by Stephen Morales
The shutdown of all sports continues to be a major topic around the world as teams at all levels of play plan for their eventual return to the field.
Normally at this time, East Los Angeles College football would be in the middle of spring practice and looking forward to summer camp as well as the start of action in September. After winning two of their last three games in 2019, the Huskies are looking to build on that momentum in 2020.
Returning sophomore - 2nd Team All-Conference QB Rudy Garcia - is a reason for that optimism. The signal caller from Don Lugo HS in Chino took over midway through the season, passing for 1166 yards and 11 touchdowns while compiling a 56.2% completion percentage. We caught up with Rudy to find out what he is doing during the shutdown, and how he is preparing for the 2020 season.
SM: Hi Rudy! Thanks for taking time to talk to us. How are you doing?
RG: Hi Stephen! it is nice to meet you; I have been doing pretty good. Just been trying to keep myself busy throughout this whole situation but it has not been too bad.
SM: Tell us a little bit about yourself, and your thoughts on your freshman season?
RG: Well to introduce myself my name is Rudy Garcia and I play Quarterback at East Los Angeles College. I am from Chino in the IE and I have a huge passion to play football and win!
My freshman season was a bumpy one but decent. I didn't end up winning the starting job at the beginning of the season, so it didn't start off too well, but I kept my head up and kept working and eventually worked my way into being the starter. Once being the starter, I worked my butt off and ended up being selected to the 2nd team all-conference team after starting half the season. That was about the biggest accomplishment I took away from my freshman season.
SM: Right now, you and the team would be in spring practice mode. What do you miss about being out on the field right now?
RG: We should be in spring mode and in practice getting ready for the season on the field, but I for sure do miss it more than anything. Some of the small things I miss about being on the field with my guys is just the competitiveness and all the fun we have out there with one another. We go at each other and make each other better every single practice. Also, I miss being out there and just simply throwing to my teammates. It can be a big stress reliever just going out onto the field and throwing the ball around just to get your mind off things.
SM: We've seen pics and vids via social media of some student-athletes maintaining workout regimens during social distancing. How have you and your teammates managed yourselves physically, particularly with no practices right now?
RG: Although during this pandemic, it has limited us to practice social distancing and kept us indoors a lot. Coach G has been doing a great job of giving the team workouts and making us send in videos of our workouts. We all have been staying in touch with each other, and consistently pushing each other to keep working and stay in shape, because we never know when this season can start - very soon hopefully. Also, our quarterbacks' coach, Coach Drum, has been doing a really good job on staying on top of the Q's and meeting up with us to keep us sharp mentally.
SM: How are you staying positive and resilient during this uncertain time?
RG: I know for sure it's been hard during this time for some people to keep their head up and keep pushing with this pandemic, but I always try to stay positive and always look at the bright side of things. I just try to keep myself busy by doing anything from working out to eating or sleeping to cleaning. The team and coaches also have been helpful because I know they will always be there for us when we need them. I just put my faith in God and trust that he has a plan, and everything will turn out the way it is supposed to be. Also, my family and girlfriend have been a big impact during this uncertain time, to keep pushing me and supporting me throughout this journey of trying to be the best athlete I can be.
SM: What do you think of the 2020 season and how the team may look?
RG: For sure this 2020 season will be one I remember forever, just because the way everything has panned out with this virus so far. But I'm still very positive we will have a season this year, and I cannot wait to get back out onto the field and work. Even though we have not had too many practices with my teammates and the offense, but from what I have seen during those practices and the type of players we have this year, it could be a special one! I know the team is working their tails off as much as I am, so once we have the chance to go back and finally continue the season we will be back and ready to compete for a National Championship.