Culture of Losing
In a way, losing on a continued basis is like an avalanche. Once the snow starts to fall, everything in its wake is engulfed.
The Glendale High football team has been hit by enough white stuff that the club hasn’t won a game in seven starts, and is clearly taxing second-year Nitros’ head coach Alan Eberhart.
Glendale fell to host Burroughs this past Thursday night, 35-6, managing only two field goals in the Pacific League affair.
“Right now, we just don’t know how to win,’’ Eberhart said recently. ”We don’t think we’re going to win, and we find ways not to win. It’s a culture, and I’m trying to change that. I don’t know how long it’s going to take, but we’re not doing the right things now, and that’s one reason why we haven’t won.”
There have been several games in which the Nitros have shown tenacity, spunk and enough talent to have won.
Last season’s quarterback Evan Norton has missed the entire schedule, and has been replaced by Alex Yoon, a fast runner with a decent arm, but usually isn’t afforded enough time in the pocket.
Many of the plays are designed runs for Yoon, who is capable of picking up large chunks of yards.
Yoon, a junior, has help in the backfield from hard-charging Chan Kim, and quick Alex Manukian and Anthony Platero.
Yoon has two speedy wide receivers in 6-foot-3 senior Linden Anderson, and 6-2 sophomore Michael Davis, who according to Eberhart is explosive.
“Michael is the fastest receiver in the Pacific League, but hasn’t caught a pass. We have to find a way to get him the ball, and we haven’t done that.”
Anderson will make receptions and accumulate yards, but has a tendency to drop the ball. This has a negative affect on how he plays, which is expected.
t’s hard to remain positive after dropping a pass that could mean a first down and an eventual touchdown.
When the game begins to unravel, it’s after a costly dropped pass, a missed tackle, a fumble or the ever-present penalty. Avoid these, and the outcome could be different.
When these mistakes occur, the opponent will invariably score a touchdown, then another, and yet another, and the small deficit becomes too much to rally from.
Don’t think for a moment the team has quit. It hasn’t, but the sheer lack of overall skill is what’s at play, along with fielding only 25 players, so that when an injury surfaces, it’s not too difficult to overcome.
Winning will take time.
“I’m going to be here for the long haul,’’ said Eberhart, who graduated from Glendale, and who led Crescenta Valley to the CIF Southern Section playoffs many times.
It may not happen this season, and it may not happen next season, but I know that we’re going to get better, and we’re going to win games.”