ERHS Football Coach Tony Payne Steps Down

Tony Payne

ERHS Varsity Football Coach Tony Payne, who took over the program in 2018, will be stepping down to dedicate more time to his family and his special education classes.

Payne made the announcement during a team meeting this afternoon (Thursday, Nov. 10).

“It’s been an honor to be part of the Warrior football program and a dream come true,’’ said Payne, who graduated as a Warrior in 1995. “I love Righetti High School and I’m not going anywhere. I plan to help this program to continue to grow and thrive. I am proud of what we have accomplished in the last 5 years, and I am forever grateful for the chance to coach and teach at my alma mater. There are so many people that have supported our program and I greatly appreciate all of them. Football is a tough sport for tough kids, and I appreciate the commitment and the sacrifice that my Warriors makefor this program. Shout out to the “CHOSEN ONES”!!!

The search for a new head coach will begin in a few weeks under the guidance of Warrior Athletic Director Kevin Barbarick, according to Righetti Principal Ted Lyon.

“The goal will to be find an individual who is committed to improving our student athletes as players and citizens,’’ Lyon added. “The school is very grateful for Coach Payne and his work with our student athletes over the past five years.’’

Last year, the team, assistant coaches, and Payne captured the CIF-Central Section Division 5 Championship.

Payne has been coaching football on the Central Coast for about 15 years at schools including PVHS, OAHS and RHS. He played two years of football at AHC before earning a full ride scholarship to West Texas A&M where he also played a few years. He has a BA Degree from Cal State University, Fresno.

SMJUHSD Media Contact: Public Information Officer Kenny Klein 805-709-1454 or