This week’s guests on the hour show included: Montebello coach Pete Gonzalez, Monrovia super recruit Ellis McCarthy and Bishop Amat coach Steve Hagerty (at 55:25).
Girls Volleyball Polls
1. St. Lucy’s, 2. Chino Hills, 3. Oaks Christian, 4. La Canada, 5. La Reina, 6. La Salle, 7. South Torrance, 8. Riverside Poly, 9. Bishop Montgomery, 10. Claremont, Mission Viejo.
1. Downey, 2. Troy, 3. Whittier Christian, 4. Palm Springs, 5. Bonita, 6. Adolfo Camarillo, 7. Diamond Bar, 8. Arcadia, 9. Walnut, 10. La Habra.
1. Campbell Hall, 2. Brentwood, 3. Rim of the World, 4. Windward, 5. La Siera, 6. San Dimas, 7. Gabrielino, 8. Montebello, 9. Arrowhead Christian, 10. Westminster La Quinta.
South Hills coach Steve Bogan confirmed that senior lineman Ben Kane lost his state appeal to play football for the Huskies. Kane, who transferred from Bishop Amat to South Hills in the spring, lives in the Northview school district. He enrolled at South HIlls and filed a hardship transfer request, but was denied by CIF-Southern Section officials. Kane’s family then appealed to a CIF-state panel board, but were denied again on Tuesday.
“It was a challenge, and I’ve never backed away from a challenge.” -- Wilson’s new head football coach Bob Burt.
By Aram Tolegian
Even at age 70, Bob Burt has no trouble finding the motivation to drive every day from his home in Hemet to his football program in Hacienda Heights. Burt, the new football coach at Wilson High School, has a real simple explanation for why he does it.
“It was a challenge,” he said. “And I’ve never backed away from a challenge.”
Burt has seen and conquered plenty of challenges in a career that’s ranged from being the defensive coordinator at Hawaii to head coach at Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Northridge to head coach of fledgling and established high school programs. And now he’s in for arguably one of the bigger challenges of his career.
By Fred J. Robledo
Jamie Canada’s football career looked promising in his freshman year at Duarte, where his first touchdown was a 48-yard reception in the fourth quarter against South Hills. It was the Falcons’ lone score in a 48-6 loss.
After that, though, everything continued to unravel for Duarte and Canada. Duarte coach Wardell Crutchfield was fired following the 2008 season and more than a dozen players transferred to neighboring schools, including Jamie and his older brother Jordan Canada, a senior in 2009.
The Canada family moved into the South Hills school district, but Duarte challenged the transfer. It said the move was “athletically motivated” and the CIF-Southern Section agreed. That forced Jordan to miss his senior year and Jamie to sit out his sophomore campaign.
For those with Time Warner cable circle two games on your calendar for live football on cable. The Serra showdown with Loyola at Bishop Amat will be shown on Oct. 28, and the regular season finale which could decide the Sierra League title when Charter Oak visits Chino Hills on Nov. 11. For the Whittier area, Orange Lutheran vs. La Habra at Cerritos College on Sept. 23 is also part of the lineup. Unfortunately for me, I got Direct TV.
Time Warner Schedule
Sept. 2–Mater Dei at Carson
Sept. 9–Venice at Chaminade
Sept. 16–Thousand Oaks at Moorpark
Sept. 23–Orange Lutheran vs. La Habra at Cerritos College
Sept. 30–Serra at Narbonne
Oct. 7–Oxnard at Ventura
Oct. 14–Sherman Oaks Notre Dame at Crespi
Oct. 21–Canyon Country Canyon at Valencia
Oct. 28–Loyola at Bishop Amat
Nov. 4–Garfield vs. L.A. Roosevelt at East L.A. College
Nov. 11–Charter Oak at Chino Hills
Could there be a shift of power with the area’s mid-major leagues and divisions? The Valle Vista is why I ask, it’s intriguing and tough to call. After watching Aram slobber over Covina yesterday, even I realize how foolish it was to guarantee a West Covina victory over the Colts on Sept. 3. I haven’t tilted enough to think the outcome will change, but it’s moving closer toward the toss-up category. The Valle Vista is tough to call because you hear so many stories about Pomona, its athletes, players that are eligible after sitting out a year, and some that have transferred in. Plus, coach Anthony Rice, after winning two section titles with Colony, has been so quiet this offseason that you know something’s up. You think he’s going to settle for another mediocre year?
