If you want to have fun watching a group of talented teenagers give their all going both ways in a high school football game, go watch Crenshaw High.
As long as their bumps, bruises, nicks, scratches and cramps don't get too painful week after week, the Cougars and the 30 players who suit up just might keep surprising the skeptics.
They're already 2-0 after Thursday night's 41-25 victory over Norco that featured three touchdown passes from junior quarterback Ajene Harris and 134 yards rushing and two touchdowns from junior running back Jacob Knight.
"Who knows?" Crenshaw Coach Robert Garrett said when asked if his many two-way players can make it through a long season.
What's clear is this team is filled with speed and multiple-sport athletes.
Birdel Hodge, a starter at offensive tackle and linebacker, can dunk a basketball. Mossi Johnson, a starting receiver and defensive back, is a standout point guard.
Max Lyons, a receiver and cornerback with hair so long he hasn't had a haircut since sixth grade, can take a baton in the 400-meter relay and bring it home.
Then there's Knight, a hard-running tailback filling the position once held by De'Anthony Thomas. Knight is going to be a big-time ballcarrier. He had a 28-yard touchdown run in the first half, a 36-yard touchdown in the second half and isn't afraid to run over defenders.
"It's everything in my life," Knight said. "This is what I've worked for since middle school. I've wanted to be a Crenshaw Cougar."
Harris is a revelation. He has seven touchdown passes in two games. He came to Crenshaw from Animo South, a small charter school that plays against Fulton Prep and Sherman Oaks CES. He's only 5 feet 11, but his arm strength is tremendous. He completed eight of 11 for 150 yards and already looks like an All-City passer.
His first two passes Thursday were touchdowns of 52 yards to Lyons and 34 yards to Dominique Hatfield.
If not for two lost fumbles and two botched punt attempts on fumbled snaps, the Cougars would have been cruising.
Norco quarterback Coltin Gerhart did his best to keep his team competitive. He had touchdown passes of 16 and 26 yards to Kyle Gonzalez and rushed for 77 yards.
If defense wins championship, Harbor City Narbonne is surely the team to beat in City Section Division I. The Gauchos opened their season Thursday with a 41-0 victory over Palos Verdes.
Narbonne has 10 returning starters on defense, and the Gauchos' two inside linebackers, Marquis Lomax and Keishawn Bierria, were outstanding.
"He's so athletic," Coach Manuel Douglas said of Lomax. "And Keishawn is fantastic. They got after it."
Douglas has been telling defensive players all month they need to come through early on while the offense gets its act together.
"I challenge them every day to be a defense to carry us while the offense works out its kinks," he said.
Narbonne's offense produced one rare occurrence. On back-to-back plays, running backs Johnell Jackson and Tony Gates each ran for long touchdowns. Jackson's 67-yard run didn't count because of a holding penalty. On the next play, Jackson ran 74 yards.
It was a hint of things to come. The Gauchos are aiming for a 16-game season, and their defense is good enough to make it possible.