Los Altos fires Jim Arellanes after one season …

Los Altos High School fired head varsity football coach Jim Arellanes on Tuesday after just one season at the school.

Arellanes was hired last March to replace Felipe Aguilar, who resigned after two seasons. The Conquerors went 0-10 this past season and Arellanes was relieved of his duties after several meetings with school officials due to the program’s lack of direction based upon clear expectations, according to a statement put out by principal Cheli McReynolds.

“Obviously, I am very disappointed and disagree 100 percent with the decision,” Arellanes said Tuesday night. “This decision was coming from the same people who asked me three different times to apply for this job last year after I turned it down two previous times.

“It was unfortunate because we felt we had made very good strides over the last month and half, since we started our offseason program.”

Arellanes’ firing combined with the recent resignation of Wilson coach Brian Zavala leaves the Hacienda-La Puente Unified School District with openings at its two most-storied football schools.

Arellanes, who graduated from El Rancho and played quarterback at Fresno St. before three seasons with the Rhein Fire in NFL Europe, was previously the head coach at Northview where he went 21-22 in four seasons.

“Our focus was not wins or losses, but a passionate ownership of the entire program, a strong commitment of time to our students and the building of relationships with all players, staff, coaches, parents and the community,” McReynolds said in her statement.

Los Altos has fallen on hard times following the resignation of former coach Greg Gano in 2007. Gano won four CIF championships in 10 years at the school. Prior to that, Dwayne Despain won seven CIF titles in 33 years.

Los Altos hasn’t had a winning season since going 8-5 in 2006. Arellanes will keep his teaching job through the remainder of the school year.

Full statement from Los Altos principal Cheli McReynolds: As of today, Jim Arellanes has been removed as head coach of the Los Altos HS football program. This decision was made after several meetings focused on the current state of the program and the lack of direction based upon clear expectations. Our focus was not wins or losses, but a passionate ownership of the entire program, a strong commitment of time to our students and the building of relationships with all players, staff, coaches, parents and the community. We would like to thank Jim Arellanes for his efforts but we strongly believe this is in the best interest of our program. We will begin the search for the next head coach of Los Altos High School immediately.

Statement from Los Altos AD Steve Garcia:
It definitely was not based on wins and losses. If it was wins and losses, you would have probably seen on Nov. 11 we would have had a coaching change. Jim went through the yearly evaluation process and had multiple discussions and the steps to get things to where we want them to be and where these kids, I won’t say should be, but where we want them to be, that process wasn’t where we were going. More than anything else, it’s a difference in philosophies in where we needed to be and how we needed to get there.

Aram’s take: Score another for my sources, but I still just don’t get it. More on that later …

  • Jhykron

    Oh god. Here it comes.

  • david rivera

    they did arellanes a favor by letting him go. how can anybody want that job at los altos when the talent pool is down to nothing. lets face it folks hacienda heights use to produce good football teams in the past but the pool with all the asians in the community doesnt give wilson or los altos a chance at football anymore. i really feel for the 2 coaches they hire at those school in the coming months. but the economy is really bad so they will have many applicants to choose from.

  • reality

    Good luck Jim. I think the blog destroyed you as it will your successor. Please just ignore all the idiots that will now post, in fact stop reading this crud that surely will surface here.

  • Middy

    David you r right but you are going to get killed with those type of comments. Don’t know why they fired Jim. The expectations are too unrealistic at both schools in the heights

  • BlindLeadingtheBlind

    How can this idiot AD, Garcia, talk about football “philosophies” when he doesn’t have a clue about how to run a football program in the first place? Then to top it off, you have a female principle (ala Wilson) who’s as in-the-dark as her AD, about what has to be done.