Then there’s San Dimas, coach Z quietly saying this team could be special, that it returns five players from its 2009 Mid-Valley Division championship team, including QB Shawn Kennedy, FB Dillon Corona and a backfield Z says could be the best of all. You can’t sleep on San Dimas. No matter how dominant King Monrovia thinks it is, it has nothing on San Dimas. They’re 2-2 head-to-head and each own a title. Sounds more like they got a score to settle. Covina, Pomona, and San Dimas are potentially so good, I’m not sure what league is more top-heavy, the Valle Vista or Hacienda? After West Covina, picking second isn’t easy. You can argue Bonita, Diamond Bar or Diamond Ranch, but none of them are world beaters. That’s why opening week is statement week. If San Dimas beats Bonita and Covina beats West Covina, you can move the Valle Vista ahead of the Hacienda on the area league ranking list behind the Serra, Baseline and Sierra. You could also argue that the Mid-Valley would be on par if not better than the Southeast. Imagine if West Covina and Covina won titles, edge goes to the Mid-Valley right? Fact is, Monrovia is still probably the best of the Mid-Valley. If they go undefeated beating Glendora, South Hills and Covina along the way, it would prove even more the Mid-Valley is every bit as good, if not better than the Southeast? That’s why opening week is so huge, it could answer some big questions right off the bat.
The CIF Southern Section Commissioner’s Cup ranks the top sports programs in the Southern Section. The winners are determined by a point system that provides: five points for a divisional championship; three points for a divisional runner-up finish; two points for advancing to the semifinal round or a third place finish in a team-place finish sport (i.e. cross country, golf, swimming and diving, track and field); and one point for a fourth place finish in a team-place finish sport. Pasadena Poly finished third overall in the boys rankings with Bishop Amat finishing seventh overall on the girls side, which represented the highest San Gabriel Valley rankings. Once again, private schools dominated, with 16 of the 20 schools combined boys/girls coming from private schools, which is another strong argument for private and public being separated in the playoffs. Simply put, it’s just not an even playing field. At the very least, what CIF should do is celebrate four Commissioner’s Cup categories, a top ten for boys and girls private, and a top ten for boys and girls public. If you can’t separate the divisions, at least separate the awards.
PLACE, SCHOOL, POINTS, ACCUMULATION, TOTAL POINTS
1. Loyola 5 (BK), 5 (TF), 5 (SD), 3 (CC), 2 (WP) 20
2. Oaks Christi an 5 (FB), 5 (BK), 3 (TF), 2 (WP), 2 (S), 2 (BB) 19
3. Pasadena Poly 5 (BB), 3 (WP), 3 (TF), 2 (FB), 2 (BK), 2 (VB) 17
4. Servite 5 (FB), 5 (G), 3 (W), 3 (TF) 16*
5. Corona del Mar 5 (WP), 5 (VB), 2 (FB), 2 (S), 2 (SD) 16*
6. Mater Dei 5 (WP), 5 (VB), 2 (FB), 2 (BK), 2 (TF) 16*
7. Harvard-Westlake 5 (CC), 5 (BK), 3 (T) 13
8. Viewpoint 5 (SD), 5 (T), 2 (VB) 12
9. Mission Viejo 5 (BB), 3 (BK), 3 (FB) 11*
10. Oak Hills 5 (BB), 3 (W), 3 (S) 11*
1. Oaks Christian 5 (S), 5 (SB), 3 (BK), 3 (TF), 2 (VB) 18
2. Harvard-Westlake 5 (WP), 5 (TF), 3 (BK), 3 (CC) 16*
3. St. Margaret’s 5 (T), 5 (VB), 5 (S), 1 (CC) 16*
4. Chadwick 5 (CC), 5 (VB), 3 (BK) 13
5. Serra 5 (BK), 5 (TF), 2 (VB) 12
6. Canyon/Anaheim 5 (BK), 3 (SB), 2 (G), 1 (CC) 11*
7. Bishop Amat 5 (S), 2 (BK), 2 (SB), 2 (TF) 11*
8. Mater Dei 5 (BK), 5 (TF) 10*
9. Dos Pueblos 5 (WP), 5 (SB) 10*
10. Poly/Long Beach 5 (VB), 5 (TF) 10*
Aram posted a scoop last night about West Covina acquiring Justin Hornsby, a 6-foot-2, 205-pound defensive end from Rancho Verde. The part I found most interesting was this: Hornsby, who attended Rancho Verde last year, moved into the Covina Unified School District and was in South Hills’ area. But the junior-to-be wanted to play at West Covina. He had to protest to the county because Covina Unified would not release him. After a five-hour wait at the county office on Tuesday, Hornsby got clearance.
