10 Dominant American High School Football Programs

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College and professional football have long been two of America’s favorite sports, but over the past two decades, high school football has become very popular as well. Much of the recent increase in popularity is due to the level of play, as some high school athletes are now comparable in size and speed to college athletes. To celebrate the rise of high school football, let’s look at ten of our country’s most dominant high school football programs.

Pile of footballs on a field

De La Salle (Concord, California)

  • State Championships – 5
  • National 25 finishes – 7
  • Fun Fact: Their longest winning streak is 151 games (From 1992 to 2004)

For quite some time, the Da La Salle football program has been recognized as a national powerhouse. In fact, there have been two books written on the program, one which tells the story of the 2001 national championship game (One Great Game by Don Wallace), and the other which highlights the 2002 team and their undefeated season (When the Game Stands Tall by Neil Hayes).

Notable alumni:

  • T.J. Ward – Denver Broncos
  • Maurice Jones-Drew – Jacksonville Jaguars
  • Amani Toomer – New York Giants

Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, New Jersey)

  • State Championships- 15
  • National Top 25 finishes: 5
  • Fun Fact: Don Bosco Prep has played and defeated De La Salle High School twice (2008 & 2009).

The Don Bosco Prep Ironmen have won 15 state championships, their most recent being the past 2015 season when they beat Saint Joseph Regional High School to earn their first title in over four years. The program has also earned the title of New Jersey’s top-ranked football program (Star Ledger Trophy).

Notable Alumni:

  • Justin Trattou – Minnesota Vikings
  • Leonte Carroo – Miami Dolphins

Trinity (Louisville, Kentucky)

  • State Championships – 23
  • National Top 25 Finishes – 4
  • Fun Fact: In 2008, NFL Films created a documentary on the historic rivalry between Trinity and St. Xavier High School

With 23 state championships and 500+ wins, the Trinity football team has long been considered one of Kentucky’s most dominant high school football programs. Yet, if you’re in Kentucky you may find that there is a state-wide debate over whether Trinity or rival St. Xavier is the best. On the first Friday of every October, these two rivals face off at the University of Louisville, an event that typically brings in 35,000 fans.

Notable Alumni:

  • James Quick – High School All-American
  • Jordan Whiting – High School All-American

Maryville (Tennessee)

  • State championships – 14
  • National Top 25 Finishes – 3
  • Fun Fact: Since the class formation in 2009, the football team has appeared in each of the Class 6A Football Championship games.

The Maryville Rebels are considered by many to be the top football team in Tennessee. They have long been rivals with Alcoa High School and have beat them 60+ times.

Notable Alumni:

  • Knox Ramsey – Former NFL Player
  • Danny Spradlin – Former NFL Player

Bellevue (Washington)

  • State championships – 11 (*does not include championships prior to 2001)
  • National Top 25 finishes – 3
  • Fun Fact: From 2001-2013, the football squad won 3A championship game 11 times.

Although not as historically powerful as other teams mentioned here, the Bellevue football team has recently received a wide array of attention. While much of this publicity is a result of their wins on the field, the team is also nationally recognized for their repeated use of the Wing T offense.

Notable Alumni:

  • Stephen Schilling – Former NFL Player
  • J.R. Hasty – Washington State Player of the Year

Byrnes (Duncan, South Carolina)

  • State championships – 9
  • National Top 25 finishes – 3
  • Fun Fact: Started the 2008 season ranked as the number one team in the nation.

For many years, the Byrnes Rebels were coached by Bobby Bentley, one of the most successful high school football coaches in the nation. He eventually left to take a college coaching position at Presbyterian College. The squad certainly proved to be fine in his absence as they went on to win back-to-back national championships (2010 & 2011).

Notable Alumni:

  • Everett Dawkins – Tampa Bay Bucs
  • Marcus Lattimore – San Francisco 49ers

Hoover (Alabama)

  • State championships – 11
  • National Top 25 finishes – 3
  • Fun Fact: The TV Show Two-A-Days is based on the Hoover football team.

Since making their first playoff appearance in 1968, the Hoover football team has put on a series of exceptional post-season performances, most notably state championships in 2012, 2013 and 2014.

Notable Alumni:

  • Josh Chapman – Indianapolis Colts

South Panola (Batesville, Mississippi)

  • State championships – 11
  • National Top 25 finishes – 3
  • Fun Fact: They hold the 3rd longest winning streak in high school football history (89 games)

From 2003-2007, the South Panola Tigers won five consecutive 5A State Championships. This streak ended in 2008 when they lost to the Meridian Wildcats.  Since moving up to Class 6A in 2009, the Tigers have continued to be successful, winning four state championships.

Notable Alumni:

  • Dwayne Rudd – Former NFL Player
  • Deshea Townsend – Pittsburg Stealers

Trinity (Euless, Texas)

  • State championships – 3
  • National Top 25 finishes – 6
  • Fun Fact: The Trinity football stadium is considered to be one of the nicest in the nation.

Playing in the ever-competitive state of Texas, the Trinity Trojans have found continued success on the football field. Playing in 6A division 1, the Trojans have been to the Texas State Playoffs 29 times, with seven semifinal appearances, five state championship appearances, and three state championships.

Notable Alumni:

  • Mike Baab
  • Dimitri Nance

Learn More

The Ohio University online Master’s in Athletic Administration program specializes in developing interscholastic Athletic Directors, building on the students’ passion for serving young student-athletes and running a highly-successful athletic department. Ohio University is a pioneer in sports education. By establishing the first academic program in the field of sports administration, this online program is recognized today as the premier professional training program for candidates seeking careers in the sports industry.

MaxPreps.com, “Top 20 most dominant high school football teams in the MaxPreps era, national and state”
USA Today.com, “De La Salle’s 151-game win streak ends”
Alabama High School Football Historical Society, “De La Salle’s 151-game win streak ends”