BREAKING NEWS: Albert Rodriguez named head coach at South Hills …

South Hills High School promoted offensive coordinator Albert “Fuzz” Rodriguez to varsity football head coach on Tuesday.

Rodriguez replaces Steve Bogan, who resigned after a 19-year stint that saw the program win four CIF championships. Rodriguez was brought on the South Hills staff by Bogan in 2006 and has been offensive coordinator since ’07.

“I’m a South Hills guy,” said Rodriguez, who graduated from South Hills in 1996. “I grew up in this area. I’m a Covina Viking, West Covina Bruin, went to Barranca and Sierra Vista, then I went to South Hills. So, it’s awesome. I can’t believe it. You have to pinch me right now, I’m excited.”

Rodriguez takes over a program that has fallen on hard times after going 3-7 in each of the past two seasons and missing the playoffs. Part of that can be attributed from the bump in league and playoff division South Hills got before the 2010 season. The Huskies have also been on the short end of the transfer pendulum, both losing players and not getting new ones to be eligible right away.

On top of that, Rodriguez follows in the footsteps of a legend in Bogan, who won 172 games and 13 league championships during his tenure.

“I have no problem with the league,” Rodriguez said of the Sierra League, in which South Hills plays. “If you take a look back at the past two years, we’re there in games, but we just have to finish. I think through hard work, we’re going to be there and put ourselves in position to win football games.

“What coach Bogan has done at South Hills is just awesome. There’s no replacing the guy. The No. 1 rule in coaching is you never want to replace a legend, but shoot, someone has to do it.”

Rodriguez is working on putting together a coaching staff with finding a defensive coordinator his top priority. Rodriguez will continue to call the plays on offense.


Aram’s take:
Coach Rodriguez is very well respected by everyone I’ve talked to. He has a very difficult assignment ahead of him with the Huskies talent level having dropped since the glory years and the bump in competition that comes with playing in the Sierra League, where if you’re lucky enough to qualify the postseason is spent in the Inland Division.

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UPDATED: Kurt Scoby rumors: Transferring to Amat? Staying at Charter Oak? What’s going on here???

The Kurt Scoby rumors are flying at full force AGAIN. Listen, he’s a great kid with tons of upside, but it’s getting ridiculous for me to chase leads on a sophomore. But that’s part of the job, sadly.

WEDNESDAY UPDATE

11:53 a.m.: Word from Charter Oak is that Scoby is staying put. Hopefully that’s the end of that.

TUESDAY UPDATE

9:10 a.m.: From what I’m able to gather, Scoby is still enrolled at CO. Carry on with your days.

Here’s what happened on Monday:

10:31 a.m.: Aram arrives at the Tribune only to be greeted in the parking lot by a non-reporter co-worker who tells him “Hey, I’ve been trying to get a hold of you and Fred all weekend. Charter Oak has some stud running back who transferred to Bishop Amat.”

10:32 a.m.: Aram, still in a fog, says “Scoby? Is his name Scoby?” And the unidentified non-reporter co-worker says “That’s his name. I heard from a guy who trains him at Bulldog Gym in Glendora that he’s going to Bishop Amat. Done deal.”

10:33 a.m.: Steve Ramirez lets myself and the unidentified non-reporter co-worker in the backdoor and in the process asks what the commotion is about.

10:33 1/2 a.m: Aram tells Stevie R. what the unidentified non-reporter co-worker told me, to which Stevie R. kinda pauses to process what he just heard before acting like he heard nothing at all and returning to his desk. OK, fine.

11 a.m.: Unidentified non-reporter co-worker pops by Aram’s desk and AGAIN says what he heard and to trust him. Which I respectfully cannot do.

11:01 a.m.: I text Charter Oak offensive coordinator Dom Farrar with what I heard from the unidentified non-reporter co-worker and I’m still waiting for a reply … which could mean it’s true, but it could also mean that all the CO coaches are sick of answering about these rumors.

6:30 p.m.: Aram checks his work email and there’s an email from a known-blogger who has ZERO relation to the unidentified non-reporter co-worker and it says the same thing — Scoby to Amat.

6:31 p.m.: Aram sees a second email from the same known-blogger, who again is not the unidentified non-reporter co-worker, and it says something to the effect that Scoby is not going to Amat, but he’s out of CO.

6:40 p.m.: Aram calls Amat coach Steve Hagerty and interrupts his home life (not a good thing if you’re me) and Hagerty says Scoby is not Amat and that this is the first he’s heard of such a thing.

Aram’s take: So there you have it. I’m pretty sick of the Scoby rumors right now. I’ve heard everything from him going to Monrovia (during last season) to now him going to Amat. I don’t have a Facebook account (I’m 36), so I don’t know about all the rumors that fly about Scoby there, but I hear they’re pretty spectacular. Don’t get me wrong. The kid is great. He’s very entertaining and I like talking to him. And of course he’s great on the field. But this whole transfer/rumor stuff is getting old. I’m sure some of you have heard a lot of these rumors and probably more, so perhaps this is nothing new.