  • LA Grad

    As a Los Altos Grad, no one was as disappointed of an 0-10 season as I was. The only hope we had was that Arellanes was going to get better. He inherited a team with expectations of winning but had not been able to live up to the hype in recent years. He also had a bunch of transfers from LA to other schools.
    He should have been given more time to see how he developed. I didnt expect him to have a winning program in 1 or 2 years; look how long it has taken Bishop Amat to start moving in the right direction.
    He has a young football team that did very well in Junior All American Football and a little success will build more success. As for those that say that LA cannot rebuild; you must remember that all those years of winning championships, Wilson, La Puente and Workman did little in comparison. Wilson did have a run a couple of years but the honest truth is that they never achieved what Los Altos did with a similar pool of kids. Despain was picked by this newspaper as the SGV as the Coach of Century back in 1999. I bring this up because coaching is everything.
    If Arellanes was that bad; Cheli McReynolds and AD Garcia are equally to blame for hiring Arellanes. What has Garcia accomplished as AD? What credentials does he bring to the table? What team did he take deep into the playoffs or win a Championship? Otherwise Arellanes should have been given the opportunity to improve. Maybe he needed to have a little more oversight until the ship was righted but to be fired after his first year was not fair to Arellanes, to the community and most importantly to the team.
    Unless Garcia has an experienced head coach in the background, this will be a complete failure on his and McReynolds part. My thought is that they will only attract some young inexperienced coach wanting a head job regardless of where or with whom they coach. If a new head coach is NOT picked until late March or April, more kids will make plans to leave and any potential for growth next year will be destroyed as well.
    Maybe more heads should roll at LA.

  • Here We Go Again

    Aram,

    You are so full of yourself; your source is so full of it also. Your source just like everyone else in the coaching circle new Arellanes was gone. He has been looking for a job for over a month that was common knowledge.
    McReynolds is also full of crap, 0-10 is the reason why he was fired. Now how is it that Los Altos fired Arellanes and Wilson allowed Zavala to step down? I guess you can add the factor that Zavala got fired from his teaching job also. I guess Aram wants us to believe that a couple upset parents got Zavala fired from his teaching job. The 0-10 record over at Los Altos just got Arellanes fired from his coaching job.

    Whats wrong Aram aren’t you going to write a big article on how one parent got him fired? I sure your source has the dirt on this one. If you want I can give you the parents name and phone number so this time you get both sides of what happen. O wait thats what reporters do never mine.

    I think this Pico Dons experiment is over in the Heights.

  • Aaron

    Going 0-10 doesn’t help at all.

    I also think Aguilar got run under the bus, but he’s a young guy and will get a shot again. He just may have to make his name at school that is not his Alma Mater.

    Good luck to Los Altos and Jim Arrellanes.

  • LA Grad

    As a Los Altos Grad, no one was as disappointed of an 0-10 season as I was. The only hope we had was that Arellanes was going to get better. He inherited a team with expectations of winning but had not been able to live up to the hype in recent years. He also had a bunch of transfers from LA to other schools.
    He should have been given more time to see how he developed. I didnt expect him to have a winning program in 1 or 2 years; look how long it has taken Bishop Amat to start moving in the right direction.
    He has a young football team that did very well in Junior All American Football and a little success will build more success. As for those that say that LA cannot rebuild; you must remember that all those years of winning championships, Wilson, La Puente and Workman did little in comparison. Wilson did have a run a couple of years but the honest truth is that they never achieved what Los Altos did with a similar pool of kids. Despain was picked by this newspaper as the SGV as the Coach of Century back in 1999. I bring this up because coaching is everything.
    If Arellanes was that bad; Cheli McReynolds and AD Garcia are equally to blame for hiring Arellanes. What has Garcia accomplished as AD? What credentials does he bring to the table? What team did he take deep into the playoffs or win a Championship? Otherwise Arellanes should have been given the opportunity to improve. Maybe he needed to have a little more oversight until the ship was righted but to be fired after his first year was not fair to Arellanes, to the community and most importantly to the team.
    Unless Garcia has an experienced head coach in the background, this will be a complete failure on his and McReynolds part. My thought is that they will only attract some young inexperienced coach wanting a head job regardless of where or with whom they coach. If a new head coach is NOT picked until late March or April, more kids will make plans to leave and any potential for growth next year will be destroyed as well.
    Maybe more heads should roll at LA.

