Minor to take over St. Mary’s football program

Got a press release from St. Mary’s-Berkeley yesterday to let us know that Dan Ferrigno has stepped down as head football coach and Keith Minor has been named as the Panthers’ new coach.

Ferrigno is leaving to take a job on new coach Brady Hoke’s staff at San Diego State. He went 5-5 in one year at St. Mary’s. Minor has coached at Balboa-San Francisco for the past seven years. He was 33-42 at Balboa.


How good is Mack…

Read this quote from the Fresno Bee from the coach of a team that the McClymonds boys basketball team beat in the Clovis Elks Holiday Classic 65-50.

“It was a win-win for us,” Sunnyside coach Mark Beebe said. “Nobody expected us to win against a team ranked in the state and nation. We’re just a good — hopefully, maybe — somewhat excellent local team.”

According to the story, Sunnyside (11-3) has its best team in years and that result was actually the closest of any games Mack has played in the tournament. Talk about a humbling quote about your own team “just a good — hopefully, maybe — somewhat excellent local team.” Mack faced Hanford in the finals tonight and I’ll post the result when I get it.


All East Bay football team

Our All-East Bay football team, as selected by the writers of the Bay Area News Group-East Bay (Oakland Tribune, Daily Review, Argus, Tri-Valley Herald, Contra Costa Times) was released in today’s paper. Here are the selections.

Player of the Year: QB/LB Jonathan Brown, Encinal

Offensive Player of the Year: QB Joe Southwick, San Ramon Valley

Defensive Player of the Year: LB Joey Levine, Clayton Valley

QB — Joe Southwick, San Ramon Valley
RB — Leroy Green, California
RB — Patrone Wood II, Ygnacio Valley
WR — Diante Jackson, Las Lomas
WR — Roman Runner, Freedom
TE — Zach Ertz, Monte Vista
OL — Jeff Ferrier, California
OL — Nick LaHaye, De La Salle
OL — Hector Orozco, Pittsburg
OL — Zack Purdy, Miramonte
OL — Sosaia Tauaho, Fremont
K — Matt Lloyd, Miramonte

QB — Brett Nottingham Monte Vista Jr. 6-4/210
RB — Kylan Butler De La Salle Sr. 5-8/185
RB — Mario Brown Bishop O’Dowd Jr. 5-9/165
WR — Tom Hemmingsen Monte Vista Sr. 5-9/170
WR — Nathan Hinke Foothill Sr. 6-1/165
TE — Darin Thompson Las Lomas Sr. 6-0/210
OL — Mike Carbone Freedom Sr. 6-1/213
OL — Magdeleno Meraz San Leandro Sr. 6-2/245
OL — Demetrius Moore Berkeley Sr. 6-4/286
OL — Cody Peterson De La Salle Sr. 6-1/211
OL — Danny Valenzuela Clayton Valley Sr. 6-3/305
PK — Edgar Villagrana Pittsburg Sr. 5-7/145


Pos. Name School Year Height/Weight
QB Blake Wayne De La Salle Sr. 5-9/180
RB Jerrell Walker Kennedy-Fremont Sr. 6-0/185
RB Forrest Hightower Concord Jr. 5-10/165
WR James King Miramonte Jr. 6-3/195
WR Nick Zwarg California Sr. 5-8/155
TE Deon James Freedom Sr. 6-2/210
OL Charles Leno San Leandro Sr. 6-5/265
OL Tyler Kintz Bishop O’Dowd Sr. 6-1/240
OL Ben McKay San Ramon Valley Sr. 5-9/205
OL Dan Wissinger Monte Vista Sr. 6-1/250
OL Tyler Worthley Dublin Sr. 6-4/300
PK Grant Vandevanter San Ramon Valley Sr. 6-2/200

DL — Morgan Breslin, Las Lomas
DL — Nick Pica, Concord
DL — Paul Piukala, Castlemont
DL — Dylan Wynn, De La Salle
LB — Garrison Goodman, San Ramon Valley
LB — Joey Levine, Clayton Valley
LB — Dave Wilkerson, Monte Vista
LB — Emeka Williams, Pittsburg
DB — Avery Patterson, Pittsburg
DB — Noah Perio, De La Salle
DB — Blair Wishom, De La Salle
DB — Devin Brown, Piedmont
UTIL — Nick Cole, Clayton Valley

