National Champions 1991, 1993,
CALIFORNIA STATE CHAMPIONS 1991,
CONFERENCE/DIVISION CHAMPIONS 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993,
1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2006
APPEARANCES 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1997, 1998,
1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009,
2014 Schedule, Results | 2014
Roster | 2014 Coaches
Individual Records, Leaders (Entering 2014 Season) | Palomar Football History
in NFL, 4-year College Football
Download Hugh Cox's Photos
Coach Joe Early has
the Palomar football team ranked No. 6 in Southern
California, No. 11 in the state and No. 25 nationally
PC resurfaces in national
poll, is sixth in SoCal
SAN MATEO / KIRKLAND, WA (10-29-2014) --
Coming off a bye week,
Palomar's football team is in position to make its biggest
splash on the Southern California, state and national levels
since 2009, when the Comets went 10-3, advanced to the Southern
California championship game and wound up eighth in the nation.
Going into a 7 p.m. Southern
Conference game on Saturday against Golden West at
Orange Coast College's LeBard Stadium, Palomar is ranked
sixth in Southern California (Golden West is ranked
fifth). The Comets are ranked 11th in Southern
California (the Rustlers are 10th). And the Comets have
resurfaced in the J.C. Grid-Wire national rankings out
of Kirkland, Washington at No. 25 (Golden West is No.
Still awaiting the Comets after
Saturday, defending Southern California champion Fullerton a
week from Saturday on the road and Santa Ana to close out the
regular season in two weeks at Wilson Stadium in Econdido.
Not that Early is even thinking about
the final two weeks at this point, but if Palomar were to run
the table, it would clinch no worse than a tie for the Southern
Conference championship. If it were to run the table and
Saddleback loses at least one of its final two games vs.
Fullerton on Saturday and Golden West on Nov. 15, the Comets
would automatically clinch a spot in the four-team Southern
California playoffs, with the SoCal champion moving on to the
state championship game.
The highest end-of-season national
ranking under Early as head coach came in his first season of
2002, when the Grid-Wire ranked the 10-1 Comets No. 4 in the
country. Early was an assistant on Palomar's three mythical
national championship teams in the 1990s.
NATIONAL (J.C. Grid-Wire)
SOUTHERN CAL (CCCFCA)
1-East Mississippi (9-0)
1-American River (7-0)
1-Riverside City College (6-1)
2-Iowa Western (9-0)
2-College of San Mateo (6-1)
2-Long Beach CC (6-1)
3-Trinity Valley (Texas) (9-0)
3-Riverside City College (6-1)
3-Mt. SAC (6-2)
4-American River (7-0)
4-Long Beach CC (6-1)
5-Snow (Utah) (7-1)
5-CC of San Francisco (6-1)
5-Golden West (5-2)
6-College of San Mateo (6-1)
6-Diablo Valley (6-1)
7-Arizona Western (8-1)
7-Mt. SAC (6-2)
8-CC of San Francisco (6-1)
9-Scottsdale (Arizona) (7-1)
10-Riverside City College (6-1)
10-Golden West (5-2)
11-Hutchinson (Kansas) (8-1)
12-Long Beach CC (6-1)
13-Sacramento CC (5-2)
13-Mississippi Gulf Coast (8-1)
14-Santa Rosa (5-2)
14-Mt. SAC (6-2)
15-Navarro (Texas) (7-2)
16-Copiah-Lincoln (Miss.) (7-2)
17-Tyler (Texas) (7-2)
17-West Hills (7-0)
18-Victor Valley (7-0)
Only Playoff-tier teams eligible
19-Kilgore (Texas) (7-2)
19-Fresno City College (4-3)
above coaches' poll. Non-
20-Coffeyville (Kansas) (7-2)
playoff eligible teams from the lower
21-Diablo Valley (6-1)
tier have a separate poll
22-Nassau (New York) (8-0)
23-Santa Rosa (5-2)
24-Golden West (5-2)
25t-Santa Barbara CC (6-1)
Amu named Defensive Player,
Athlete of Week
BEACH / SAN DIEGO (10-21-2014) --
Palomar football player Toeafua Amu has received two awards for
his performance in the Comets' 20-10 victory over Orange Coast
on Saturday night in Escondido.
Amu, a sophomore outside
linebacker from El Camino High School, was selected Defensive
Player of the Week by the Southern Conference and Men's Athlete
of the Week for all sports by the Pacific Coast Athletic
With the Comets trailing 10-0 six
minutes into the second half on Saturday, Amu turned the game
around on one play. He intercepted a pass and returned it 42
yards for the touchdown that got Palomar on the scoreboard. The
play ignited a win that put them in a tie for second place, one
game behind Fullerton, the defending Southern California
Community College champion and 2013 state runner-up.
Amu also had five tackles (four solo,
all for losses).
Toeafua Amu (41), Junior Tau (partially hidden in the middle and
Drew Madera (52) swarm Orange Coast receiver Mark Munson. --
Photo by Stephen Davis. BELOW LEFT: Amu, who
returned an interception 42 yards for Palomar's first touchdown.
BELOW RIGHT: Malohi Makihele, who also had an
interception. The Comets' other interception came courtesy of
Interceptions ignite come-from-behind
(10-18-2014) -- After playing lackluster
football for much of the evening and trailing Orange
Coast in a Southern Conference game 10-0 a little
under six minutes into the second half on Saturday
night, it turned out Palomar had the Pirates right
where they wanted them.
healthy returns by linebacker Toeafua Amu (left),
linebacker Malohi Makihele (right) and defensive
Diovanni Brewer all resulted in touchdowns and
ignited a 20-10 come-from-behind victory over the
Pirates at Wilson Stadium. The Comets (5-2,
2-1) enter their bye week in a tie for second place in the conference
behind 2013 Southern California champion and state
With the visiting Pirates on top by 10 points and in
possession of the ball in a second-and-3 situation
from their own 31 in the third quarter, Amu picked
off a Kody Whitaker pass and returned it 41 yards
down the right side for the touchdown that got
Palomar on the scoreboard. Patrick Koch's PAT kick
cut Orange Coast's lead to 10-7 with 9:41 remaining
in the period.
After the ensuing kickoff, the Pirates drove from
their own 37 yard line to the Palomar 7, which is
when Makihele broke their backs with the second pick
of the night. He intercepted Whitaker at the goal
line and returned the pick 70 yards. A penalty for
an illegal block early on the return brought the
ball back and left the Comets with a first down at
their own 22 yard-line.
With quarterback Brett Hollingsworth completing five
passes, including two to Daniel Warren and two to
Damon Nolan, Palomar went 78 yards in eight plays in
a drive that took only 2 minutes, 46 seconds.
Hollingsworth connected with M.J. Bailey on a
12-yard pass play for the go-ahead touchdown and
Koch converted to put the Comets on top 14-10 with
3:20 remaining in the third quarter.
The Comets added a 40-yard TD pass play from
Hollinsworth to Wayne Ganan with 7:26 left in the
game. The touchdown came on the first snap after
Brewer intercepted another Whitaker pass at the
Palomar 12 and returned it 45 yards to the Orange
Coast 43. The Pirates' Gilbert Gildersleeve blocked
Koch's PAT attempt.
