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Glendale faces tough road

Football: Nitros will open 2012 campaign with three road games prior to league.

July 02, 2012|By Charles Rich, charles.rich@latimes.com

With a new coach on board, the schedule will remain virtually the same for the Glendale High football team for the 2012 season, with one exception — the Nitros will not open their season against cross-town rival Hoover.

The Nitros and Tornadoes, who are members of the Pacific League, opened the 2011 season with a nonleague game, in addition to the traditional regular-season league finale between the rivals. The idea was hatched by Alan Eberhart and Chris Long, who were former coaches at Glendale and Hoover, respectively.

Under the direction of first-year Coach John Tuttle, who was hired Dec. 19, the Nitros will play their three nonleague games on the road before beginning league at home against Pasadena.

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"I think it's going to be a good schedule for us," said Tuttle, a former quarterback at San Marino who will look to lead the Nitros to their first playoff appearance since 2003. "We are looking at our first three games being competitive and help us get ready for league, which will be tough.

"The good thing about starting the season on the road is that you can come together faster as a team."

Glendale, which went 2-8, 1-7 in league last season, will kick of its season Aug. 31 at La Salle. The Nitros will then participate in nonleague games against La Cañada and South Pasadena on Sept. 7 and 14, respectively. La Salle, La Cañada and South Pasadena did not qualify for the playoffs last season.

Tuttle, who previously held assistant coaching positions at San Marino, Temple City, Duarte and Monrovia, said he's familiar with all three nonleague teams and the environment each stadium offers.

"Against La Salle, it's a good place to play," Tuttle said. "It's going to be a chance to see certain guys step up and try to make a name for themselves.

"With La Cañada, they have always had disciplined teams and they always seem to be strong up front. South Pasadena was our big rival when I was at San Marino. They always have good athletes and that's a fun place to play a game."

Last season, Glendale suffered a 16-14 loss against La Cañada and suffered a 49-21 defeat to South Pasadena.

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