FOOTBALL: It’s still too early, but for the sake of conversation …

Yo, footballfan:
From too far in the distance, and in no particular order, this what this
fall’s football looks like:
1. Santa Fe.
Because it’s Santa Fe, and until somebody knocks the Chiefs off their
perch, that’s enough. The area’s best back-up quarterback returns,
although he may be pushed hard by the young man coming up from last season’s
freshman team (and no, he didn’t transfer in from anywhere!)
2. St. Paul.
Swordsmen will build on last season and have some new personnel to make
it easier. Quarterback may be a concern.
3. California.
A prototype quarterback returns, big, strong and experienced. The
question is how the new guy at the helm is accepted by a community that
feels it was robbed of its coach.
4. La Habra.
Because it’s La Habra. If there is an area program that can come close
to mirroring Santa Fe, it is the Highlanders’. Hard to find a weak spot,
and if it has one, it’ll be corrected by the time league rolls around.
5. Pioneer.
I know, I know, but don’t sell the Titans short. A good QB last year
will be better this year, two of the area’s best — and most honest —
running backs return, and increased paricipation that includes more than
a handful of solid prospects are reason for the DRL take a second look.
6/7. La Serna/El Rancho.
New coaches always bring with them renewed optimism. How far they can
develop it is always questionable. But give them a chance.
8. Whittier Christian.
Small school with a big school appetite. Coach/A.D. is legitimate and so
is the program, which dodged a bullet when he almost left but changed
his mind. The stud horse the Heralds have ridden the past two seasons is
gone, and undoubtedly they will feel a draft from the void, but he
leaves a solid legacy on which to build a new one.
9. Whittier.
Probably should be listed higher, but the question lingers: Was last
season’s remarkable — and impressive — performance a one-shot deal?
Staff says no, merely a stepping stone to higher expectations. Only time
will tell.
10. La Mirada.
Matadores didn’t achieve early season expectations a year ago, riding a
rollercoast season that was sometimes brilliant and sometimes frustrating. A
strong finish a year ago coupled with a new season brings reason for for
new expectations, hopefully more realistic.
11. Cantwell.
Small school dreaming bigger. Increased participation always a good
sign, and mental approach surely will benefit from rugby program’s
success.
12. Montebello.
Inconsistency last season makes looking ahead difficult. A lot of
question marks.
13. Schurr.
Defending division champions lost many key players. A tough act to
follow, but same coach that got them to the final in ’06 figures to make
them at least competitive in ’07.

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