The TD gave Palomar a 20-10 lead, which is the way
the game ended.
Hollingsworth hit on 14-of-27 pass attempts for 169
yards and two touchdowns after relieving Mitch
Bartram, who started the game at quarterback. Nolan,
Warren and Bailey caught 14 of those passes for 143
yards. Justin Harris rushed for 57 yards on 14
carries and was instrumental in controlling the ball
for the Comets as time ticked down down the stretch.
Cory Salazar, Brewer and Drew Madera each had eight
tackles for the Comets and combined for 3.5 tackles
for losses and two sacks. As a team, Palomar tackled
the Pirates 15 times for losses, including 7 sacks.
Madera recovered an Orange Coast fumble. Javonte
O'Roy and Brewer broke up a combined seven passes.
The hit of the night was delivered by defensive end
Dylan Donahue, who played in situations returning
from an injury that kept him out of last week's win
On one of his patented clean but violent hits,
Donahue leveled a Orange Coast player on Brewer's
interception return, adding 20 yards to the end of
the return. The player collapsed when he got up and
tried to walk off the field but eventually was
revived and was helped off. He did not appear to be
Codey Wuthrich deposited five of his eight punts
inside the 20-yard line.
ABOVE: Palomar's Wyatt Paterson
crosses the goal line
on a 30-yard pass play
from Mitch Bartram in last week's 45-44 two-overtime
win over Moopark. The Comets will host Orange Coast
on Saturday at 6 p.m. at Escondido High School's
Wilson Stadium. -- Photo by Hugh Cox. BELOW:
Defensive end Ian Kelly
PC seeks 3rd win in row on Saturday at home
Palomar will try to notch
its third straight football win and position itself
in the Southern Conference race on Saturday when the
Comets return to conference action aganst Orange
Coast at Wilson Stadium's Chick Embrey Field.
Kickoff will be 6 p.m.
The Comets are coming off
a 45-44 non-conference win over Moorpark last
Saturday night and will be trying to go 2-1 in the
conference going into their bye week. Palomar is 4-2
After losing their first
four games, the Pirates came to life last
weekrolling to a 49-10 victory over Los Angeles
Pierce as Kody Whitaker passed for 335 yards and
Quarterback Mitch Bartram passed for 197 yards and
three touchdowns in Palomar's victory over Moorpark.
Receiver Wayne Ganan had four catches for 76 yards
and one TD and also rushed for 117 yards on five
revrse plays. Defensive end Ian
Kelly had 12 tackles (9 solo), 3 tackles for loses
and a 5-yard sack.
GAME DAY: Orange Coast (1-4, 0-1 Southern
Palomar (4-2, 1-1 Southern Conference)
Chick Embrey Field at Wilson Stadium,
Escondido High School, Saturday
Ht Wt Yr
||RB 5-10 190
||RB 5-10 180
||Rancho Buena Vista
/ So. Illinois University
||SL 5-7 155 So
||FL 5-10 175
6-2 282 Fr
||Poway / Purdue
||LG 6-1 315
||LT 6-7 295 So
||RG 6-4 310
||RT 6-8 320 Fr
||DT 6-4 270
(Antelope, CA) / Sacramento CC
Palomar Special Teams
||PK 5-10 165
||La Costa Canyon
||RET 5-8 190
||KR 5-10 190
TOP PHOTO: Palomar's Damon Nolan cradles the
ball as he scores the winning touchdown on a 12-yard pass from
Mitch Bartram in the second overtime Saturday night.
DIRECTLY ABOVE: Linebacker Austin Wolff (47) and
defensive tackle Rafael Sangines (50) sandwich Zach LaBar, who
started the game at quarterback for Moorpark, on a first-quarter
sack. -- Photos by Hugh Cox. BELOW LEFT: Wayne
Ganan, who ran for 117 yards on five end-around plays and also
caught a 36-yard touchdown pass from Bartram. BELOW
RIGHT: Bryan Jones, who had another big game
defensively with an interception, three pass break-ups and four
PC wins in 2nd OT on
Bartram-Nolan pass, PAT
Palomar held off visiting
Moorpark 46-45 in a wild two-overtime non-conference
football shootout on Saturday night at Wilson
Outscored 17-0 in the fourth quarter as the visiting
Raiders roared back from a 38-21 deficit and with
the game appearing to be slipping away, the Comets
(4-2) survived a scoreless first overtime on an
interception by Bryan Jones.
Palomar then won the game in the second OT on a
12-yard touchdown pass from Mitch Bartram to Damon
Nolan in the front of the end zone and Michael
Elrod's PAT kick which put the Comets up 45-38.
Getting possession last, Moorpark scored on a 6-yard
keeper by quarterback Nick Davis to pull to pull to
within one at 45-44 and went for the win when they
tried to run the ball in for a two-point conversion.
Palomar's defense smothered Raekeal Beasley for a
loss on the play, slamming the door on the Raiders
and ending the game.
The Comets never trailed in the game and were tied
by Moorpark only once, on a 44-yard field goal by
Derek Kirk with 1:27 left in the fourth quarter that
pulled the Raiders even at 38-38.
Palomar led 7-0, 10-0, 10-7, 17-7, 24-7, 24-14,
31-14, 31-21, 38-21, 38-28, 38-35, 45-38 and by the
45-44 final score.
Freshman wide receiver Wayne Ganan produced 193
all-purpose yards for the Comets, running for 117
yards on five end-around plays and catching four
passes for 76 yards, including a 36-yard pass play
from quarterback Mitch Bartram.
Justin Harris rushed for 87 yards on 13 carries,
with 74 of those yards coming in the first half, and
scored on touchdown runs of 2 and 22 yards.
Bartram came off the bench to pass for 197 yards and
three touchdowns, hitting tight end Wyatt Paterson
with a 30-yard scoring strike that was sandwiched
between the TD passes to Ganan in the second quarter
and Nolan in the second overtime. Bartram also
tacked on 68 positive yards rushing, including a
31-yard keeper when Moorpark's Justin Manuatu poked
the ball out of his grasp and the Raiders' Calhill
Porter fell on it.
Daviente Sayles added a 13-yard touchdown run for
Palomar and Elrod, subbing for regular kicker
Patrick Koch who missed the game due to a death in
the family supplied the rest of the Comets' point
Elrod made one of three field goal attempts, a
33-yarder in the first quarter, and added six PAT
Nolan had five pass receptions for 80 yards.
On defense, Diovanni Brewer had a big turnover for
the Comets when he intrcepted a pass with 6:10
remaining in the fourth quarter.He also contributed
6 solo tackles and an assist. Jones broke up 3
passes, 2 of them late in the game, and had 4 solo
Cory Salazar (a sack, 6 solo tackles and 3 assists)
and Bryce Alexander (a pass break-up in the second
overtime and 5 solo tackles) also had big nights in
With Dylan Donahue
sidelined by an injury, Ian Kelly, Dominic Darby and
Joe Naotala stepped up big on the defensive line.
