Brinkley's 13-0-1 Sailors this fall.
There is, and always will be, only one CIF Southern Section Division VI
champion in 1999.
Today, this still-euphoric fourth day, this year's players are still
walking on clouds. Only in the years to come, however, will they fully
appreciate the special feeling that accompanied Friday's 19-18 triumph
over Irvine at Orange Coast College.
For a little perspective, this year's team need only look to the CIF
champs of 1994, a 14-0 Harbor squad from which several players have
already made the post-collegiate transition into the work force.
History remembers them, too. History never forgets.
Brinkley, as well as a handful of assistant coaches, remain a link to the
only two section championship squads in the school's 69 seasons.
Assistants Bill Brown, Mike Bargas, Bill Vetica and Bill Calloway, as
well as coaches' assistant Ryan O'Donnell, will soon add a second
championship ring to their collection.
Brinkley said the five seasons in between, which included one trip to the
title game (1996) and another to the semifinals ('97), have helped him
appreciate winning in Week 14.
The winningest coach in Newport-Mesa District football history was
particularly gratified that his 80-year-old father, Roy, as well as his
former high school coach and former Sailors' assistant, Bob Larson,
witnessed Friday's game.
"I told our kids there's got to be somebody special in their lives to
enjoy it with and, for me, that was my Dad.
"And I have so much respect for (Larson), I'm glad he was there, too. He
taught me so much and is a major factor in my being a coach."
In addition to the aforementioned assistants, who include Harbor alumnus
and former player Bargas, a pair of former Sailors took part in their
first championship season.
Matt Burns, a linebacker on the Sailor team which lost to Irvine, 30-8,
in the 1992 Division IV title game, was particularly energetic during
postgame festivities Friday.
Biehl, a 1995 graduate, had his playing career cut short by a knee injury
after his sophomore season. He was a starting center for his freshmen