Amat signers: Ajee Montes (SMU) and Jalen Moore (Eastern Washington) … CONGRATS TO BOTH … and please tell me about any others …

Bishop Amat football players Ajee Montes and Jalen Moore are expected to sign with SMU and Eastern Washington, respectively on National Signing Day on Feb. 1.

Congrats to both players and their families.

Please let me know about any other players and where they’re set to sign.

Follow me on Twitter @ChemicalAT

How the hell am I supposed to diet when this happens? FIVE GUYS opens in West Covina …


Unreal.

I had heard things about Five Guys so I decided to try it back in 2010 before an Amat boys hoops playoff game that I was covering in Lawndale. I did what any normal warm-blooded American male would do, I hit up Five Guys in Carson. And naturally, when I got to the game that night the first thing everyone asked me was “How was Five Guys?”.

Anyway, now there’s one in West Covina at 1455 Plaza Drive. It is open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week.

Aram’s take: Although I do like In-N-Out, it’s vastly overrated. I liked Five Guys the one time I had it, but even I will admit that it probably can’t be consumed as often as In-N-Out. Anyway, Fred and I (maybe Miggy and Stevie R.) will have to do some representing down there. Hope to see some of you there when we do.

Follow me on Twitter @ChemicalAT

Surprise, surprise, Covina hires from within after all and names Joe Brown head coach

Covina High School has hired from within after all.

Longtime assistant coach Joe Brown was named the Colts new head coach on Wednesday, replacing Darryl Thomas who resigned earlier this month after 15 years at the helm.

Brown has been the Colts’ offensive coordinator since 2005 and on staff since 1996.

“They offered it to me when we got back from Christmas break and I thought about it for a few days and politely turned it down,” said Brown, who is a 1990 graduate of Wilson. “After thinking about it, I’ve been here 16 years. I live right by the scohool. I still want to coach. I had opportunities to coach in some other programs, but I just decided it would be better if I stayed here at Covina and took the responsibility.”

After Brown and other on-campus options turned the job down, Covina decided to fly the position and had an estimated 12-15 applicants. The application process was set to end on Friday and interviews would have began next week. Not anymore.

Brown doesn’t exactly step into a great situation, with several key players from the ’11 graduating in June and the program’s top returner Gevontray Ainsworth jetting for Monrovia on Tuesday. But, it’s Covina and things go in cycles, as we all know.

Brown was called the plays in 2005 and 2006 when the Colts averaged 43 and 42 points per game, respectively. Covina averaged 36 points per game this past season.

No word yet on a staff or whether Brown will continue to call the plays.

Aram’s take: I like the hire. The numbers don’t lie: When Brown has the weapons, he knows what to do with them, i.e. ’05, ’06, ’11. But the main weapon for next season, Gevontray Ainsworth, just left for Monrovia. So, C-Town is back in rebuilding mode. Brown said he will do his best to keep the Vikings talent that comes thru Trawick still going to Covina. Can’t wait to see what kind of staff he puts together.

Folow me on Twitter @ChemicalAT

Rosemead promotes defensive coordinator Marc Paramo to head coach …

Rosemead has named Marc Paramo its new head coach, replacing Matt Koffler.

Paramo’s hiring at Rosemead came as no shock. After Koffler resigned earlier this month, he was very vocal in wanting Paramo, his defensive coordinator, to replace him.

“The good thing about Coach Koffler was that he didn’t micro-manage,” said Paramo, who graduated from Rosemead in 1995. “I was pretty much the head coach of the defense and the special teams, so I already felt like I was doing head coach things.

“It’s unfortunate that Coach Koffler stepped down, but this would be the only place I ever would have done it. I couldn’t be more excited. I grew up in Rosemead and went to Rosemead High School. My dad is 80 and still lives right down the street and he doesn’t miss a game.”

Aram’s take: Get this, Paramo asked Koffler to be part of his staff, but Coach K rebuffed him, saying that for the time being he’s retired and will think about after taking this year off. Paramo has been the architect of some pretty staunch defenses at Rosemead and he said there won’t be much change in how the Panthers do things on the field. Rosemead missed the playoffs last season as the Mission Valley got much, much tougher with El Monte and South El Monte putting some strong products on the field. Don’t expect that to change anytime soon, so Paramo and Rosemead will be under the gun to not only sweat knocking off Arroyo, but keeping EM and SEM at bay, too.

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UPDATED: Gevontray Ainsworth leaves Covina for Monrovia … Wildcats get PHS transfer, TOO! … Alemany WR/DB Jeff Farrar next?

UPDATED: Ainsworth enrolled Tuesday at Monrovia after checking out of Covina.