Kelly had a sack, 3 tackles for losses, 6 solo
tackles, 3 assists and a quarterback hurry. Darby
contributed a 12-yard sack, 5 solo tackles and 3
assists. Naotala had 2 tackles for losses, one of
them for 8 yards, and had 4 solo tackles.
At linebacker, Austin Wolff broke up a pass and had
7 solo tackles and an assist.
Palomar will return to Southern Conference action
next Saturday night against Orange Coast at home.
ABOVE: Wayne Ganan, a freshman receiver from
Del Norte Hgh School, could play a key role for Palomar on
Saturday night vs. Moorpark. Here he carries the ball on an
end-around play in last week's 41-24 victory over Grossmont. --
Photo by Hugh Cox. BELOW LEFT: Justin Harris,
who rushed for 190 yards against the Griffins. BELOW
RIGHT: Brett Hollinsworth, who returns as the Comets'
starting quarterback coming off an injury
Comets come home for non-conference game
Fresh from its best
effort of the season in a Southern Conference
victory over Grossmont, the Palomar football squad
will host a dangerous Moorpark team on Saturday at
Escondido High School's Wilson Stadium.
The Raiders (1-3) will give the Comets a whole bunch
of different looks in the 6 p.m. game.
After rushing for just under 300 yards vs. Grossmont
behind a 190-yard performance by Justin Harris
behind some dominant line blocking, Palomar will be
trying to go 4-2 on the season as the Comets prepare
for a return to Southern Conference action a week
from Saturday against Orange Coast, also at Wilson
Brett Hollinsworth will return as the starting
quarterback for the first time since week 2 of the
season. Coming off the injured list, Hollingsworth
came in to finish last week's game against
The Comets, ranked No. 9 in Southern California this
week by the Calfornia Community College Football
Coaches Association and No. 16 in the state in the
CCCFCA / Junior College Athletic Bureau poll, will
be without defensive end Dylan Donahue, who will
miss the game with an injury.
TOP PHOTO: Daviente Sayles helps set up
Palomar's fifth touchdown of the afternoon on this run.
DIRECTLY ABOVE: Freshman Bryce Alexander out of Brawley
High School intercepts a pass and returns it 34 yards deep into
Grossmont territory. He's escorted on the return by Joe Naotala
(95), Toeafua Amu (41), Dominic Darby (97) and Drew Madera (52).
-- Photos by Hugh Cox. BELOW: Justin Harris,
who rushed for 190 yards and a touchdown for the Comets
Harris (190 yards), Comets run over the
CAJON (10-04-2014) --
Justin Harris rushed for 190 yards and a touchdown,
M.J. Bailey caught two touchdown passes, and Cory
Salazar and Bryan Jones returned interceptions for
TDs on Saturday afternoon as they led visiting
Palomar over Grossmont 41-24 in a Southern
Conference football game.
The G-House, two weeks removed from a 38-28 upset
victory over then-state No. 1-ranked Riverside City
College on the same turf at Mashin-Roth Stadium,
fell behind 34-6 three minutes into the fourth
quarter. The Griffins needed three late touchdowns,
one on the final play of the game, to make the game
appear closer than it actually was.
Harris, a sophomore from Chaparral High School in
Temecula and a two-year starter for the Comets,
accumulated his 190 yards on 28 carries. He had a
long run of 44 yards from his own 17 to the
Grossmont 39 early in the fourth quarter, helping
ignite a 12-play drive that ended in Palomar's fifth
touchdown of the day. And Grossmont could never
tackle Harris for a loss.
The Comets took a 7-0 lead midway through the first
quarter on a touchdown by Deviante Sayles, who
sailed high into the air as he dove over his own
blockers and Grossmont's defense into the end zone
from 2 yards out.
Palomar added two second-quarter TDs, on a 13-yard
pass from Mitch Bartram to Bailey and Salazar's
52-yard interception return, which put the Comets on
top 20-0 at the half.
The Griffins finally got on the board 5 minutes into
the second half on a 55-yard Michael
Carrillo-to-Thomas McDonald pass play, But Palomar
answered late in the period on a 1-yard run by
Harris which put the Comets back in front by three
Bailey's second TD catch, coming at the end of a
5-yard pass from Brett Hollingsworth with 12:12 left
in the game, gave the Comets their biggest lead at
34-6. Hollingsworth, making his first appearance
since suffering a concussion against Long Beach City
College, came into the game in the fourth quarter..
Turnovers and some sloppy plays helped Grossmont
score three late touchdowns, making the game appear
to be relatively close.
Jones' interception and 29-yard return gave Palomar
a 41-18 lead with 5 minutes remaining in the game,
before the Griffins scored on a short pass as time
expired to round out the scoring.
The Comets had a bunch of big defensive plays
besides the two pick-sixes, including two fumble
recoveries by Hunter Moore, one of which he caused
himself, and sacks by Moore, Dominic Darby and Ian
Kelly. Bryan Alexander also had an interception and
34-yard return. Salazar, Joe Naotala and Drew Madera
also had tackles for losses.
"We still have to learn to close out people," coach
Joe Early said. "But we're happy with the win and we
have to move forward to next week and the rest of
The Comets host Moorpark in a non-conference game
next Saturday night at Wilson Stadium in Escondido
before resuming confernce action one week later with
a home game vs. Orange Coast.
Palomar upped its record to 3-2 overall, 1-1 in
conference. Grossmont is 2-3 and 0-2.
View, Download Hugh Cox's Photos From This Event
Shawn Cameron returns a kickoff 99 yards for a
touchdown in the first quarter Saturday evening to
give the Comets a 21-14 lead over Saddleback at
Wilson Stadium in Escondido. The return tied Cameron
for second on the all-time Palomar list. The
Gauchos, however, came back to win the teams'
Southern Conference opener 32-21.DIRECTLY
ABOVE: Deviante Sayles hurdles the line on
a short that gave Palomar a first down early in the
second quarter and set up a field goal.
-- Photos by Hugh Cox.
BELOW: M.J. Bailey, who had six
receptions for 143 yards, including a 71-yard
touchdown from quarterback Mitch Bartram.
Palomar can't hold on in conference opener
ESCONDIDO (9-27-2014) --
Saturday night's Southern
Conference opener against Saddleback at Wilson
Stadium featured plenty of spectacular football by
Shawn Cameron, a freshman from Carlsbad High School,
returned a kickoff 99 yards for a touchdown with
5:42 left in the first quarter, giving the Comets
their third lead in the game's first 9 1/2 minutes
and tying Chris Cash for second on the all-time
The Comets led three
separate times in a 4-minute, 22-second span in the
opening quarter -- on a 4-yard touchdown run by
Deviante Sayles that made it 7-0, a 71-yard pass
play from Mitch Bartram to M.J. Bailey that made it
14-7 and on Cameron's kickoff return that put them
on top 21-14.
Damon Nolan set up Sayles' TD with a 44-yard punt
return on the previous play.
But, each time, Saddleback answered back. And when
Patrick Koch kicked a 28-yard field goal that broke
a 21-21 tie and put Palomar ahead 24-21 early in the
second quarter, it would be the last time the Comets
would lead in the game.