  • bbbbb

    SHOULD HAVE PLAYED HIM THE WHOLE GAME…………….

    HAHAHA

    U FIRED

  • Just do it yourself..

    Los Altos AD, should just Coach the team himself. Seems like he wants to put his finger in every aspect how to run a program and isnt happy how the Coaches he picks runs the team and then fires them. Hey Steve Garcia, pick up a whistle and run the Los Altos Program and see how well you do yourself with no “recruits”, no football demographics and all your football athletes leaving to other schools now that you have left your beloved Los Altos Football Program without a Leader again! You just did your team more harm than good by letting Arellanes and staff go…

  • LA Conq

    I’m going to make this REALLY EASY guys!

    Arellanes was fired because of his off-season program…or should I say, lack-there-of!

    Like Garcia said, “If it was wins and losses, you would have probably seen on Nov. 11 we would have had a coaching change”. The reason it’s happening now is because of his lack of commitment to improving the program in the off-season.

    I have a buddy who coaches a different sport at LA and according to him (and various other people) all the football players do is lift weights for 10 minutes and then dick around for the rest of the period. They are not working on the field, they are not in the classroom watching film of last year, they are not learning plays or defensive reads, or any of the other things that we SUCKED at last year!

    You people keep talking about “unrealistic expectations”. Is expecting your coach to get off his ass and work on improving his team unrealistic? Is asking him to create a quality off-season program that gives us a hope of winning a game “unrealistic”. I think not.

  • http://www.insidesocal.com/sgvfootball/2011/02/breaking-news-los-altos-fires-jim-arellanes-after-one-season.html Paul

    Is Al Davis the principal @ Los Altos now, sounds like Wilson and Los Altos are going to have a hard time finding a coach… well a good one at least!

  • Wilson

    Paul,

    I can speak on the behalf of Wilson and state that many quality staffs have applied for the Wilson job. Now does the administration make the correct choice?

  • LA Parent

    If you don’t have a kid at LA then you don’t know what isn’t going on-there isn’t a solid strength and conditioning program for those boys on the off season. Jim A is a nice enough man but he is no head coach. He also isn’t a rookie so the things he isn’t doing don’t need guidance or time–every other sport works out year round now. It has gotten so bad that the boys are going to other teams and coaches and asking them if they could work out with them. The progress being made is because supposedly several of the football boys were caught going home during football period and when the principal went down the coach wasn’t around and the few boys there where playing pick up ball with the pe class. Don’t even get me started about the shambles of the freshman team. Banquet in February not with the rest of the team like it has always been and Jim A showed up for a short time ducking in and out. NOT a Head Coach and doesn’t understand how to build an LA team. Look at the other sports on campus that may not have winning records or haven’t in the past–they have coaches like Hess, Reeder and the water polo coach who are there for the kids, there programs keep growing, they practice year round, they know there underclassmen and how to build them toward varsity. Not a Head Coach and NOT at LA.

  • LA guy

    I’ve heard from a very good source that LA has offered the job and are pushing hard to get Bobby Godinez to leave the college ranks to come back to LA. If LA gets him you can count on LA making a huge turn around. If he doesn’t though, I don’t know. They should have given him the job last year!

  • Fire the A.D.

    Garcia should be the one to be fired. He is the one responsible for hiring Arellanes and now after one year he is firing him. Garcia should be held accountable for the supposedly bad hire. GArcia must go now!

  • david rivera

    people wake up, these 2 schools both have terrible ad’s and not much to choose from seeing how the heights is over populated with asians students.ASIANS DONT PLAY FOOTBALL and that my friend is a 80 percent of the student body

  • LA Alum

    LA guy

    I hope for your sake, if they hire Bobby, they include a stipulation that his father not be included in the program. What a Douche.

  • no-step

    Seeking a coach’s “credentials” is all well and good, but it would seem to be more important to find out how much the guy knows about football. Remember, Amelia Earhardt had a ton of credentials, but was a lousy pilot.

