2023 High School Football

2023 football: 50 top Southern Arizona seniors — Salpointe defensive end Elijah Rushing

Today marks only 15 days until the kickoff of the 2023 Southern Arizona high school football season with games scheduled Aug. 18. AllSportsTucson.com is listing 50 of the top seniors in Southern Arizona during this stretch. This is not a ranking. We acknowledge more than 50 quality seniors will play on high school fields locally this fall and we will report on them accordingly.

Elijah Rushing, 6-foot-5 and 251 pounds, became Arizona’s top recruit ever attracted to the program when the 247Sports 5-star defensive end announced last month his commitment to Jedd Fisch’s program. … Rushing said his decision to play with the Wildcats was based on staying close to family, playing with his brother Cruz (a freshman defensive back at Arizona), contributing to the Wildcats’ ascension under third-year coach Jedd Fisch and carrying the banner for Southern Arizona football talent. … In Rushing’s three years as a varsity starter, Elijah has accumulated 161 tackles, 24.5 for loss, including 19 sacks. And these numbers are with plays by opposing offensive coordinators intended to avoid Rushing. … With Arizona signee Keona Wilhite on the other end and nose tackle Luis Cordova in the middle, Elijah Rushing’s tackle production and havoc on other offenses will increase.

Salpointe coach Eric Rogers on Rushing: “Anytime you can get a kid to have his education paid for, that’s kind of why I do what I do. It’s a special moment for the family. It’s a special moment for Elijah. I think it’s awesome in a lot of ways for him to be a hometown kid and play for the hometown team. … For him to now put that footprint down, like he just stated, ‘We’re going to put ourselves on the map.’ … Southern Arizona is going to be put on the map as far as having players who can play at any level, any time, any place.”

Salpointe defensive end Elijah Rushing had 13.5 tackles for loss last year, including 11.5 sacks (Rushing photo)


Head coach: Eric Rogers
Lancers compete in the 6A Central. Bold are playoff games. Playoff games at 7 p.m.
9/1at Bishop Alemany (CA)W5221
9/8at Shadow RidgeW4924
9/15Valley VistaW506
9/29Desert VistaW3424
10/6Corona del SolW2920
10/13at LibertyL049
10/20Mountain PointeW3526
10/27at SaguaroW2114
11/3at Brophy PrepL1214
11/9Corona del SolW410
11/17Williams FieldW3525


ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon. He became an educator seven years ago and is presently a special education teacher at his alma mater Sunnyside High School.

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