AJ Mast/APStanford needed several late-game comebacks to reach this weekend’s super regional.

CCSF ready to open conference play on a clean slate

Until this month, City College of San Francisco hadn’t lost a nonconference football game since 2008.

That was before American River College jumped all over the Rams on Oct. 5 in a 34-13 victory on CCSF’s home field, dropping the Rams from No. 1 in the California Community College Athletic Association to fourth.

Fortunately, the loss came before the beginning of conference play, so CCSF still holds hopes of regaining the conference title that eluded it last season for the first time since 2008. Rams coach George Rush said the loss does nothing to diminish the team’s goals for the season.

“The issue isn’t how many [nonconference] games in a row you’ve won,” he said. “The issue is did you win your conference? So this has no impact on that whatsoever. We haven’t played a conference game yet. Neither has anyone else. … All our goals are in front of us. There’s nothing in the back window. We’re not looking in the rear window. Everything’s in front of us and that’s where we’re headed.”

Within the Northern California Football Association — at least in the early-season standings — are Butte College and College of San Mateo, both of whom swept their nonconference schedule on their way to state rankings in the top five.

Rush said he believes the loss to American River may have wounded the team’s pride, but that he didn’t see any problems in that game that the team couldn’t fix for future matchups.

“Not to take anything away from American River, but most of the damage was self-induced,” he said. “We had a lot of turnovers and we haven’t been a big turnover team. Matter of fact, the week before we had no turnovers, but we turned the ball over seven times, gave them a short field, we just didn’t play very well. … That’s the great thing about conference play. The whole thing starts over, you can be 0-5 or 5-0, and you’re in the same place. You’ve got to win the games the next five weeks. That’s what it’s all about.”

Led by sophomore quarterback Turner Baty, who threw for 1,352 yards and 14 touchdowns in the five nonconference games, the Rams open the conference schedule at home against De Anza (3-2) on Saturday. They will need to tune up quickly in that game before heading down the Peninsula to face San Mateo the following week.

NEXT GAME

CCSF (4-1) vs. De Anza (3-2)

WHEN: Saturday, 1 p.m.

WHERE: City College of San Francisco

LAST GAME: CCSF lost 34-13 to American River College on Oct. 5; De Anza lost 41-39 to Sequoias

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