The Gauchos went on to record their first victory of
the season 32-21, and Palomar must now win next
Saturday afternoon at Grossmont to keep from falling
to 0-2 two weeks into the conference season.
The Comets only scored once more during the course
of the evening, on Bartram's 8-yard TD pass to
Daniel Warren with eight minutes to play in the
game. That pulled Palomar, which had fallen behind
by 11 points, back within range at 35-31.
However, after Jadon
Henry returned Grant Fleming's kickoff following the
touchdown 42 yards out to the Saddleback 45, the
Gauchos slit the Comets' throats on the ensuing play
when Bautista and Chris Dimry hooked up on a 55-yard
TD pass play. Bautista also hit Dimry for a 52-yard
touchdown that got Saddleback on the scoreboard for
the first time in the opening quarter.
On the night, Bautista connected on 22-of-35 passes
for 356 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for an
additional 47 net yards, which gave him 403 yards of
Even after the second Bautista-to-Dimry touchdown,
Palomar still had chances to get back into the game.
But they shot themselves in the foot on each
occasion and saw time tick methodically away as the
Comets fell to 2-2 overall.
Palomar made just enough mistakes to prevent them
from slamming the door on the Gauchos (1-3). The
mistakes ranged from 110 yards on 14 penalties,
including one illegal procedure and false-start
penalty after another, to dropped passes,
misdirected passes, blocking breakdowns and
badly-blown pass coverages that left Saddleback
receivers ridiculously wide open downfield.
If not for just some of those mistakes, the Comets
made more than enough big plays to win the game.
Bartran passed for 320 yards. Bailey caught six
passes for 143 yards and one touchdown. Wayne Ganan,
Nolan and Warren added nine more catches for 161
yards and Bartram's second TD. Bartram, Sayles,
Justin Harris and Ganan ran for a combined 103
Defensively, Palomar had four sacks, 10 tackles for
losses and two broken-up passes. Dylan Donahue led
the Comets with 10 tackles (5 solo), 6 of them for
losses that added up to 34 yards, and 2 sacks for 13
yards. Drew Madera had 9 tackles and a half-sack.
Dominic Darby added 2 sacks.
Cameron's achievement on his kickoff return is not
to be taken lightly. He missed tying Nakoa
McElrath's Palomar record of 100 yards against
Fullerton in 1997 by 1 yard. McElrath moved on to
become a first-team All-Pac 10 receiver at
Washington State and led the Pac 10 in receiving in
1999. He later played for the Seattle Seahawks.
Cash, whose 99-yard return came against Pasadena
City College in 1999 and whom Cameron tied with his
return on Saturday, moved on to earn All-Pac 10
honors at cornerback for USC and was a three-year
starter for the Detroit Lions. Cash finished his NFL
career with the Atlanta Falcons and is now the
defensive backs coach at Florida A&M.
Bumped from third to fourth place on the all-time
Palomar list: current Comet head coach Joe Early,
who had a 98-yard TD return against Orange Coast in
1979. Early moved on to Long Beach State, which
since has dropped football.
Dylan Donahue (49)
chases down San Diego Mesa quarterback Brandon Diaz
during the Comets' 33-6 victory last week. Donahue,
who leads Palomar in five defensive categories, and
the Comets will host Saddleback in a Southern
Confernce opener on Saturday evening at Wilson
Stadium in Escondido. -- Photo by Hugh Cox
Palomar tries to go 3-1 against Saddleback
ESCONDIDO (9-26-2014) --
Fresh from last week's
33-6 road win over San Diego Mesa, Palomar's
football squad will host Saddleback in its Southern
Conference football opener on Saturday at 6 p.m. at
The Comets are 2-1 on the season. The Gauchos are
0-3 but are about as dangerous a community college
team as they come.
"We're facing a wounded bear," Palomar coach Joe
Early said. "They're very talented and very
dangerous. We'd better come ready to play."
Mitch Bartram, who threw three touchdown passes
against Mesa, will get his second straight start at
quarterback for the Comets. Wide receiver M.J.
Bailey and slot Damon Nolan have caught 33 passes
for 443 yards and four touchdowns between them in
three games. Justin Hartris and Deviante Sayles both
are threats running the ball.
End Dylan Donahue leads Palomar's defense in tackles
(25), solo tackles (16), sacks (5), tackles for
losses (9) and quarterback hurries (3).
Palomar's Damon Nolan (9) has been
selected as Southern Conference Special Teams/All-Purpose Player
of the Week for his 272 all-purpose yards in Saturday's 33-6
victory over San Diego Mesa. DIRECTLY ABOVE:
The Comets' Junior Tau
(94), shown taking down
Mesa's quarterback and running back at the same time on an
attempted hand-off, was named Defensive Player of the Week. Tau
had 9 tackles (7 solo), a sack and 3 tackles for losses against
the Olympians. -- Photos by Hugh Cox
take Southern Conference honors
LONG BEACH (9-23-2014) --
The Southern Conference has seleced Palomar's Damon Nolan and
Junior Tau for Player of the Week honors for their performance
on Saturday in the Comets' 33-6 victory over San Diego Mesa.
Nolan, a 5-foot-7, 155-pound sophomore
from Murrieta Valley High School, accumulated 272 all-purpose
yards against the Olympians. He ran the ball once for 17 yards,
caught 7 passs for 97 yards and the game's first touchdown and
returned 7 punts for 158 yards.
Tau, a 5-10, 275-pound sophomore from
Temecula Chaparral High School, had 9 tackles (7 solo), a sack
and 3 tackles for losses.
Co-Players of the Week on Offense were
Golden West quarterback Chris d'Entrement and wid receiver
Zimari Manning for their performances in a 36-30 win over Citrus
on Saturday night.
Sayles, a redshirt freshman from Rancho Buena Vista High School
by way of Eastern Illinois University, cuts off a block by Khris
Alvarez, a freshman from San Marcos High, to score Palomar's
third touchdown of the night in the third quarter.
DIRECTLY ABOVE: Linebacker Austin Wolff (47) and tackle
Joe Naotala (partially hidden, No. 95) haul down Mesa's P.J.
the first quarter.
Cornerback Diovanni Brewer (29) arrives to help. -- Photos by
BELOW LEFT: Damon
Nolan, who had 236 all-purpose yards, not counting a 69-yard
punt return that was called back. BELOW RIGHT:
MacKenzie Bettle, who blocked a Mesa punt that sailed out of the
back of the end zone for a safety
continue domination of Olympians
DIEGO (11-20-2014) --
Palomar's defense made life a living hell for quarterback
Brandon Diaz and his San Diego Mesa football teammates on
Saturday night. And the Comets' offense and special teams
weren't far behind in inflicting pain on the Olympians.
who haven't lost to Mesa in 47 years in an on-again,
off-again rivalry, rolled to a 33-6 victory at
Merrill Douglas Stadium. The Olympians never
seriously threatened until they scored on a 53-yard
Hail Mary pass on the final play of the game --
getting the ball off on an off-balance fling from
backup QB Scort Weismann to Chris White after it
was snapped with less than one second remaining.
