For the second time this season, Brock Bowers of Napa has been honored by the Southeastern Conference.
Bowers, a tight end for the University of Georgia, was named as the SEC Freshman of the Week after catching five passes for 101 yards and two touchdowns in the Bulldogs’ 30-13 win over Kentucky, it was announced in a report at georgiadogs.com on Oct. 18.
Bowers caught a 27-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter and pulled in a 20-yard TD pass in the fourth quarter for Georgia (7-0 overall, 5-0 SEC) in the game on Oct. 16 at Sanford Stadium in Athens, Ga.
“He helped the Bulldogs distance themselves 21-7 from the Wildcats with an acrobatic 27-yard catch in the end zone. In the fourth quarter, Bowers put the game out of reach for Kentucky as he caught a 20-yard touchdown catch that was lofted over the hands of the Wildcats,” the report at georgiadogs.com said.
Bowers also had 45 yards after the catch.
“He’s a real good player. He made plays,” quarterback Stetson Bennett said at georgiadogs.com.
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Bowers is a Napa High School graduate and leads Georgia in receiving, with 25 receptions for 416 yards and six touchdowns.
He has started six of the team’s seven games and is averaging 16.6 yards per reception and 59.4 yards per game.
Bowers was named as the Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Week after catching two touchdown passes and also running for a TD in Georgia’s 62-0 win over Vanderbilt on Sept. 25.
“Our tight ends are weapons. They’re size guys. They make plays down the field,” coach Kirby Smart said at georgiadogs.com. “We’ve got a talented tight end room. As long as they buy in to the team-first concept, then we’ve got a chance to be successful.”
Bowers, named as the All-Napa County Player of the Year by the Napa Valley Register and the Vine Valley Athletic League Most Valuable Player in 2019, enrolled at Georgia this past January.
MaxPreps named Bowers to its Preseason All-America First Team offense and also its Preseason California All-State First Team offense in 2020.
Georgia continues it season on Saturday, Oct. 30 against Florida in Jacksonville, Fla.
Former Napa High principal, coach Casanega passes away
Ken Casanega, a former Napa High School principal and head football coach and a member of the 1946 San Francisco 49ers’ team, passed away Sunday, Oct. 10 in Medford, Oregon, The San Francisco Chronicle reported at sfchronicle.com on Oct. 14.
Casanega “was the oldest living 49er and the last surviving member of the franchise’s original 1946 team,” The Chronicle reported. He was 100.
Casanega was Napa’s head coach during the 1950 and 1951 seasons and compiled a 9-7-2 record.
He was a halfback for Santa Clara University, playing for the Broncos from 1938-1942. He was inducted into Santa Clara’s Hall of Fame in 1965.
According to Santa Clara University, at scu.edu:
“In 1946, Casanega became one of the original San Francisco 49ers. He spent two seasons with the team and intercepted 8 passes, the 2nd most interceptions in the All-American Football Conference.”
According to Pro-Football-Reference, Casanega was a quarterback, defensive back and halfback with the 49ers.
He went to Castlemont High in Oakland.
St. Helena among top teams
St. Helena High (5-1 overall, 3-0 North Central League I) is No. 15 among the Top Small School Teams, CalHiSports.com reported on Oct. 14.
It’s the first state small schools Top-16 rankings of the 2021 season for small schools, the report at www.calhisports.com said.
“We’ll do these rankings several more times through the end of the CIF state bowls,” CalHiSports.com said.
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Vintage (4-3 overall, 3-1 Vine Valley Athletic League) is No. 5, St. Helena (5-1 overall, 3-0 North Central League I) is No. 9, and American Canyon (4-3 overall, 2-1 Vine Valley Athletic League) is No. 10.
Vintage in NCS Rankings
Vintage High School (4-3 overall) is No. 22 in the North Coast Section Rankings, announced by MaxPreps at maxpreps.com on Oct. 17.
The rankings are led by No. 1 De La Salle-Concord (5-2).
The top-10 also has:
No. 2 Pittsburg (4-1), No. 3 California-San Ramon (6-1), No. 4 Clayton Valley Charter-Concord (5-2), No. 5 Windsor (7-0), No. 6 San Ramon Valley-Danville (5-2), No. 7 Marin Catholic-Kentfield (6-1), No. 8 Monte Vista-Danville (6-0), No. 9 Dublin (5-2), No. 10 Rancho Cotate-Rohnert Park (6-1).
The next 10 teams:
No. 11 El Cerrito (5-2), No. 12 Benicia (5-2), No. 13 Cardinal Newman-Santa Rosa (5-2), No. 14 Liberty-Brentwood (3-4), No. 15 Foothill-Pleasanton (6-2), No. 16 Las Lomas-Walnut Creek (5-2), No. 17 Amador Valley-Pleasanton (4-3), No. 18 Antioch (4-3), No. 19 Heritage-Brentwood (4-3), No. 20 San Marin-Novato (7-0).
Also in the rankings:
No. 21 Casa Grande-Petaluma (5-2), No. 23 Del Norte-Crescent City (5-1), No. 24 San Leandro (4-3), No. 25 Campolindo-Moraga (4-3).
NCS teams in NorCal Rankings
Five North Coast Section teams are listed in the Week-9, Top-20 NorCal Football Rankings, announced by SportStars Magazine at sportstarsmag.com on Oct. 18.
De La Salle-Concord (5-2) is No. 2.
De La Salle is followed by No. 6. Pittsburg (4-1), No. 17 Windsor (7-0), No. 18 California-San Ramon (6-1), and No. 20 Clayton Valley-Concord (5-2).
The “next five knocking” include No. 21 Monte Vista-Danville (6-0), No. 23 San Ramon Valley-Danville (5-2), and No. 24 Marin Catholic-Kentfield (6-1).
NorCal JC teams in the rankings
Eleven Northern California teams are listed in this week’s JC Athletic Bureau Coaches Poll, announced on Oct. 19 in a report by the California Community College Athletic Association at www.cccaasports.org.
At No. 1, College of San Mateo (6-0) leads the poll.
The poll also includes:
No. 3 City College of San Francisco (6-0), No. 9 Diablo Valley-Pleasant Hill (4-2), No. 10 Modesto (4-2), No. 16 Butte-Oroville (3-3), No. 17 Laney-Oakland (3-3), No. 18 American River-Sacramento (3-3), No. 19 Contra Costa-San Pablo (5-0), No. 20 Sierra-Rocklin (3-2), No. 23 Shasta-Redding (3-2), and No. 24 Feather River-Quincy (5-0).
Ken Delgado, a former American Canyon resident, is in his first year as an assistant coach at Kenyon College.
Brock Bowers, George Cutting, Seth Morrison, Caleb Tremblay, Lucas Gramlick and Steve Hendrickson are featured in this County Football Insider.
College players from the Napa Valley such as Brock Bowers, Lucas Gramlick, Caleb Tremblay and Viliami Schaumkel are mentioned in Marty James' Insider, along with the Vintage, American Canyon and St. Helena teams.
Marty James mentions Brock Bowers, Caleb Tremblay, Viliami Schaumkel and ranked teams in this Napa County Football Insider.
Marty James mentions Brock Bowers, Caleb Tremblay, Justin Barnes, Viliami Schaumkel, Lucas Gramlick, Isaiah Newton, Marcus Nunes, Malik Davis, Blake Hoban and Gunnar Schoeps in this Napa County Football Insider.
Dick Vermeil, Louie Canepa, Christoph Horton and Brock Bowers are featured in this week's football column by freelance sports writer Marty James.
Freelance writer Marty James covers people and topics with ties to the Napa Valley football community.