For now, college ball is winning the game

THE TRADITIONS of college football programs such as USC and UCLA count for a lot (Flickr/Dinur).

College football and the National Football League are competing for your attention right now, and the college boys are winning.

Aside from the fact that the USC and UCLA programs have exceptional exciting quarterbacks, and that the Rams and Chargers look to be no better than so-so this season – at best – the collegiate game has several other appealing aspects.

The pageantry of the university version is unsurpassed, and the traditional rivalries can stretch back for a century or more. Graduates of the Big Two in the area represent a large and continuing fan base, and – unlike pro football teams – there’s little prospect of the Trojans and Bruins packing up and leaving for a bigger, better deal in some other Sunbelt state.

Certainly, for entertainment value alone, nothing that the pros did this week was better than the USC-Texas game. It will take a while before the Rams and Chargers build up some new history, make some new memories and sink their roots deep. For the time being, the college game is king.

Chargers, Mariners still atop High Five

As Week Five opens for area high school football teams, four are still unbeaten. That’s a pretty good showing for the Garden Grove-Huntington Beach-Westminster area almost halfway into the season.

In our latest High Five rankings, Edison (3-1) remains in the top spot after beating a good San Juan Hills team 28-0. Pacifica (4-0) is second after a one-sided win over city rival Garden Grove.

Moving into third place is Ocean View (3-0), followed by La Quinta (3-0) and Orange (3-0). On the bubble is Westminster (2-1).

Looking ahead to bigger games

Speaking of the season being so far along, that means that league action will be starting before long. Which, in turn, means some big games.

Taking a look at the records of the teams so far, here’s what’s shaping up to be the contests you don’t want to miss if you follow local prep gridiron action.

  • Sunset League: Fountain Valley is a surprising 3-1, while Edison is 3-1 and Los Alamitos 2-1 so far. If you figure that the Edison-Los Al will be the decider, that’s set for Oct. 19 at Cap Sheue Field on the Huntington Beach High campus.
  • Golden West League: There are four legit prospects for the GWL crown. Ocean View and Orange are 3-0, with Segerstrom at 3-1, and Santa Ana and Westminster at 2-1. Assuming that OVHS and OHS will be the top two, their clash will be Nov. 3 at the Seahawk stadium.
  • Garden Grove League: Garden Grove High (1-3) has won five straight GGL football titles, but this final year in the GGL (they are being moved to Golden West for 2018) and they could be in off-year. La Quinta (3-0) vs. Rancho Alamitos (2-1) on Oct. 20 shows promise, if the Aztecs beat the Argonauts on Oct. 5.
  • Empire League: Three contenders for the title: Pacifica and Tustin are 4-0 and Cypress is 3-0. If it’s Pacifica vs. Cypress, that game will be on Oct. 13 at Bolsa Grande High; if it’s vs. Tustin vs. Pacifica, that will be on Oct. 27 at GGHS.

Monday Morning Coach is written by Pete Zarustica and sometimes posted on Sunday night.



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