Palomar's front seven of Junior Tau, Dylan Donahue,
Hunter Moore, Ian Kelly, Toefua Amu and Austin Wolff
spent the better part of the evening punishing Diaz
and his teammates in and behind the Olympians'
backfield, slot receiver Daman Nolan and the offense
set the tone for the night immediately following the
A 17-yard run
by Nolan on an end-around play and two Mitch
Bartran-to-Nolan pass plays that went for a combined
53 yards put the Comets on top early 7-0 after a
one-minute, 55-second opening drive. Bartran and
Nolan connected on a 28-yarder for the touchdown and
Palomar never let up on the way to its second win in
also scored on a 43-yard field goal by Patrick Koch,
a 4-yard pass from Bartram to Daniel Warren, a
5-yard run by Daviente Sayles, a safety when
MacKenzie Bettle blocked a punt that sailed out of
the back of the end zone, and a 10-yard pass from
Bartram to M.J. Bailey. Koch converted after all
four Palomar touchdowns.
making his first start at quarterback, connected on
15-of-26 passes for 209 yards and three touchdowns
before giving way in the fourth quarter to Austin
Early, who was 4-for-5 for 26 yards. With the Comets
leading 33-0, Early's fifth attempt was dropped by a
tight end who was wide open in the back right corner
of the end zone.
accounted for 272 all-purpose yards (7 catches for
97 yards, the 17-yard run and 7 punt returns for 158
yards). He also had a 69-yard punt return to deep in
Mesa territory called back because of a block in the
back away from the play.
Justin Harris, Sayles and
back-up fullback Ricky Smith combined to run for 163
Defensively, Tau led the Comets with 9
tackles (7 solo), 1 sack and 3 tackles for losses. Donahue
contributed 1 sack for a 10-yard loss and had 3 tackles for
losses. Naotala had 1.5 sacks and 2.5 tackles for losses. Wolff
had 1 sack for 12 yards and 1.5 tackles for losses. Amu had 1.5
tackles for losses. Moore had a 9-yard sack, and Miranda also
had a tackle for loss.
Palomar sacked Diaz and Weismann six
times for 45 yards. All in all, the Comets tackled the Olympians
14 times behind the line of scrimmage for 67 yards in losses.
The non-conference victory
kept the Comets unbeaten against the Olympians since Oct. 14,
1967, when Mesa won 14-7.
Palomar will return home
to Wilson Stadium in Escondido next Saturday to host Saddleback
in a Southern Conference opener at 6 p.m.
GAME STATS |
Speedy Damon Nolan will start at slot
receiver and return punts for the Comets at San Diego Mesa on
Saturday evening. -- Photo by Hugh Cox. BELOW LEFT:
Charlie Long, a Poway High School product and a
transfer from Purdue, will be one of Palomar's two co-captains
for the game. Long is the Comets' starting center. BELOW
RIGHT: Bryan Jones, a sophomore starting corner from
Great Oak High School in Temecula who will be Saturday's other
PC will try to bounce back
to first-game form
DIEGO (11-19-2014) --
Palomar will attempt to
win for the second time in three 2014 football games on Saturday
when the Comets go on the road to play non-conference opponent
San Diego Mesa at the Olympians' Merrill Douglas Stadium.
Coach Joe Early is dead sure of one thing. The Comets will be
much better off if they play like they did in their opener, a
come-from-behind victory over Citrus, as opposed to their
performance last week when they sleep-walked through an
embarrasing loss to a powerhouse Long Beach City College team.
"We have to play back to
the way we played against Citrus," Early said. "They want to win
as badly as we do. They're 1-1 just like we are. They're playing
us at their place. They play with a lot of energy. We've got to
match that energy."
Mesa, a member of the
Mountain Conference in the lower-tier, non-playoff eligible
American Division, will be getting its only shot of the year
against an opponent from the upper-tier National Division. Only
teams from the National Division are eligible for the four-team
Southern California Community College playoffs and are able to
advance to the CCCAA State Championship game.
line: This is a "statement game" for the Olympians. And it's
what is referred to as a "trap game" for the Comets of the
powerful Southern Conference, one of three conferences in the
Southern California upper-tier National Division.
Palomar will have a new
starting quarterback Saturday evening in Mitch Bartram, an
Escondido High School product who steps in for Brett
Hollingsworth, the starter the first two weeks. Hollingsworth
apparently suffered an undetected concussion early in the Long
Beach game but played on and off into the fourth quarter before
The third quarterback in
the mix for Palomar is freshman Austin Early, Joe Early's son,
an Orange Glen High alumnus who gray-shirted a year ago. Early
has had success throwing the ball the first two games but was
sacked seven times by Long Beach.
Hollingsworth, who played at Riverside King and Perris' Citrus
Hill High School and was Southern Conference Offensive Player of
the Week for his performance against Citrus, will be on the
sideline on Saturday but won't suit out.
The big-play performer for the Comets
on offense the first two games has been sophomore receiver M.J.
Bailey, a San Marcos High product and a nephew of all-time
Palomar great Jerry Garrett. Bailey has caught 15 passes for 195
yards and an average of 13.0 yards per reception the first two
weeks of the season
End Dillon Donahue, a
sophomore from Billings, Montana, and cornerback Bryan Jones
from Temecula's Great Oak High School have been the Comets'
the Southern Conference Defensive Player of the Week after the
Citrus game, leads the team in tackles (19), solo tackles (12),
sacks (4), tackles for losses (5) and quarterback hurries (3).
Jones, Saturday night's
other co-captain, is second in tackles (15) and solo tackles
(10), broke up what would have been a touchdown pass in the left
corner of the end zone against Long Beach and also has an
interception that was called back.
DeAngelo Ivey, the other
startering corner and a freshman from Carver High in Atlanta,
intercepted a pass six yards deep in the end zone and ran it out
62 yards to the Long Beach 44-yard line in last Saturday's game.
Shawn Cameron returns a kickoff 48 yards from the
goal line after Long Beach's last touchdown of the
night on Saturday. BELOW:
Cornerback Bryan Jones (8) breaks up a pass intended
for De'Quan Hampton in the end zone to prevent a
touchdown by the Vikings. -- Photos by Hugh Cox
into a buzzsaw in its first loss
BEACH (9-13-2014) --
The word on the street was that Long Beach City
College may be as athletic and talented as any team
in the Southern California Football Association this
Against the Vikings on Saturday evening at Veterans
Memorial Stadium, the Comets smacked head-first into
the realization that the word on the street may have
been right on the money.
After Palomar drove down after the opening kickoff
to take a 3-0 lead on the first of two Patrick Koch
field goals from 33 yards out just 1 minute, 22
seconds into the game, Long Beach answered right
back by scoring 21 unanswered points in the next
eight minutes and continued on to a 45-13
non-conference victory over th Comets.
"They played at a faster speed than we did,"
Palomar coach Joe Early said.
To make matters worse, the Comets (1-1) did little
positive to help themselves the remainder of the
first half and found themselves staring at a 35-6
That was the bad news. The good news was that they
put up a much better battle over the last two
quarters, when they came to life and played the
Vikings (2-0) to a 7-7 standoff.
The biggest differences in the game were a huge
performance by Long Beach quarterback Kenny Potter,
who passed for 219 yards and three touchdowns and
ran for an additional 143 yards, and the Vikings'
monster pass rush that produced nine sacks.
