Carmen Rivas is ready to dip his toes back in the water.
Last a head high school baseball coach in 2009, the Monarch teacher who guided the Coyotes for several years as well as Centaurus has been tabbed the next coach for the Boulder Panthers.
Boulder athletic director Eddie Hartnett announced the hiring on Tuesday, and Rivas couldn't be more excited to get back in the dugout.
"Seven years is a while to be out of it. I never said I'd never come back, and I've really been observing what kind of jobs were out there the whole time just kind of waiting for one that really was enticing to me," said Rivas, who still works at MoHi. "I've known Eddie Hartnett for a long time, and I felt he'd be a good guy to work for and work with.
"There's some things I have to catch up on a little bit. I'm looking forward to learning about the team and the community."
Though he hasn't overseen a program for a while, Rivas has never ventured too far from the game. He has worked with a few club programs including the Slammers, as well as taking on a role as instructor at the Blow It Up Hitting facility in Denver.
But his coaching resume speaks volumes about the potential for Boulder baseball — a program which has had its share of success in the past but has struggled to get to 10 wins the past six seasons. In six years at Monarch, Rivas guided the Coyotes to three Front Range League titles and a Class 5A final four appearance in 2006.
Prior to that, he had enormous success at Centaurus. The Warriors won six league titles in the seven years he was there.
Rivas also has experience at the college level, spending two years at Northern Colorado as a pitching coach and recruiting coordinator.
"I am extremely excited to welcome coach Rivas back to the 5A Front Range League," Hartnett said in a press release. "It became clearly evident that coach Rivas is well respected and well known throughout the Colorado high school baseball environment. I am confident that coach Rivas will bring a positive approach that will impact Boulder High School baseball for many years to come."
The Panthers went 8-11 in 2016, their third year under Colt Sedbrook (26-31 overall record). With a number of seniors to-be potentially on the roster, Rivas said he feels like there is a solid core with which to establish a ground base.
That has become evident in the way the team has carried itself this summer.
"I think a lot of the guys are returning from last year's team, so I really think there is a lot in place already," Rivas said. "I'm looking forward to getting together with them and watch them play a little bit, just as an observer."
The hire still fresh, there are many things to iron out but Rivas said he hopes to establish offseason workout programs at the earliest possible time.