On rumors, rants and reasons …

Your opinions are greatly appreciated, but …

Why are so many performance evaluations of high school coaches based
upon how many CIF championships their program has won? Even worse, teams that get to the finals but don’t win, forget ‘em! Teams that have
CIF titles, good for them. But not having a championship ring does not
mean that a coach or his program is not worthy of positive
acknowledgement. A committment to working hard in practice and playing
hard in games should be the basis for all evaluations, regardless of the
event’s outcome and not influenced by personal agendas. …..

Truth be told, the area is blessed with many outstanding coaches, some
of whom are being unjustly vilified for things such as not winning
enough, or not using the right players, or not winning big enough, and of
course, the personal agenda thing. Sometimes, it must be considered that
the other team just had better players who performed better. ….

When and where has it been announced that wherever recently removed St.
Paul football coach Pete Gonzalez lands with a new job his staff will
land there, too? ….

About where St. Paul’s outstanding defensive coordinator Gilbert Jimenez
will wind up, has anyone considered that his real passion is basketball?
It is said by those in a position to know that as good as he is in
football, he is even better in basketball. ….

High on the list of enticing football coaching openings is South El
Monte’s. Has it been made public why head coach Erick Escamilla decided
to leave? His will be a tough act to follow. ….

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Patience a virtue when selecting a new coach

Montebello and St. Paul high schools are looking for head football
Sounds simple enough.
Place some ads seeking applicants, do a little paper screening,
couple of interviews and presto, you’re in business.
It would seem in some local circles that the only criteria for
consideration is how well did the guy do on his last job?
Folks posting on the blogs seem bent on criticizing/praising
perspective candidates not so much on whether their teams played hard
and were competitive regardless of the outcome but rather on how many
CIF championships have they won?. And how recently?
Apparently content to ignore the theory that coaches coach and players
play, it would appear that the school’s talent pool had little to do
with it.
This approach could cause some some talented and otherwise qualified
applicants to be overlooked. Fortunately, the selection of the
replacement coaches isn’t up to the bloggers, several of whom have their
own agenda.
Rest assured, the folks in charge of making the decision in these
situations are experienced in such things and the responsibility is in
good hands.

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Nishil Shah: Reasons and reasoning

A lower winning percentage than he expected for himself and the program, and some issues aside from the Xs and Os of the game prompted Nishil Shah to tender his resignation as Montebello High School football coach.
“Five years as head coach, a record of 16-34,” Shah said late Sunday night. “That’s a winning percentage of 32 percent, and that’s not in line with the traditions of Montebello High School.”
Montebello’s best records under Shah were 4-6 in 2004 and 2008. The Oilers’ best finish in the Almont League was a three-way tie for second in 2005, but they lost out in the tiebreaker for a playoff berth. They did not qualify for CIF postseason playoffs in any of Shah’s seasons.
Shah said the decision about leaving the program was his, and that he was not asked to resign.
“I was asked to make some changes that I was not willing to do,” Shah said. He chose not to be specific about the changes other than to say they “involved staff.”
“This decision was based on many circumstances,” he said. “I feel my decision was for the school and the community. I put my heart and soul into coaching my beloved Oilers. I am disappointed about not having more success.
“However, I am at peace with my decision and I’m looking forward to the next chapter in my life.”
Shah, who has been a mathematics teacher at the school for 10 years and says teaching is his No. 1 priority, said it is possible he might return to coaching.
“Depending on who they hire (as his replacement), my intentions are to probably coach at a lower level, the freshmen or junior varsity, where expectations of winning are not so great.
“I would like to get back to working with the kids because I enjoy it. Coaching kids, calling plays, game planning on weekends, those are all positives. Everything else is absolute misery.”
Asked if he might coach basketball again, Shah quickly replied, “No more winter sports. I’m looking at maybe freshman football and/or track and field. Those are my loves.”
Shah was the Oilers’ head track coach in 2005-06 while he was coaching football, but he admitted it was difficult “leaving the football kids in the spring to coach track and field.”
Asked if he would be interested in coaching at another school, Shah said, “Montebello is my home. That’s where I want to be.”

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Montebello football coach made his own decision

Nishil Shah said Sunday night that the decision to resign as Montebello High School’s football coach was his and that he was not forced out.
“I feel my decision was made for the school and the community,” Shah said. He said he will remain at the school as a mathematics teacher and could possibly return to coaching at a lower level (freshman, junior varsity) but probably not this year. He also indicated the future is bright for whomever takes the reins.
“This group of kids, the juniors and sophomores, is the best group we’ve had in some time,” Shah said. Then he added, “I am at peace with my decision and I’m looking forward to the next chapter of my life.”

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Area football coaching stuff:

Montebello High school athletic director Tim Murphy confimed Wednesday
morning that football coach Nishil Shah turned in his letter of resignation Friday.
Shah has not returned calls concerning his decision. Murphy said the
school is flying the position through Feb. 12, and then will begin paper
screening applicants.
“We have the brand new facilities and some talent coming back, so I
expect we will get some very good, qualified applicants.

