|OCVarsity Gridiron: Let the games begin|
The 2012 football season is upon us as Steve Fryer, Carlos Arias, and Dan Albano visit No. 1 Santa Margarita. Can the Eagles win in Arizona? Will Servite beat up Bishop Amat? Can HB defeat El Toro again? Video by Jonathan Khamis, OCRegister.com
|Matt Barkley has 'unfinished business'|
Interview with USC's Matt Barkley: What does "unfinished business" mean? Which freshman are ready to make an impact? Which high school football team does Barkley have his eye on? Video by Jonathan Khamis, OCRegister.com (8/22/12).
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Transfers' impact to be felt early
Let 'em play.
Four football players who transferred in recent months and are expected to make significant impact at their new schools have been declared athletically eligible: running back Shavony Drew, who transferred to Fountain Valley from Centennial of Compton; DaVonte Young, who transferred to Tustin from St. John Bosco of Bellflower; and receiver Sean Modster and running back Alex Suchesk, both of whom transferred to Mission Viejo from Santa Margarita.
Like all transfers, those four had to make verified change of residences or get a hardship waiver, or sit out the first month of the season before becoming eligible at their new schools. All four made a verified change of residences.
Those change of residences were verified by the four players' new schools. As the CIF-Southern Section is very much a self-policing organization, when it comes to transfers or forfeitures, the section office accepts schools' findings in these and most other matters. The language in the transfer rules that kept so many transfers from becoming eligible – "athletically-motivated transfer" – has been deleted from transfer rules via a vote of the CIF Council, which is made up of CIF member schools.
The feeling here is that if adults are allowed to live and work where they want, then students should be able to attend school where they want. And they should be able to play sports at any school they choose, too, with minimal restrictions. Freedom is a good thing.
Of course, we don't need to have something like a quarterback in late October transferring from a losing team to a playoff contender when the contender's quarterback had a season-ending injury. And undue influence, i.e. recruiting, should always be forbidden.
Student-athletes who transfer, and their parents who approve of or even are the driving force of a transfer, often transfer for the wrong reasons.
Going to a high profile public school program or to one of the hot shot private schools is not needed to get recruited by colleges.
A small collection of examples: Fili Moala of the Indianapolis Colts went to Western; Eddie Pleasant of the Houston Texans went to Kennedy; Alex Parsons of the Oakland Raiders went to Woodbridge; and Oniel Cousins of the Cleveland Browns played 8-man football at little Eastside Christian.
So, kids, stay at your original school. Be able to one day review your yearbook to smile and laugh at the memories you will have page after page. Try to avoid being that three-schools-in-four-years person who looks back at the high school experience as an empty one.
By the way ... those four NFL players mentioned earlier? They stayed at their high schools for all four years.
Taking a look around Orange County high school sports:
•Sports Illustrated's website published a worthy profile on Mater Dei football coach Bruce Rollinson, emphasizing the Monarchs' penchant for developing quarterbacks. The contributions of Mater Dei offensive coordinator Dave Money were mentioned, but not sufficiently so. If USC's Matt Barkley wins the Heisman Trophy, Rollinson would become the first high school football coach to have two Heisman winners come from his program.
•Servite people certainly are going to request equal time from SI, just like they do here. Something like a piece on the Kalil brothers, Servite alums Matt and Ryan, being starting NFL linemen might do it. And SI should not forget about ex-Friar Matt Slater, with the New England Patriots.
•Mater Dei junior linebacker Grant Moore is a son of Rex Moore, a great player at El Modena who went on to some outstanding years as a linebacker at USC in the mid 1980s.
•When we last visited an El Toro football practice during the 2011 playoffs, Chargers coach Robert Frith pointed with pride at the area where an on-campus stadium would be constructed. Nearby residents oppose the stadium plan, having expressed concerns over lighting, traffic, noise and parking issues. The plan is on hold.
•Fox Sports West and Prime Ticket will televise high school football games every Friday, many times live. The first county teams on the schedule: Edison vs. San Clemente, Sept. 28.
•FoxSportsWest.com will provide live streaming of many football games, too. Longtime local play-by-play man Paul Westphal, who has worked for Cox3 and more, will be on many of those webcasts.
•Time Warner Cable's SoCal 101 channel will televise two football games a week. Its first telecast involving a county team will be Mater Dei's home game against St. Paul of Santa Fe Springs on Aug. 31.
•KLAC/570 radio is broadcasting a high school sports show on Saturdays at 10 p.m. The show will move to Fridays in early October.
•Of course, the best high school sports radio segment happens every Friday at 9:30 a.m. on Roger Lodge's "Sports Lodge" show on KLAA/830. Lodge has this really smart sportswriter on every Friday. You should check it out.