Confusion lingers after departure of Kingsburg head football coach

KINGSBURG, Calif. (KFSN) -- It's now been two days since Dave Steele told his players he would not be their coach next year at Kingsburg High School, his alma mater and where he coached for seven years.

The coach says he was fired by the school board Monday night, and his players don't know what to think. Coach Steele coached his 20th year last fall, and in the past seven years at Kingsburg, he went 73-16, winning three consecutive titles.

"You know last week we were doing stuff and this week I'm not," Steele said.

That's been a harsh reality for Steele, who says he was fired by the school board on Monday night.

"It's been kind of a whirlwind of emotions and everything else," Steele said.

There's been some confusion, and some tough conversations with his players, who he says he's had to console.

"It kind of sucks, you know, I don't like it but since he's gone, (we just have to) get ready for a new coach and just have to go on from there," sophomore player Anthony Sierra said.

Kingsburg Joint Union School District Superintendent Randy Morris said Coach Steele was "not invited back for next season," but couldn't comment further because it's a personnel issue.
Steele told us he had to take a stand to protect what he had in place.
Mainly, he says he had his coaching roster set, and the board wanted to change that.

"I understood that he kind of had his coaching staff already and they wanted some other people and he was just loyal to his coaching staff I think," longtime Kingsburg resident Barbara Grandal said.
Grandal says her grandson won a Valley title with Steele just a couple of years ago.

She says a few disgruntled people are behind the decision to not bring him back.

"People say that coach is gone so we're not going to do so good, but we just gotta believe in ourselves and work hard and stuff," junior player Emmett Brooks said.

And that's exactly what Steele has been telling players: move on, like he's going to do. Last week he was coaching, this week he isn't. As for the weeks ahead, he's going to leave that to a higher power.

"I'm going to be where I need to be, and whether it's still staying at Kingsburg and just teaching or is it going off and coaching somewhere, I'm going to be where he needs me to be," Steele said.

And that's a reality Coach Steele is at peace with.
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