Star-News Pick ‘em: Battle royale as area heavyweights Monrovia, St. Francis meet…who wins? I got St. Francis, but it’s close

pickem

Keith and I are matching our knowledge of the area and high school football by offering our picks on the area’s games.

LAIR: 74-13 (18-1 last week)
RAMIREZ: 70-17 (18-1 last week)

Last week: We both have near-perfect weeks, winning 18 of 19 games. I missed on Frazier Mountain over Flintridge Prep, with Keith wrong on Sotomayor over Keppel.
This week: It doesn’t get any bigger for a regular-season game this week as the area’s top two teams, Monrovia and St. Francis, meet in M-Town. From our perspective, it has the feeling of championship week. It’s hard to pick a winner on this one, but someone has to win, right? I can see both winning, but we have to pick one and my choice is St. Francis, which I like mainly for the Golden Knights versatility on offense. St. Francis can hit with the run and senior Joe Mudie, or come at you via the air, with senior Ty Gangi, who has looked solid during the first four weeks. I wouldn’t want to be the defense coordinator this week, because Monrovia’s chance lies with its running game, which with star Kurt Scoby and quarterback Deshawn Potts, is at a higher level. But I see some inconsistency in the Wildcats pass game, and that should be the difference. But this one will be one for the ages.

This week’s schedule and predictions
Thursday
Burbank vs. Pasadena at Burroughs HS – Ramirez (Burbank); Lair (Burbank)
Friday
St. Francis at Monrovia — Ramirez (St. Francis); Lair (Monrovia)
Temple City at Rosemead — Ramirez (Rosemead); Lair (Rosemead)
Glendale at Muir — Ramirez (Muir); Lair (Muir)
South El Monte at San Marino — Ramirez (San Marino); Lair (San Marino)
St. Bernard at Bosco Tech — Ramirez (St. Bernard); Lair (St. Bernard)
Mountain View at Maranatha — Ramirez (Maranatha); Lair (Maranatha)
Workman at Duarte — Ramirez (Duarte); Lair (Duarte)
Arroyo at La Canada — Ramirez (Arroyo); Lair (Arroyo)
Beverly Hills at South Pasadena — Ramirez (SPas); Lair (South Pasadena)
Marshall at L.A. University — Ramirez (LAU); Lair (University)
Saturday
Flintridge Prep vs. Heritage Chr. at Granada Hills HS — Ramirez (Heritage); Lair (Flintridge)
ALL GAMES ARE SCHEDULED FOR 7 P.M.

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  • Kennedy Bryant

    I got Monrovia, SF hast seen any team with kind of speed, Monrovia has, and the Cats have a lot of weapons and SF will not be able to account for all of them. I see too many mismatches out there. Will be a good game but I have the CATS all day everyday.

    • GP AKA Green Machine

      I Currently have the Cats as well. There are some key points the naysayers are forgetting about, is Mtowns ability to keep SF off balance. SF is going to try to shut Scoby down, which means Potts is going to have some nice runs. He has been throwing the ball well despite some drops. We will see 8 in the box all night. The good thing is that you can’t stop everything. If the Mtown WR catch the ball. SF is going to have to adjust, then Scoby hurts them. Stop the run…. and SF will throw Int’s. They threw several verse LM. No big special teams plays and we’re good.

    • Steve Ramirez

      Well, maybe not this season, but St. Francis faces a very athletic Serra team every season. So they have faced speed before. It’s all a matter of execution.

      • GP AKA Green Machine

        And they lose to Serra Every year…They lost to Monrovia last year…SF didn’t execute against Serra or Monrovia….

        • Steve Ramirez

          Most teams lose to Serra every, GM. That’s why they are defending state D-II champions and ranked No. 2 in the state this year. There’s a reason why I referred to them as the New York Giants (they were Blue, Red and White). Last year’s SF team was made up of sophomores and juniors who had no previous starting experience, sans their QB. Most of them are all back this season. And that experience matters. I can recall covering the BCS title game in 2010 and coach Nick Saban said at one of the press conferences that the difference in Alabama losing to Tim Tebow and Florida in 2009 and beating them soundly in 2010 was experience. He said, and I’ll paraphrase, in 2009, all we had was film, in 2010, we had the experience of actually playing against it on the field.
          Experience is why players improve from year to year, especially in football. It also should be noted that Joe Mudie missed last year’s game, and the way he’s playing this year, that’s a big difference. Like I said, from what I seen of the two teams this year, both have decent defenses and great offenses and are both extremely well-coached. SF is a little more balanced, because they have moved the ball throwing it, while Monrovia is still inconsistent, with its passing, which is why I’ve picked SF. In the Mid-Valley, the gap they have over teams is to big for being one-dimensional to matter, but in a game where the talent-level is close, it could make the difference. Now because Monrovia’s one-dimensional, I expect Monrovia to have some opportunities in the passing game as SF tries to limit the run game. If they take advantage, they’ll win, but if they don’t, I think they’ll lose. This is as even of a game as I’ve seen in quite some time, maybe equaling some of those Charter Oak-Los Altos games in the late 1990s and 2000s. It should be a great one.

  • Name

    GP,
    Same assessment could be made of Monrovia. SF has a balanced mutli threat offense. Stop Mudie, than Gangi is free to throw to several quality receivers. Tie up Gangi and SF utilizes three very versatile RB’s. SF Def remains solid. Gonna be a great game, but I give edge to SF due to their discipline and focus. Scoby will be a challenge for sure.

    • GP AKA Green Machine

      Why does every one assume Parochial have a discipline and focus advantage? Monrovia is going to be focused just the same? I give the edge to Monrovia because of their not rich kids with silver spoons in their mouths….see how ridiculous that sounds. It’s going to be classic! Both teams bring a lot to the table.

      Mtown for life’

  • Name

    Not a parochial school assumption. It’s an observation about St. Francis specifically. They are very disciplined and intelligent players. Going to ASSUME more so than Monrovia’s.

    GK ’83

    • GP AKA Green Machine

      So Monrovia’s players are not intelligent…Really…It was SF who fumbled on the goaline in last years game…Not Monrovia….So what data are your looking at?

      • Kennedy Bryant

        That’s code for slow and white…. Really come on now you’ve been decoded.. Heady player gimme a break and miss me with the nonsense

    • Kennedy Bryant

      That’s code for slow and white…. Really come on now you’ve been decoded.. Heady player gimme a break and miss me with the nonsense

      • SCRAPPY!

        The question is whether the St. Francis’s hustle can keep up with Monrovia’s athleticism.

        ;-)

        • GP AKA Green Machine

          Monrovia hustles too you know.

  • GK ’83

    Hmm, not sure your reply is logically sound. But no I didn’t say Monrovia players are not intelligent. I stated SF players are likely more so, especially in regards to how they have to play football. Not a slam. SF battles every week, and more often than not has to rely on game smarts to compete as the school does not have stable of pure athletes at its disposal. And intelligence really has nothing to do with fumbling a ball.

    • GP AKA Green Machine

      What does being athletic have to do with intelligence? Either you play smart football or you don’t. By your logic you can’t be athletic and smart at the same time? Actually, I would say its not smart to fumble the ball….It’s quite dumb and shows a lack of focus and discipline. Hey did you play with Michael Phillips GK’ 84 ?

  • GK ’83

    According to Green Machine, Monrovia has everything they need to win; Speed, hustle, Scoby, intelligence, Potts, logic, athleticism, solid D, non Catholics and anything else posted here that suggests SF has even the slightest chance to overcome this vaunted team.

    Should be a good game.