Camacho Lands Boys Job!

May 2, 2009 by  

BELLARMINE-JEFFERSON HIGH — Bell-Jeff girls’ coach and athletic director will lead both Guards’ hoop teams.

Bryan Camacho already had a busy schedule at Bellarmine-Jefferson High.

Along with being a teacher and the school’s boys’ athletic director, Camacho also served as Bell-Jeff’s girls’ basketball coach.

Thursday, Camacho added another job to his workload.

The Bell-Jeff graduate was introduced as the Guards’ new boys’ basketball coach by Principal Sister Cheryl Milner.

Camacho said although it appears he is overloaded with work, he is confident he can organize all of the tasks and devote enough time to all of his endeavors.

“I wouldn’t have taken this job if I wasn’t confident that I could handle it,” Camacho said. “It’s all about the student-athletes here at Bell-Jeff, and I know I’m going to be able to give all that I have to both teams.”

Camacho said one of the keys to making the dual-coaching situation work is surrounding himself with a group of quality assistant coaches.

“I wouldn’t have been able to even consider the new job if I didn’t have a solid group of coaches helping me,” he said. “We have a lot of great coaches in place right now and hopefully I’ll be adding some more.”

Bell-Jeff gave Camacho the boys’ coaching job less than a month after the resignation of longtime coach Eli Essa, who guided the program for 14 years.

Milner said the school received interest from 28 coaching candidates. However, Camacho stood out among his peers and that’s why he was selected.

“We are very excited to have Bryan as our new boys’ coach,” Milner said. “We were impressed with his interview and his plans, and we know he is going to do a great job for us.”

Camacho takes over a boys’ team that has a wealth of potential. Last season, Bell-Jeff went 16-12 and won its CIF Southern Section Division VA first-round game against Nuview Bridge, 72-35. The Guards fell in the second round to Aquinas, 47-31.

Camacho said he is excited about the team.

“There are some very good athletes on the team, and a lot of them were freshmen and sophomores last season,” he said. “I think that we have a great group and they are very talented.”

Camacho is no stranger to coaching at Bell-Jeff. In two stints as the Guards’ girls’ coach, he has a 150-44 record and a .785 winning percentage.

His girls’ squad is coming off the most successful season in city history.

In March, Bell-Jeff defeated Pinewood, 55-47, in the CIF State Basketball Division V Championships at Arco Arena in Sacramento. It was the first state title by any team — in any sport — in city history.

The win gave Bell-Jeff a 34-1 record, which set a new school record. In addition, the team ended the season on a 20-game winning streak.

The Guards also won the CIF Southern Section Division V-A championship against Santa Clara, 61-31. It was the program’s first crown in 12 years.

Camacho also knows a little about boys’ basketball at Bell-Jeff — as a player. During the 1991-92 season he was a member of an outstanding Guard team.

As a 5-foot-8 senior, Camacho helped the Guards win a San Fernando Valley League championship. He averaged 13.3 points and nine assists a game.

Under Coach Steve Wahl, Camacho was part of a team that went 21-5, put together a 14-game winning streak and advanced to the CIF Southern Section Division IV semifinals, losing to Austin Croshere and Crossroads High, 69-54.

After his playing days at Bell-Jeff, he moved on to College of the Canyons, where he earned all-conference honors.

Camacho has also had success as an assistant coach, when in 1998 he was on the staff of a Chaminade High boys’ team that went 28-2 and won a CIF championship.

By Jeff Tully – Burbank Leader

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