Pos. Name School Year Height/Weight
DL Ricky Aliifua San Leandro Sr. 6-2/250
DL Brandon Essy Berean Christian Sr. 6-2/220
DL Cody Juarez Freedom Sr. 6-2/262
DL Dan Whitaker California Sr. 6-3/235
LB Derek Goetting California Sr. 6-1/208
LB Lucas King Berkeley Sr. 6-3,/200
LB Chris Martin Bishop O’Dowd Jr. 6-4/230
LB Kevin O’Connell De La Salle Sr. 6-1/207
DB Erick Dargan Pittsburg Jr. 6-0/190
DB Cody Peebles Freedom Sr. 5-9/158
DB Tyler Rittenour Campolindo Sr. 6-0/170
DB Dominique Sashington Encinal Sr. 6-0/185
UT Xavier Milton Encinal Sr. 6-1/170

Pos. Name School Year Height/Weight
DL Azzie Ikarho Monte Vista Sr. 5-11/235
DL Josse Tejada Clayton Valley Sr. 6-1/225
DL Siua Taufa Ygnacio Valley Sr. 6-0/280
DL Sione Tupouata Fremont Jr. 6-4/250
LB Matt Enos Heritage Sr. 6-0/196
LB Tommy Nott Las Lomas Sr. 6-1/215
LB Kenny Shrader College Park Sr. 6-0/200
LB Soma Tialavea Pittsburg Sr. 5-8/180
DB Aaron Horne Castlemont Sr. 5-9, 170
DB Khyri Knowles De La Salle Sr. 5-10/180
DB Dwaine Simpson San Leandro Sr. 5-10/170
DB Kristoff Williams Deer Valley Jr. 6-3/190
UT Byron Gruendl San Ramon Valley Sr. 6-1/200
UT Ryan Rodriguez Freedom Sr. 5-7/164


CIF bowls III: Some final thoughts

I’m sure Ben will eventually offer his final Monday Morning Punter of the season, but I wanted to throw out my two cents on the weekend of state football.

First off, with the exception of the small school game, this was clearly the most competitive bowl weekend since it all started in 2006. Each of the last four games were extremely good football games. And even though the South went 4-1, Northern fans should gain some hope from this weekend.

Now, for some specific thoughts on a few topics:

Grant: Well, there was little surprise that by Sunday morning we had three comments here from Pacers fans asking us to eat crow. And I understand completely.  Now, I will admit that I was wrong about Grant. They were extremely impressive in their 25-20 win over Long Beach Poly.  I thoroughly enjoyed watching their defense, especially the play of linebacker Jordan Wallace and strong safety Howard Warren. After watching that game, the Pacers deserve to be mentioned among Northern California power programs.

CIF, Grant/De La Salle: So while I admitted to being wrong about Grant, I don’t believe I was wrong in challenging the CIF’s choice of putting them in the Open Division game — at least not by the rationale that it gave. While it all worked out, and Grant was able to make the CIF look awfully good, I still stand by my initial criticism that the Pacers did not play a stronger schedule than the De La Salle. Now that I’ve seen Grant, and know how good it is, it’s my hope that they begin playing power programs within the state. The Pacers deserve to be seen, and other programs across the state (especially Northern California) deserve the challenge — if they want it.  As for the CIF, I hope it understands that it’s not completely absolved by the results of the Division I and Open games. I hope it takes some caution from the criticism it took for its decision, specifically on how it rates out-of-state opponents.

LB Poly/Centennial: After watching both teams play, I firmly believe that Centennial was the more complete team. And while much credit has to go to Grant, Poly did not impress me as much as I thought it would. For a defense so heavily praised, I thought it broke down quite a bit. It seemed they relied too much on speed and raw talent as opposed to scheme and technique. I felt the opposite about Centennial’s defense (and Grant’s, for that matter). The Huskies not only brought speed and talent, but it brought effort and – for the most part – discipline. Offensively, there was no comparison. Centennial had more weapons, and appeared to execute better. Based on that breakdown, I thought DLS’ 5-point loss to Centennial was more impressive than Poly’s 5-point loss to Grant. But I still believe Grant deserves to be ahead of the Spartans. If I had a vote for the final state rankings, this would be my top five: 1) Centennial, 2) Grant, 3) DLS, 4) Poly, 5) Cathedral Catholic-San Diego.

Lastly: I don’t want to steal all of Ben’s MMP thunder, so I’ll wrap up. In all, I thought the weekend was a very satisfying finish to another great year of California football. I’m already counting the days until September.


Grant answers all critics

Well, anybody who questioned Grant as the Open Division selection for the CIF state championship bowl game doesn’t have anything to say now. Grant proved it deserved that spot ahead of De La Salle and congrats to the Pacers on their victory. And thank goodness that NorCal didn’t get swept. That would’ve been embarassing.