Los Osos’ Bechtel hired as Colony head football coach

*** Update ***

After seven years as the offensive coordinator at Los Osos High School, Matt Bechtel was hired as the head football coach at Colony High School on Monday, pending board approval that can come no sooner than March 2. Bechtel, 35, begins his first stint as a head coach with plenty of hopes for a Colony program that won CIF championships in 2006 and 2007.

“If you look at the success at Colony and the potential there, it’s the type of program that can be a force not just in the area but in the entire Inland Empire,” Bechtel said. “I don’t think winning will so much be the challenge here as it will be to adjust to a new coaching staff and a new philosophy.”

Bechtel has spent nearly his entire coaching career in the Inland Empire, beginning with a year as an assistant at Cajon in 1996 before spending 1997-2002 as the quarterbacks coach at Upland. He was hired in 2002 to be the offensive coordinator at Los Osos, where he remained save the 2008 season during which he was the Chaffey College offensive coordinator.

Bechtel was the head coach-in-waiting at Los Osos behind Tom Martinez, the Grizzlies’ inaugural head coach.

“My phone was blowing up all day with people asking me why I would leave if I was the next guy at Los Osos,” Bechtel said. “It was a tough decision – I’ve had other opportunities since I’ve been at Los Osos – but I felt like this was the perfect fit with my philosophy. Tom (Martinez) is a young man. He’s got plenty of years left and I didn’t want to be the one to push him out.”

During Bechtel’s six seasons at Los Osos, the Grizzlies won or shared four Baseline League championships. In four seasons under departed head coach Anthony Rice, who interviewed for the Pomona High School head football coaching job on Monday, Colony went 18-2 in the Mt. Baldy League. Bechtel was one of six candidates to interview for the Colony job on Friday.

“It was an easy decision for me,” Colony athletic director Jaime Sandoval said. “I felt and I think everybody else in the room felt like he is ready. Anthony (Rice) had a lot of success, so I think the question was: who is the person that can take us somewhere from there? Matt (Bechtel) was talking about eventually competing on the state level, talking about things like bowl games.”

Bechtel aspires for Colony to be mentioned in the same breath as Inland Empire football powers Corona Centennial and Norco, two schools farther South along Highway 15.

“No disrespect to the athletes in the Baseline League, they’ve produced a lot of Division-I players, but the geography has changed with the athletes running up and down the 15,” Bechtel said. “Colony isn’t right in the middle of that – it’s a little north – but it’s close. It’s been tapped at Colony but not fully tapped.”

Bechtel’s regimented plan to tap the resources in South Ontario made an impression on the interview panel at Colony. From offseason workouts to summer programs and, of course, in-season ideals, Bechtel’s blue print left an impression on Sandoval, among others.

“For someone so young to have such a vision and to be so structured,” Sandoval said, “it reminded me of my program when I used to coach way back when.”

Bechtel was admittedly torn about leaving Los Osos, where Martinez gave him his first coordinator position.

“Oh, yeah I wavered quite a bit,” Bechtel said. “I had two things pulling me in different directions. I had my loyalty to Los Osos pulling me in one direction and my loyalty to my personal goals pulling me in another direction.”

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  • Good things

    He will do a great job at Colony…The Administrastion did a phenominal job on this hire. Colony you are in good hands…


  • Inside Job

    There was no plan. He could have stared at the wall during the interview and got hired. This was an inside job from day one. Principal called him to apply. He has 2 friends who are administrators. But I got news for you. He will be at Los Osos as soon as the job opens. As soon as next year. Mark my words. This is head coach training for him.
    This is what I think is going down – he goes to Colony amd gets HC experience. Then goes back to Los Osos in 1 or 2 years and Sandoval can bring in his buddy from Servite when the economy gets better. That is who he really wanted as coach.

    Anthony Rice tapped the program like he said. If they were going to go to bowl games, etc. you don’t think Rice could have done that c’mon. There is a reason why he left.

  • Anonymous

    Coach Bechtel is the talented coach at Los Osos. The players respect him very much and appreciate the effort he puts in getting borderline talent kids to the next level. The same can not be said about coach Martinez. Colony is very lucky to get him. Good Luck Coach Bechtel. You deserve it.

  • recruiting guru

    Hey inside job or should I say rick ward of montclair u sound a lil bitter for not getting the job!! Maybe u should just slow ur roll before,u make the new colony coaches upset!!! All the success to u at montclair. Can’t u read what the other people posted. Bechtel is the up and coming coach in the inland empir, with proven success! When’s the last time montclair went to cif!!hmmmmmmmmmm I dunno!!! Bechtel has proven he’s a successful coach at osos,upland, and now he will have great success at colony!!! Focus on montclair and not what anybody else is doing!! Go titans. I wish bechtel the most success at colony. He will do a great job, and will build a great staff over at colony.

