CONCORD, Calif. —
He once held four high-school head-coaching jobs in a six-month span.
His Ygnacio Valley (Concord)
team of 1999 once scored 32 points against De La Salle (Concord)
- then a record against a Bob Ladouceur-coached team - but lost by 39.
His 2001 Clovis East (Clovis)
squad once recorded a 21-14 win against Long Beach Poly, a program that has sent more players to the NFL than any in the country.
Tim Murphy, now at
Clayton Valley Charter (Concord)
, might be the most interesting coach in Bay Area high school football.
On Friday, Murphy, 43, takes an interesting path to start his second season with a game at De La Salle, the nation's No. 2 team
Murphy didn't have to take the game - he sought it, in fact - but that's the straightforward, high-energy, take-on-all-challenges type of man Murphy is.
It's a big reason he led Clayton Valley, a program that had averaged six wins seven of the previous eight years, to a 12-1 record and one win short of a state Division II Bowl bid last season.
But De La Salle? After losing two of the best players he has coached - middle linebacker Jesse Medrano and 3,000-yard rusher Joe Protheroe - and returning only 10 starters? Is Murphy insane? A glutton for punishment?
His reaction: Stay thirsty — and hungry — my Eagles.
"I think the (North Coast Section) Division I and Division II champions should open the season every year, no matter what they have coming back," Murphy said.
That's classic Murphy. Succinct. Logical. But he's not crazy. He knows what he's facing. He watched De La Salle's scrimmage last week.
"They're huge," Murphy said of De La Salle's linemen, who average about 270 pounds. "I've never seen them this big. For all intents and purposes, we're playing a college team. But challenges like this make athletics what they are. I want to see what this team is made of and see how they handle being the big-time underdog."
In that regard, Murphy's program is similar to De La Salle's. If you challenge teen boys, they will respond, both programs preach.
Plus, he uses a run-based offense off the double wing that relies on repetition, precision and misdirection. It's old school, but it works. Everywhere he's gone.
Murphy left Ygnacio Valley for Clovis East, where he racked up more wins in a nine-year span than any other school in the Central Section. A squabble with the school district led him to a job offer from Hunter (West Valley, Utah) which he accepted, but then changed his mind when he was offered his old Ygnacio Valley job.
"I realized I needed to get back home," he said.
But once there, the Clayton Valley job opened. Before coaching a game at YV, he was offered the post and it has been nothing but success.
Murphy returns four on a line that rushed for a near-Northern California record 5,445 yards, including 6-foot-2, 230-pound Justin Rogers
. The Eagles have a new quarterback in quick Gabe Taylor
and 2,000-yard JV running back Miles Harrison
will take the place of Protheroe.
Murphy's personality has helped attract a whopping 76 kids to his roster in a school of 1,800.
"The kids have more of an understanding of the system and the tempo," Murphy said. "They also know the 6-4 and 5-5 reputation is gone, that there's a target on their back. Everyone is gunning for them and that should keep them hungry."E-mail MaxPreps senior writer and columnist Mitch Stephens at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @MitchMashMax