Now that the Temecula Chaparral football team is 0-3 and staring at another tough game Saturday night against Servite, ranked No. 1 in the Southland by ESPNLA.com, any second thoughts regarding that unrelenting nonleague schedule?
This question was posed to both coach Tommy Leach and standout receiver Antoine Arnold following Chaparral’s latest defeat, a 45-12 stinger Friday night against visiting Corona Centennial.
Arnold said it was a difficult question to answer but admitted that playing a weaker nonleague schedule would also create a no-win situation for the Pumas, who came into the season atop both the Southern Section Inland Division coaches’ poll and the ESPNLA.com Inland Empire rankings, but have since dropped out of both top 10s.
"If we beat up on teams right now, we’d be known as, ‘Oh, that’s just the defending champ, Chaparral, they’re No. 1, nobody can stop them,’ " he said. "At the same time, at the end of the road, we’ll have to play hard teams ... it kind of goes both ways."
Arnold’s full response is on the ensuing video clip, as well as an update on his recruiting and what he likes to do the day after games.
As the architect of Chaparral’s nonleague schedule, Leach isn’t kicking himself either. After all, the Pumas started 4-3 last season, then reeled off seven consecutive victories to capture the Inland Division title.
Here’s what Leach had to say following Friday’s game.