Ken Davis, the most recent coach to defeat a Hart High football team in Foothill League play, holds little hope for an upset by his Schurr team in tonight's 7:30 game at College of the Canyons.
Davis said flatly that Schurr would lose. Is Hart, ranked No. 1 in The Times Valley poll, that good?
"Well, we're pretty crappy," drawled Davis, a transplanted Georgian. "We've gotten to the point where our guys have quit. Players just want to get this thing over with. It's been a real depressing season."
It has been depressing for most league teams since Rick Scott became the Hart coach four seasons ago. Scott has never lost a league game and can run his streak to 20 tonight.
Hart (8-1, 4-0) already has clinched its fourth consecutive title and probably will enter the Southern Section Northwestern Conference playoffs as the conference's No. 1 team. Hart, the defending conference champion, is ranked No. 1 in the latest conference poll.
Senior quarterback Darren Renfro runs the most productive passing attack in the Valley area. He has completed 163 of 243 passes (66.4%) for 2,091 yards and 18 touchdowns and has a variety of receivers from which to choose. Running back Craig Whitten leads the Valley-area receivers with 42 catches for 394 yards and 4 touchdowns. He also leads the team in rushing with 632 yards on 134 carries.
Senior wide receiver Joe DeSchryver has 38 catches for 619 yards and 4 touchdowns, and junior tight end Brian Allen has 34 receptions for 524 yards and 7 touchdowns.
Despite those numbers, Hart needs to improve its passing game, Scott said. "Our intermediate game is good, but we've got to get the ball upfield and stretch out our passing game," he said.
Season-ending injuries have claimed two of Hart's better players. Linebacker Todd Daniels has a dislocated left wrist and center-linebacker Joe Schreier broke his leg in two places in last week's 17-14 win over Burbank.
Schurr (3-6, 2-2) has only a remote chance of gaining a playoff berth, needing a win tonight and a San Gabriel loss to Alhambra on Friday. Even then Davis isn't sure he wants the season extended.
"I don't think you should take a mediocre team and play in the playoffs. If they asked us, I'd have to wonder about going," he said.
Senior running back Freddy Burgueno leads the team with 955 yards rushing. Schurr, which has totaled nearly 4,000 passing yards in the past two seasons combined, this year has only 536.