Robert Frith will be the defensive backs coach for San Clemente's varsity football team, Coach Jaime Ortiz announced Tuesday.

Frith joins San Clemente coaching staff (updated)


Former El Toro football coach and athletic director Robert Frith has joined the San Clemente football staff as an assistant coach, Tritons coach Jaime Ortiz announced Tuesday afternoon.

Frith, a 1995 graduate of San Clemente, will coach defensive backs, Ortiz said.

“This was an opportunity for him to get back into coaching,” Ortiz said. “He’s invested in the community and he lives right above the school. It was a no-brainer.”

Frith was El Toro's coach from 2009 to 2014, when he handed the reins to his stepfather, Mike Mayoral, in order to accept a position as the school’ athletic director.

In the Saddleback Valley Unified School District, athletic directors cannot simultaneously coach athletic programs.

Frith confirmed he resigned as athletic director in June. Frith said the school has since hired Armando Rivas to serve as AD. Rivas previously served as athletic director at La Mirada High.

“The initial intent wasn’t to jump right back into coaching,” Frith said of his resignation. “I had other goals and I had some nice vacations with my family. I met with (Ortiz) a couple weeks before the season started and kept an open mind.”

During his tenure at El Toro, Frith led the Chargers to the CIF-SS Southwest Division final in 2011, in which they lost to Tustin, 35-28, and three quarterfinal appearances. His offenses were known for their quick play and aerial attack.

“He’s usually on the other side of the ball, but he can show our kids what to look for from an offensive standpoint,” Ortiz said.

Ortiz and Frith coached their sons, who were on the same flag football team, during the winter and spring. Ortiz said that gave him an opportunity to evaluate his staff to see if they could add Frith as an assistant.

“I’m a football coach, through and through,” Frith said. “The real joy of coaching is being out with the kids and showing them how football reflects life. Being able to get back into that is truly rewarding.”

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