In October of 2020, I found out that I had won the 2019 California Boys Youth Rec Coach of the Year, almost exactly a year to the day from when I had coached my final game in 2019, and what has turned out to be my final game coached to the present day.

I would like to thank our League President, Carmen Saucedo, and the rest of the Executive Board of the Clovis Crossfire Soccer League.  That award came with the nomination for D-7 Rec Coach of the Year, and I’d like to thank John Hodgson and the D7 Board for then honoring me with D-7 Rec Coach of the Year and nomination  for State Coach of the Year.  I’d finally like to thank the Cal North Board for awarding me with the 2019 California Boys Youth Rec Coach of the Year award.

Looking forward to 2021, I’m hopeful that we will emerge from the pandemic with an opportunity to return to youth sports in the summer.  Losing the opportunity to coach has made me realize how much I enjoy it, and while a part of me was secretly thinking it might be nice to take a year off, the truth is that I’ve really missed it.  I’ve realized that the boys, the parents (no, really!), the camaraderie, and the competition are all much more important to me than I would have guessed.  It is a great honor to get to lead players, model hard work and commitment, and try to build the skills our kids will need in life, through the beautiful game of soccer.

The loss and the sadness of 2020 has caused our family to “reset”, with a new focus on what is important and meaningful in life. In the middle of a season, and sometimes in the middle of a game, it’s easy to lose focus on who we are out there for, and why we are out there in the first place.  We are out there for the kids, and we are coaching to share the game we love, to grow better little humans, and maybe grow a little ourselves.  In the words of the legendary Jurgen Klopp, “football is the most important, of the least important things”.    Read more…