NORCO – The awards just keep piling up for Toby Gerhart. The Norco High School senior running back’s latest award came Monday, as he was named as California’s Mr. Football, the Cal-Hi Sports’ State Player of the Year. “It’s an unbelievable honor,” Gerhart said. “They keep adding up this year.” Gerhart already had been picked as a Parade All-American and was the Gatorade State Player of the Year as well. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECoach Doc Rivers a “fan” from way back of Jazz’s Jordan Clarkson “I thought I had a pretty good chance. I was one of the front runners,” Gerhart said of the latest award. “That (award) and winning the finals means a lot.” When the 6-foot-1, 228-pound Gerhart won the Gatorade award, Norco hadn’t yet won its CIF-Southern Section Division V championship. But since then, he has put the final touches on the state career rushing record with 9,662 yards. He led the state in rushing with 3,233 yards in 2005, scoring 39 touchdowns and finishing with 108 in his career. Gerhart is the first Inland Empire player to win the award in 10 years, since Riverside J.W. North’s Chris Claiborne won it in 1995. The last Inland Valley winner of the award was Pomona’s Marty Keough in 1951. “I think the Inland Empire is underrated in football,” Gerhart said. “Everyone talks about Orange County and L.A. teams, but they don’t think Inland Empire.” Gerhart edged out six other finalists to win the award: Colton’s Allen Bradford, Lemoore’s David Ausberry, Los Angeles Crenshaw’s Darian Hagan Jr., Oakland McClymonds’ Derrick Hill, Compton Dominguez’s Marvin Johnson and El Cajon Valley’s Abrahim Muheize. Gerhart was the only finalist who played almost exclusively on one side of the ball, and Bradford was the only fellow finalist whom Gerhart had met. “I thought he (Bradford) had a little bit of an advantage playing on both sides of the ball,” Gerhart said. “(Setting the record) and the fact our team won in the finals, that made a difference I think.” Gerhart, also a top prospect in baseball, has not made his college decision yet, but UCLA and Stanford appear to be the front runners. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!