Multi-Sport State Coaching Leaders

California's winningest football and boys basketball coaches are Bob Ladouceur of Concord De La Salle and Gary McKnight of Santa Ana Mater Dei. Ladouceur retired after the 2012 football season. McKnight reached 1,000 wins in 2015.

California’s winningest football and boys basketball coaches are Bob Ladouceur of Concord De La Salle and Gary McKnight of Santa Ana Mater Dei. Ladouceur retired after the 2012 football season. McKnight won his 1,000th game during 2014-15 season.

For the first time, we present an anchor home for instant access to the Cal-Hi Sports state record lists for coaching wins in football, boys basketball, girls basketball, baseball and softball. All records have now been updated through the 2018 football season plus 2017-18 school year for boys and girls hoops, baseball and softball. Go inside for all the details.

Note: All state record lists in various sports will eventually be posted on this site as part of our Gold Club membership. There is no other source for this information other than through Cal-Hi Sports. To sign up for your Gold Club membership so you can see all of our weekly state rankings, player rankings, record updates and more, CLICK HERE.

FOOTBALL COACHING LEADERS

Counting forfeit wins and losses, Santa Ana Mater Dei’s Bruce Rollinson became the 10th coach in state history to reach 300 wins or more for a career when the Monarchs topped De La Salle of Concord in the 2018 CIF Open Division state final.

For the Cal-Hi Sports state records, however, forfeits are not counted, so Rollinson still would need two more wins for his total to show up at 300 using that criteria. While his team in 2018 had one forfeit loss to Bishop Amat in a game it won on the field, earlier teams at Mater Dei won twice by forfeit and also once by default.

We also have Newhall Hart head coach Mike Herrington with 293 career wins heading into the 2019 season. The Indians usually win at least seven games every season under him so his 300th win could be coming before the end of the decade.

Two coaches who both had teams that finished 13-1 in 2018, Tony Martello of Colfax and Darren Bennett of Tulare, became the state’s two newest members of the 200-win club. And since both Martello and Bennett won their 200th games early in the season, they also both have already moved past nearly 10 others on the all-time state list who retired in the low 200s.

For the complete list, which is up-to-date heading into the 2019 season, and is for Gold Club members only, CLICK HERE.

To join our Gold Club membership, CLICK HERE.

BOYS BASKETBALL COACHING LEADERS

Not one, not two but three different coaches in the state earned their 700th milestone win during the 2018-19 season.

John Singer from Helix of La Mesa, who was on the same team at Helix in 1970 when the Highlanders were unbeaten and were led by the legendary Bill Walton, was one of the three. He was joined by former State Coach of the Year Doug Mitchell from Bishop Montgomery of Torrance and Jonas Honick from Branson of Ross, who was voted State Coach of the Year for the 2018-19 season.

Despite having a team with mostly sophomores, Santa Ana Mater Dei’s Gary McKnight added to his numbers with a team that went 29-5 and made it to the CIF Southern California Open Division final. McKnight won his 1,100th game during the 2017-18 season and is still the only coach in state history to reach 1,000 wins.

With McKnight continuing to build his resume, we think he should one day get voted into the International Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass. Yes, that’s the same one with Bill Russell, Michael Jordan, Dr. J and all the rest. There are already several high school coaches who are in it and McKnight’s accomplishments are comparable or superior.

We had to do some extra digging, but have confirmed that Los Angeles Westchester’s Ed Azzam only needs one more win at the start of the 2019-20 season to reach 900 for his career. Azzam, who has been leading the Comets’ program since 1980, probably would have gotten to 900 in the 2018-19 season if not for a couple of games that were canceled and not made up due to a teachers’ strike.

For a coach looking to join the 800-win club, that also should happen early in the 2019-20 season since Tom Bonfigli from Cardinal Newman of Santa Rosa only needs five more wins to get there.

Two coaches who won their 600th games during the 2018-19 season and have now been added to the Cal-Hi Sports state record list were Dave Kleckner of Etiwanda and Craig Ashmore from Newark-Memorial of Newark.

For the complete list, which is for Gold Club members only, CLICK HERE.

To join our Gold Club membership, CLICK HERE.

Mater Dei girls basketball coach Kevin Kiernan is surrounded by family and players after recording 762nd victory to break state record. Photo: Erik Boal.


GIRLS BASKETBALL COACHING LEADERS

It was quite a scene when Santa Ana Mater Dei’s Kevin Kiernan was recognized at the school in early January of 2019 for becoming the winningest girls basketball coach in California history.

Officially, Kiernan got the historic win in an opening round game of the So-Cal Holiday Classic, which put his career win total at 762 and surpassed the long-held state record of 761 set in 2007 by Joe Vaughan from Buena of Ventura.

In the team’s next home game, among those helping with the festivities were all-time boys state record holder Gary McKnight along with video congratulations, including one from Sierra Canyon of Chatsworth head coach Alicia Komaki, who is one of Kiernan’s former players at Troy of Fullerton nd guided Sierra Canyon to the 2019 CIF Open Division state title.

There weren’t nearly as many milestone wins during the 2018-19 season as there were from the previous season, but there was a 500th win for Marcelo Enriquez from Redondo of Redondo Beach.

We also have several coaches who are on the verge of major milestone wins. Sue Phillips from San Jose Archbishop Mitty, who coached in the McDonald’s All-American Game this season, needs just more during the 2019-20 season to reach 700. Terri Bamford from La Jolla Country Day also should win her 600th game.

