore quarterback Jaden Rashada. “Shoot, me coming in, I didn’t even know who he was, but then he woke me up every practice. Our team believes in him a lot, and he definitely should be playing at the next level. He’s crazy and he’s helped us out a lot in the run game this year.”

Everyone knew who Pearson was once his senior campaign rolled around this spring

The season opener was a 73-yard display on just 10 carries in a 59-14 rout of Freedom. And then the 100-yard performances rolled through faster than ever.

A 141-yard day and one touchdown against Heritage. Four carries for 164 yards and two touchdowns versus Liberty, which came out to an absurd 41 yards per carry. Seven carries this past weekend for 111 yards, including 57 receiving yards and two touchdown catches against Deer Valley.

Through Pittsburg’s undefeated season, with the program clinching another league crown, Pearson has 489 rushing yards – the eighth-most in the North Coast Section and the second-most in the BVAL, according to statistics available on MaxPreps.

“He’s like the life of the offense,” said Pittsburg senior receiver Matthew Quesada. “He makes everything happen. He just brings a big play when we need it and everything. He’s a big part of this offense.”

Since Pearson started playing football, though, he and his family knew this sort of thing was eventually going to happen.

Big plays were part of the ordinary. Pearson’s shiftiness, athleticism and overall talent exuded special things were in store.

“People told me around me I was always good, but once I saw myself play, I saw I could really be great,” Pearson said.

Pearson said he’s generated some recruiting interest, but nothing major has appeared yet.

However, he is focused on finishing out his high school career in an impressive way and completing the undefeated regular season. 

“I just want to finish off strong,” Pearson said. “Finish what I started.”

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