Milestone Football Wins By Schools

Former Manteca High head coach Eric Reis (left) celebrates his 100th win several years ago. We have the Buffs as a school winning their 600th in their last game. At right, players at Ventura show off what they call their Storm Troopers uniforms. The Cougars can win their 500th all-time game this week. Photos: Mark Tennis & @VenturaFootball / Twitter.com.


According to our all-time state records as well as info from files maintained for many years by the late Bruce McIntosh, there are several schools in California on the verge of collecting a milestone win for the longtime history of their football program. There also are some who have recently gained one, including Manteca (600th), Woodlake (500th) and Sutter (500th). Go inside to see which schools are closing in on their 600th or 500th plus see how many wins all-time leader Bakersfield needs to become the first in state history to win 800 reported games.

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Coaching milestone wins create probably more questions for us from the media than any other category in the state record book. As the unofficial record keepers of California high school football, it’s just a situation where the school communities themselves want to show their appreciation for a coach’s success usually over a long period of time.

But very few of the schools around the state are even aware of a different type of milestone win that also should be celebrated and that’s the one for the school’s football program as a whole going back 80, 90, or even 100 years.

Here is a list of California schools that are on the verge of a milestone win and some that have recently gained one. Note: Forfeit wins or losses are never counted in Cal-Hi Sports records. On-the-field results only.

Bakersfield
It’s been a struggle this year so far for the Drillers with an 0-3 record in the 2021 fall season. The team in the spring did pick up two wins, so we have a current record of 797-283-43 for Bakersfield going into this week’s game against Centennial of Bakersfield. The three losses are all to state-ranked teams at the time Los Alamitos, Clovis and Central (Fresno) so there could still be three more wins coming this season. If that happens, the Drillers would become the first school in state history to get to 800 all-time reported wins. The first reported win is for 1896, the first undefeated season is for 1897.

Banning of Wilmington player shows logo of school during game from 2019. Photo: Facebook.com.


Banning (Wilmington)
With seven wins since the end of the 2019 season (three from the spring and four so far this fall), the Pilots head into their big game this week against San Pedro with 505 reported wins since 1921. They won No. 500 in the spring.

Caruthers
The Blue Raiders have slipped this season so far and have a 1-5 record heading into this week. But in the spring they were 4-1 and moved to 500 wins overall with their second win. Caruthers has 502 wins since 1921.

Colton
Four wins so far for the 2021 fall season has pushed the Yellowjackets’ reported total to 496 since 1911. We had Colton with 492 after 2019. The reason that the total isn’t higher than 496 is because the school wasn’t able to get in any games for the super-shortened 2020 spring season.

Dorsey (Los Angeles)
A school known for its NFL players (most prominent has been WR Keyshawn Johnson) that has been playing football since 1937 is shown with 497 wins before this week’s contest at home vs. Locke. The Dons were 0-0 in the spring and have started 3-2 this season.

Fort Bragg
Since the end of the 2019 season, the Timberwolves have only won once entering their game this week. This is due to no games for 2020-21 due to the pandemic and a 1-3 start for this season. Regardless, the North Coast community only needs five more wins to reach 500 since 1924 with a current mark of 495-304-24.

Lemoore
The Tigers have been playing football since 1908 and were shown with 493 wins at the end of the 2019 campaign. There were only two games played in the pandemic-influenced 2021 spring season (both losses) and so far this fall Lemoore has gone 4-1. That’s 497 wins currently and counting.

Lompoc
The big story of the fall so far for the 3-2 Braves has been the six kick return TDs by Deville Dickerson. The team’s 5-0 record from last spring gave the school 605 wins since 1921. The 600th therefore would have been the first win of the spring. Only 16 others from state history had that total or higher at the time. Entering this week, we have Lompoc with an all-time record of 605-365-21.

Manteca
Congrats to the Buffs. It appears they won the 600th game in school history (1923 start) when they last played — a 65-0 romp on Sept. 17 over Sierra of Manteca. We had them at 591 after 2019 so they got to 600 with a 4-1 record from the spring and then a 5-0 record so far this fall. The Buffs had a bye last week and play Friday at home vs. longtime rival Oakdale, which has well over 500 all-time wins since 1922 but still needs a few years to reach 600.

Defensive lineman Eddie Vanderdoes has been one of the greatest players that Placer of Auburn has ever had. Photo: Mark Tennis.


Placer (Auburn)
Snake-bit might be a good description about the Hillmen so far this fall. In an 0-4 start, they’ve lost by scores of 40-33, 41-33, 47-37 and 32-26. They were 2-1 in the spring. With a reported record of 494-297 at the end of 2019 since 1899, Placer now needs four more wins to get to 500.

Sutter
After going 5-0 in the spring and with wins that helped head coach Ryan Reynolds earn State Small Schools Coach of the Year honors, the Huskies added two more wins this fall before suffering a 21-0 loss to Foothill of Palo Cedro. The 500th win for the program came in the spring. Since 1927, entering this week, we have Sutter with 506 reported wins.

Tehachapi
The Warriors have been saying that this season is a re-boot of the program. There’s a new head coach, Kris Krempien, and the team wasn’t able to play at all during the 2020-21 school year. Tehachapi has started 2-3 so far. That puts the reported all-time record at 598-330-25. With two more wins, Tehachapi could become just the 19th in California history with 600 or more.

Vallejo
School still known for its legendary team in 1954 with the great Dick Bass has a 2-2 record to start this season. The team only played twice in the spring and lost both games. Still, we have a total of 596 wins since 1898 so four more this season is certainly possible.

Ventura
While we found one school for this historical feature that notched a milestone win in its last game (Manteca for No. 600), the Cougars can get to a milestone with their next win. That would be No. 500 according to our files from the first season 1923 to 2021 fall. Ventura is taking a 2-2 record into its game Friday vs. San Marcos of Santa Barbara. In the spring, head coach Tim Garcia’s squad posted a 4-1 record with a lone loss to Pacifica of Oxnard. We had the team with 493 wins at the end of 2019.

Woodlake
We still think of the late, great coach Leo Robinson whenever we mention the Tigers. The first score in our files is from 1916. Woodlake won its 500th game just two weeks ago, 33-7, over Lindsay and added 501 last week by topping Sierra Pacific of Hanford, 27-20. The team started 0-4 this fall and was 1-1 in the spring.

NOTE: The schools with the best win-loss records among those with 500 wins or more are De La Salle of Concord and Mater Dei of Santa Ana. Entering this week’s games, DLS has gone 515-74-8 since 1972. MD has gone 573-192-15 since 1950. Not including forfeits.

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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3 Comments

  1. Derry Eads
    Posted September 30, 2021 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    I have Ventura with 489 wins as of this week.

    • Derry Eads
      Posted September 30, 2021 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

      My bad. Did a recount and found the 10 wins. Ventura does have 499.

      • Mark Tennis
        Posted October 1, 2021 at 8:43 am | Permalink

        Thanks, Derry. Should have probably checked on that one with you first, but you know how it goes. Desire to get it out faster with a couple of less double-checks often wins out.

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