Crescenta Valley, Hoover gear up for intercity rivalry

SOUTHEAST GLENDALE — The Glendale YMCA Quarterback Club, in its 68th year, meets Tuesday's at the Elk's Lodge. The following are odds and ends from the fourth meeting of the year.

FROM ONE RIVAL TO ANOTHER

For the second week in a row, the Crescenta Valley High football team will meet an intercity rival. The Falcons began Pacific League play Friday with a 35-14 victory against Glendale High at Moyse Field.

Now, the Falcons (3-1) will return to Moyse on Friday to face Hoover (1-3). The Tornadoes began league Thursday with a 57-13 loss to Burroughs, which shared the league championship last season with Burbank.

Crescenta Valley first-year Coach Paul Schilling said there's room for improvement concerning his squad, which will have an arduous task of trying to stop Hoover senior quarterback AJ Pule, who passed for more than 300 yards against Burroughs.

"Hopefully, we will improve more this week," Schilling said. "I'll be happy when the Hoover game is over because it's tough facing your two [area] rivals in consecutive weeks.

"Hoover's got a tremendously talented offensive team and they seem to throw all of the time. Pule would start on any team in our league. He's a great athlete and we don't stop the pass well."

Hoover third-year Coach Chris Long said the Tornadoes will be presented some challenges playing against Crescenta Valley.

"I'm sure it will be a packed crowd," Long said. "We've had trouble stopping the run and CV likes to run a lot.

"I know we'll be ready, and I'm sure CV will be as well."

EBERHART REFLECTS ON CV GAME

For parts of 14 seasons, Alan Eberhart patrolled the sidelines as head coach at Crescenta Valley. Now, he's a second-year coach at Glendale attempting to turn the Nitros into a respectable program.

Though there's plenty to deal with, at least Eberhart won't have to longer worry about facing Crescenta Valley. Crescenta Valley recorded a 35-14 Pacific League win Friday against Glendale at Moyse.

Nonetheless, Eberhart had plenty to say about facing his former program.

"It's unique playing CV because you are standing across the sidelines and looking at what they present," said Eberhart, who coached the team to five league championships between 1993-2006. "The band, fans and, of course, the 60 players.

"We got our team ready to play. We wanted first downs and didn't want [Crescenta Valley] to have the ball. It was 7-7 at halftime and the players were excited, but we needed them to be unexcited and we told them to calm down.

"At the end of the third quarter, we were down, 28-7, and the excitement went away. I'm happy with the way we played, but I'm disappointed with what happened. We had a chance, but we couldn't get it done."

THE ULTIMATE FOOTBALL EXPERIENCE

From handling postgame media interviews to breaking down game film to coaching a game under the bright lights, the life of a football coach can be demanding. Many hours are spent away from their families. The pressure to win can be overwhelming.

As the guest speakers at Tuesday's meeting, Eberhart and Schilling provided a glimpse at what their coaching responsibilities entail during a typical week of the season.

"[At the Glendale YMCA Quarterback Club] you get to see us for one hour a week and we spend five or six minutes speaking," Eberhart said. "But people want to know what we do and what our job is like.

"The week starts when the game ends and then we deal with the press and you have to be able to talk to them and have your emotions under control. Then you go and deal with your players and then you have the film exchange and get it ready, which becomes an ordeal in itself.

"When the technology changes, there's a change in the equipment [set-up]. You exchange the film at 8 a.m. Saturday and then the coaching staff meets before the players come in to watch film.

"There's a lot of constructive criticism in the meetings and film doesn't lie. You meet with the coaches again on Sunday and then we practice at night Monday and practice Tuesday and Wednesday and finalize a game plan. On Thursdays, we are in half pads and working on special teams and then have a team dinner. On Friday, it's game day and there's nothing like it on campus. Then the game starts and it's a lot of fun, but a lot of stress because there's a lot to think about. Being a coach, it's who we are and it's the greatest thing in the world because there's no greater job than being able to work with kids in the area, coaching football and being a teacher."

For Schilling, he's learning the ropes of being a head coach at the varsity level after previously serving as a lower-level coach and a defensive coordinator at Crescenta Valley up until this season. Schilling said he relied on many people for advice about entering the coaching fraternity.

"There are a lot of people who got me here to CV," Schilling said. "I wanted a [coaching] job because there were a lot of people who affected me. I played in high school at [Sherman Oaks] Notre Dame and played for a great coach in Kevin Rooney, who I learned a lot from. They cared about the kids.

"Then Coach Eberhart took a chance with me and I had no coaching experience. I became the head JV coach in 1994 and I was blessed with an unbelievable amount of talent. Then I became the defensive backs coach at the varsity level before I went to Saugus for two years.

"My heart was still at CV and I came back. I held different coaching positions at the lower level and got the players ready for the varsity level.

"[Crescenta Valley Coach] Tony Zarrillo told me last season that he was going to retire and I had to put my name in the hat to replace him because I wanted to keep the family together and I was lucky to get the job.

"Coaching football is amazing on Friday nights. You get to be 17 years old that night. I'm 42, but to be able to act 17 again is the greatest feeling ever. We get kids who come back and say that high school football was the greatest time for them."

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