  • LA Conq

    david rivera,

    Rough demographic breakdown of Los Altos HS

    Hispanic – 60%
    White – 15%
    Asian – 15%
    OTHER – 10%

    If other schools in the area can be successful with predominantly hispanic students, why not LA? We need to quit blaming this on the race of our kids and work to find an adult who can get the BEST out of what we have.

    Are we loaded with talent at LA…hell no! But we have kids who know football and can make things happen. Again, we just have to find the right adult to pull it out of them. It became very apparent to those around the program that Jim Arellanes was NOT that man. Kudos to the admin for pulling the trigger now rather than waiting for further damage!

  • http://www.insidesocal.com/sgvfootball Aram

    Los Altos should be no different than Schurr. That’s my take. Should be about the same talent pool if nobody jets. But recently, everyone is jetting.

    In fact, Los Altos was Schurr under Gano … with some transfers/speed guys/D-1 guys mixed in.

    Let’s not forget, Los Altos’ best player left for Cathedral where he made 27 receptions for 490 yards and three TDs … also had three picks.

    Its second-best player left for Amat where he caught 10 balls, three of which for TDs, as a sophomore.

  • LA Alum

    LA Conq

    The problem isn’t the Asian students at LA (unlike Wilson), it’s the Asians at the district level, who control the purse strings, and the trickle down Asians who are school principles, and other school admins. Football just isn’t a priority to them.

  • Get A Clue

    Aram,

    You you trying to say that Sal was the second best player on that LA team, did your source tell you that. I will say this much Sal couldn’t hold Frankie’s jock strap. Are you really that clueless as to talent. Longoria by the way transferred over to Wilson a few weeks back.

    I talked to Bobby Godinez a month or so ago and he told me he had no interest in coaching High School ball, that could have changed.

  • Mike Smith

    LA Alum:

    How does anyone get upset w/ Rick Godinez? Must be a personal thing… He coached Db’s at the school for 25 years, very respectful and good man. Never created any waves.

  • S Cazares

    Godinez is in the mix. I guarantee it.

  • ADMINISTRATION

    Los Altos reminds me so much of the South Hills situation last year but much worse. Los Altos has no problem with illegal recruits coming in, but when they leave they will do anything possible to stop them from transferring out or playing when they transfer. A perfect example of that is in the middle of last season Gio Martinez’s transferred to Diamond Bar in the middle of the season. Major conflicts with Coach Arellanes, the father pulled Gio out and transferred him back to his real address in Diamond Bar. The school did everything they could to make sure that kid didn’t play another down of football, it worked. What was the point of that, to intimidate the other players? It also pissed off one parent big time, was it really worth it? So Garcia does that make you feel like a big man because you stopped Gio from playing football his senior year. Just curious Garcia how would you have liked it if Bishop Amat stopped you from transferring to Los Altos, how would that have sat with you and your family. That is one example of the new Los Altos under Garcia. That is a reflection of the play on the field; the players that don’t want to be there are staying in fear of not playing at all. If you are going to build a program around fear, what type of program are you really building? Like I said that is one of many examples, threating players and parents is common over at Los Altos and now we all see what that has resulted in. One of the worse football programs in the SGV. Garcia may want to win but has no clue the right way to do it. The Los Altos of old is long gone, personal don’t think we will ever see it again. The core of this problem is the administration not just the Asian administration. They are making more and more enemies every day. The Los Altos administration doesnt have a clue how to deal with adversity, they want to win but have absolutely no clue the right way to do it.

  • LA guy

    Bobby would be a perfect fit, I hope he takes it. You want credentials, knowledge, passion, everything….? Aram, what do you think?

  • Win At What Cost?

    LA Guy,

    The biggest road block in getting Bobby to LA is McReynolds. LA is going to have to deal with the recruiting issue, Bobby is going to recruit and McReynolds has made it very clear no recruiting. If Bobby takes the job is he going to end up like Zavala over at Wilson? Dont get me wrong on the field two totally different guys. Bobby is a great on the field coach very strong headed. The school administration would have to take a hands off approach. Is McReynolds willing to swallow her morals and give Bobby the freedom needed? She would have to go back to the Roberts/Gano era, lie cheat and steal as long as you win its ok.