Austin Early, the second of three quarterbacks the
Comets used, completed 6-of-9 passes for 109 yards,
including a 50-yard play to M.J. Bailey (6 catches,
108 yards) just before the half. But Long Beach
sacked him seven times.
Some other bright spots for Palomar were Shawn
Cameron's 121 yards on five kickoff returns,
including a 48 yarder from the goal line, a 62-yard
interception return by DeAngelo Ivey from six yards
deep in the end zone, and an interception by Javante
Also Dylan Donahue's 2 tackles (2 for losses) and 2
quarterback hurries, Bryan Jones' 10 tackles and 3
pass-breakups (one in the end zone) and Dominic
Darby's 7 tackles and 12-yard sack.
"We did some good things," Joe Early admitted. Just
not enough of them.
The Comets also scored on on Koch's 32-yard field
goal and quarterback Mitch Bartram's 4-yard
touchdown run with 14:25 left in the game. Koch
converted after the Bartram TD.
GAME STATS |
View, download Hugh Cox's photos
ABOVE: Palomar's Dylan
Donahue (49), last week's Southern Conference Defensive Player
of the Week, greets Citrus' Demetre Smith for a 3-yard loss in
last week's season-opening 35-28 victory over the Owls. Donahue
and the Comets will match 1-0 records at Long Beach City College
on Saturday evening. -- Photo by Hugh Cox. BELOW:
Receiver M.J. Bailey, a sophomore from San Marcos High School
who caught nine passes against the Owls for 87 yards, including
a 24-yard touchdown pass from Austin Early.
It's Comets vs. Vikings
Saturday at 'The Vet'
BEACH (9-12-2014) --
Palomar's resurgent football team will
attempt to go 2-0 for 2014 on Saturday when the Comets travel to
Long Beach City College's Veterans Memorial Stadium for a 6 p.m.
non-conference match-up with the Vikings.
The Comets turned back Citrus 35-28 in
their season opener last week. Long Beach, leading by a
touchdown, blew a close game open in their opener with Moorpark
in the fourth quarter as the Vikings won 44-27.
"They're very athletic," Palomar coach
Joe Early said. "We'll have to be at our best."
The Comets had both the Southern
Conference Offensive Player of the Week and Defensive Player of
the Week in week one of the season in quarterback Brett
Hollingsworth and end Dylan Donahue. Hollingsworth, who began
the game by completing nine of his first attempts, and
second-team quarterback Austin Early, who hit on seven of eight
passes, combined to throw for 219 yards and three TDs.
Long Beach, meanwhile, had a clean
sweep of the Central Conference's Player of the Week awards.
Quarterback Brock Dale, who hit on his first 12 attempts and was
19-for-30 passing vs. Moorpark for 277 yards and three
touchdowns, was the Offensive Player of the Week. Down lineman
Jason Fao, who had nine tackles including four for losses and
2.5 sacks, was selected on defense. The Special Teams Player of
the Week was Anterio Bateman, who contributed 201 all-purpose
yards including a 57-yard punt return for a TD.
Donahue conf. Players of Week
The Southern Conference has selected Palomar
quarterback Brett Hollinsworth (left) and
defensive end Dylan Donahue (right) as Players
of the Week for the opening weekend of the
Hollingsworth, a freshman from Citrus Hill
High School in Perris, hit on 18-of-30 pass attempts for 176
yards and two touchdowns, including a 26-yard strike to Wayne
Ganan with 2:38 to play which gave the Comets a 35-28
non-confernce victory over visiting Citrus.
Donahue, a 6-foot-3, 235-pound sophomore from Billings West
High School in Billings, Montana, did not start the game because
he was coming off an injury, but made up for lost time when he
got on the field as he sacked Owls quarterback Larry Cutbirth
four times for 47 yards. Donahue had seven solo tackles and also
contributed a quarterback hurry.
M.J. Bailey dives into
the end zone at the end of a 10-yard touchdown pass
play from Austin Early to break a 6-6 tie against
Citrus with 1:02 left before halftime on Saturday
night. The Comets won their season opener 35-28.
PHOTO SIRIES DIRECTLY ABOVE:
This is the first of two
controversial 15-yard roughing-the-kicker penalties
called on Palomar that prolonged Citrus drives. -- Photos by Hugh Cox.
Hunter Moore, a freshman defensive lineman from
Mission Hills High School who returned a fumble 13
yards for a touchdown. BELOW RIGHT:
Punter Codey Wuthrich,
who played a major role in the victory. He averaged
41.0 yards for eight punts, and his last five went
for 43, 44, 50, 49 and 53 yards.
with 2:38 left to win 2014 opener
(9-06-2014 / REVISED 9-09-2014) --
Palomar, trailing by a
point as the clock wound down in the fourth quarter
Saturday night, scored on a 26-yard pass play from
Brett Hollingsworth to Wayne Ganan with 2 minutes,
38 seconds to play to beat visiting Citrus 35-28 in
its season opener.
Hollingsworth's second TD pass of the
night put the Comets in front of the Owls 33-28, and he then hit
Daniel Warren for a two-point conversion that put Palomar in
front by the final seven-point margin.
"We overcame some adversity in this
one, and that was satisfying, and it feels good to win," coach
Joe Early said. "But we haven't done anything but win one game.
We're not satisfied with that."
While Palomar suffered its worst season
in 31 years a year ago with an extremely uncharacteristic
collapse, Citrus is coming off a year which saw the Owls go 8-3,
sustaining two of their three losses by one point to powers Mt.
SAC 37-36 and Riverside City College 51-50. They turned back
Saddleback in the Beach Bowl to cap a near-storybook run.
forgot to tell the Comets to be overly impressed. Hollingsworth,
making his debut as the starting quarterback, connected on nine
of his first 10 pass attempts and teamed with Austin Early, who
replaced him for part of the second quarter, to throw for a
combined 219 yards and three touchdowns.
The Owls, who got 327 yards passing
from quarterback Larry Cutbirth, and Comets battled back and
forth as the lead constantly changed hands. Hollingsworth threw
a 9-yard scoring pass to Damon Nolan to put Palomar in front
early 6-0, but a missed two-point conversion set the stage for
Citrus to take 14-13, 21-20 and 28-27 leads.
The Comets also scored on a 10-yard
pass play from Early to M.J. Bailey, a 13-yard fumble return for
a touchdown by Hunter Moore and a 2-yard TD run by Justin
Harris. Patrick Koch kicked three PATs.
Early was 7-for-8
passing. Bailey had nine pass recreptions for 87 yards.
Palomar got a huge effort from touted
defensive end Dylan Donahue, who didn't start for the Comets
after just receiving a medical clearance from a minor injury on
Friday but made up for lost time once he entered the game by
sacking Cutbirth four times for 43 yards in losses.
