View Mobile Site

Ask the Expert

Signal Photos


Is this the night where the offense ignites?

Posted: October 23, 2009 10:47 p.m.
Updated: October 24, 2009 4:30 a.m.

College of the Canyons quarterback Eric Brown scrambles out of pocket during COC's 27-17 win over Antelope Valley at Cougar Stadium on Sep. 5.

We could see a renewed College of the Canyons offense tonight at Ventura College.

COC head football coach Garett Tujague said he expects a difference when the Cougars play defensive-minded Ventura at 7 p.m.

“I think the Cougar offense will have a new sense of energy,” Tujague said. “I have nothing to base it on but practice. Practice is practice and games are games, but I really think we’ve kind of turned over a new leaf.”

Much of the reason for that, Tujague admitted, is because Eric Brown will be starting at quarterback for the first time since week one.

Since then, Brown has been in and out of the lineup with a majority of the snaps and all the starts going to Justin Morales.

Tujague likes Brown’s experience at this point over Morales’ — Brown is a sophomore, Morales is a freshman.

COC’s offense has been inconsistent this season.

One of the biggest areas where the Cougars have struggled is in the turnover department. COC (5-2, 2-1) has turned the ball over 17 times this season.

Ventura (5-1, 2-0) has forced 16 turnovers this season.

Pirates sophomore defensive back Travaun Nixon has been responsible several of those turnovers.

Nixon, who Tujague said he tried hard to recruit, has six interceptions this season.

And though Tujague describes him as “the real deal,” that doesn’t mean that COC will shy away from throwing the ball in his direction.

Also, despite the offensive struggles, the COC head coach said he doesn’t need to try anything creative against a Ventura team that is ranked third in the state in total defense.

The Pirates are coming off a bye last week.

They last played Oct. 10, a 26-20 win over Pasadena.

Ventura, like COC, is in the middle of the pack in the state in total offense.

Much of that offense comes from the legs of quarterback Antavius Sims.

Minus sacks, Sims would be the team’s leading rusher at 384 yards. He has also scored eight touchdowns on the ground to go along with 676 yards in the air.

Dominic Morris adds 336 rushing yards.

“We’ve been a pretty good defense against the rush this year so I like that matchup,” Tujague said.

Teams are averaging only 2.0 yards per rush against the COC defense.

Of late, defensive back/linebacker Kenny Shanahan has stepped up, leading or co-leading the team in tackles the last two games.

“He does it all,” Tujague said. “I’m so glad he’s on our team.”

Defensively, Tujague said, his team has to watch out for Ventura’s big-play capability.

Sims could frustrate the Cougars with his scrambling.

Tujague said COC will allow some big plays, but they can’t let Ventura score on those big plays.

On top of everything, Tujague said there’s an underlying rivalry between COC and Ventura — one that involves recruiting wars.

On top of that, COC is ranked 21st in the state.

Ventura is at No. 20.



Commenting not available.
Commenting is not available.

Powered By
Morris Technology
Please wait ...