  • http://www.insidesocal.com/sgvfootball Aram

    My take on Godinez is this: I know his hiring would appease a lot of the LA veteranos.

  • Rowland fan

    Ever wonder why other under acheiving coaches do not get ripped apart on this blog like Walnut, Rowland, Nogales,etc. Because parents and alum there HAVE A LIFE!!!! And the administrators obviously back up their H.C.s Any coach would have to be stupid to put him and his family in jeopardy by being an H.C. at either L.A. or Wilson. One idiot is already dishing dirt on some potential coaches Dad and he’s not even a real candidate yet.I suggest that admins at these two schools beg the tribune to block all posts related to their football programs if that is at all possible. And admins quit reading this blog. If it is true that they say Arrallanes did not work hard enough you gots to be kidding. I doubt the coaching stipend amounts to 50 cents an hour so if they relax somewhat in the off season so what??

  • Your A Joke Aram!

    Aram don’t rate head coaches on what they know but on who they known. What else would you expect from him.

    Aram just came out and supported Zavala and Arellanes two of the worse head coaches in the SGV and then replies with that comment about Godinez. Somethings never change!

  • Clues for Free

    Get a clue – Longoria was non existant and definately a NON-FACTOR vs. AMAT this year. “Sal” on the other hand, played lights out and is definately going to be a factor on next years AMAT team too. Kid can BLOCK and he can catch too! The most impressive thing about “Sal” is that he is a tenacious and smart player who is extremely coachable by all accounts. If he was the third, fourth or fifth best player on that LA team then AMAT will gladly take any other under achievers that can’t hold “Frankie’s” jock strap. Apparently AMAT is able to make them into top level players and starters on their Varsity roster? Maybe YOU should get a clue or two????

  • Facts

    Clues for Free,

    Sal played lights out; ok he averaged less than one catch per game is that lights out. Sal is a good kid, but lacks lots of natural talent. That natural talent that kids like Longoria do have; speed, height, and great hands.

    You mentioned that Ryan didnt do much against Bishop Amat funny Sal didnt even play in that game, or if he did he had zero stats.

  • You Guarantee?

    S Cazares “Godinez is in the mix. I guarantee it.”

    You guarantee it, he may have been in the mix. Made a phone call, Bobby was approached about two weeks ago by school administration. Bobby did consider it, but turned it down. That was status within the last 24 hours.

  • S Cazares Guarantee?

    S Cazares “Godinez is in the mix. I guarantee it.”

    You guarantee it, he may have been in the mix. Made a phone call, Bobby was approached about two weeks ago by school administration. Bobby did consider it, but turned it down. That was status within the last 24 hours.

  • laconq

    If any of you knew anything about a school, you would know that Mr. Garcia has only a small portion in the hiring process of the the head football coach. I also believe that most of you on this blog know nothing about what a coach, teacher, or principal goes through in a school year. Some of you ought to try it. I bet you would be fired too!!!!!!!

  • Middy

    Aram take a stand. Don’t say Garcia cares when he just ruined Jim. U know arrelanes and you know his is a good coach. His firing was wrong in so many ways. As a journalist get Jims side of it. He was coaching his butt off and cares about the kids and you know that.

  • david rivera

    not even godinez could save this football program. this program is ruined for many years and will not come back for at least ten years until you get more whites,blacks in the area. hispanics too but they are there now. the black athlete is nowhere around in the heights anymore

  • WTF

    david rivera, Your must be the dumb or just an idiot. Color has nothing do with a succesfull program. Based on your comment Rivera means your a dumbass hispanic correct? A great program is based on Great Coaching and Arellanes was not that person.

  • bbbbb

    Middy

    Jim Arellanes ruined himself.

    Watch the Belflower Los Altos Game and see for your self

    He is a horrible coach …………..

