Montview and Valle Vista leagues lose their appeals …

The CIF-Southern Section playoff grouping committee has spoken and it’s not good news for the Montview and Valle Vista leagues.

The committee denied their appeals to keep the Almont League from joining the Mid-Valley Division on Wednesday.

Both leagues appealed on Tuesday before the committee and argued that the Almont League joining the division was unfair on two levels. The first being that the Almont’s schools are too big for the division. The Almont League has six of the seven largest schools in the division. The second argument was that adding the Almont while subtracting no other league hurts the chances of schools from both leagues being able to make the postseason.

Under the proposal, the Mid-Valley Division would see the top-two teams from each league earn automatic bids while the remaining four spots would be at-large berths chosen by the Southern Section. That’s tough to swallow because the Montview, at eight teams, and the Valle Vista, at seven teams, are the two largest leagues in the division.

Hagerty updates Amat QB situation and transfers …

Bishop Amat coach Steve Hagerty confirmed that former South Hills backup QB Brock Booth has checked in and is part of the competition for the open quarterback spot. However, Hagerty also said that the competition is six deep with Rio Ruiz, Tyler Pruszynski and three current freshmen all in the mix heading into spring.

If Hagerty had to pick a front runner, which he was reluctant to do because as he says the staff doesn’t think that way (at least not now), it would be Ruiz. He also said that there would have been a competition regardless of Booth’s checking in.

“His (Booth) arrival doesn’t mean there’s a competition,” Hagerty said. “There was a competition before he arrived. I would hope Brock is here because he likes the atmosphpere … becausehe likes what happens between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. and Friday nights, too.

Hagerty also confirmed that former Los Altos freshman standout Sal Velasquez is now at Amat and participating in offseason workouts. He would not say whether Velasquez will make the varsity team, but that every player in spring is trying to make the varsity team.

Aram’s take:
Seems like just yesterday that Dorian Wells left Amat for South Hills and Bryce McBride turned in his golden “A” for a red LA. Funny what wins will do for a program. It’s amazing what can happen when Amat shines.

Arellanes gets cracking at L.A., comments on transfers …

Spoke to Coach Arellanes at Los Altos the other day and there’s an article in Saturday’s Trib about how things are going since he got the LA job.

Here’s a tidbit on transfers:

“We know those things are going to happen,” Arellanes said. “We can only do the best we can. We can’t control whoever thinks it’s in their best interest to leave. We’re going to go with the kids we have here.”

To keep reading, click on the story below …

Returning the Los Altos High School football program to prominence promises to be a difficult job for new coach Jim Arellanes. So why not get to work on it early?

Arellanes has been doing just that by making the drive from his current job at Northview High to Los Altos – not a fun commute for those familiar with Valley traffic patterns – every day after school to help bring his new team up to speed before the offseason workouts get under way with spring practice and summer passing games.

Mystery at Pomona …

Two all-league players transfer to a school that is reported to be hiring their current/former coach from their old school. The coach isn’t the coach at one school any longer, but is rumored to be the next coach at the school the two players transferred to. But the players are no longer on their old school’s roster … but are on the all-league list. Sound interesting? You may want to take a look at Fred Robledo’s blog.

More food for thought ….

This is The Oinkster in Eagle Rock. Pulled pork sandwich and fries. Well worth your drive.

Maybe we should make this a semi-regular occurrence since I do eat lunch everyday and I do have some tidbits many of you would like to know. I also kinda like it because some of you get so offended by it. But then again, if you can’t see the relation between football fan and food, then you probably shouldn’t be here anyway.

Anyway, now that it’s out there that former South Hills QB Brock Booth transferred to Amat, the question now becomes whether he’ll challenge for the starting job. Why would Booth go if he wasn’t under the assumption that he’d push Rio Ruiz to be the big man on campus?

The thing is, Ruiz has had the starting job nailed since he was in 8th grade. But maybe since Ruiz will be doing baseball activities well into June, Booth’s camp thinks he’s got a chance to seize the job.

Did you know that the younger brother of Charter Oak standout Dennis Rufus has transferred to San Dimas? I believe he was a freshman this past season, so he’s well within his rights to jet. But it’s odd nonetheless.

