30 Questions to Kickoff: Sideline up-and-comers

Well, it’s a little late in the day, but we’re still getting things done and making big plays. Today we’ll stick to the coaching ranks.

Chace’s question: So yesterday we talked about the return of Matt Sweeney to the Foothill sidelines, and the obvious impact it will have on the Falcons. But coaches like Sweeney, Bob Ladouceur (De La Salle) and Herc Pardi (Clayton Valley) are pretty much household names to East Bay prep football fans. Who are the up-and-comers, or the most underrated coaches out there right now?

Ben’s answer: When it comes to new coaches, I’m excited to see if Justin Lowell can keep the improvement going at Northgate. Now-departed coach Darin Owens gave the Broncos something to believe in last year and Lowell knows the kids, will run the same system Owens did, and is a young face for the kids to work with. I think Northgate could continue to improve.

When you talk about underrated coaches though, one of the first names that pops into my mind is Ygnacio Valley’s Josh Davis. No team ever, ever takes YV lightly under Davis’ watch. What I think I like most about the program he runs is that he’s gotten those kids to buy into a hard-nosed brand of football that can overpower a lot of teams. When done right, that kind of physical football is really fun to watch.

I really got a taste last year of how good a coach Campolindo’s Kevin Macy is as well. The adjustments he was able to make throughout the season really kept his team in contention for both the DFAL and NCS 2A East Bay titles. It’s not easy to lose a senior QB (Scott Scharff) and keep the ball rolling and that’s just what the Cougars did.

I’d also be remiss if I didn’t mention Las Lomas coach Doug Longero. All the guy does is win and when his teams aren’t winning, they’re still well coached and technically sound. Yes, the Knights had a ton of talent on last year’s 13-1 team but it was the coaching that kept them in close ballgames and ready to make comebacks.