For the complete list, which is for Gold Club members only, CLICK HERE.

To join our Gold Club membership, CLICK HERE.

BASEBALL COACHING LEADERS

It would be hard for any coach in any sport to end a career the way that Mission Viejo Capistrano Valley’s Bob Zamora did at the end of the 2018 season.

Zamora’s club came into the CIF Southern Section Division I playoffs as a second-place team from the South Coast League and wasn’t in the State Top 20. After four games, though, the Cougars won it all with a 2-1 victory over Foothill of Tustin in the title game.

Zamora concluded his career with more than 740 wins, made it 7-for-7 in CIFSS finals over his long career, and was the Cal-Hi Sports State Coach of the Year. He also moved from 10th to eighth on the all-time state wins list.

Moving up the most on the all-time state list was San Jose Valley Christian’s John Diatte. He won his 600th game early in the season and it turned out to be a magical season for the Warriors. They won the CIF Central Coast Section Open Division title (their second straight), finished 29-3-1 and were State Team of the Year. Diatte jumped seven positions on the all-time list based on where he was when the season began.

In addition to Diatte, two others to earn their 600th win during the season were Rick Weber of Chatsworth Sierra Canyon and Jack Thomson from Sierra of Manteca. Neither will be at those schools in 2019 since Weber resigned and will be at Viewpoint of Calabasas while Thomson is retiring.

For the complete list, which is for Gold Club members only and has now been updated through the 2018 season, CLICK HERE.

To join our Gold Club membership, CLICK HERE.

SOFTBALL COACHING LEADERS

It wasn’t the magical ending that it could have been, but San Diego Cathedral Catholic’s Margaret Mauro did have a 2018 season that moved her to No. 3 on the all-time state list. Led by UCLA-bound Gatorade National Player of the Year Megan Faraimo, Mauro’s girls were 26-3 and were No. 1 in the state and in the top five of every national ranking entering the CIF San Diego Section Open Division final. Her team lost in that game 4-0 to San Marcos, but still ended No. 5 in the final FloSoftball FAB 50 national rankings.

Another one of those on the all-time state list with 700 or more wins that had an interesting season was Tony Dobra of San Pedro. He’s actually been retired for several seasons, but in April there was a sudden departure of the San Pedro head coach and Dobra decided to step in. The Pirates were only a No. 8 seed for the CIF L.A. City Section Open Division, but upset top seed Carson in the first game and then Poly of Sun Valley in the semifinals before losing to Chatsworth 4-1 in the final. Dobra went 7-4 in the games he coached and those totals were added to his all-time record.

One of our favorites on the all-time list that we’ve seen many times (especially contributing editor Harold Abend) who retired after the 2018 season is Union City James Logan’s Teri Johnson. Her last team ended 19-5 with a CIF North Coast Section D1 playoff loss to Heritage of Brentwood. Johnson won her 600th game several seasons ago and was the 2011 State Coach of the Year.

This year’s only addition to the 600-win club, by the way, was Rob Weil of Los Alamitos. His 2018 squad didn’t repeat as CIFSS D1 champions, but ended 25-3 and early in the season was in the top five of most national rankings.

For the complete list with all updates added for the 2018 season, which is for Gold Club members only, CLICK HERE.

To join our Gold Club membership, CLICK HERE.

Note: All coaching records have been updated through the 2017-18 school year.

Mark Tennis is the co-founder and publisher of CalHiSports.com. He can be reached at markjtennis@gmail.com. Don’t forget to follow Mark on the Cal-Hi Sports Twitter handle: @CalHiSports


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8 Comments

  1. admin
    Posted March 12, 2014 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    Looks good, guys!

  2. Vicente
    Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

    You’re so awesome! I don’t suppose I’ve truly read through a single thing like this before. So good to discover somebody with a few original thoughts on this topic. Seriously.. thanks for starting this up. This site is something that is required on the internet, someone with some originality!

  3. Parle
    Posted June 18, 2015 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

    If all-time coaches are judged soley on number of wins accumulated, there is an absolute unfair advantage going to the coaches who practice their craft in sections who allow more games to be played than others. The playing field will not truly be level until the state (or federal) organizations agree on standardized rules. Not taking away from the accomplishments of these great men…they deserve all accolades. The system, however, is broken and unfair (speaking primarily about the kids).

    • Mark Tennis
      Posted June 19, 2015 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

      This is a record list. There’s no judgement given or meant to be given in any way. Other coaching categories include most CIF state titles, most CIF section titles and more.

  4. Guy Anderson
    Posted June 24, 2015 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    My 45 years of coaching baseball at Cordova High School have been a sure joy. Your continued sports information on high school baseball continues to be out standing and to be in your record book is in deed an honor. Coach Guy Anderson

  5. edert ramirez
    Posted February 28, 2016 at 10:58 am | Permalink

    is there records for cal. junior college ?

    • Mark Tennis
      Posted March 1, 2016 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

      If there are, sorry don’t know about them.

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One Trackback

  1. By Oh What A Night – Sportscenetv's Blog on March 2, 2016 at 9:17 pm

    […] Gary McKnight. It is my understanding that McKnight is the winningest coach of all time in CIF.( http://www.calhisports.com/2014/07/12/multi-sport-state-coaching-leaders/). He has coached at Mater Dei High School for better part of 30 years. He is known, honored and […]

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