Fred’s take: I’m on record many times saying in most cases players should be able to transfer without CIF’s interference, though CIF is just following the rules set forth by the schools. But if a school district allows a player to transfer and he’s making the grades, he should be able to play sports at the school, and I’m hoping this works out for Hornsby. But you wonder what CIF does with this if Aram’s accounts are accurate. He said the junior-to-be “wanted” to play at West Covina despite being in the South Hills school district. On the surface, that sounds athletically motivated. So let’s be clear, although he’s been cleared to attend West Covina, he still needs to be cleared by CIF to play football. This may not be a normal transfer, to be eligible at West Covina, he will probably have to file a hardship transfer, explaining why he felt compelled to attend West Covina, despite living in South Hills’ district. Stay tuned.
“We return nearly everybody up front. That’s where you win ball games.” — Rosemead coach Matt Koffler
By Keith Lair, Staff Writer
Rosemead High School lineman Sal Chavarin does not know how to play football any way except how his coach, Matt Koffler, describes it.
“We play the Rosemead football way,” Koffler said. “That would be finding ways to dominate the lines. We return nearly everybody up front. That’s where you win ball games.”
Chavarin is the biggest presence in the middle of the Panthers’ line. The senior is 6-foot-2 and 350 pounds. He will play noseguard and “any position they want me to on offense,” he said. “I love noseguard; that’s my passion,” he said. “If they want me to do something on offense, I’ll do it.”
Rix on the accusations ….
“It’s expected when you play those rivalry games that guys are going to hit hard, but the thought never crossed your mind that someone was trying to hurt someone,” said Rix, who is also a prominent quarterback mentor for several high school quarterbacks throughout the San Gabriel Valley. “I just thought it was part of the intense Florida State- Miami rivalry. It is sad to see this come out, but the truth always comes out. Part of me wasn’t surprised, because we’ve seen how much of a business it has become. You have guys who aren’t satisfied with their per diem check that they get every month, so they’re looking for extra money. So if somebody can be offered $5,000 for a hit, obviously they’ll take advantage of it.”
Click link for full story and reaction from Rix: Nevin Shapiro, a former Miami booster who’s serving a 20-year prison sentence for masterminding a $930 million Ponzi scheme, has told Yahoo! Sports he provided impermissible benefits to 72 of the university’s football players and other athletes from 2002 to 2010.
Shapiro said he gave money, cars, yacht trips, jewelry, televisions and other gifts to a list of players including Vince Wilfork, Jon Beason, Antrel Rolle, Devin Hester, Willis McGahee and the late Sean Taylor. Shapiro also claimed he paid for nightclub outings, sex parties, restaurant meals, and in one case an abortion for a woman impregnated by a player.
He also claimed to have offered a $5,000 bounty to any Miami player who could knock Florida State quarterback Chris Rix out of a game. Rix, who lives in West Covina, attended Bishop Amat and Santa Margarita high schools before going to Florida State. He called the Yahoo! report “a sad story.”
When I look back at West Covina’s championship, I can’t help but think of Bonita losing it as much as West Covina winning it. Bonita had it, a hand-delivered pick by Bulldogs QB George Johnson in the final minutes would have sealed the deal for the Bearcats and ended the Dogs’ game-winning drive. But that’s football, West Covina finished the drive and that was that, a 37-33 victory. The big question entering 2011 is who are the real challengers to dethrone the Dogs? It doesn’t appear to be a dominating division, but you figure the challengers must be Muir, Diamond Ranch, Diamond Bar, Bonita, La Serna, Mayfair and Norwalk. But if you ask me, I’m rolling with Arcadia. This is the surprise year for the Apaches, and you heard it here first.
