Today’s question comes in much the same vein as yesterday’s, and it continues our line of questioning on coaching. While last year’s crop of new coaches was certainly a bit more high-profile, this year’s class has some big shoes to fill as well.
Ben’s Question: While not as high-profile as last year’s crop, this year’s group of new coaches has a definite set of challenges to contend with. This year’s new coaches include Antioch’s Randy Autentico, El Cerrito’s Kenneth Khan, Kennedy-Richmond’s Delo Hilton, Northgate’s Justin Lowell and Livermore’s Mike Profumo. So, just how well will these coaches fare in their first year?
Chace’s Answer: Though I haven’t had a chance to look into these program’s situation with much detail, I do know that the success of a new coach often goes hand-in-hand with what kind of players he inherits.
If I had to say which coach has the best chance at early success, it would be Lowell. Lowell came onto the Broncos staff last year as the defensive coordinator for new hire Darin Owens. He helped shape the program’s turnaround from an 0-10 season in 2006 to a 5-5 effort a year ago. Though Owens headed East to take a new job in Idaho, Lowell plans on continuing the same teachings and systems that revitalized the program last year. Furthermore, he’ll have Broncos players who are already familiar with him and have already bought into the program. Also, don’t underestimate a program which has tasted success for the first time and will certainly want more.
Autentico will have a similar knowledge of his personnel after spending the last few years coaching within the Antioch program. It was a rough year for the Panthers last season, but there were several young players who could return to be impact players in 2008
As for Kahn and Hilton, they could both have their hands full. Both are young, and both are taking on their first varsity job. Hilton has been helping out with the Eagles for the past few seasons, so he’ll be a familiar face. But more importantly, his time amongst the program will help him understand the uphill climb in front him. As for Khan, he’ll have help in the form of longtime coach, Dan Shaughnessy, who returns to the sideline as an assistant.