Sophomore punter Codey Wuthrich played
a major role in the Palomar win. He averaged 41.0 yards for
eight punts, and his last five punts went for 43, 44, 50, 49 and
The Comets will try to go to 2-0 when
they visit Long Beach City College in another non-conference
game next Saturday night at Veterans Memorial Stadium on the
Download Hugh Cox's Photos
Coach Joe Early talks to his Palomar
football team at the end of Friday's walk-through before
Saturday's night's season opener against a high-powered Citrus
team. The Owls were 8-3 last season, with two of their losses
coming by one point (33-32 to Mt. SAC and 51-50 to Riverside
City College). Citrus defeated Saddleback in the Beach Bowl. --
Photo by Hugh Cox
'New-look' Comets will
kick off 2014 vs. Owls
ESCONDIDO (9-05-2014) --
Palomar will attempt
to put its forgettable last two seasons in the rear-view mirror
on Saturday when the Comets kick off the 2014 season against
Citrus College at Escondido High School's Wilson Stadium.
Kickoff will be at 6 p.m.
The Comets will unveil a
new look that will include both a highly-regarded freshman
quarterback (Brett Hollingsworth), four new assistant coaches
including former Washington State, Washington, Stanford and
Notre Dame offensive coordinator Bill Dietrick, a re-tooled
offensive line and a re-tooled defense.
As a high school senior at
Citrus Hill in Perris last season, Hollingsworth passed for
3,340 yards and 32 touchdowns, and rushed for 443 yards and 10
TDs, as the CIF Southern Section Inland Division Offensive
Player of the Year. He led the Hawks to a 13-1 record and a
receivers corps will be split end M.J. Bailey (San Marcos High
School), slot Damon Nolan (Murrieta Valley) and flanker Wayne
Ganan (Del Norte). Daniel Warren (Carver High in Atlanta) goes
in when the Comets use a four-receiver package.
The Comets have two
breakaway threats in the backfield in returning starter Justin
Harris (Temecula Chaparral) and transfer Daviante Sayles (Rancho
Buena Vista, Eastern Illinois University). They'll run behind a
line of tackles Alex Dunn (6-7, 295, Vista Murrieta) and Mike
Stevens (6-8, 320, Valhalla), guards Eddie Grajeda (6-1, 315,
Escondido) and Khris Alvarez (6-4, 310, San Marcos) and transfer
center Charlie Long (6-2, 282, Poway, Purdue University).
Defensively, end Dylan
Donahue (6-3, 245, Billings West High in Montana), who is one of
the most highly-sought community college defensive linemen in
the country, was cleared to play Friday after a minor injury in
last Saturday's intrasquad scrimmage. Miami and Oregon are among
an impressive list of D-I powers recruiting Donahue.
Javante O'Roy (Antelope
High, Sacramento City College), who broke a Palomar record with
a 101-yard interception return against El Camino last season,
returns to stabalize the secondary, Local defensive starters
include linebackers Drew Madera (Temecula Chaparral), Toefua Amu
(El Camino High) and Austin Wolff (Fallbrook), linemen Dominic
Darby (Mission Hills), Hunter Moore (Mission Hills), Junior Tau
(Temecula Chaparral) and Ian Kelly (Temecula Chaparral), and
DB's Diovanni Brewer (Oceanside) and Bryan Jones (Temecula Great
Citrus, went 8-3 last season with two of those losses coming by
one point (33-32 to Mt. SAC and 51-50 to Riverside City College.
The Owls defeated Saddleback 25-14 in the Beach Bowl.
"We know they're a good
football team," Palomar coach Joe Early said. "We need to come
out of the gate quickly, and we need to execute assignments on a
consistant basis. Basically what I think that translates to is
we need to win every rep."
Receiver Hakim is
Jets' primary kick returner
PARK, New Jersey (8-26-2014) --
New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan told ESPN.com on Tuesday that
former Palomar wideout and current Jets wide receiver/kick
returner/gunner Saalim Hakim has a "leg up" on other candidates
vying for a spot on the 53-man roster.
This, Ryan said, is because of his
ability to play special teams. And Hakim's ability to play
special teams has a great deal to do with his blazing speed. The
24-year-old former Comet, who enters the final preseason game as
the Jets' primary kick returner, was timed by NFL scouts at 4.23
in the 40 at his pro day in 2012.
Hakim was activated from the Jets'
practice squad late last season and played in their final three
games. He showed signs of just how fast he really is on a pair
of end-around plays, one which went for a 9-yard gain that he
nearly broke for a touchdown.
He also played two games for the New
Orleans Saints late in the 2012 regular season.
Hakim, younger brother of 13-year
former NFL receiver/kick returner Az-Zahir Hakim, came to
Palomar at his brother's suggestion in 2008 from Palo Verde High
School in Las Vegas, where he was primarily a soccer player. He
caught three passes for the Comets as a freshman and, after a
year of coaching, had 28 receptions as a sophomore in 2009.
"The only route I knew how to run was a
go-route," Hakim told ESPN.com. "But nex thing you know, I
started learning other routes too. I was learning a lot."
Hakim moved on to Division II Tarleton
State in Texas, where he had 18 catches in 2010. Hakim then
spent the 2011 season with the Las Vegas Locomotives of the
United Football League. One year later, he returned to Tarleton
State to participate in pro day and, after running the 4.23 in
the 40, Hakim says 18 NFL teams called him.
"My cellphone was blowing up," he told
ESPN.com. He first signed a free-agent contract with the Dallas
Cowboys, dislocated a finger in a blocking drill. He next had
short stints with the St. Louis Rams and the Saints, then joind
the Jets' practice squad in October 2013. The rest, leading up
to the Jets' final preseason game prior to the 2014
regular-season opener, is history.
(Hakim lists his college as "Palomar"
rather than Tarleton State)
2014 Pre-Season ...
PC, Arizona St. alum Schwab
returns to NFL
(8-02-2014) -- Former
Palomar and Arizona State offensive tackle Brice Schwab has
returned to the NFL. Schwab signed with the Houston Texans last
week and has already made an impact in drills at the Texans
Training Facility in Houston.
The 6-foot-7, 302-pound
Schwab was with the Tampa Bay Bucaneers and the New England
Patriots during the 2013 pre-season.
Schwab was ranked as the
No. 9 No. 9 community college recruit in the nation and the No.
2 offensive lineman by Rivals.com coming out of Palomar
following the 2009 season when the Comets went 10-3, reached the
Southern California championship game and were ranked No. 8
nationally by the JC Grid-Wire of Kirkland, WA.
verballed to USC, de-committed when coach Pete Carroll left the
Trojans for the Seattle Seahawks and chose Arizona State over
Oklahoma and Florida State, both of which also recruited him
heavily. He played in nine games for the Sun Devils in 2010,
red-shirted in 2011, then started all 13 games at right tackle
as a senior in 2012 for a team that averaged 205.5 yards
rushing, Arizona State's best total in 25 seasons.
Houston opens the
preseason Saturday night at Arizona.
The other former Comet
currently on an NFL roster is wide receiver Saalim Hakim, who
has been clocked a 4.28 in the 40 and is beginning his second
season with the New York Jets.
returns a kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown in Palomar's 38-16
victory over Orange Coast on Sept. 28, 2013. -- Photo by Hugh Cox
Simmons signs with
SAN MARCOS (7-01-2014) -
Palomar kick returner and running back Earvin Simmons, a
sophomnore from Murrieta Valley High School and a
first-team All-Southern Conference selection last fall as a
sophomore, will play at MidAmerican Nazarene University in
Former Palomar, Kansas State University
and NFL running back Joe Hall will be Simmons' position coach.
