Glendale Community College football still contemplating wild loss

GLENDALE — The Glendale YMCA Quarterback Club, in its 71st year, meets Tuesdays at the Elk's Lodge. The following are odds and ends from the fourth meeting of the year.


Most everyone in attendance at the Glendale YMCA Quarterback Club let out a groan as Glendale Community College football Coach John Rome recounted Saturday's heartbreaking 37-30 home loss to Antelope Valley College.

After trailing, 29-17, about halfway through the third quarter of its Pacific Conference's American Division opener, GCC rallied late and took a 30-29 lead with about a minute remaining at Sartoris Field.

“We finally, finally got to the top of the mountain and scored and went up by one,” said Rome, “and we kicked off and they returned it for a touchdown.”

The room moaned, while Rome couldn't help but smile describing the disheartening ending, which was capped by the final of four kick-return touchdowns.

“It wasn't that great a weekend, well it was until the game started,” Rome chuckled.

Even despite Saturday's disheartening loss, Rome was still in high spirits because of his team's resiliency.

“What I come away from this game thinking is that our team didn't quit, for high school that's expected, but in junior college when you have such transient athletes that's not always the case,” Rome said. “Our attitude coming out of that game was we were very angry at ourselves, but we fought very hard. I came away thinking we can play with anybody.”

GCC (2-2) will look to prove that Saturday and go back above .500 when it travels for just the second time this season to Santa Monica City College (2-2).


It may be with a limp, but Hoover football is walking excitedly into its fourth game with Arcadia.

“We're fired up about it because we get to play Hoover's former coach Andrew Policky and that's going to be an emotional game for us,” first-year Hoover Coach Matt Andersen said.

Policky, an Arcadia graduate, stepped down as Hoover's coach of the past two years and took the head Arcadia job in May. Friday will be the first time Policky has coached at Moyse Field since he left Hoover, which went 3-7, 1-6 in the Pacific League with him at the helm last year.

Both teams enter the game at 2-2 after the Tornadoes' 39-26 loss to Sotomayor in week two was officially ruled a forfeit. Hoover is dealing with some injuries, as its 30-man roster has been trimmed down after a 35-3 loss to Muir last week.

“I'm definitely proud of our effort during the game, we're down to about 22 or 23 guys now and a lot of them barely leave the field during the game,” Andersen said. “As in shape as we're in, they're just gassed by the fourth quarter.”


It would seem football was the destiny of Anton Clarkson, son of elite quarterback coach Steve Clarkson. Anton shared his hot-and-cold relationship with football at Tuesday's meeting and how it came to be so meaningful in his development as a person, not only a player.

After standout performances at Venice High and Hofstra University, Anton has become one of the youngest and top quarterback coaches in the country. He's tutored players like Jake Locker of the Tennessee Titans, the Arizona Cardinals' Ryan Lindley, UCLA's Brett Hundley, Boston College's Chase Rettig and St. Francis' Ty Gangi.

“It's really amazing being out on Saturday, opening up a newspaper and read about how one of my kids was lighting it up on Friday night,” Anton said. “I get back to my place and put on ESPN, ESPN 2 or FoxSports and I'm going back and forth seeing my kids play.”

Anton admitted his relationship with football has been up and down, starting in college. He felt a sense of entitlement coming out of Venice where he earned the Western League Offensive Player of the Year award in 2001 after throwing for more than 2,800 yards, 29 touchdowns and four interceptions.

He accepted a full athletic scholarship to Oregon State University to play under Dennis Erickson, who quickly left for the National Football League and gave way to Mike Riley. Anton and Riley clashed after the quarterback began skipping classes and, as a result, was suspended on the brink of academic probation.

It led to Anton transferring to Hofstra where he admitted he took things for granted against lesser competition in his first season. He bounced back, began preparing correctly and wound up throwing for 8,878 yards and 60 touchdowns against only 24 interceptions with a 62.8 career completion percentage in three years under center.

“There's nothing like football, there's nothing like being able to come and be with 10 other guys in the huddle and know you're all working towards one goal,” Anton said. “I always felt playing quarterback is pretty special.”

With his playing days behind him after brief stints with the New York Giants and Montreal Allouettes in the Canadian Football League, Anton is now helping youngsters develop into top-level high school, NCAA or NFL quarterbacks.

“For me, football is the single best thing that's ever happened to me,” he said. “It's taught me about responsibility, it's taught me about family. It's very much a microcosm of life.”

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