Progress, patience key for Vaqueros

Football: Despite 0-2 start, Coach Rome keeping Glendale college focused on preparing for upcoming conference play.

September 18, 2010|By Gabriel Rizk,

GLENDALE — Last year, the Glendale Community College football team started out a torrid 3-0, but in the end it didn't count for much, as the Vaqueros finished 4-5.

The shoe is on the other foot two games into the 2010 campaign, as the Vaqueros still seek their first win.

But as shaky as the young and largely inexperienced team has looked in its two nonconference losses, third-year Coach John Rome knows it still has plenty of time to turn things around before and during conference play and angle for a strong finish.


"That's one of the things that we talk about all the time is that we don't have to win our first games to win the division," said Rome, whose team moved to the Pacific Division of the American Conference this season. "Our goal is to go to a bowl game and that's gonna entail winning our conference. We have to win all or most of our conference games to accomplish that goal, so therefore, it's about how we progress."

With its 39-22 loss to Golden West on Saturday indicating progress in some areas from a 39-22 loss to Pasadena City College in the Sept. 4 opener, Glendale has two more nonconference games to further build its strength, with the first coming up today at 6 p.m. at East Los Angeles.

"It's another challenge," Rome said of the matchup. "From where it was three years ago, I think East L.A.'s done a tremendous job rebuilding their program and getting quality athletes in there."

East L.A., which was defeated by Glendale, 33-28, last season, in which it finished 5-5, is also coming in at 0-2 this year.

The Huskies have experienced offensive struggles, failing to score a touchdown in last week's 6-3 loss to Santa Monica. But they do possess the second-ranked defense in Southern California, allowing 194.5 total yards and 17 points per game.

Ranked fourth in Southern California in defending against the pass and second against the rush, East L.A. could pose problems for the Vaqueros' dual offensive objective of asserting the running game and helping first-year starting quarterback Steven Batista get more comfortable under center.

"I would hope that we continue to have offensive improvements," Rome said. "I would like to see us be able to run the ball a little better because we have a great stable of young backs. The problem is we've had nothing to bust out with.

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