Simmons returned 22 kickoffs for 709
yards for the Comets in 2013, an average of 32.2 yards per
Palomar's earlier signees
were kicker Jonathan Leiva (UNLV), quarterback Ryan
Lamb (Central Michigan), defensive end Brian
Gundling (Texas State), middle linebacker Sylvester
Hagen (Missouri Southern State), running back Aaron
Mossbarger (MidAmerican Nazarene), tight end Brett
Hayes (Southwest Oklahoma State) and corner Daichi
Kozu (Baker University of Kansas).
Safety Stephen Parks, making a tackle against Riverside City
College in a 2013 game, will sign with Southern Utah. --
Photo by Hugh Cox
PC's leading tackler Parks to sign with So. Utah
MARCOS (5-27-2014) --
Palomar's leading tackler last season, will sign
with NCAA Division I Football Championship
Subdivision Southern Utah University.
Parks, a 6-foot-0, 200-pound safety out of
Escondido High School, had 147 tackles, 3
interceptions, 10 pass break-ups and 2 forced
fumbles as a starting safety for the Comets
during the last two seasons.
During the 2013 season, Parks led the Comets
with 82 tackles (55 solo) and also had 4.5
tackles for losses, 1 interception, 5 pass
break-ups and a forced fumble.
Southern Utah, a member of the Big Sky
Conference located in Cedar City Utah, went 8-4
during the 2013 regular season before losing to
Sam Houston State in the FCS national playoffs.
The Thunderbirds will open the 2014 season at
Nevada on Aug. 30 and also will play
Southeastern Louisiana, South Dakota State,
Fresno State, Weber State, Cal Poly, Eastern
Washington, Idaho State, North Dakota,
Sacramento State, Montana and Northern Arizona.
Palomar running back Aaron Mossbarger,
who has accepted a full scholarship to MidAmerica Nazarene,
dives into the endzone to score a touchdown vs. state runner-up
Fullerton College last October. Former Palomar, Kansas State and
NFL running back Joe Hall is the Pioneers' running backs coach.
-- Photo by Hugh Cox
Mossbarger to play for Joe Hall
MARCOS (5-13-2014) --
Aaron Mossbarger, an Escondido High School product who played
running back for Palomar for the past two football seasons, has
signed as a scholarship player with MidAmerica Nazarene
University, an NAIA member school in Olathe, Kansas.
Former Palomar, Kansas State and NFL
running back Joe Hall is the Pioneers' running back coach.
Mossbarger played in seven games for
the Comets last fall and in 15 games over the last two seasons
while missing some action with injuries. He won Palomar's 2012
Iron Man special teams award and was a part-time starter at
running back for the 2013 team. .
Comets who signed earlier have been
kicker Jonathan Leiva with UNLV, quarterback Ryan Lamb (Central
Michigan), defensive end Brian Guendling (Texas State), middle
linebacker Sylveswter Hagen (Missouri Southern State), tight end
Brett Hayes (Southwestern Oklahoma State) and middle linebacker
Offisa Kose from the Comets' 2012 team, who sat out last
season (Western New Mexico).
A wave of other Comets are expected to
move on to the four-year level as the spring semester ends,
including tight ends Sam Browning and Ryan Ena, and safety
PC adds ex-Notre Dame, Stanford
MARCOS (3-03-2014) --
Head coach Joe Early has upgraded Palomar's football coaching
staff by bringing in Bill Diedrick as the Comets' quarterbacks
coach. Dietrick's hiring is effective immediately, which follows
approval of the Palomar College board.
Diedrick has a top-flight Division I
background. He was offensive coordinator / quarterbacks coach at
Washington State (1989-1990), the University of Washington
(1994-1997), Stanford (1998-2001) and Notre Dame (2002-2004).
His Stanford offense averaged 30.4
points and 422.4 yards per game in his four seasons there,
including 37.1 points and 451.5 yards in 2001 when the Cardinal
ranked in the Top 10 nationally in both categories. Stanford
broke a 50-year-old school record in 1999 with 409 total points,
and broke a second school record with 5,138 yards of total
Dietrick developed such quarterbacks as
Brady Quinn, Marques Tuiasosopo, Drew Bledsoe and John Friesz.
He's coached 12 quarterbacks who moved on to the NFL.
"When Bill became available, it was an
opportunity we just couldn't pass up," Early said. "His resume
stands on its own. I'm really looking forward to leaning on his
experience, and the same goes for my brother (offensive
coordinator Dan Early). This is without even mentioning what
having Bill on board brings to the table in terms of developing
our players, especially at the quarterback position, and in
recruiting and in moving our players on."
Dietrick was a four-sport letter winner
at Eastern Washington University, where he was an NAIA
All-American quarterback and team MVP, and began his coaching
career as a graduate assistant, coaching quarterbacks and
receivers at the University of Hawaii.
THE BILL DIETRICK FILE ...
2002-2004 -- UNIVERSITY OF
NOTRE DAME, Offensive Coordinator, Quarterbacks
1998-2001 -- STANFORD
UNIVERSITY, Offensive Coordinator-Quarterbacks
(1998 -- Led Pac-10 in passing offense; 1999 -- Led Pac-10 in
passing offense, total offense and scoring, Pac-10 Champions;
Most prolific offense in Stanford history; 2001 -- Led Pac-10 in
rushing offense, total offense and scoring
1994-97 -- UNIVERSITY OF
WASHINGTON, Offensive Coordinator-Quarterbacks (UW
all-time career passing and total offense leader
1989-1990 -- WASHINGTON
STATE UNIVERSITY, Offensive Coordinator-Quarterbacks
(passing offense ranked No. 1 in Pac-10; scoring offense ranked
second in Pac-10 and 15th nationally)
2008-2009 -- Indiana State
University, Offensive Coordinator-Quarterbacks and Wide
2007-2008 -- Toronto Argonauts,
CFL, Assistant Coach-Quarterbacks and Wide Receivers
(2007 Eastern Division Champions)
2005-2006 -- Calgary
Stampeders, CFL, Assistant Coach, Quarterbacks and Wide
1991-1992 -- Edmonton Eskimos,
CFL, Offensive Coordinator-Quarterbacks and Wide Receivers and
Running Backs (More than 8,000 yards total offense and
671 points scored, Western Division Champions, 1991)
1986-1988 -- University of
Idaho, Offensive Coordinator-Quarterbacks and Wide Receivers
(nationally Top 3-ranked nationally in passing offense three
straight years; All-American quarterback)
1984-1885 -- Montana State
University, Assistant Head Coach, Offensive
Coordinator-Quarterbacks (1984 NCAA I-AA National
1982-1983 -- Whitworth College,
Assistant Head Coach (led nation in passing offense and
second in total offense)
1971-1981 -- High
School Coach in Spokane, WA
1970-1971 -- University of
Hawaii, Graduate Assistant Coach-Quarterbacks and Wide Receivers