About this Speaker
I was breaking film down at the age of 10 with my father, a high school science teacher and football coach for 52 years! I attended Servite High School in Anaheim, California, which is recognized as one of the nation’s top academic private high schools. The Friars also played in one of the toughest high school leagues in the nation, the Angelus League in the 70’s, presently the Trinity League. At Servite I was coached and mentored by some of the finest coaches around. All would move onto great success at the collegiate level from University of Washington, to University of Cincinnati, and to Chapman University. From Servite I would go on to play collegiately at FCS University of Northern Iowa and DIII University of Redlands for legendary small college coach Frank Serrao. Upon graduating I became the secondary coach for DIII Claremont McKenna College and worked under highly respected John Zinda. After 2 years with the Stags, I accepted the Defensive Coordinator position at University of Redlands. I was the Bulldogs’ DC for 2 years and lead them to 2 consecutive years of being a top 5 DIII Defense nationally. At the end of my second year my personal life issues took priority over my career choices for 2 years. During those 2 years away from the game I moved back to my home town of Dana Point and resumed a boyhood activity surfing. I also began work on obtaining a teaching credential in Social Studies and SPED.
I returned to the football sidelines of Orange County, the sidelines I once roamed as a Friar corner, as a defensive mercenary/specialist, in 1990 at Fullerton Union High School. The irony of this was my new girlfriend and later wife, Julie, graduated from Fullerton High School. Over the next six years I moved from school to school long term subbing and fixing or creating top notch defensives in the highly competitive southern California large high school arena. I had a chance to rub elbows and match wits with some of the games finest coaches from Bruce Rollinson at Mater Dei to Bob Johnson at El Toro and presently Mission Viejo. Finally after 10 years of experience at a variety of schools I thought I was ready to become a head coach. About this same time my new wife and I were interested in getting more rural, like Orange County once was. These two desires would lead me from a school of 3,000 in southern California to a small school of 300 on the southern Oregon coast. From programs staffed like small colleges to no staff, no equipment man, and no certified trainers. I was stepping way back in history to what the game was like in the early 50’s at Gold Beach High School. When I told my still coaching father of my new job, he could not stop laughing! He explained that I was in for a rude awakening, that I was truly going to finally become a complete football coach. Now 18 years later I look back and laugh myself at how much I had to learn, create, and change to put Gold Beach on the map as a consistent small school power in Oregon. I had absolutely no football knowledgeable assistants; they were absolutely great guys but had no real coaching experience or knowledge. So over the first 4 to 6 years I had to become an expert coach of every position on the field. I would gain so much as a coach because I could not hire an expert assistant like you could in densely populated urban areas; I had to be the expert. Gold Beach had no weight room, no training room facilities and no money for the program and my goals. Oh and it was not a consistent winner! Over the next 18 years I worked my tail off to create a regionally known and admired football camp, Beach Camp. This camp over the past 18 years has pumped close to 6 million dollars into Gold Beach’s struggling economy. It also allowed us to raise the necessary funds to create our program’s vision. Gold Beach presently has one of the best small high school weight rooms in Oregon, our players wear nothing but the very best gear and uniforms made, seniors have had the opportunity to travel to southern California and practice with Mater Dei and Mission Viejo, and we raise great young men!
In close to 35 years of coaching I have come to realize that this great game allows me the tools and teaching opportunities to create not necessarily great football players but great men and teammates. This philosophy and attitude to create great men, great husbands, great fathers, great teammates, and great community leaders is what has allowed us to be the football successes we are today. The Panthers will always line up against the biggest and scariest teams at Beach Camp and always are very competitive with Aloha and Will C. Wood High School of Vallejo. The Panthers have won 8 league titles in past 10 years, played in 10 years of quarterfinals or better playoffs, played in 5 State Title games, and won two State Titles at 2 different divisions. This all happened because of the culture of a prized and special brotherhood created by the young men who listened and shared a collective goal, the community that bought in and finally me, who happened to have a vision.