The Orange County Register reported last night that veteran San Clemente football coach Eric Patton has been replaced by interim coach and Tritons athletic director Jon Hamro fewer than three weeks before the start of the season, the school announced Tuesday. Patton has been a key focus of an investigation into a sports equipment and apparel company’s alleged kickbacks to Orange County coaches. The Register story also included this: In July, the district said that some of its high school coaches may have embezzled hundreds of thousands of dollars of district and parent money in a kickback scheme involving LAPES (Lapes Athletic Team Laguna Hills).
The live show is three half hour segments starting at 7 p.m., with La Habra coach Frank Mazzotta, followed by Chrix Rix at 7:30 p.m., and Jason David at 8. Aram will host all three shows with Steve Ramirez, Miguel Melendez and myself splitting time in each segment. It will all run on the same UStream, and each blog will have the full hour and a half up and running. If you miss any part of the show, it will be available on the blogs afterward.
When: EVERY Tuesday at 7 p.m.
What: The best players and coaches in the area as guests.
Where: Any of the blogs will have a LIVE player
August 16 guests: Former Charter Oak standout and Super Bowl champion Jason David, Former Bishop Amat and Florida St. quarterback Chris Rix and La Habra head coach Frank Mazzotta.
It you don’t trust Robledo, Tolegian or the biased bloggers on the thread, should you trust MaxPreps’ computer generated San Gabriel Valley preseason rankings, with teams ranked locally in parenthesis, and the Southern Section ranking next to it. You might be surprised. Charter Oak at No. 10? Bonita No. 4? Can Observant and New York live with Monrovia at No. 5? Or how about Rio Hondo Prep at No. 20, with no mention of Arroyo, Azusa, etc. Is Bishop Amat’s No. 5 ranking in the Southern Section (and state) a tad lofty? This is why we always say, trust your local sportswriters when it comes to area rankings, we know more than the computers do.
Below: Charter Oak isn’t doing cartwheels over these rankings? They might not be No. 1 in the Valley, but they’re certainly a lot higher than No. 10.
MAXPREPS (LOCAL) AND SOUTHERN SECTION RANKINGS
(1) 5. Bishop Amat (La Puente, CA) CA 0-0 0-0 58.50
(2) 21. West Covina (CA) CA 0-0 0-0 43.3 0
(3) 25 Chino Hills (CA) CA 0-0 0-0 41.9 0
(4) 30. Bonita (La Verne, CA) CA 0-0 0-0 39.7 0
(5) 41. Monrovia (CA) CA 0-0 0-0 34.6 0
(6) 45. Damien (La Verne, CA) CA 0-0 0-0 33.7 0
(7) 46. St. Francis (La Canada, CA) CA 0-0 0-0 33.6 0
(8) 70. Claremont (CA) CA 0-0 0-0 28.4 0
(9) 74. Covina (CA) CA 0-0 0-0 27.1 0
(10) 78. Charter Oak (Covina, CA) CA 0-0 0-0 26.7 0 (11)
(11) 90. Glendora (CA) CA 0-0 0-0 24 0
(12) 91. Muir (Pasadena, CA) CA 0-0 0-0 23.9 0
(13) 94. San Dimas (CA) CA 0-0 0-0 23.5 0
(14) 119. South Hills (West Covina, CA) CA 0-0 0-0 20.6 0
(15) 139. Arcadia (CA) CA 0-0 0-0 17.7 0
(16) 140. Walnut (CA) CA 0-0 0-0 17.4 0
(17) 143. Diamond Ranch (Pomona, CA) CA 0-0 0-0 17 0
(18) 153. Diamond Bar (CA) CA 0-0 0-0 14.4 0
(19) 156. Rio Hondo Prep (Arcadia, CA) CA 0-0 0-0 13.7 0
(20). 187. Maranatha (Pasadena, CA) CA 0-0 0-0 8.5 0
Wonderful tribute to San Gabriel Valley coaching legend Ed Rycroft. Rycroft played at Monrovia High in the 1960s and returned to coach there in the 1990s and also at Azusa with coach Fil Lujan after his tour of duty in Vietnam. His passion for football is obvious in this 2010 tribute video after being selected to the Minor League Football Hall of Fame. He has coached local semipro teams the SGV Rhino’s, Foothill Firehawks and is currently the defensive coordinator for the Norwalk Cowboys of the UDFL. I’m sure many of our bloggers know who he is, and for those who don’t or high school players today, listen to what he says in the video. You will love his passion.
