Arroyo coach Jim Singiser puts it best: “All summer passing tells us is who should be starting the first day of pads. And that can change by lunch that first day.”

It’s sophomore QB Adan Guillen’s turn to run the show at Rosemead

The Mission Valley League kicks off my league predictions from top to bottom. Tell me where I went wrong (or right) by casting your vote.

1. Arroyo — Best overall player in the league = league championship. That’s how it’s been the past two years and that’s how it will be this year. QB/S Steven Rivera is the league’s best offensive and defensive player. He allows Arroyo to do something that no other MVL team can do — pass the ball effectively. The Knights three-peat … but then ….?????
Predicted record: 9-1 overall, 5-0 in league
Playoffs: Yes. Top-four seed in Mid-Valley.

2. Rosemead — The Panthers have plenty of experience back on defense and they weren’t exactly embarrassed on that side of the ball when they lost to Arroyo last year. But until a running back and quarterback are established, this is a team playing with arm tied behind its back. The defense will be counted on too heavily to win the tougher games on the schedule. The offense should be finally hitting its stride by the end of the season, but it cannot be anywhere near as good as ’10 when an experience Matt Macias was running the show and Matt Fregoso was running wild.
Predicted record: 6-4 overall, 4-1 in league.
Playoffs: Yes.

3. El Monte — The Lions have a major factor to replace in Mike Jimenez, who came out of nowhere to rush for 1,800 yards. Can the Lions find another surprise like that? Got me. The QB situation has seen last year’s starter Manuel Santa Cruz supplanted by Brandon Martinez, but now Santa Cruz gives the Lions another weapon elsewhere. The receivers led by Memo Silva are solid. Can El Monte stop anyone? That’s the issue. Arroyo may be too tall of an order, but they certainly showed they can score on Rosemead last year. So now they need to stop the Panthers. Do that in the league opener and this could be a playoff team, which is still might be if CIF is kind.
Predicted record: 5-5 overall, 3-2 in league.
Playoffs: No.

4. Gabrielino
— Typically, teams that don’t post rosters on Maxpreps for two straight years are bad bets to have winning seasons. That’s what you’ve got going on at Gabrielino, where the Eags have gone 7-13 the past two years. This once-certain MVL contender has floundered in recent years, but there’s talk that a Perini-led run attack could lead to an improved situation. In any event, The Fightin Tongva had better shore up a defense that allowed 30 points per game in league last year. Numbers like that don’t fly when you score only 13 a game.
Predicted record: 4-6 overall, 2-3 in league.
Playoffs: No.

5. South El Monte
— I like what new coach Ibis Aguilar is doing. He enlisted the help of longtime Bonita DC Ray Medina to come up with a better scheme for his team. That should help. He also switched to a spread on offense, which while I don’t understand how, helps teams that can’t play smashmouth. Aguilar is getting more kids on campus involved, which should also help. But when all your losses the season prior come by 14 points or more, you have to wonder just how far the gap can be closed in less than a year.
Predicted record: 1-9 overall, 1-4 in league.
Playoffs: No.

6. Mountain View — Year 2 of Jimmy Wilson’s Wing T may not go as well as some are expecting. Now that the rest of the league has had a chance to see it and has ample films on it, the Vikes may not be such a gimmick this season. Plus, there’s a lot to replace in terms of skill guys. RBs like Jossymar Ullloa don’t fall off trees at places like Mountain View, so replacing him will be tough. Plus, a new QB will be running the show. The change in tactics have breathed life into the program after going 5-5 last season, but I see a big step back this year before another step forward.
Predicted record: 2-8 overall, 0-5 in league.
Playoffs: No.

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