HomeSportsHigh School Football Team Wins Without Any of its Coaches

High School Football Team Wins Without Any of its Coaches

by Chase Thomas
(Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Sierra Linda High School improved to 6-2 on the 2021 season. They did so without their coaches on Friday night.

You read that right.

The Sierra Linda football team, based out of Arizona, played and won, a football game against Yuma on Friday afternoon. Their head coach and assistants did not coach the kids.

They won with substitute coaches.

Where Were The Coaches?

The head coach, Nate Gill, was suspended earlier in the week after an incident in a lower-level game where it was discovered the players did not have any hip girdles. Due to the infraction, the game was deemed not safe to continue.

After Gill was suspended the coaches below Gill made a decision. The assistant coaches refused to coach without him on Friday night.

From the Arizona Republic, “If Coach Gill was going to be suspended, then we felt we all should be suspended,” the coach said.

This left Sierra Linda in a very precarious spot. The team did not forfeit or cancel the game. The team made the trip. Substitute coaches were found and cleared to coach the kids Friday night against Yuma.

Below is the email the school’s principal, Tim Madrid, sent to the parents of the football players.

“I would like to inform you that the SLHS Varsity Football game in Yuma is still on schedule and the team departed at approximately 1:30 p.m.,” the email said. “Unfortunately, our SLHS coaches decided they were not going to accompany the team on this trip. Consequently, we had to scramble to find certified, highly qualified and authorized coaches to substitute in their place. 

It worked out for the kids and the substitute staff as they ended up winning without any of their normal coaches, even calling their own numbers on offense and defense.

What was the fallout?

A parent texted reporter high school sports reporter Richard Obert this nugget, per his Twitter account.

“So our boys won 23-21 coaching themselves calling their own offensive and defensive plays,” a parent texted. “Parents, coaches and the community are so extremely proud of what these young men accomplished Friday night.”

This may not qualify as a spooky development in high school football, but it was certainly a wild scenario that ultimately turned out to be a happy ending for the kids who won the game for their coaches.