REV It Up: Bruich State Coach of Year

The 2014 State Coach of the Year, Redlands East Valley's Kurt Bruich, holds CIF D2 state title game plaque after team defeated Clayton Valley of Concord. Photo: Mark Tennis.

The 2014 State Coach of the Year, Redlands East Valley’s Kurt Bruich, holds CIF D2 state title game plaque after team defeated Clayton Valley of Concord. Photo: Mark Tennis.

For the first time on the list of state football coaches of the year that stretches back more than 100 years, we have a father-son combination as Redlands East Valley’s Kurt Bruich is the honoree for the 2014 season. His father, Dick, received the same honor after the 1989 season.

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The Bruich name is synonymous with high school football success in California’s Inland Empire. And as of today, both Dick Bruich and his son Kurt can see their names as State Coach of the Year.

Kurt Bruich has been chosen as this year’s recipient mostly because his 15-1 team at Redlands East Valley won the CIF Division II state title with a 34-33 win over previously unbeaten Clayton Valley of Concord.

From 1977 to 1998 at Fontana and from 2000 to 2008 at Kaiser of Fontana, Dick Bruich won 292 games with four CIF Southern Section titles and two teams (1987, 1989) that were unbeaten and selected as Cal-Hi Sports State Teams of the Year. Bruich’s win total is still eighth on the all-time state list even though he retired six years ago.

Bruich’s son, Kurt, led the secondary on that 1987 Fontana team, which blanked Fountain Valley 21-0 in the CIFSS Big Five Conference final and also was ranked No. 1 in the nation according to the National Prep Poll (National Sports News Service).

The only father-son State Coaches of the Year get in a hug after CIF Division II state bowl game. Photo:

The only father-son State Coaches of the Year get in a hug after CIF Division II state bowl game. Photo:

Dick Bruich wasn’t the State Coach of the Year for 1987, but he was the choice for 1989, which was another nationally ranked powerhouse.

Kurt Bruich went on to play at the University of Redlands and then decided to become a head football coach/educator himself.

After several seasons at Cerritos, the younger Bruich began his own Inland Empire football journey by accepting the head job in 2002 at Redlands East Valley. In the first five years that REV fielded teams (the school opened in 1997), the varsity win-loss record was an abysmal 1-49.

Bruich pushed the Wildcats to their first winning season in his first season and he’s also now the school’s athletic director.

Counting the win over Clayton Valley, Bruich will take a 105-33-4 record for 13 seasons into the 2015 season. The run also includes nine league championships and several deep playoff runs.

This year’s team at REV not only had to beat a 15-0 opponent in its last game, but also had to beat a 13-0 foe, Riverside Poly, in order to win the CIF Southern Section Inland Division title and become bowl eligible.

“I don’t even try to live up to my dad’s accolades,” Kurt told Kyle Glaser of the Riverside Press-Enterprise prior to the CIF state bowl game. “What I try to live up to, and why I wanted to get into coaching, was because I saw how many of my friends he influenced when I was in high school. Boys that didn’t have everything, they always felt like they were part of our family and they went on to do bigger and better things. That was why I wanted to be just like him. It had nothing to do with championships. I wanted to do what he did with people.”

That sense of purpose also has not gone unnoticed by his players.

“Coach Bruich is a phenomenal coach,” University of Oregon commit and Mr. Football State Player of the Year finalist Malik Lovette told the Press-Enterprise. “He does everything right from my perspective. He never puts his kids in a bad position.”

After the elder Bruich was chosen in 1989, there’s only been one other from the Inland Valley named as a State Coach of the Year in football and that would be Matt Logan from Corona Centennial for 2004.

Note: In recognizing Bruich, it’s obviously important to list all members of his coaching staff. According to the CIF Southern Section championship program, assistant coaches also deserving of accolades are Elliott Anderson, Sandy Crumrine, Jeff Cuaron, Bryan Ducey, Clay Goodrich, Jeffrey Harman, Lenzy Hunter, Walt Isaac, Michael Moreno and Chalen Tessitore.

Chaminade's Ed Croson was last season's State Coach of the Year.  Photo: Scott Kurtz.

Chaminade’s Ed Croson was last season’s State Coach of the Year. Photo: Scott Kurtz.

(All selections by
(Based on research by the late Nelson Tennis, our founder, prior to 1979)

