For the first month of the season, the Glendale High football team won't need to board a bus.
The Nitros will spend all of September at Moyse Field, looking to enjoy homefield advantage. It's something Glendale second-year Coach John Tuttle would like to see.
"It's nice to be able to start off at home," said Tuttle, whose team went 3-7, 2-5 in the Pacific League last season. "To play the first four games of the season at home is something I don't think I've ever seen before in my years of coaching.
"It's going to be important for us to come out strong and play consistent."
The Nitros will play virtually the same schedule they had last season. The lone exception will be during the first week of the season when the Nitros open up at 7 p.m. Sept. 6 against San Gabriel in a nonleague contest. The Nitros started off last season with a nonleague game against host La Salle.
Tuttle said San Gabriel should serve as a quality opening-week matchup.
"San Gabriel [finished runner-up in the CIF Southern Section Mid-Valley League in 2011 and] always has some tough guys to go up against," Tuttle said. "It's a game where we will find out about ourselves early on."
Glendale will then play two nonleague games against teams from the Rio Hondo League, as it will first meet La Cañada at 7 p.m. Sept. 13 before facing South Pasadena at 7 p.m. Sept. 20.
The Nitros posted a 21-3 win on the road last season against the Spartans before suffering a 39-7 defeat against the Tigers.
"La Cañada likes to play a physical game," Tuttle said. "It's the kind of game that can help prepare you for league.
"South Pasadena is also pretty good physically up front. They've given us some tough battles."
The Nitros will then begin the Pacific League portion of their schedule at 7 p.m. Sept. 27 against Burroughs.
Burroughs has won league championships in two of the last three years. The Indians notched a 24-7 win against Glendale last season.
"It will be a nice test for us coming out against a team like Burroughs that has consistently finished in the top half of league," Tuttle said.
The Nitros will hit the road for the first time with a league game at 7 p.m. Oct. 4 against Muir. The Mustangs posted a 37-0 win against the Nitros last season on the road en route to winning the league title.
Tuttle said the Nitros will face a stern test against the Mustangs.
"That's always a tough place to play, but we are excited about going over there to play them," Tuttle said. "They get good crowds for their games."
Glendale will return home the following week to meet Arcadia at 7 p.m. Oct. 10. The Nitros will have a short week to prepare for the Apaches, who earned a 49-7 home win against Glendale last season, as the game will be held on a Thursday.
The Apaches are now coached by Andrew Policky, who previously coached at Hoover.
"When you go up against Arcadia, you know going in that they are always good and fundamentally sound," Tuttle said.
Glendale will stay at Moyse Field the following week for a 7 p.m. game against rival Crescenta Valley on Oct. 18. However, the Nitros will serve as the visiting team, as the schools rotate every season.
Arguably, Glendale's biggest win last season came against Crescenta Valley. The Nitros registered a 20-17 victory.
"It's always a pretty intense game when the two teams get together," Tuttle said. "It's a type of game that brings out the best in the players."
Glendale will then hit the road for a pair of league games against Burbank and South Pasadena on Oct. 24 and Nov. 1, respectively. Both games start at 7 p.m.
Glendale will take on Burbank at Burroughs High's Memorial Field. Burbank posted a 56-10 win against Glendale last season.
"When you play Burbank on the road, you know you are in for a tough test," Tuttle said. "They are a team that's always physical with lots of skilled players."
Pasadena netted a 35-0 home win against Glendale last season.
"You just hope to go in there and try to slow them down," Tuttle said.
Glendale will then close out the regular season at 7 p.m. Nov. 8 against crosstown rival Hoover in the annual "Battle for the Victory Bell." Glendale, which cruised to a 44-13 win last season, will be the designated home team.
Tuttle said while the Nitros have an eye on the Hoover matchup, he doesn't want the Nitros losing focus on the first nine weeks of the season.
"It's always the biggest game of the season for the kids in terms of the rivalry," Tuttle said. "You get the big crowd for that game and there's the bragging rights part of it.
"We want them to understand that the first nine games are equally important."
2013 GLENDALE HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
- Sept. 6 San Gabriel, 7 p.m.
- Sept. 13 La Cañada, 7 p.m.
- Sept. 20 South Pasadena, 7 p.m.
- Sept. 27 Burroughs, 7 p.m.*
- Oct. 4 at Muir, 7 p.m.*
- Oct. 10 Arcadia, 7 p.m.*
- Oct. 18 at Crescenta Valley, 7 p.m.*^
- Oct. 24 vs. Burbank at Burroughs, 7 p.m.*
- Nov. 1 at Pasadena, 7 p.m.*
- Nov. 8 Hoover, 7 p.m.*
*Denotes Pacific League game
*^at Moyse Field