We compiled a list of the top ten fantasy football games you won’t see this fall with predictions from Aram Tolegian and Fred J. Robledo …
1. Bishop Amat vs. Charter Oak — How long have we been asking about this? Prediction: Robledo (Amat); Tolegian (Charter Oak).
2. Monrovia vs. Muir – Would be fireworks and bragging rights for the the biggest WSGV game of the year. Predcition: Robledo (Muir), Tolegian (Monrovia)
3. Charter Oak vs. West Covina – Battle of former and current Southeast champions. Prediction: Robledo (Charter Oak), Tolegian (Charter Oak).
4. South Hills vs. Covina – This would finally make sense for the king of the District. Prediction: Robledo (South Hills), Tolegian (Covina).
5. Damien vs. Bonita – Why haven’t the La Verne schools squarred off? Prediction: Robledo (Damien), Tolegian (Damien)
6. Monrovia vs. West Covina – Why haven’t former coach and champions Maggiore and Maddox hooked up? Prediction: Robledo (West Covina), Tolegian (West Covina).
7. Baldwin Park vs. Sierra Vista - Was canceled after the bad blood, but the crowds were great and the city deserves it. Prediction: Robledo (Sierra Vista), Tolegian (Baldwin Park)
8. Azusa vs. Arroyo — Want to know who is best between Montview and Mission Valley Legue champions. Prediction: Robledo (Arroyo), Tolegian (Arroyo).
9. Chino Hills vs. Bishop Amat – Huskies might be only area team with a real shot. Prediction: Robledo (Bishop Amat), Tolegian (Bishop Amat).
10. Glendora vs. Damien - Use to be one of the great Sierra rivalries. Prediction: Robledo (Damien), Aram (Damien).
LA MIRADA — Youth is being served for the La Mirada High School football team this season.
But that doesn’t mean the the Matadores can’t continue their recent tradition, which includes winning the Suburban League title the past two seasons and the CIF-Southern Section Southern Division in 2009.
If anything, the concept by most that La Mirada will take a step back, just fuels the Mats’ fire.
“We want to be the underdog every weekend,” said La Mirada offensive coordinator Armando Rivas, who is interim coach while head coach Mike Moschetti recovers from a pneumonia. “We want to be the team that no one knows what to expect. We’re going to thrive on that every week, build on that momentum, and get better.”
By Steve Ramirez
LA MIRADA — Andy Gramajo will start in the backfield for the La Mirada High School football team this season. Just don’t expect him to be in that spot every time the Matadores come to the line of scrimmage.
The senior is La Mirada’s Mr. Versatility, capable of putting a dent in the opposition no matter where he lines up on the field.
“He’s been playing football his whole life,” La Mirada offensive coordinator Armando Rivas said. “He’s smart, knows our offense. He can play a number of positions. He’ll play running back, receiver, or even be our main guy in the Wildcat (formation) if we decide to run it.
“He’s smart, like a coach on the field, and he’s a great athlete who is the fastest guy on our team and has the best hands on our team. He’s going to be the guy we expect to carry the load.”
Sierra Vista’s Giovanni Rivera, the area’s leading rusher in 2010 with 2,304 yards, shocked Dons coach Don LeGro when he attended the first day of summer camp on Wednesday. Rivera was not with the Dons during the spring, and told Le Gro he was going to skip his senior season to concentrate on baseball. “We were thrilled when we saw his face,” Le Gro said. “What it does is take some of that talent we were going to use to replace him, and move it somewhere else. All along we were hoping that as we got closer he might change his mind, and when he showed up, it gave us a whole new outlook.”