2014 — Kurt Bruich (Redlands East Valley) 15-1
2013 — Ed Croson (Chaminade, West Hills) 14-2
2012 — Ernie Cooper (Granite Bay) 13-3
2011 — Mike Papadopoulos (Vacaville) 13-1
2010 — Earl Hansen (Palo Alto) 14-0
2009 — Jim Benkert (Westlake, Westlake Village) 14-0
2008 — Mike Alberghini (Grant, Sacramento) 14-0
2007 — Ed Buller (Oak Grove, San Jose) 12-1
2006 — Bob McAllister (Carlsbad) 10-0-2
2005 — Harry Welch (Canyon, Canyon Country) 13-1
2004 — Matt Logan (Centennial, Corona) 13-1
2003 — Steve Grady (Loyola, Los Angeles) 11-3
2002 — Kevin Rooney (Notre Dame, Sherman Oaks) 14-0
2001 — Bob Johnson (Mission Viejo) 14-0
2000 — Jerry Jaso (Poly, Long Beach) 14-0
1999 — Mike Herrington (Hart, Newhall) 14-0
1998 — Randy Blankenship (Clovis West, Fresno) 12-1
1997 — John Beam (Skyline, Oakland) 12-0
1996 — Dave Silveira (Alhambra, Martinez) 13-0
1995 — Larry Welsh (Atascadero) 14-0
1994 — Bruce Rollinson (Mater Dei, Santa Ana) 14-0
1993 — John Barnes (Los Alamitos) 14-0
1992 — Mark Paredes (Bishop Amat, La Puente) 15-0
1991 — Herb Meyer (El Camino, Oceanside) 13-1
1990 — Pat Preston (Bakersfield) 13-0
1989 — Dick Bruich (Fontana) 14-0
1988 — Norm Dow (Live Oak, Morgan Hill) 11-0-1
1987 — Bennie Edens (Point Loma, San Diego) 13-0
1986 — Bob Ladouceur (De La Salle, Concord) 12-0
1985 — Charlie Wedemeyer (Los Gatos) 13-1
1984 — Tim Simons (Clovis) 12-0-1
1983 — Ron Calcagno (St. Francis, Mountain View) 13-0
1982 — Wayne Schneider (Tracy) 12-1
1981 — Marijon Ancich (St. Paul, Santa Fe Springs) 14-0
1980 — Bill Workman (Edison, Huntington Beach) 14-0
1979 — Ron Lancaster (Cordova, Rancho Cordova) 13-0
1978 — Jerry Deuker (Pinole Valley, Pinole) 11-1
1977 — Chris Ferragamo (Banning, Wilmington) 11-1-1
1976 — Benny Pierce (Saratoga) 13-0
1975 — Ed Lloyd (Cardinal Newman, Santa Rosa) 12-0
1974 — Dick Haines (Vista) 13-0
1973 — Dwayne DeSpain (Los Altos, Hacienda Heights) 12-0-1
1972 — Bob Hitchcock (Temple City) 13-0
1971 — Gene Vollnogle (Carson) 12-0
1970 — Jack Neumeier (Granada Hills) 11-1
1969 — Forrest Klein (Alameda) 9-0
1968 — Tom Burt (Los Altos) 9-0
1967 — Clare Van Hoorebeke (Anaheim) 12-1
1966 — Ernie Johnson (El Rancho, Pico Rivera) 13-0
1965 — Dick Coury (Mater Dei, Santa Ana) 12-0-1
1964 — John Hanna (Bellarmine, San Jose) 10-0
1963 — Paul Briggs (Bakersfield) 9-0
1962 — Bob Berry (Willow Glen, San Jose) 9-0
1961 — Joe Marvin (Sequoia, Redwood City) 9-0
1960 — Sam Cathcart (Santa Barbara) 11-1
1959 — Dave Levy (Long Beach Poly) 11-0
1958 — Paul Huebner (Banning, Wilmington) 11-0
1957 — Johnny Johnson (Oroville) 9-0
1956 — Dick Hill (Downey) 12-0-1
1955 — Duane Maley (San Diego) 11-0-1
1954 — Aaron Wade (Centennial, Compton) 10-1-1
1953 — Milt Axt (Poly, San Francisco) 10-0
1952 — Fred Moffett (Berkeley) 9-0
1951 — Hod Ray (Palo Alto) 8-0
1950 — Ernie Busch (Merced) 11-0
1949 — Bob Patterson (Vallejo) 10-0
1948 — Harry Edelson (Fremont, Los Angeles) 9-0-1
1947 — Jim Sutherland (Santa Monica) 12-0
1946 — George Hobbs (Alhambra) 12-0
1945 — Colon Kilby (Vallejo) 10-0
1944 – Bert LaBrucherie (Los Angeles) 7-0
1943 – Larry Siemering (Stockton) 10-0
1942 – Brick Johnson (Piedmont) 7-0
1941 – Roy Richert (Castlemont, Oakland) 5-0-1
1940 – Clarence Schutte (Santa Barbara) 9-1
1939 – Palmer Muhl (Woodland) 8-0
1938 – Ras Johnson (Galileo, San Francisco) 8-0-1
1937 – Jim Blewett (Manual Arts, Los Angeles) 8-0
1936 – Harlan Lee (Red Bluff) 7-0-1
1935 – Paul Hungerford (Poly, San Francisco) 9-0
1934 – Orian Landreth (Long Beach Poly, Long Beach) 12-1
1933 – Dick Arnett (Inglewood) 8-2-1
1932 – Harry Shipkey (Salinas) 11-0
1931 – Tex Oliver (Santa Ana) 13-0
1930 – John Price (Bonita, La Verne) 10-0

List continues back to 1896 in State Record Book & Almanac.

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

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One Comment

  1. Erik Duncan
    Posted January 3, 2015 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    It’s a shame that Dave Humphers was never chosen for this great honor.

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