Scott Meyer can see himself making a move into the Corona del Mar area. He spends most of his time here already, more so than in Long Beach, where he lives.
He is a social studies teacher at CdM High and the head football coach at the school.
"Here early, before the sun's up," Meyer said when asked what time he arrives on campus during the work week. "Leave when the sun's long gone."
The long days started five months ago, when Meyer took over the Sea Kings' football program and began teaching. What he has learned in less than half a year is that he really likes it here.
What is there not to like? The weather is ideal. The public school is one of the best in the country. The football team is coming off its first outright league title won since 1988.
There is a lot of success at CdM.
At 46, Meyer never envisioned his second stint as a head coach would be at CdM. He stepped away from the head coaching ranks after six years at Long Beach Jordan in 2009 to spend more time with his three kids.
The following school year, the oldest kid, Nick, entered his freshman year at Long Beach Wilson.
Meyer took a position as an assistant coach at the school, his alma mater, to be there for Nick, who came out for football. The two enjoyed two varsity games together after Nick moved up late in the season.
Three months after the Bruins' season ended, a job opened 21 miles away in Orange County. Meyer had been down this road before. The previous year he applied for the head coaching position at Trabuco Hills, only to come up short.
"I was disappointed," Meyer said. "I hear people say things work out for a reason and it [did]. I'm pretty happy that it worked out this way."
Before Meyer landed in CdM, he pulled Nick aside. Telling your son that you won't coach him again in high school is no easy job.
"I had a good talk with him," Meyer said. "He understands what a great opportunity it was for me as far as a long-term career."
Meyer plans to be in charge of the Sea Kings longer than the coach he replaced.
The new coach knows the old coach, Jason Hitchens, who resigned after three seasons. Both teach in the same department.
They ran into each other often in the spring and talked.
"He was really helpful," Meyer said. "He's been great."
Under Hitchens, the Sea Kings played great in two of his three years at the helm.
In his final year, CdM went unbeaten at 4-0-1 in the Pacific Coast League. The league finish marked the second time the Sea Kings didn't drop a league game in the program's history. The other time was in 1988, when CdM went on to claim the first of two straight CIF Southern Section Division VI titles.
Returning to a section title game is where the Sea Kings fell one game short twice with Hitchens. Each time they entered the CIF Southern Section Southern Division playoffs as the No. 2 seed and each time their run ended in the semifinals.
The team lost to Beckman, 24-3, last year. In 2008, the Sea Kings lost to Mayfair of Lakewood, 14-6.
Compared to the teams Meyer's been a part of the past seven years, only two have made it to the playoffs, last year at Long Beach Wilson and three years ago at Long Beach Jordan. The teams played in a tougher league, the Moore, which has powerhouse Long Beach Poly, winner of 18 section titles.
"When you come in third or fourth in [the Moore League], you're going to get a Mater Dei, or a Servite, or a Mission Viejo, or a Loyola [in the CIF Southern Section Pac-5 Division playoffs] … it's going to be a tough game," said Meyer, who went 21-39-1 overall and 11-25 in league at Long Beach Jordan.
"I think people just look at the fact that some of the Moore League teams [outside of Long Beach Poly] haven't won in the playoffs, but I bet if you went back and looked at the third-place teams from other leagues, you'd find that they haven't done as well either."
Meyer doesn't have to worry about the Moore League or the Pac-5 playoffs anymore. His new team is in a league and playoff division it can contend for titles right now.
The Sea Kings
League: Pacific Coast
CIF Division: Southern
Coach: Scott Meyer (first year)
Staff: Kevin Hettig (offensive coordinator/wide receivers), Dan O'Shea (defensive coordinator/inside linebackers), Kevin Purtell (running backs), Eric Salazar (offensive line/strength and conditioning), Kyle Collins (offensive line), Roland Harrison (quarterbacks), Dan Collins (tight ends/outside linebackers), Dennis Wilbanks (defensive line), Aaron Huerta (cornerbacks), Randy Davis (special teams), Jack O'Shea (operations), Craig Truglio (trainer)
2010 season: 10-2-1, 4-0-1 in Pacific Coast League (first place), advanced to the CIF Southern Section Southern Division semifinals
Returning starters: four offense, five defense
Returning with honors: CB Cole Cottrell, LB Aaron White, RB Erik Fisher, TE Matt English
2 – Savanna at Glover Stadium, 7 p.m.
9 – at Huntington Beach, 7 p.m.
15 – Western at Newport Harbor, 7 p.m.
23 – Newport Harbor at Orange Coast College, 7 p.m.
30 – Magnolia at Newport Harbor, 7 p.m.
13 – Northwood at Irvine , 7 p.m.
21 – Irvine at Newport Harbor, 7 p.m.*
27 – Woodbridge at Irvine, 7 p.m.*
3 – University at Irvine, 7 p.m.*
11 – Beckman at Newport Harbor, 7 p.m.
*denotes league gameCopyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times