By Aram Tolegian, Staff Writer
Walnut High School’s football team has gotten an early jump on the season, but that hasn’t made the quarterback battle an easier decision for coach Mike O’Shields. The Mustangs are auditioning three would-be signal callers for the job of throwing to Washington-bound receiver Aubrey Coleman. The race is between senior-to-be Brandon Roach and juniors-to-be Kevin Lopez and Chris Mendez. (To continue, click thread)>
“There’s some competition going on,” O’Shields said. “Most of our skill guys are returners. Our offensive line is basically all returning. I think the good part of spring ball is looking at the quarterback situation.”
The Mustangs have been practicing since March. They’ll wrap up spring ball next week before turning their attention to a busy summer that includes stops at the Bonita and Claremont passing tournaments.
Roach appears to have the jump on his younger challengers, O’Shields said after recent practices and two competitions against Baldwin Park.
O’Shields said his team really enjoyed the scrimmages with Baldwin Park, even providing a barbecue meal after their home game. The Braves returned the spread when they hosted last Friday.
“We had an obstacle course for the linemen,” O’Shields said. “They did one-on-ones, then we did seven-on-sevens. At the end, it was seven-on-seven with linemen also there just going one-on-one.
“It went real well. We’re not going to play each other in league, so we could help each other out.”
O’Shields expects the rest of summer to determine who his quarterback will be in fall. And he’s got a special treat for whoever wins the job – throwing to Coleman.
“When you’re 6-foot-5 like Aubrey, they can throw the ball anywhere and he’s going to catch it.”
Walnut finished 7-3 last season, but missed the playoffs after losing some key games in the now-defunct San Antonio League.
The Mustangs will now be part of the new Hacienda League, which includes rival Diamond Bar and nearby Rowland and West Covina.