Ayala reinstates boys basketball coach Kenny Donavon, who said principal apologized to him

According to the L.A. Times, Ayala boys basketball coach Kenny Donavon was given his job back on Friday after being fired earlier in the week by principal Diana Yorboi, who told Donavon he was not coming back because the school was moving in a different direction. Sources indicated to us that it was Yorboi’s intention to hire former Charter Oak head coach Ray Walker. But it appears Donovan’s firing didn’t sit well with a lot of people, and Donovan took the job back when it was offered to him.
“The principal apologized,” Donovan told the Times. “She said she made a mistake.”

“She told me she made a mistake,” Ayala athletic director Steve Martin told the Bulletin’s Clay Fowler. “She’s a principal in her first year and I think she was trying to placate as many parents as she could. I think she’s discovering, in athletics you can’t placate everybody.”

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  • WELCOME BACK COACH DONAVON WHAT TOOK SO LONG ?

    Boy to be a fly on the wall at Monday’s practice.

    Great to see the Sierra League try and shed some of it’s spoiled rich kid reputation.

  • WELCOME BACK COACH DONAVON WHAT TOOK SO LONG ?

    Boy to be a fly on the wall at Monday’s practice.

    Great to see the Sierra League try and shed some of it’s spoiled rich kid reputation.

  • WELCOME BACK COACH DONAVON WHAT TOOK SO LONG ?

    Boy to be a fly on the wall at Monday’s practice.

    Great to see the Sierra League try and shed some of it’s spoiled rich kid reputation.

  • interesting

    Now where does Walker go?
    If he knew in December that he would get this job-maybe telling his principal that he didn’t want the CO basketball job without a teaching position wasn’t so hard a decision. If he didn’t think he had somewhere to go – maybe he woulda stayed

  • Anonymous

    Wow! There is a very popular head coach at ayala that was recently caught involved in an unethical and immoral sexual realtionship on campus with a married female faculty member who is involved in the athletic program and it is swept under the rug and kept under wraps with no disclipinary action taken on either of them for their behavior, but a coach like Donavon who displays high morals, values, character and sets a good example is fired? What does that say about Ayala’s athletic program?

  • ayala fan

    Coach Donavan in not a Varsity Coach. He is a great history teacher and a jv coach and that is all. With this firing it now makes 3 times he has been fired (azusa,diamond ranch and ayala) i know he got his job back but this because the ad martin wants his puppet.And now we realize Martin is calling the shots over and not the pricipal.
    Fred do some investigating. The Times said main reason he got his job back was that parents complained about the firing. NO WAY that happened! Call all returning varsity players and ask them 1) do they respect donovan, 2) did they like playing for him and 3) how happy were they when they found out he was fired? Than Fred you are sharp reporter call the returning parents and just ask them the last question. I can GAURANTEE you that you will not get one vote of support from the players not even the board members son, who by the way can not stand donovan. then ask the parents the last question. You will get 1 parents suport and that is the board members parent and that because he also like martin control the coach and you will not recieve another vote of support!
    So now was martin thinking about the program or himself!
    Fred looking forward to your findings! As you know better than anyone – if there is a wiil, there is away!

  • St, Ayala?

    Anonymous do they have priests at Ayala ?

  • hs fan

    wow fred. makes you wonder why any person would want to coach at ayala. but i have a question for you fred, maybe you can help. the poster below, who is asking you to investigate, do you think he is a happy parent? or a unhappy parent? i cant tell if he/she is glad to see coach donovan back….lol. and dont stop with the seniors, ask the hundreds of kids who have went through that program and played for him. they will give you the scoop on donovan also…lol..this is amazingly ridiculous. the guy won 17 games with so-so talent, no size, and after replacing a coaching legend…and 1 parent supported him the entire year???…not one player liked him??…17 wins ?? this guys deserves coach of the year!!! lol. keep it going ayala parents..you are the laughing stock of southern california..

  • Mark Rosen

    Coach Donavon is a good man that has good intensions, but that does not make a good basketball coach. To be successful, a coach needs his players to respect his wishes and skill sets, take direction during practices and follow the rules that he has put into place. This was not the case last year. Was coach Donavon’s firing a case of bad spoiled boys and parents running over a coach? I think not, it was about a Coach not demanding the respect required to run a quality program. It is about a coach unable to communicate with his players and teach them the right way to conduct themselves both on and off the court. This is not going to change by re-hiring him. Individuals can change, but Mr. Donavon is a nice man that avoids conflict at all cost. That is not a good trait for a coach whose job requires him to deal with conflict on a weekly basis.

