- JSerra News
The first day of the early signing period for football was celebrated at JSerra Catholic High School on Wednesday with six student athletes committing to play football at the colleges of their choice.
This is the second year for the football early signing period which will extend for 72 hours until late Friday. After Friday, high school recruits can't sign national letters of intent until February 6th.
JSerra Lions signing today included Caden Bell – Columbia University, Munir McClain – University of Southern California, Etuate Moala – Army West Point, Calvin Mouisset – University of California Davis, Shawn Nielson – San Diego State University, and Grant Ristoff – University of Pennsylvania.
Three of today's signees follow in the footsteps of JSerra football alumni. Most notably, Ristoff will join five former JSerra football athletes at University of Pennsylvania – Sam Philippi ('15), Nick Robinson ('15), Conor O'Brien ('16), Riley O'Brien ('17) and Jake Haggard ('18).
McClain follows JSerra Alumni and brother Abdul-Malik McClain ('18) to USC, and Mouisset fol-lows JSerra Alumni Jake Parks ('18), recent HERO Sports All-American, to UC Davis.
Quarterback Caden Bell (Columbia University) transferred to JSerra his senior year and made an impact both as team captain, and breaking a number of JSerra records including the single season passing touchdown record.
When asked who has had the greatest influence on his athletic career, Bell answered, "My parents for all of their continued love and support of me. All they put into me got me to where I am today."
Commenting on Bell's single season status, Coach Harlow stated, "Caden did not have a long career at JSerra, but it was a very impactful one." He elaborated, "Caden set numerous records this year and helped lead us through the toughest schedule we have ever faced. Caden will succeed at Columbia because of his diligent work ethic."
Wide receiver and defensive back Calvin Mouisset (UC Davis) played for JSerra all four years of high school garnering numerous honors and awards along the way – including two time 1st Team All-Trinity League 2016 and 2018, two-time Team Captain, three-time Defensive Player of the Year 2015, 2016, and 2018, and MVP 2018 .
Mouisset identified his coaches at JSerra as having the greatest impact on him as an athlete and thanks his parents for their support. "Calvin has had a tremendous career here at JSerra always leading by example," said Coach Harlow."We believe that UC Davis is getting not only a great player, but a great person as well."
A triple-sport athlete, defensive lineman Shawn Nielsen (San Diego State) also played football all four years at JSerra along with rugby and baseball. Similar to Mouisset, Nielsen has received much recognition for his athletic accomplishments garnering 2nd Team All-Trinity League 2016, 1st Team All-Trinity League 2017, 2018, OC Register Preseason All-Area Team 2018, OC Varsity Mid-Season Defensive MVP Trinity League2018, and USA Today Super 25 Top Star, Week 5.
Nielsen credits JSerra Defensive Line Coach Justin Danh as having the greatest impact on his career as a coach, mentor and role model. Coach Danh worked with Nielsen all four of his years at JSerra and was instrumental in reforming the former linebacker into a powerhouse defensive lineman.
"Shawn had a long, fruitful career at JSerra," states Coach Harlow. "Shawn was a dominant defensive lineman for us the past three years that opposing teams had to game plan around. Shawn is going to his dream school and we are excited for him and his future."
Wide receiver and duel-sport athlete MuNir McClain (USC) transferred to JSerra his junior year playing football for two years and basketball for one. McClain recieved All-Trinity League Honors for football during that time. Setback by injuries, McClain shared, "My mom has made the greatest impact on my athletic career. She has helped me to overcome many adversities and always encour-aged me to stay strong."
Coach Harlow enumerated, "MuNir had an injury shortened career here at JSerra, but when healthy he was one of the most dominant wide receivers in the country." Harlow added "We look forward to MuNir having a great college career."
Offensive lineman Etuate Moala (Army West Point) transferred to JSerra to play for the Lions his senior year. Moala received First team All-League honors while playing for King High School in the Big 8.
"My first experience with football was fun," exclaimed Moala, "but I learned about it the hard way, getting ran over by a fullback in the backfield." He credits his older brother Gisi for having the greatest impact on his athletic career. "He was much stronger than me and that encouraged me to work hard to surpass him. "
"Etu is a great player and when he got hurt it really changed our defense," lamented Coach Harlow. "We are very excited to see what he can do at West Point and even more proud that he has chosen to serve our country."
Grant Ristoff, sixth in a line of JSerra football alumni to commit to University of Pennsylvania, attended JSerra all four years and played tight end and defensive lineman. Ristoff says he has been playing football for 9 years, 11 if you count flag football with his first experience being a daily game with his dad and brothers in his front yard.
"My Dad has made the biggest impact on my athletic career," shared Ristoff, "He always believed in me and my abilities even when I doubted myself. He has encouraged me and helped me get to the place I am today."
High School achievements for Ristoff include Football Team Captain 2018, 1st Team All-Trinity League 2018, Scholar Athlete 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015 and Lion Award 2015. A standout student, Ristoff also achieved a perfect score on the ACT.
"Grant probably got the most out of his career of any player I have ever coached," stated Coach Harlow. "Grant will have collegiate success and more importantly success in life due his unbelievable work ethic and desire to get the job done at a high level."
Congratulations to the six fine JSerra young men who signed to play football at the next level today at National Letter of Intent early signing day for football!