  • FBFan

    bbbbb is the equivalent to all those Zavala haters. Total agenda. Aram, I suggest you ask other coaches in the area on how they feel about the firing of Arellanes. I have heard that several area coaches are upset about the firing and have a great deal of respect for Arellanes. No one wants to take either of these jobs.

  • USWeekly

    LA doesn’t even have a teaching job to give. What’s the deal at Wilson? They aren’t even interviewing yet. Sorry folks, both programs will be down for a while.

  • Status

    FBFAN,

    Once again over 40 applicants for the Wilson job, multi applicants have head coach experience. I know this for a fact since I have talked to some of the staffs. Zavala’s lack of knowledge of game and insecurity was his down fall. These coaches told me that Zavala would chase away any coach that knew more football than him. His attempt to have a staff he could control also produced a very weak staff.

    Can’t speak much about the LA job, but they are sending a very clear message. You don’t win your out of here. With the talent and the league this is a very risky job. When I spoke with Bobby he wasnt interested. I was told by someone who talked to Bobby a couple days ago that Bobby was asked a couple weeks ago and turned down the job a few days ago.

  • LA Admin?

    The admin at Los Altos is absolutely shameless! There was a CIF investigation at Wilson yet their admin didn’t treat Zavala nearly as bad as Arellanes is being treated by Los Altos. I hear Garcia didn’t even give Arellanes a chance to talk to the kids, he told the kids before Arellanes could. Arellanes is a hard working coach who cares for kids as Middy expressed. Just a damn shame that they couldn’t give him at least a little more time. No one is going to want to apply for this job and LA is going to be stuck with either Garcia himself or that 400 pound slob that calls himself a coach.

  • Keep on spinnin

    Spin it the true way if you are gonna keep posting inside info–Bobby Godinez got a pay raise and moved up in responsibility for the college team he is coaching for out of state. don’t act like you know what is going on if you don’t–keep to your Wilson propoganda.

  • LA guy

    Anybody have any word on where they stand with Bobby? Someone had mentioned he was not interested, is that for sure? I know the youth programs in HH is hopeing he’s the guy!

  • david rivera

    hey wtf,everybody knows that a sucessful football program has the black athlete in the mix. this is just a fact my friend even though it might sound rascist. at los altos last year i only saw maybe 1 or 2 black athletes on the team. in the past years at los altos they have had many blacks on the team so dont tell me that race has nothing to do with it. it has everything to do with it

  • david rivera

    diamond ranch, west covina,bishop amat,charter oak,monrovia,bonita,corona centenial, and on and on they all have a number of black athletes on there teams so wtf please dont tell me they have nothing to do with a wining football team. but i agree coaching is very important to a team as well

  • LA Grad

    david rivera,

    Just shut up about demographics. Dont worry about what you cant control. If you only have 600 kids to choose from instead of 2000 kids to choose from, you can still put a quality product on the field.

    Whoever goes out there deserves a good coach.

  • SG Valley

    david rivera – What an assinine thing to say about “every” program needing a black athlete. There are some things that you just don’t say even if you think them and you sure as hell don’t put them in print to remove all doubt about what an idiot you truly are! To admit that you believe in such a theory is at the very least an admission of racisism. All players bring something to the table and skin color does NOT make one athlete better than the next. Hard work, training, desire and natural talent are just a few of the necessary ingredients needed. To say that skin color should be added to the list is just idiotic! Wasn’t there a professional LB for the Dalls Cowboys who was of Asian decent?

  • david rivera

    hey sgv, you must be a idiot to think that race has nothing to do with sports. look at the nba and nfl,how many asians are in the nfl compared to the black athlete or the nba. you know i speak the truth but nobody has the guts to talk about it. well my friend the facts are the facts so become a coach with no black athletes and lets see your sucess. probably not good

  • AOYA

    Hey David Rivera,

    When it comes to real competition the Asian’s have all the jobs and money.

  • Wrong …

    JEWS= Power & Money

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