    The standard for being a good coach is not just wins and losses; it is about making a team out of a group of young athletes. It is about teaching them to share the ball and play hard as a unit. This did not happen last year, nor do I believe it will happen this coming year. Ayala will probably win more games next year because its current talent pool will be more mature and the bench will be stronger. Keep in mind their schedule was very weak last year. The teams that the bulldogs defeated had a combined record of 153 wins / 197 losses. Only 3 of the 16 teams Ayala defeated during the regular season finished with a winning record and two of those teams were in Ayalas own league. Glendora and Damien, the two schools in Ayalas league, accounted for 40 of the 153 wins.

    The big question is will anything change at Ayala? My guess is no. The school administration has dropped the ball and let School Board politics determine the outcome of a program that they do little to fund. What has been created is a no win situation for everyone. The big losers here are the kids that play at Ayala. It is a common theme at a lot of High Schools these days.

  • Slackerville

    Ayala fan as far as coaches being fired, every coach has been fired. On the way up and on the way down. Just look at Pete Carroll, he was fired on the biggest stages only to stage one heck of a upswing all the way to $$$$eattle. So I don’t understand your point.

    The Ayala problem highlights what’s wrong with high school sports today. The kids lack the ability to respect anyone that doesn’t turn them into starters. Not players, not team mates, not good practice workers mind you but the cure all of all end alls…cue music…Starters!!!!! (trumpets blaring)

    Chino Hills seems to have this problem cured for some reason, if lack of blog drama is any indicator. Work your way thru the system and eventually if you’re good enough, work hard enough and follow orders …you earn playing time. CH’s Michael Rodriguez was a great example of this and Ayala used to have Gregorian soldiers who followed the “plan” as well. Glendora still has their basketabll system in place from top to bottom and sideways, lol.

    Today I see parents who complain when their “starter” kids get taken out of a game because of turnover after turnover or after one missed shot after another start hurting the team. Competency isn’t what parents parents look for anymore, THEY WANT MAJOR UNINTERRUPTED MINUTES DAMN IT !!! it’s pathetic really.

    The key to this logic is a “starter” doesn’t need to improve/work, be evaluated/monitored or “pushed/punished”, also called “accountability…. all he needs is “game time baby!!!” The fallout of this disease is parent cannibalism resulting in gossip, player or parent cliques and professional shenanigans of the highest order.

    This year my son came to me with news of a circulated letter the players wanted to present to the coaches because the team was in a tail spin Every player had signed on but one, my son. I told my son, “No way.” He agreed. Then I asked him, “When’s the letter was being circulated that says the best players play, no more favoritism and the whiney starters need to be sat down once in awhile.” He laughed. So much for accountability.

    Ayala is not any different but I do notice lots of problems coming from that area of the SGV. Maybe all those news houses, new schools, great facilities, affluent this and spoil me that have created so many travel ball syndromed spoiled rotten kids and over the top, I never did it but my kids will, Dads that we shouldn’t be as much surprised as embarrassed we put up with this disease for so long.

    Kids complain about a coach who “they” don’t respect…wow! No wonder society has soooooooo many slackers.

  • Glenn Hansen

    I am continually amazed reading these forum posts. Most of all, it astonishes me that only one person posted their name on their thoughts and opinions. If you have something to say about this situation, and you truly believe in it, then you should stand behind that thought in public. Or, are you like so many of those who claim to be truly interested in helping, then you leave the room and say or do something completely different?

    So let’s discuss this in a public place – even online – and then let’s see how the discussion might change.

    For the record, I stand firmly in support of the program Coach Donovan is building at Ayala. And it includes more than just the overly dramatic Varsity program. Look at all the coaches he brought in. Look at the successful JV program. It’s all happening under Donovan’s leadership. And it requires effort from others involved, including parents and players.

  • Cal Poly Cuts

    Hansen your point is well taken but you’ve forgotten the rules of engagement in today’s high school sport’s landscape. revenge, insecurity and nepotism rule the roost.

