Aaron Allen didn’t get the head coach job at Monarch, but he’ll still root for the Coyotes.
Scott Weiss did get the Monarch job, but he’ll still root for Allen, who landed at Centaurus.
And why not?
Each is undertaking the similar task of bringing a once-proud baseball program back to prominence.
Allen, a former Monarch assistant who took over on an interim basis last year after unrest in the program, applied for the full-time job. Although he was — and remains — respected by the program, the Coyotes wanted to pump new blood into the team and opted for Weiss, a former College World Series champion.
That allowed Allen to start anew at nearby Centaurus, a job close enough that he can still regularly keep tabs on his former school.
“Hopefully this is a great change for both programs,” Allen said. “With Monarch not making the playoffs the last few years and Centaurus in the same boat, hopefully, with a couple fresh-start head coaches, we can bring some good baseball back to the east side of Boulder Valley.
“It’s been only Broomfield from the east side.”
Allen’s project might be more ambitious — Centaurus was 2-16 last season — but Monarch has some work to do as well.
Weiss, a former Stanford pitcher who was a regular in the College World Series (winning in 1988) and spent three years in the Chicago Cubs organization, will bring immediate credibility.
While he isn’t a familiar face, he has added several as assistants. And these guys are no regular Joes. Joe Manders and Joe Ray are varsity assistants, and Joe Sawicki will coach the JV along with Marcus Valenzuela.
Each was a part of Monarch’s 2007 Legion A summer title team and prominent members of the Coyotes last truly formidable varsity squad. All but Manders played college ball at the University of Northern Colorado (Manders played at CSU-Pueblo).
“I think we’re looking at putting the program on solid ground so players want to come play at Monarch,” Weiss said. “We’re going to have a standard that represents quality baseball and the skills that our players have. I think everybody is excited about the fresh start.”
While each coach admits the return to glory might not be instant, the culture transformation can be.
“We’re really preaching that we’re a team with a lot of heart and a lot of ability that just needs to learn how to execute well,” Weiss said. “But it’s not necessarily that we’re going to build slowly, because the seniors don’t have time to build slowly. We want to be successful now.”
Label Weiss a Centaurus fan, because he knows all about Allen’s contributions to Monarch and that the new Coyotes assistants still have immense respect for him.
As for Allen, he harbors no bitterness that Monarch went in another direction.
“Absolutely not,” Allen said. “I coached all those assistants and their prime high school years, and I still know all the players. I’m rooting for them.”