Happy New Year’s, everybody! I salute all of you (just don’t flag me).
My suggestion: Get some Chinese food and watch bowl games for the next two days.
My next suggestion:Follow me on Twitter.
Finally: If I see another values.com commercial, I’m gonna puke. Tell me some of you saw the one yesterday where the high school basketball player tells his coach the ball went out off of him (the ref called it the other way). So the coach commends the kid and they tell the ref … Pathetic. Almost as bad as the hippie who finds some woman’s purse at a bus stop … oh man, I can’t even keep going.
Record: 8-5 Biggest win: 35-34, OT over Monrovia Worst loss: 19-14 vs. Baldwin Park The Good: This one is obvious: it’s how the Saints finished the season. San Dimas entered the postseason as an at-large team, but beat No. 3-seeded Arroyo in the first round and Maranatha in the second round. Making the semis as an at-large is a pretty nice accomplishment, but … The Bad: … why were the Saints an at-large team in the first place? That’s because they couldn’t seal the deal against Baldwin Park and Covina in Valle Vista League home games that ultimately cost San Dimas a chance at a high seed in the playoffs. The Ugly: San Dimas’ inability to put two big halves together proved costly. The bottom line is that 8-5 for a defending CIF champ that had a lot of talent back is a bit disappointing. Yes, the Saints made up for it by beating Arroyo and rocking a pretty hot Maranatha team in the playoffs. In the end, there were no tangible results, i.e. a Smudge Pot win, a league title or a CIF title. San Dimas’ season, quite simply, was handful of big moments and a handful of disappointing ones. Sad to see you go: QB Codee Watts, RB Theo Darlington, RB Damarquis Lawson, RB Jordan Taylor, RB/LB Angel Gonzalez, WR Kevin Kolbeck, OL Allen Brown.
What to look forward to: CIF champion QB Shawn Kennedy is back and hopefully healthy. Dillon Corono and Davonte Christopher are two solid playmakers and should be featured even more in next year’s offense.
Anthony Craft gives Monrovia fans something to be excited about in ’11.
Record: 12-2 Biggest win: 38-8 over Whittier Christian in CIF final. Worst loss: 35-34 to San Dimas in OT The Good: The Wildcats took an entire football program off the hook by being the first team in school history to win a CIF championship. Monrovia was previously 0-9 in championship games. But beside the Rio Hondo and Mid-Valley Division titles, the Wildcats proved they could overcome adversity, and that’s something that was in question up until Dec. 12. The Bad: It’s nitpicking, but this team was good enough to go 13-1. It should have beaten San Dimas in Week 3, but there are some who feel that without that defeat, Monrovia never would have developed its championship character. I can buy that. The Ugly: Wildcats fans will shed plenty of tears at graduation this June, because that’s when legendary QB Nick Bueno leaves the school for good. Bueno has been the face of the program for three seasons and now comes the task of replacing a rare talent like him. It won’t happen, but that doesn’t mean the ‘Cats won’t be just fine at QB next fall. Sad to see you go: QB Nick Bueno, LB Derrick Johnson, WR Jay Henderson, DB Charlie Cimmarusti. What to look forward to: Ellis McCarthy TE/DE is back, he will be one of the top recruits on the Left Coast and the best defensive player in the entire Valley. QB George Frazier is supposed to be a good one, but he’ll have huge shoes to fill. K Mason Bryant will be one of the top kickers in the area. Anthony Craft is another WR/DB talent ready to break out.
The Colonel and Nine will have a lot to talk about this offseason
And now it’s time for a little something we’ll be doing to wrap up the seasons for most local teams. Will I get around to everybody? No. But I will certainly do all teams in the top 25. We’ll start with Amat, because nothing says “hey, look at this!” like Amat.
Record: 9-2 Biggest win: 31-28 over Crespi Worst loss: 31-21 to Tesoro The Good: The emergence of Jalen Moore at running back and Nine at quarterback as two of the top performers in the Serra League was nice, considering the Lancers were replacing their top QB, RB and WRs from last season. Amat averaged 35 points per game this season. Those numbers helped Colonel Hagerty’s boys march to a 9-0 record and had Robledo and the Amat nation mapping out trip routes to Mission Viejo. It was an exciting first nine weeks (10 actually). The Bad: The defense, which actually carried the show early, turned out to be not-ready-for-primetime later in the season. Amat was hurting in its back seven due to lack of experience and, quite simply, lack of the needed talent to make consistent stops at the level. Turnovers also hurt the team late in the season, and you couldn’t chalk them up to inexperience because by that time, everybody had nine weeks of what they call “big-boy ball”. The Ugly: Losing to Tesoro in the first round was a horrific step back for a program that was on the rise. In 2009, the Lancers actually won in the first round. In fact, during the 2000s, Amat’s biggest problem has been the second round. But this year it was the first round and it was a seeded team … and the loss was to a Tesoro team that lost to Chino Hills and was banged up going into the game. As I’ve said all along, the excitement about Amat football is definitely back, but the tangible results are not. When the two actually meet, it should be epic. Sad to see you go: Julian Gener OL/DE, by far one of the top defensive players in the Valley. Wallace Gonzalez WR, you don’t find frames like his, well, ever. Christian Orduno OL/DL, Amat’s one D-1-looking talent in the trenches. What to look forward to: Whereas Amat was inexperienced in the skill spots entering this season, it will be oozing with experience next year. QB Rio Ruiz, RBs Jalen Moore and Zach Shay, WR Adam Sanchez, TE Sal Velasquez, all return.
Two more Southern Section teams went down, and went down hard. Servite was never close against De La Salle, and Serrra was routed by Folsom.
Yes, I know, Southern Section football sucks. It really does right now. No two ways about it. Do I love it? Yes. But as a whole, the Southland is going through a rut in terms of talent and it showed over the weekend. Our all-everything offensive juggernaut Corona Centennial got held to 13 points, for crying out loud.
Anyway, that’s not my problem. My problem is these games are beyond pointless. They diminish what it means to win a Southern Section championship. Couldn’t we just stop there? No, because CIF wants to make some more cash.
The attendance for Saturday’s Servite-De La Salle game was supposedly over 10,000. I’m gonna need a recount of actual ticket stubs to believe it, however.
It seems to be raining on this weekend every year. Maybe that’s a sign for CIF to call it a day when it comes to these forced showcases of flat football teams, who are a week removed from the titles they care about most.
Disclosure: Would I feel this way if an SGV team actually made one of the games? I couldn’t tell you until I saw whether we won or not.