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Something new, something old

Vaqueros, who kick off season today, will rely again on defense while beginning play in new conference.

September 04, 2010|By Gabriel Rizk, gabriel.rizk@latimes.com

NORTHEAST GLENDALE — While the Glendale Community College football team is focused on the future, it's undoubtedly motivated by the past.

Coming off a second-half slide for the second season in a row, the Vaqueros will look to put the disappointment of a 4-5 season, one that began at 3-0, behind them.

Major factors in their quest to do so include sustaining a defensive potency coming off a strong year that most within the Vaqueros' own ranks believe could be even better now, and rebuilding the offense from the ground up, all while adjusting to a new conference membership in which the team will no longer have the grueling task of competing against junior college powerhouses with rosters twice its size.

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"I think this year we're going to be a little bit more of what Glendale football has been — we're gonna run the ball and establish field position and try to run the clock and all the things we've done in the past that I believe in," third-year Coach John Rome said. "We're going to be the same multiple pro-style offense we've always been.

"[The new conference] is much more competitive from our standpoint, we're playing teams like us. We feel that we're probably in a situation that lends itself to us being more competitive."

The first team Glendale plays this season, Pasadena City College, is the same squad that handed the Vaqueros a 38-22 loss for a final record of 1-5 in the Northern Conference National Division.

With the Vaqueros having moved to the Pacific Division of the American Conference, today's 6 p.m. rematch with the Lancers at Sartoris Field will be a nonconference affair, but one the team is eagerly anticipating to begin the season on the right note.

"To start off with that kind of rivalry, everyone's excited," sophomore linebacker Jeano Khajarian, a Glendale High graduate, said. "Everyone's just thinking PCC, it's a one-game season right now."

Looking for a fresh start after two trying years in the Northern Conference battling heavyweights like College of the Canyons and Bakersfield College, the Vaqueros will once again line up with traditional conference foes Los Angeles Valley College, L.A. Pierce College, West L.A. College, Santa Barbara City College, Santa Monica College and Southwest L.A. College.

One thing the Vaqueros will be hoping to carry over from last season is the success of their defense, which finished ranked 18th in Southern California and kept the team in many games despite a largely ineffective offense.

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