Speaking of CO, the search is on for the next Chargers running back. A good RB could be all that stands between Big Lou’s troops and challenging Chino Hills for the Sierra League crown.

Here’s an early Sierra League final standings prediction for you. 1. Chino Hills, 2. Charter Oak, 3. South Hills, 4. Damien, 5. Ayala, 6. Chino. That’s right, Damien misses the playoffs. Talk to me next week, though, and I’ll probably have South Hills and Damien flipped.

Is Damien the biggest mystery team in the area? I cannot withold what I’ve heard from Spartans coach Greg Gano thus far, but you’ll be disappointed. So here goes … most of our conversations have gone like “Coach, did you get anyone in?” or “Coach, how are you guys looking?” The response? “I’ll let you know.” That just means Aram will be a very familiar face at Damien practices/passing games this spring/summer to get a better handle on it.

Keep an eye on Covina’s Gevontray Ainsworth this spring/summer. He’s the nephew of former Monrovia standout wide receiver Michael Ainsworth, who earned a scholarship to Cal back in the late 90s/early 2000s. Gevontray will be just a sophomore this spring, but he could do some damage this season for the Colts.

Sadly, this might be under the radar of area fans, but it should be as good as always when Los Altos and Wilson battle for the wheel in Week 3. Added intrigue now that Jim Arellanes is at LA and will be taking on his former defensive coordinator in Wilson’s Brian Zavala.

I can’t be the only one pumped up to see Baldwin Park and Walnut this May. How can you beat Aubrey Coleman, WC3 and Demetrius Jackson on the same field before the weather even heats up?

And don’t think for a second I won’t be out at Glendale to see St. Francis in May. I’ve gotta know how Jimmy Bonds is going to handle life after Dietrich Riley. Granted, the Knights may not be rolling at full strength, but Ian Hamilton should be out there shagging balls and that’s good enough for me.

Oh man, the stuff I have to eat to get your attention …

This is the green chile burrito from Victor’s Villa (Irwindale). I know, I shouldn’t have.

Whittier Christian’s Jeff Worthy is on unofficial visits to TCU and SMU this week. Those who I’ve spoken to about Worthy say things like “beast” or “animal” to describe him. Best d-lineman in the area? Could be.

Hey, no truth to the rumor that South Hills principal Dr. Judi North is changing the school’s phone numbers to include 909 area codes. I mean, now that South Hills is considered part of the Inland Empire it kinda would make sense.

Word is that Bishop Amat’s tally of transfers includes two from South Hills and one from Los Altos. And that’s what we know of. It could be and probably is more. Kind of amazing, isn’t it? I mean, just a few years ago everyone was LEAVING Amat and now they’re ponying up to get on for the ride. And the Lancers had a frosh team that Robledo can’t stop raving about.

Hey, no truth to the rumor that Charter Oak coach Lou Farrar is looking for good restaurants in Fontana to eat Thanksgiving dinner at. I mean, now that Charter Oak is part of the Inland Empire it only makes sense.

In case I wasn’t clear enough in my article about the CIF playoff grouping proposals, South Hills coach Steve Bogan was referring to the Sierra League, not just his own team, when he said it was a compliment that CIF thinks they can hang with the Inland Division despite having a thousand-less kids. I guess in South Hills’ case, it will be more like 1,500-less kids. Smallest team in the division, folks.

Hey, no truth to the rumor that the Damien coaching staff is going around the 909 and buying up distressed properties to use them as an outpost for their first-round playoff game next season. I mean, it would make sense and all now that Damien is considered part of the Inland Empire.

Keep in mind that West Covina’s B.J. Lee and Covina’s Remontay McClain, who are locked in a serious tit-for-tat on the track right now, are both football players and should be two of the better burners around next fall. Of course, it’s well known that track stars are rarely the best ball handlers.

Some of you are spending spring break on cruises or hiking or mini-vacations or getting caught up on sleep. But Mike Mooney is spending it wondering whether to take the San Marino job … and break Temple City’s heart.

