There is a new boss atop the Orange Coast College football team's chain of command and that boss is former assistant coach Joel "Bubba" Gonzalez, who will take over the program for the 2018-19 season.
Gonzalez is entering his third year as a coach with the Pirates and his ninth season overall in his coaching career. In addition to head coaching duties, he will also be the team's defensive line coach.
"It is an honor to be the head coach here at Orange Coast College," Gonzalez said. "OCC has a long tradition of excellence in athletics and education and I am proud to be a part of this great institution. As a coach, I strive to build trusting relationships with student-athletes to aid them in reaching their goals. As a head coach, my goal is to support my staff so they can mentor our student-athletes and develop them physically, mentally, and emotionally. My short term goals are to create a culture of accountability & discipline and my long term goals are to develop a competitive football program that puts education first."
In two seasons as the OCC defensive line coach, Gonzalez has helped nine defensive linemen earn NCAA & NAIA scholarships. "The early stages of my time here at Coast have been amazing, Gonzalez said. "I love coming to work and I am excited about the future for Pirate football."
Prior to coaching at OCC, Gonzalez began his coaching career in 2009 as the assistant offensive line coach at Villa Park High School. From there, Gonzalez moved on to Mater Dei high school where he coached for six seasons as the offensive line coach and the defensive line coach. While at Mater Dei, Gonzalez helped the Monarchs reach the CIF playoffs five out of six seasons and coached in two CIF championship games.
In his six years at Mater Dei, Gonzalez has mentored numerous players and helped them reach their goals of playing football in college. Prior to coaching football, Gonzalez worked as a police officer for the Fountain Valley Police Department.
Gonzalez played football at Mater Dei High School where he helped his team reach the CIF finals his junior year and winning the national championship during his senior year. After high school, Gonzalez attended Saddleback College for a year before earning a full scholarship to the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He finished his playing career at UNLV and was voted as team captain his senior year.
After UNLV, Gonzalez played semi-professional and professionally for two years after college before retiring. He is married to Kawehionalani and they have three sons.
Prior to coaching football, Gonzalez worked as a police officer for the Fountain Valley Police Department.
"We are excited to have Bubba leading the way for our football program this coming season," OCC Athletic Director Jason Kehler said. "Bubba comes into the position with several years of football experience, both as a coach and former player and his best interests are always with our student-athletes."