Gladstone’s Albert Sanchez will coach the East against El Monte’s Joel Sanchez in the Hall of Fame All-Star Game.
The game is going to be played earlier this year, but I haven’t heard an exact date. Nonetheless, this will be The Sanchez Bowl … and also Round 2 of Amezquita/B-Mart. If you’ll recall, the two All-Area QBs put on a show in Week 3 with Gladstone winning 68-66 in 3 OT.
The game will also mark the final hurrah for Albert Sanchez, who resigned shortly after the season ended.
Mark Paredes, who coached Bishop Amat to arguably its best-ever season in 1992, was named the new varsity football head coach at Damien High School on Thursday.
Paredes, who spent the past three seasons as the head coach at JW North in Riverside, replaces Greg Gano, who resigned in December at four seasons at the school. Gano has since been named head coach at Tustin.
“I toyed with the idea and really didn’t think I was in the ballpark and finally it came to fruition,” Paredes said of being hired. “It’s one of those thing that everything came to be in place. They wanted me and I wanted them and I decided that it was a good situation. I’m excited about building a program and continuing the Damien tradition.”
After leading Amat to California’s first-ever 15-0 season in 1992, which included a CIF championship and a win in the now-defunct Reebok Bowl, Paredes left in 1994.
He landed at JW North where he won CIF championships in 1995 and 2001. Paredes left JW North in 2001 to become the offensive coordinator at Riverside College until 2010 when he left to return to JW North.
Damien received over 70 applications for the position, which flew until early January. Principal Merritt Hemenway, who like Paredes has Amat connections, said the school made a short list of six candidates before ultimately coming to terms with Paredes.
“Making a final selection was a challenge,” Hemenway said. “In the end, Mark’s extensive experience at both the high school and college levels, and the fact that he matched each of the elements we were looking for in a head coach, made the decision, one of him getting to say yes, the greatest challenge.
“He is an excellent coach, a wonderful family man, an accomplished classroom teacher and a steeped in the traditions of Catholic education.”
Damien’s program has fallen on hard times in recent years. The Spartans have not won a playoff game since 2006. When Gano was hired prior to the 2009 season, he appeared to be the spark the school needed. But the four-time CIF champion could manage only two postseason appearances, losing both, and never won a league title.
“I have no idea how Damien has been doing,” said Paredes, a 1970 graduate of St. Paul who lives in West Covina. “I don’t know their record last year, to be honest. I was busy at North that I was basically focused on working on next year and the opponents that we have.
“Basically, my attraction to the school was the religious aspect, the principal and that it’s closer to home.”
Paredes said he’s already working on putting a coaching staff together and that he currently has no plans to hire anyone who was with him at North or anyone currently at Amat. As to whether Damien would put Amat back on its schedule after dropping the Lancers last season at Gano’s asking, Paredes said he’d prefer not to play his former employer.
“Bishop Amat is a high school that I love, JW North is a school that I love, St. Paul is a school that I love,” Paredes said. “I would not go and seek playing them only because you have mixed emotions. Let me put it this way, if I have to play them, I will play them. If I don’t have to play them, I won’t play them.
“I have friends everywhere. It would be fun, I guess. I wouldn’t hesitate to restore that rivalry, if need be. Our schedule is full right now. We’ve always tried to schedule the best competition we can at JW North.”
Derek Bub resigned as Chino Hills High School football coach on Wednesday after five seasons, citing a desire to spend more time with his family and seek a position in higher up in administration. Bub is currently the school’s athletic director.
Bub won Sierra League championships in his first three seasons and compiled a record of 43-16-1. He did not rule out a return to coaching, and even hinted at it being a certainty.
“I’m going to spend some time with family and also go down the administration route,” Bub said Wednesday morning. “I thought about it over Christmas break and wanted to see where I was at. It’s one of those thing where I have to put my family first. It just makes sense for me.
“To sit here and say that I’m never going to coach again would be a lie. It’s in my blood. To tell you I’m not going to be shaking on the sidelines next year would be an absolute fabrication. I love this game. I love what it does for kids. But for right now, I think this is the best decision for me. That’s not to say I won’t entertain anything for years to come.”
The Centennial game Bub was referring to came in 2010 with what was arguably his best team at Chino Hills. The Huskies reached the semifinals of the Inland Division playoffs that season and gave a juggernaut Centennial a battle for three quarters before falling 42-23.
“Off the field, I think we produced a great number of kids that make us proud in the community,” Bub said. “That’s probably the biggest thing that will stick with me. On the field, obviously, the Centennial game sticks in my mind and some games against Charter Oak. We had some great games in the past five years.”
Bub said the school will fly the job within the district as soon as possible, and will fly it outside the district if needed.
“I’d like to have somebody in place by the beginning of February,” Bub said. “We’ll get things going and make things as smooth as possible.”
When asked if former Colony head coach and current Huskies offensive coordinator Matt Bechtel was the favorite to take over, Bub said he wasn’t sure and it depended on the applicants.
“I don’t know if I’d say he’s the favorite because I don’t know who else is going to put in,” Bub said. “I like Matt. I like the way he coaches. I enjoyed being able to coach with him for the past year. I think he does a great job. I like everything he has to offer, but who knows who else is going to come out in the district or even outside the district.”
Aram’s take: First, let me say that Bub is/was an absolute class act. Never heard anyone in the coaching community have a bad word to say about him. He was great to work with for Fred and I. It’s not an easy drive going from the Chino Hills area to the Tribune area, but Bub always had his players available and on-time airlines for any photo opps we needed, which included even sending standouts Ifo-Ekpre Olumo and Nate Harris all the way to the Rose Bowl for our Signing Day photo shoot in early 2011. As for the open job, I kinda feel like saying “interested applicants need not apply”, but I won’t. However, the theory has been “out there” since last year that Bechtel would come over, call the offense, then become the head man when Bub made his move to admin. Looks like it’s unfolding, although I’ve heard Bechtel’s name mentioned with both the Etiwanda and Damien openings … maybe that’s why today’s news was expedited? Dunno. Nonetheless, if Bechtel does get the job, the Huskies will be in good hands and I would expect that Bub would play a role on the staff sooner than later. Good for Bechtel or whomever gets it. Talk about one great job.
Boise St. head coach Chris Petersen (left), Amat’s Dionza Blue (middle), Boise St. assistant Jim Lake (right)
I guess you can call this making it official before making it official. Amat RB/DB Dionza Blue got a home visit from the Broncos contingent on Monday to firm up his commitment to be a Bronco next season. Blue had originally given a verbal commitment to Fresno St., but changed his mind, like any of us would, when Boise came calling.
Blue was a Tribune All-Area selection this season after leading Amat in tackles, interceptions, rushing and touchdowns.