Moore welcomes former quarterback Daniels back to Oakmont

Daniels returns to old stomping grounds with new role on new team
By: Steven Wilson,
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As Friday night quickly approaches, so too does the reunion of a quarterback and coach at Oakmont High School. 

Joshua Daniels — the Vikings signal caller who threw for 620 yards and six touchdowns last year as a junior — has turned into an aggressive, 6-foot-3, 200-pound strongside defensive end for the Whitney Wildcats. He’s a sacking machine, who can shed double-teams and get in the backfield, but he also doubles up as a wildcat quarterback for his new team after transferring this past offseason.

His snaps have decreases on the offensive side of the ball, but he can still run over defenders and run through ball carriers. Yet, even with Daniels beneath senior Hunter Rodrigues on Whitney’s depth chart, his return to his former school creates a big matchup problem for Oakmont. 

“It’s going to be hard,” Vikings longtime coach Tim Moore admitted. “We’ve got a lot of work ahead of us — we really do. We have to make sure our kids are focused and they practice well all week.”

The Wildcats enter the game averaging 49.3 points per game on offense — the most in the entire Capital Valley Conference — and have won two of their first three league games by nearly 100 combined points. 

“We went against Whitney in 7-on-7 over the summer and we saw just how good they were,” Moore said. “They’re well coached — Paul (Doherty) does a great job. In his first year, he’s really dialed it in — just like he did at Sacramento High School.”

Doherty has used both Daniels (95 rushing yards, 66 passing yards, 1 touchdown) and Rodrigues (1,977 passing yards, 34 touchdowns) to perfection this season. 

“He’s a happy camper right now because they’re winning,” Moore explained. “That’s what he wanted, and I’m happy for him. I hope he’s going to be successful in life — I really do.”

Moore knows Daniels is in a good situation after getting in trouble while at Oakmont. 

“He missed four games last year (due to ineligibility) and five games the year before,” the coach recalled. “We were trying (to get him turned in the right direction).

“He’s had some rough times in his life — his mom died when he was a freshman and we really took him under our wings. But I don’t feel like he took advantage of the opportunities we provided him to grow up and have a solid (career).”

With his transfer, Daniels joins a program that sits in second place in the league standings (2-1) heading into this week’s matchup against 0-3 Oakmont. Daniels size, speed and intangibles not only make him an obstacle for the Vikings offensive line, but they give him a good chance at gaining collegiate recognition — something Moore appreciates. 

“If anybody knows me, I love winning football games,” Moore explained. “But you know what, I’m here to help kids become successful in life — that’s the bottom line.”