Re-Tooled Alhambra Lions Looking To Roar This Fall

(Pat Shannahan/ The Arizona Republic)

By Harley Yearout

Football season is just around the corner in the Valley and practices are well underway. With a new year comes fresh faces and one of those is Chris Crockett, the new head coach at Alhambra High School.

Crockett was named to lead the program back in February after former head coach George Medrano stepped down suddenly.

Crockett said that while his goal was always to be the head coach of this program, he realizes the transition between coaches was difficult for some players. “Change is hard,” Crockett said to “They’ve responded well, and I think we will be okay.”

The Lions are coming off a 3-7 2017 campaign, something Crockett plans to improve on.

Coming into the 2018 season, Crockett said he made his focus very clear to his team. “We have to win game one against a very, very tough team in Highland…very talented team, well-coached,” he said. “That is our focus, everything is on game one.”

But Crockett’s vision extends well beyond game one. “If we don’t make the playoffs, I am going to be very disappointed,” he said. “If I look back on the season and we’re not in the playoffs, that’s going to be an unsuccessful season for me.”

To get there, Crockett will have to top one of the schools he formerly coached in Cesar Chavez.

“In our section [Cesar] Chavez, I coached there so I know, has been the team that’s won our section every year,” Crockett said. “Something has to change.”

That change could very well start with senior quarterback Andrew Favela. “If he’s not all-section quarterback its either because unfortunately he was not healthy, or I’m not as good a coach as I think I am,” Crockett said.

One of Favela’s main targets will be junior wide receiver Tony Miller. “He’s going to be prominently featured in this offense,” Crockett said.

Despite all of the coaching changes and implementing both a new offense and defense, Crockett said he remains optimistic the Lions will have a successful year.

“I’m really, really confident we are going to have a good season,” he said.

The Lions kickoff their 2018 season against Highland on August 17.