Running back Jim Kelley (#7) prepares to take the ball
for the Warriors (in white) in a 1958 game at Coy Burnett Field.

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Are You Ready For Some Football
2008 Season Marks the 80th Anniversary of THS

Posted by on August 31, 2008

The beginning of the 2008 season marks the 80th anniversary of Tehachapi High School, and the 50th anniversary of the Warriors playing at Coy Burnett Field. A special tribute will be held this Saturday night to recognize former Warrior alumni that played for Tehachapi.

While Tehachapi High School opened up in 1928, the first football team did not emerge until 1930. Tough season in 1930, the Warriors went 0-11. So here is your Warrior trivia for the week. Were the Warriors always green-and-white? The answer is ... no. The Warriors were originally red-and-white until a student body election in 1938 changed the offical school colors to green-and-white. As part of the anniversary celebration, we were kind of hoping the Warriors would wear some old red throwback jerseys to get into the mood of the celebration!

Rumors abound that some members of the 1958 Warriors that played that first season at Coy Burnett Field will be on hand for the ceremonies Saturday night. Fullback Jerry Rymel scored the first Warrior TD in the first home game on October 4 at Coy Burnett Field, as Tehachapi defeated Strathmore, 39-0.

The next week, October 11, during Homecoming festivities, the new field was officially dedicated. The opponent was Trona, and an inspired Warrior football team played the eventual league champion Tornadoes to a 19-19 tie.

The old Coy Burnett Field sign stood proudly
for many years on the north side of the stadium.

The new Coy Burnett Field was named after the President of the old Monolith Cement Company, as a tribute for the role he played in developing the new football field. Before Coy Burnett, the Warriors played at Imhof Field, the turfed area directly west of Coy Burnett (the grounds of the old Jacobsen Jr. High School).

Warriors Look To Repeat As SSL Champions

Many of the so called "experts" are pointing towards the Warriors to repeat as league champions for 2008. It makes sense, since the Warriors return a host of talented players from last year's CIF central section championship team. Look for the well-coached teams from Taft and Bakersfield Christian to again challenge the Warriors for the league title.

The 2007 Warrior team scored 429 points, a #2 ranking in 78 seasons of Warrior football for the most points scored in one season. Four of the five offensive linemen are back to create holes for returning running backs Adam Mullen (17 TD's) and Josh Strauss (7 TD's).

Head coach Steve Denman also returns for his 27th year for the Warriors. The current "Dean" of coaches in Kern County has an overall 223-87-4 record for a .717 winning percentage. His teams have advanced to the post-season playoffs 22 times in 26 years, claiming 11 league titles along the way, and winning five CIF sectional championships. The all-time leader in the central section for wins by a coach is Woodlake High legend Leo Robinson with 291 wins in 41 seasons of coaching.

The 2008 Segerstrom Jaguars, some 65+ players strong, will invade Coy Burnett Field Saturday night.

We have not heard too much from the Warrior Athletic Director's office on why Segerstrom was scheduled for the 2008 season? There must be some reason why a school in the general Los Angeles area would make a three hour bus trip to the mountains of Tehachapi? Tehachapi will battle the freeways and the smog with a return trip next season. One thing is for sure, the Warriors will have their hands full Saturday night --- this is no "easy, first game, patsy school." The Jaguars are an emerging football program (5-5 in 2007) looking to make a name for themselves. The school is in its third year of existance, and with 2,300 students, will be the largest school the Warriors face during the regular season. The Jaguars also play in a tough league with perennial football power Westminster.

Around the SSL This Week ...

While the Warriors battle with Segerstrom this Saturday, the majority of teams in the South Sequoia League will open up their respective 2008 seasons on Friday night. Highland High of Bakersfield will be at Arvin; Shafter will visit North Bakersfield; Taft High will entertain Templeton; Oaks Christian of Westlake Village will be at Bakersfield Christian; and Wasco will open up at McFarland next Friday, September 12.

The highly anticipated game of the week in Kern County is the Bakersfield Christian game. The game will feature the debut of Texas transfer Derek Carr, little brother of current NFL quarterback David Carr. David also had a stellar career at Fresno State, and played quarterback at Stockdale High School. Bakersfield Christian is the defending CIF Central Section Division V champions.

Bakersfield Christian will also be playing with heavy hearts --- and a lot of emotion. A few weeks ago, player Patrick Allen became ill after a team practice, and passed away.

Oaks Christian is a perennial southern section small school power. The Lions finished the 2007 season with an 11-3 record, but won their league, and won a CIF southern section championship.

The Lions feature a high profile team loaded with potential Division I college players. An example. QB Nick Montana is battling for the starting QB position. Yes, Nick is Joe Montana's son, so there could be a good chance Joe is in Bakersfield Friday night.

Even the junior varsity team is high profile -- Wayne Gretzky’s son Trevor and actor Will Smith’s kid Trey are both sophomores on the junior varsity.

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