“Yesterday was like Christmas Eve and I woke up this morning very excited. I’d be lying if I said we weren’t excited about the level of experience we have. We get to a different level football now as far as teaching them. We’re not just going to be out here with our base stuff.” — Covina coach Darryl Thomas
By Aram Tolegian
Not since the 2006 season, when the Covina High School football program returned one of the best senior classes around, has there been this much excitement when the Colts took the field Thursday for their first day of fall practice. The Colts, who went 10-2 last season and swept the Valle Vista League, return their leading passer, rusher, receiver and tackler. With so much experience, the expectations have been heightened and the anticipation is palpable.
Funeral services for St. Lucy’s assistant soccer coach Mark Faurot, also the goalkeeper coach, junior varsity coach and a big contributor to the club soccer community, will be held on Saturday, August 27, at the Christ First Baptist Church in Covina at 11:00 a.m.
Faurot, who had been an assistant at St. Lucy’s since 2005, was diagnosed with cancer in March and passed on Aug. 5 at the age of 41. Faurot, also a softball coach at La Verne Lutheran a few years back, graduated from Diamond Bar, and was a member of the Brahmas’ 1987 CIF championship team. “Our kids are devastated,” St. Lucy’s athletic director Judy Hartranft said. “It was a very tough battle and very quick. He had a rough last few months.” Former St. Lucy’s head coach Robert Rodriguez remembered him fondly. “He worked tirelessly on behalf of the players and families,” Rodriguez said of Faurot. “He was a huge part of the success they have had.”
1. Jalen Moore, Bishop Amat, Sr. – Earned Serra League first-team honors and rushed for 1,634 yards and 23 touchdowns. He was even more impressive when Zach Shay turned his ankle against Crespi. Even though everyone keyed on him, he was still able to produce.
2. Jamel Hart, South Hills, Sr. — One of the few bright spots on the Huskies’ miserable 3-7 campaign. He rushed for 1,318 yards and 17 touchdowns, and did so against one of the area’s toughest schedules.
3. Chris Solomon, West Covina, Sr. — The reigning player of the year and Southeast Division MVP rushed for 1,790 yards and 20 touchdowns and will be an even bigger focal point this year. Think about it, he only had 151 carries, averaging nearly 10 yards a carry.
4. Corey Victoria, Glendora, Sr. — In coach Todd Quinsey’s run-oriented offense, he inherits a gem in the 6-foot, 180 pound back, who will share the backfield with Donovan Holmes, who give the Tartans quite a 1-2 punch.
5. Gevontray Ainsworth, Covina, Jr. – The third piece of the Colts’ triple threat, which also includes quarterback Billy Livingston and all-purpose standout Vinny Venegas. I thought Ainsworth looked intimidating as a sophomore, already 6-foot and 175 pounds. I’m expecting a monster year from him in 2011.
6. Kurt Scoby, Charter Oak, So. — Rushed for 470 yards and 10 touchdowns as a freshman, but will be called upon much more to help balance out quarterback Travis Santiago. Whenever Charter Oak’s football teams have had success, they have had solid backs.
7. Jamaal Clayton, Diamond Bar, Sr. – He rushed for 70 yards and three touchdowns as a junior, but figures to be an important piece in coach Ryan Maine’s offense. If Diamond Bar has success, Clayton figures to be a big reason.
8. Dillon Corona, San Dimas, Sr. – He was on the 2009 championship team and in coach Zernickow’s Wing T, the fullback figures to produce and produce heavily. The Saints don’t rely on one back, but if you have to zero in on one, it’s Corona.
9. Desmond Reed, Azusa, Sr. – The Aztecs shared the load and shared in well in 2010, but expect Reed to get the bulk of the carries and be among the area leaders in total yards. He’s a natural back with cutting ability and speed. With Sierra Vista’s Giovanni Rivera not with the Dons, Reed should be the league’s best back.
10. Donald Morris, Pomona, Jr – I’m taking coach Anthony Rice’s word that he will be one of the area’s top backs. With the kind of schedule Pomona faces, someone like Morris should be able to rank among the area’s rushing leaders.