This is the off-the-menu Aram Special from the old school, veterano Petrillos in SG
So there I was asking Charter Oak offensive coordinator Dominic Farrar if I could interview his dad even though there were THREE MINUTES LEFT TO PLAY IN THE THIRD QUARTER of last night’s Chargers rout of Santiago. You never know with coaches. Even though you’re watching a near-50 point blowout, in their minds it could be a nailbiter. Anyway, Big Lou was very accommodating, but his first words to me were “I’m trying to coach a football game here.” I wish we didn’t have newspaper deadlines, but we do. I bring this up because that was the magnitude of Charter Oak’ whipping of Santiago. Anyway, I got to thinking and Charter Oak’s offense is the best that I’ve ever covered. Just offense. Top to bottom. Best I’ve ever covered. Now, how many years is that? Probably less than 10. But I stand by it. I know it’s taboo, but I can’t avoid always looking forward and I poured over the CO roster and they are going to be very scary again next year if a QB shows up on the doorstep or one is developed. Moving on, all Saturday morning I continued to shake my head over Maranatha being blanked by San Gabriel. I still just don’t get it. I may have to ask Arroyo coach Jim Singiser if I can sit and watch the film of the game with him. Could it be that San Gabriel is the scariest team in the Valley right now? Good enough to have 60 points vs. a solid Alhambra defense by the third quarter and also good enough to blank Andrew Elfers and Maranatha. Congrats to Arroyo QB Steven Rivera. The kid got his first postseason win and that had to feel like a load off. It was all that was missing from his resume. And judging by his stats (312 yard passing, 3 TDs, 1 rushing TD, two strips, one of which he took back to the house), Rivera has not going to let the opportunity pass him by. Speaking of huge games, West Covina’s Jimmy Frazier continues to amaze: 5 carries for 188 yards and 3 TDs. Makes you wonder about the other two carries he didn’t score on. Lots of talk today about how good the Hacienda League is. I think you can say the same about the Pacific, specifically teams from The ‘Dena. When was the last time BOTH Muir and PHS were alive in the second round of the playoffs at the same time? Epic. I love how the talk has now become “Muir’s going to the finals.” Well, considering they play Roddy’s Ranchers at home, it’s hard to say that. I expect D-Ranch is going to give Muir a battle, but I still make the Mustangs a solid favorite. You have to hand it to the Fightin’ Joe Scherfs over at Azusa. The Aztecs suffered what could have been a season-changing injury to top defensive player Luis Nunez two weeks ago against La Puente. Instead, they rout Valley Christian. Azusa is a great group of kids and they can really play. They could really play last year, but everything that could go wrong vs. Village Christian (including me picking Azusa) did go wrong. This year, Scherf’s magic touch continues to shine. He scheduled up in the nonleague and his team is still dancing because of it. Speaking of the Mid-Valley Division, there were lots of grumblings on the field about San Dimas not looking good during the Saints’ win over San Marino. And to each person who said something of the sort to me, I replied back with the following “this is what the Mid-Valley Division was designed to do.” What I mean by that is that the Mid-Valley Division is structured so that no team really lays over another. It should be competitive, for the most part. And upsets should be commonplace. Covina is a fantastic team. Monrovia was a fantastic team last year. But neither is/was invincible. That’s the best part about this division. That’s why I love it so much. So if any top seed goes out there and turns the ball over twice like San Dimas did in the other guy’s end zone, then yeah, the game’s gonna be close. I still like San Dimas’ chances. Congrats to Los Altos coach Dale Ziola. It’s truly remarkable what he has done. The Conqs were 0-10 last year and just about everyone in the Valley had the program dead and buried (myself included). Now, LA is 7-4 and in the second round of the playoffs with real nice chance to make a run. Ziola and his players believed when nobody else would. They held a midnight practice to start the season and got mocked for it. Next year, I bet Los Altos won’t be the only team holding a midnight practice. It’s great to see Los Altos football back! Back to Steven Rivera for a second. Let’s be honest, there’s just no separating him and Travis Santiago right now for Player of the Year. You just can’t do it. These two kids are just awesome. I saw Travis yesterday and will see Steven on Friday. I love the playoffs! Speaking of Travis, it was good to see UCLA offensive coordinator Michael Johnson out at CO last night watching the game. Considering how badly UCLA has bricked recently on QBs, why not go the unconventional route and take a kid who may not have the perfect size, but he’s got the arm, the smarts and THE DESIRE to be great. It’s time UCLA thinks outside the box. And judging by the fact that Travis Santiago and Dom Farrar are at the UCLA game today at the Rose Bowl on an unofficial visit, maybe the dream will come true.