The rumors that former California High School and current Villa Park
football coach Dusan Ancich might be the next St. Paul football coach
can be laid to rest.
A Villa Park spokesperson confirmed Wednesday afternoon Ancich is firmly entrenched as the Spartans’ head coach and is already preparing for the coming season. He is
said to be happy at Villa Park, and Villa Park is said to be happy to
have him.

The rumors that persist claiming Dusan’s father, Marijon Ancich, will
return as St. Paul’s head coach appear to be foolhardy at best since neither he nor
school officials will confirm them and both continue to deny them, well,
in a roundabout manner. The school will continue to fly the positiion
until Feb. 28.

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Rumors …. and the other side of the coin

Just meandering …

Yo, :) (or what/whomever that is): Why would Dusan Ancich want to leave the head coaching job at a better paying public school to take the position at St. Paul. DO NOT misinterpret that to be a slam on St. Paul’s storied program. The money differential is substantial. …

Speaking of $$, according to a well-placed source in a position to separate fact from fantasy, the rumor that St. Paul would receive a “$1 million gift” from the Willig family if one of their own was named the Swordsmen’s head football coach is bogus. Big time bogus. And does that really surprise anyone?

Yo, yo, Anonymous: The play of Whittier’s girls basketball players indeed is impressive. Notice any similarities between their’s and the boys program’s defensive intensity and execution? Works for one, works for the other. …

Yo, yo, yo, Cal High Parent, er, Paretn: You post in generalities concerning a coach’s abilities or lack thereof, yet you list no specifics with which you are uncomfortable. Just what is it specifically that you think is missing in the program? Even though you may disagree with it, you must assume his game plan is based upon the belief his players’ talents are suited to it. Eliminating innate talent (over which a coach has no control), the next three most important traits for a program are 1. Players buying into the program, 2. Players working hard both in practice and games, 3. Players getting along together (better known as the proverbial chemistry). Your program has all three.

Just curious: If you were the coach, what would you be doing differently?

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Del Rio League hoops: Whittier makes a statement

One game into high school league basketball play doesn’t determine a
championship, but it clearly can send a message.
Friday’s opening game action:
La Serna 44, Whittier 40

It was one of those coulda-woulda-shoulda games for the visiting Cardinals. They led by 14 at halftime, then couldn’t hang. La Serna was typical Mike Lowe-La Serna: Never say die and accept nothing less. Still, Whittier’s aggressive defense created problems for the Lancers. But that won’t surprise the rest of the league.

Pioneer 50, California 36
Coach Joey Mata’s program has been close in recent seasons but hasn’t been able to win the games it needed to get over the top. This may be the year. Michael Crosby on the baseline will be a problem for most everyone, and G/F Michael Saldana can shoot with anyone. California is still finding an identity after major lineup adjustments.

El Rancho 41, Santa Fe 36
The Dons are still an unknown this season, but winning games you are supposed to win is always a plus, and this was one of those games for them. Santa Fe is struggling under new coach Dan Galvan, so look at this as a building year.

Whittier 61, La Serna 39

Whittier’s defense mirrors the Cardinals boys program, quick, aggressive and non-stop.
They key playing them is staying focused on what you do and not so much on what they do. Easier said than done.

Santa Fe 51, El Rancho 42
The host Chiefs trailed at halftime, 18-14, rallied to lead, 28-25 after three quarters, and then pulled away. Another of those “should win” games for Santa Fe if the Chiefs are to compete with Whittier for the title.

California 45, Pioneer 39
The Condors’ pressure defense wanted to push Pioneer away from the basket so the Titans responded with nine 3-pointers. California had an 11-point lead late in the game but allowed the Titans to make a game of it.

First impressions of the league race:
Whittier’s manner of play, both the girls and the boys, will have a huge impact on the outcomes by the end of the season. You may not like their aggressiveness, but coupled with their quickness, especially the girls’, is a style born to disrupt.


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St. Paul football coaching position officially up for grabs

What has been bandied about intensely over the past two weeks became official Friday when Pete Gonzalez met with St. Paul principal Lori Barr and athletic director Marc Hernandez and informed them he had decided not to resign his position as the Swordsmen’s head football coach.
Ms. Barr then took the alternative and relieved Gonzalez from his coaching responsibilities.
Late Monday afternoon, Hernandez faxed a release announcing the final action and informing that St. Paul would begin immediately a search for Gonzalez’s replacement.
The release was short and to the point and included a one-line sentence explaining that this has been a confidential matter and no further details will be discussed.
Ms. Barr has been unavailable for comment.

Anybody else have the feeling this isn’t over … ?

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A bit off the subject, but just wondering …

It’s a couple days early, and Florida and Oklahoma still have to play for the BCS championship, but will that outcome influence opinion concerning the average spectator’s choice for the title of No. 1 college football team in the nation?
Or, …. do you think the question has already been answered by the games that have been played?
Florida, Oklahoma, Texas, Alabama, maybe even USC … ?
Just wondering …

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