Gevontray Ainsworth, who rushed for 1,469 yards and nine touchdowns last season as a member of the Covina High School football team, has checked out of Covina and enrolled at Monrovia.

Ainsworth has family ties to the Duarte/Monrovia area. His dad Greg Ainsworth played at Duarte. His uncle Michael played at Monrovia.

Strangely, Monrovia beat Covina in the semifinals of last season’s Mid-Valley Division playoffs.

The Wildcats landed a transfer from Pasadena, too, but I’m not sure of his name (lotta help that is, I know).

Monrovia may be on the verge of getting another impact transfer in Alemany wide receiver/defensive back Jeff Farrar, who was a sophomore this past season and also has ties to the Monrovia area.


Aram’s take:
(It’s Christmas in Monrovia).Where to start? Does this lessen the appeal of the open Covina job for those who have applied? Does this basically answer the only concern M-Town had going into next season? I’ll answer that one: Yes. Does Ainsworth stand a shot in hell to get eligible with CIF? Well, that’s tricky. Even if a 30-day sit-out rule is proposed and passed by CIF, it won’t be in effect for kids who transferred BEFORE next season. I kinda doubt Covina will claim to CIF that this was athletically motivated, so perhaps Ainsworth won’t even have to clear that hurdle and with a valid change of residence he will be eligible to start plowing over Rio Hondo League teams. Ahh, drink it in Monrovia fans. When life is good, it’s really good. As I wrote after the San Gabriel win, the powerhouse has finally arrived. Championships and schollys, they’re an intoxicating blend.

Follow me on Twitter @ChemicalAT

WAY TOO EARLY All-Encompassing SGV(N) Top 25 … Follow me on Twitter @ChemicalAT

After watching a lot of film and consulting with coaches, this is the first All-Encompassing Top 25 ranking of the 2012 season. There will be another one right before spring practice, right after spring practice/start of passing circuit, post-passing circuit, and then the preseason. Mark your calendars.

1. Charter Oak — With so much coming back, the offseason task is easy: Groom a QB.
2. West Covina — Lose a lot and return a lot. And the Noodles Hull Era begins …
3. Monrovia — No more Big Ellis and RB is a concern. But ‘Cats loaded everywhere else.
4. Damien — With so many starters back, biggest task is to be a year better.
5. Bishop Amat — Defense looks great, but offense must replace top QB, RB and WR.
6. Chino Hills — Leading RB and WR are back, but Huskies have holes to fill.
7. St. Francis — QB Leibowitz is back, but most other key cogs on both sides are gone.
8. St. Paul — New coach Asante catches a break with veteran QB Telles to work with.
9. La Habra – Program can reload, but losing Porter and Bartolone stings.
10. La Mirada — Mats have every key skill player back. Should be a sight to see.
11. San Dimas – RBs look strong with Payton and Mitchell. Watch for WR Reep to blossom.
12. La Serna — QB Palmer back along with nice weapons in McCarty and Duarte.
13. Muir – Want to make sure Holmes Jr. sticks around before ranking ‘Stangs higher.
14. Maranatha — Program got humbled last year, now QB Elffers set for swan song.
15. Arcadia — Lagace and Carr gone, but McKinley/Medel backfield is scary.
16. Cantwell — QB Walsh is back after throwing for 2k yards. So is RB Gonzales.
17. Arroyo — No Rivera, but Knights were so young in so many spots. Watch out again.
18. Pasadena — Bulldogs could go a long ways with QB Cox, but that defense … meh.
19, Alhambra — QB Mendoza back along with several key weapons. Almont favorites?
20. Azusa — Here’s your early warning: Watch out for RB Cameron Blackburn. Wow.
21. Bonita — Gotta think Sunshine is back with a vengeance at QB. And Turner helps.
22. Diamond Ranch – Panthers lose some key guys and need to get way better at QB.
23. Claremont — QB has to be replaced again, but man, Flemming and Reeder are solid.
24. El Monte — B-Mart back at QB has Lions thinking league title may be forthcoming.
25. La Puente — QB Vasquez had 22-2 TD/INT ratio last year. RB/WR Centeno also back.

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Covina job search: 12-15 applicants so far … no word on names … but I keep hearing some really big names have applied …

Due to the heavy amount of emails I’m getting about the open Covina job, I would like to provide you this update.

I spoke to Coach DT (Darryl Thomas) today and he said that they have about 12-15 applications so far and that they will stop accepting applications on Friday. The interviews will start first week of February.

Thomas declined to comment about speculation that several big names have applied for the job. I don’t blame Coach DT for declining comment.

Aram’s take: Some names I’ve heard are impressive, but I’m not even sure they’re legit candidates or have applied. It’s very obvious that coaches from around the area are fond of this job. Who wouldn’t be? If you can lock up that Vikings talent, you’re in good shape to do damage in the Mid-Valley Division.