  • Congrads

    Colony is very lucky to have a coach coming into there program, He is a very good coach and will be successful. Good Luck Coach Bechtol. I guess we will see how good Martinez really is with him.

  • JD

    Congratulations to Coach Bechtel, your first call should be to Jason Smith he will be a great asset at OC.

    Colony has some good kids coming back, you’ll be OK.

  • C. Moore Butts

    Great decision period. Why is it so bad to better yourself? Good luck Matt, I know I have learned a great deal from you! Stay away from the recruiting guru I heard he’s trouble.

  • Rick Ward

    First off I would like to say congratulations to Coach Bechtel. He is a great coach and I know him on a personal level. He will do a great job and I think is a good fit for the job.

    As far as inland valley recruiter. I came on here to read this artcle and saw my name so I thought I would reply to you. Now you know who I am, who are you? Unlike you I post my name. And don’t appreciate people calling me out in public and putting my name in their speculation without posting theirs. Most of us who applied figured that Bechtel was the shoe in for the job. But it is a good experience to interview anyway. Are we bitter? I can’t speak for them but all I can say is that I am busy preparing my team for next year. We have enough to worry about. So in the future if you want to attach a comment to my name, do me a favor post yours. Then you will legitimize it.

    Thanks for your time and good luck again to Coach Bechtel.

  • Former Coach

    I want to extend my Congratulations to Matt for being hired at Colony. He will do a great job. I coached Matt at Damien, where he played quaterback. It`s a pleasure to know young men that I`ve coached have grown to become great examples to this generation of youngmen. Good luck Matt and God Bless.

  • local coach

    Mr. Recruiting Guru, First of all comparing Montclair to Osos or Colony leads me to believe you are not a coach or at least haven’t coached at a socioeconmically challeged school. Winning is how coaches are judged and that is understandable but in some places, winning isn’t everything. As far as the colony job bechtal deserves a shot at running his own program. He built his reputation in that district and was the front runner for the job. I’m sure he will do well. he will only get better with the experience. As far as Rick Ward, well he is an experienced Head coach who is new to the district and if gotten the opportunity would have done well at colony also. Ward was the only one on that panel that had an outside shot of getting that job. The others had no shot in hell. As long as Ward is in that district he will be the x factor for any future head coaching position. Montclair, Altaloma, and Ontario are stepping stools to get to those prime jobs (osos, rancho, etiwanda, and colony). Alot of opportunities in that Chaffey Joint district for high school football coaches.

  • I Wanna see this.

    Hope Bechtel gets a chance to play Colony in the future. I would love to see that game.

  • Anonymous

    the colony players are very hyped up after talking with the coach for the first time and already we have bought in to what he says even after what happend colony will be back

  • local coach said

    Did Colony ever go anywhere? Why would you be back?

  • Correction

    would love to see colony play Osos.

  • Anonymous

    Someone help me understand what is all this hype about Bechtal and Colony being back… How soon people forget coach Rice was at colony 4 years and won the CIF championship 2 out of the 4 years, is Bechtal really going to top that? When Colony moved up a level they didn’t get it done, they will be going back down a level and so what if they win again…what would Bechtal have proved, that colony can win at their old level…Big deal.Colony’s Ad needs to pull his head out also… He stated that Bechtal is talking about state bowl games….really, does he know the system, Colony does not play at the level to make the state playoffs, daaaa.

  • They DO

    They play the first game of the season at Colony HS.

  • Curious

    So now that Bechtal is the new guy at Colony. What are realistic expectations for Him and the Titans next year?

  • Anonymous

    Local Coach,
    I would like to know what public school is not socioeconomically impacted by the state of our Union Today?

    Coach Wards resume would be greatly appreciated?

    I have one comment for you regarding Alta Loma, Ontario, & Montclair “Bulls&@!. You get a 5 dollar fine for whinning. In 2005Montclair beat Colony 49-17. In 2006 Alta Loma beat Colony 24-20 and in 2008 Ontario beat Colony 25-14. In 2005 Upland beat Colony 66-6.

    I guess what I am saying Coach!! Coach’em up or get out!

  • colony sucks

    of course this new coach is gonna have success. He’s in a bulls*** league with a bunch of scrub teams. Try coming into the baseline or sierra league, and see how badly they get there a**es beat.

  • silky

    colony is gay

  • CiscosChopper

    Wow… lots of fire posted here. Well I certainly wish Coach Bechtel lots of luck at Colony. They’ll do well under his leadership. And if he jumps back to Los Osos later, then that’s his choice. Enjoy the ride while he’s there, support the school (if you’re a fan) and relax… The two schools play each other in the first game…

  • Anonymous

    los osos works as a team to get better week after week.colony has indiviuals