Three county football coaches--Crawford's Dan Armstrong, Valhalla's Carl Iavelli and Mission Bay's Dennis Pugh--will not return to their positions next season.
Armstrong, who has been a substitute teacher at Crawford for two years, told the school's administration at the start of the year he would leave if no permanent position became available.
"There have been rumors of other positions in the county opening up," Armstrong said. "It would be a challenge to go in and turn a program around."
Armstrong, in his second year at Crawford, led the Colts to a tie for the City Central League title, the first round of the section playoffs, and an 8-3 record. With a strong group of players returning, Armstrong said the team should be good next year. Crawford's defense led the county, allowing 5.3 points per game.
"I'd love to come back one more year," Armstrong said. "If it's not me, whoever comes in will have a pretty good nucleus to work with."
Iavelli is also Valhalla's athletic director and football and golf coach. He was recently appointed physical education department chairman. Iavelli will remain at the school, relinquishing only his football position.
"It's not a big deal," Iavelli said. "I'll be an assistant, just not the head coach. I don't have time to do all three."
Mission Bay's Pugh also has his hands full as the football and baseball coach and the athletic director. Like Iavelli, Pugh will remain the AD and baseball coach. He said he wants to spend a year away from football and possibly return the following year as an assistant.
"I just need to get away from it for a year," Pugh said. "It's tough doing all three--mentally and physically. It's time to get someone new in here."
Mission Bay enjoyed its first winning season since 1975, finishing second in the City Western League (9-3, 4-1) behind Kearny. Mission Bay made it to the section quarterfinals, losing to Ramona, 20-6, Saturday.
"It will be hard leaving, especially when football season starts next year," Pugh said, "But it's also the right time because we had a lot of seniors."
Monte Vista senior Mike Polson, the Grossmont 3-A water polo player of the year, moved into fourth in the section record book with his 146 goals this year.
"He's probably the most dominant offensive player in the county," said Tim Lindley, Grossmont's coach. "In fact, I think he's probably the most dominant player on both sides of the pool."
Polson also had 68 assists.
"He's a great athlete with great instincts, " Lindley said. "He has the ability to make the big plays."
Lindley played for the Monarchs in 1972-1974. He scored 223 goals and still ranks 10th in the section for goals scored in a career.