Colton school board to approve Markham as head coach

Former Bloomington and Rialto head coach Don Markham will be recommended to the Colton Joint Unified School District as the next coach of the Colton football team at Thursday’s CJUSD school board meeting according the CJUSD agenda released Tuesday.

Markham, who is a teacher at Colton High School, was hired as Compton High School’s head coach in the offseason. His recommendation for the job, which was held by Rick Bray last year, puts the district in accordance with the Rialto Rule, which gives hiring preference to certificated teachers. According to Colton athletic director Harold Strauss, who otherwise refused comment, the only qualification for applying for the job was previous coaching experience, something that the 71-year-old Markham has plenty of with 309 career victories.

Markham’s last coaching at the high school level came in 2007, when he led Bloomington to a 6-5 record. He coached at American Sports University before being hired by Rialto in January 2010. He never coached a game with the Knights, resigning in April 2010 amid allegations of mistreatment of players.

Bray, a security officer at Colton High School and longtime assistant before taking over the head job last year, led the Yellowjackets to their first CIF-SS title since 1978, winning the Central Division with a 17-7 victory over Moreno Valley Rancho Verde in December. Bray was also named the all-Sun Coach of the Year.

Markham needs a simple majority vote — at least four votes out of seven — to be approved by the school board. Bray, who was recommended to the school board at the last board meeting April 21 but rejected due to Rialto Rule considerations, has reapplied for the position and will almost certainly have plenty of support at Thursday’s meeting, which starts at 5:30 p.m. at the school district office.

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