After an abysmal 0-10 season, the Varsity Football team has named Darin Owens as its new head football coach, a man whose track record proves that he’s got a knack for flipping losing teams into winners.
The team’s last coaching hire, Chad Reed, . To fill the void, the school appointed assistant coach Shontae Pouncey as the interim head coach for the remainder of the year.
But last year’s coaching woes was just a fragment of the school’s floundering football program, which is currently riding an 11-game losing streak. The team only scored 10 touchdowns the entire 2011 season and has earned just five wins in five years. Given these recent struggles, even the new coach acknowledges he may be facing his biggest challenge to date at his new post.
“I’m ready to jump in and get to work. This is an opportunity to turn a negative atmosphere into a positive one,” said Owens in a news release.
By hiring him, Owens says it’s clear the school is committed to winning and he's determined to turn the program around.
In accepting the Dons’ head coaching position, Owens leaves behind his players, students and faculty at Hillcrest High School in Idaho Falls, Idaho.
When Owens arrived at Hillcrest in 2008, the team was on a 23-game losing streak and had only scored three offensive touchdowns the previous season. Morale was at all-time low, but in just one year, Owens worked his magic and led the team to a championship.
The team won every game but one and captured the state championship–breaking school records and state rushing records along the way.
But the California native is no stranger to that success, having accomplished similar feats at three other high schools before Hillcrest. And he says that’s what he plans to do at Cerritos High.
“For me, it’s about expecting to win, preparing to win and believing,” he said.
Cerritos athletic director Robert Adams told the Long Beach Press Telegram that Owens was one of 55 who applied for the position.
"We would like to see the program grow and be a bigger part of the athletic program," Adams told the newspaper. "We'd like to see some success in the wins and loss column, too. ... He was the most qualified coach of all the applicants - and there were lots of good ones this time. Because of him being a head coach and coaching several schools with less-than-successful programs and turning them around, he was very attractive to us."
Editor's Note: PR NewsChannel contributed to this report.