    I see high school sports like the child abuse cases in the Catholic Church. No matter how much evidence keeps piling up, no matter how many states or countries continue to keep this story in the front pages of newspapers all over the world every one acts like it only happens at other schools. From idiot coaches running up the scores, to parents opening schools to gerrymandering success, to HOF QBs abusing their fame, every one wants their 15 seconds. No matter who it hurts in the process.

    Priests, coaches, teachers and administrators are no different when they abuse their power…every one knows and no one does anything about it.

    Ayala is just the latest case of abuse of power. Every one with half a brain and a pair of eye balls knows who’s the problem, what their agenda is and how they are getting away with murder, yet no one steps forward and says a thing for fear they could be the next scalp.. Oh sure they’ll dance around the problem and use code words when the heat gets too close but everyone knows what’s going on at Ayala. Sad thing is not one of the players on that team is as memorable as the coach they helped get fired or the coach they tried to replace, not one.

    Cal Poly Pomona just won an NCAA Championship. How many Ayala players could be projected to make their team, not one. All this drama for a bunch of players who have unrealistic views of their own ability and fantasy expectations of their playing careers.

    Second rate players and third rate parents fire first rate coach !

    How’s that for a headline Fred?

  • VARSITY PLAYERS

    ITS NOT THE PARENTS!!!IT’S US!! THE PLAYERS. WE ARE ALL UNHAPPY WITH HIM. MAJORITY OF YOU PARENTS ARE SO IGNORANT TO WHAT’S GOING ON AND WHAT WE WENT THROUGH.YOU GUYS THINK THAT JUST BECAUSE YOU GUYS ARE FRIENDS W/ COACH AND KISS ASS TO HIM ALL THE TIME SO THAT YOU KID PLAYS THAT ITS OK. wHEN REALLY NONE OF US WERE SATISFIED WITH WHAT WENT ON. FROM THE LACK OF COACHING ABILITY TO THE LACK OF LEADERSHIP THAT WE SHOULD HAVE BEEN GIVEN BY A COACH.
    TO PEOPLE LIKE GLEN ( WHOEVER THAT IS)AND OTHER PEOPLE THAT WANTED TO TALK DOWN ON US, YOU NEED TO JUST WORRY ABOUT NJB AND STAY THE HELL OUT OF HIGHSCHOOL BASKETBALL. BECAUSE THIS YEAR WE DID HAVE GOOD TALENT FROM PLAYERS SUCH AS J.P. WHO THEY JUST DIDNT EVEN TRY AND DEVELOPE, ANDREW WHO WASNT USED PROPERLY, DJ WHO WASNT USED PROPERLY ALSO, JARED, MIKE, TONEY WHO WAS A HARD WORKER BUT NEVER GOT THE CHANCE TO SHOW HIS SKILLS,MATHEW, JEFF WHO THEY ALSO DIDNT EVEN TRY WITH BUT INSTEAD KICKED TO THE CURB AND TYLER. SO TO YOU SO CALLED PEOPLE WHO THINK YOU KNOW THE GAME OF BASKETBALL, YOU NEED TO KEEP YOUR MOUTHS SHUT ABOUT THIS SITUATION BECAUS ALMOST EVERY KID I NAMED CAN BE PLAYING FOR SOME SCHOOL IN THE FUTURE. BUT THANKS COACH DONOVAN,MR.MARTIN, SELFISH NO BASKETBALL I.Q. HAVING SPECTATORS FOR MAKING MY YEAR THIS YEAR A WASTE FOR ALL OF US!

  • just sayin’

    I find it funny that on one hand the complaint was from those that said Coach Donovan played too many players in a “JV” mentality and the other side that SCREAMS players were “kicked to the curb”, “didn’t try to develop”, “never given a chance”
    Which is it Ayala?

  • Wah wah wah

    VARSITY PLAYERS

    You show no respect for your parents, your coaches, the administrators and anyone else who doesn’t cut the crust for you. No wonder you guys are such babies. So you’re not happy. Three freshmen on varsity last year and now four sophs on varsity this year and yet no one developed you. Which is it? You guys weren’t happy with Gregory or he’d still be there, you guys weren’t happy with Donavon and you almost got him run. Why not make Mr. P the coach. Would that make you happy. isn’t this all about three boys who came into the world at about the same time.

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