By Tim Peterson
There has been a lot of talk about who is the best team in the area now that all of the summer passing tournaments are in the books. I’m not going to bust out a Top Ten just yet but if Pasadena isn’t somewhere in your Top 3 then you better think again.
The Bulldogs won the Colony Tournament, they won their own tournament and they were runner up at the SGV Shootout. I’ve seen Pasadena all summer. Believe me they’re going to be a problem. Plus they have a quarterback who not only may have the best arm in the area but definitely has the coolest name in Indiana Wijay. Wijay mentioned that there is a story behind the name. I’ll get more on that soon. Also I like his Bass Pro Shop hat.
Pasadena also has a big time receiver in Baylin Brooks who transferred in from Loyola and has already committed to San Diego State. Expect to see the Wijay to Brooks connection on a weekly basis this fall.
Once Pacific League play starts the Bulldogs will slice through that like a hot knife through butter. Nobody will come within four touchdowns of them. Muir you say? I saw the Mustangs last week at the Pasadena Showcase. I like the energy that new head coach Lance Mitchell brings. The Stangs have a quarterback that can sling it and some talent at the skill positions. They will definitely compete….Ok I convinced myself. Pasadena will beat them by only 3 touchdowns.
The League is already a wrap but Pasadena does have some barnburners (do they still use that word?) in non-league play. The Dogs open at home against La Serna, then travel to Glendora and Damien, before returning to the Dawg House for Loyola and Colony. I’ll say 9-1. Not that Pasadena can’t go 10-0, I mean doesn’t OC Robert Maxie always say “Red is Better?” but everybody stumbles at least once and I think that happens once in the first five games. Loyola might get them.
Pasadena was runner up in the SGV Shootout? What? Who won the Shootout? That would be Monrovia. Again no drama for the Wildcats in league. They’ll beat the Rio Hondo like a drum. In fact if you plan on going to a Monrovia game when they play a Rio Hondo League opponent hide the women and children first. It’s going to get ugly fast. 45-0 halftime scores will be the norm. The good news is with a running clock you will still have time to catch a dinner and a movie after the game. And of course this begs the annual question- when is Monrovia going to be moved out of the Rio Hondo? Attention CIF: This needs to happen sooner than later.
The Wildcats do have some competitive non-league matches though. Northview, Arcadia and San Dimas at home, Bonita, El Rancho and Ayala on the road. Last year I had Monrovia going 9-1 in the regular season. The Wildcats proved me wrong as they went 10-0. I again say they go 9-1. Why? Because nobody’s perfect. Are they? We’ll see. for the Cats 2022 is all about the playoffs. I expect Carlos Hernandez, Brian Salazar and company to take care of business and make a deep playoff run.
Last thought on Monrovia-Pasadena. Can you imagine the buzz and excitement that would be created if these two matched up? A sportswriter can only dream though. I’ve been told by multiple sources that this will never happen. It’s still too dangerous due to possible gang activity. Too bad. It would be a must see.
Talk about a must see has anybody else seen Downey’s Aidan Chiles sling it? Dude has a rocket for an arm, solid accuracy and great size. Oregon State apparently thought the same thing as they signed Chiles to a letter of intent. Downey always has a great schedule but if you can only check out one game this year make it Warren-Downey. It’s the best rivalry in the area bar none. Now that’s a must see.
Are the rumors about Long Beach Poly quarterback/ Tennessee commit Nico Iamaleava not playing this year true? I’ve heard he will play, then he won’t, then Tennessee won’t allow him…not sure. It’s all over the map. Personally I hope he does. I saw him at Warren last year and would love to see him go to work on a high school field for one more year.
If you think anybody other than Arroyo will win the MVL this year you’re fooling yourself. The Peterson is a homer comments start in 3…2…1…
Nothing really grabs me on the Knights schedule but I do like the Schurr game on September 2nd.
Do I think Sierra Vista will bounce back? Jesse Ceniceros is there. Yes, the Dons will bounce back.
I’m hearing some good things about Covina. I had a nice conversation with Colt head coach Aaron Berry at the El Rancho Tournament. He says they looked good, the numbers were solid and they had one kid who looked like he could play linebacker for the Chicago Bears. This isn’t a bounce back year for the Colts. They went 8-4 last year and advanced to the second round of the CIF Division 10 playoffs. With several returning starters including quarterback Jake Duronslet and a very winnable Sierra League they’ll be fine. Berry said he’s loving the horseshoe. By the way Berry, an Azusa Pacific alum, is still not happy that the Cougars dropped the football program.
Latest word is that Temple City is still alive and kicking and will be naming a new head football coach soon.
La Puente? Patience Daniel-san.
Looking for a good Week 0 matchup? There are several but this one jumped out. Northview at Muir. Could be a real barnburner.
That’s my principle.
Tim can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @tspeterson40 and Facebook- Tim Peterson.