Spring ball is almost here and there’s still no head coach at Bassett or Workman. In fact, when you take into account how long those jobs have been open and that both schools (reportedly) have already been through the interviewing process, it’s kind of amazing we’re still waiting. I guess we can pencil Azusa in for another Montview title.

Lastly, me and Robledo were talking about Muir’s chances in the Southeast Division now that Charter Oak is located in the Inland Empire. It’s all hypothetical of course because yours truly is of the belief that even had the ‘Stangs beaten CO last year, they’d have lost in the next round. Just a vibe. I’ve been around too long to think different. But nonetheless, Freddie and I salivate over the idea of Muir being a power again. Hey, Freddie turned Amat around, so anything is possible.

UPDATED: The truth about 3rd-place teams; numbers don’t lie

UPDATE: Third-place teams’ record in the playoffs since ’05 …


2005 13-46 (.283) 26 Points

2006 16-45 (.355) 24 Points

2007 19-40 (.475) 24 Points

2008 17-44 (.386) 22 Points

2009 14-47 (.298) 26 Points

Overall 79-222 (.356) 25 Points

I found the results below pretty damn interesting and a BIG BLOW to anybody not liking the at-large over automatic bid policy coming to a local league near you.

Under the new Mid-Valley proposal, the division would be comprised of the Montview, Valle Vista, Almont, Olympic, Rio Hondo and Mission Valley leagues. All first- and second-place finishers from each league will automatically make it, leaving FOUR at-large berths to be awarded by CIF.

But, did you know ….

that CIF information czar Thom Simmons and the boys at the Southern Section have crunched the numbers and since 2005 …

FOURTH-PLACE TEAMS that received AUTOMATIC bids are 2-47 with the average margin of defeat being 29 points per game.

Meanwhile, AT-LARGE teams, are 17-40, including three champions, one finalist and four semifinalists.

You win, CIF. You always do.

Happy Easter, everybody!

Sierra League DOES NOT appeal; Bogan wins quote of the year …

At some point, it’s a compliment. Maybe it’s a bigger compliment than we deserved, but this is proof the whole Valley feels this way about us. They set it up. They didn’t want any part of this league, so they put us in there. Maybe we’re wrong and they (CIF) just have a deep respect for us and how much we can do with a thousand-less kids. — South Hills coach Steve Bogan on being placed in the Sierra League and the new playoff groupings

The deadline to appeal CIF’s proposed playoff groupings came and went on Thursday. The Sierra League did not appeal the Southern Section proposal to be placed in the Inland Division.

That means, barring a change of heart of asst. commissioner Rob Wigod, the Sierra League will be heading to what most football sharps call Division II where powers like Redlands East Valley, Upland, Norco and Rancho Cucamonga will be waiting for them. Good luck with that.

South Hills is dealing with a double whammy: The Sierra League and Inland Division.

League’s that appealed (that I know of): Valle Vista, Mission Valley, Montview, which are all in the Mid-Valley Division.

League’s that did not appeal (that I know of): Sierra (Inland), Rio Hondo (Mid-Valley).

What’s their beef? As far as the Mid-Valley Division is concerned, several schools are not happy with being in a six-league division that has only TWO guaranteed playoff berths per league and FOUR at-large berths to round out the field. Also, some coaches don’t like the Almont, with its large enrollments, joining the fray.

In the Inland Division, the beef is playing against teams with considerably larger enrollments and in far-off places.

In the Southeast Division … nothing that I know of.

Talk to me Coach Zavala (Wilson): The league pretty much came to a consensus that we’d like another opportunity to re-evaluate this. The whole idea with schools like us who got relief was to reap the benefits. Now, we’re going for two playoff spots and I don’t know what the criteria will be for choosing the at-large teams.

Talk to me Coach Thomas (Covina):
We got bigger, but we lose a playoff spot? I understand they have a job to do, I just think a lot of coaches in our league disagree.

Talk to me Coach Farrar (Charter Oak): We could appeal, but the lost first appeal for our re-leaguing. I don’t know what would make us think can win an appeal for the division. I guaranteed that’s (Inland) where we’re going to be playing.

Full story coming in tomorrow’s Trib …