May 2, 2013
Nevada Union High School football coach Dave Humphers steps down

Ready to explore life with his immediate team and satisfied with the body of work as a coaching legend, Dave Humphers is hanging up the trademark lid.

He has stepped down as the Nevada Union High School football coach, expressing great satisfaction with what the Miners have done in Grass Valley under his tenure and moved by the overwhelming desire to spend time with family.

Under Humphers, the Miners since 1991 won 195 games, reached the postseason 17 playoff teams, claimed 10 league championships, six City Championships and four Sac-Joaquin Section Division I crowns. Humphers earlier served several seasons as defensive coordinator with NU. He learned the tricks of the coaching trade from his Mira Loma mentors Don Brown and Gerry Kundert from the 1970s.

The Miners - Miner Magic - have been one of the storied programs in section history, with Humphers a staple on the sideline with his trademark battered and faded blue fishing hat, a tribute to Kundert, who wore a similar hat during his wing-T express Mira Loma era. Kundert still watches his old pupils play, including Terry Stark at Inderkum.

Humphers and the Miners befuddled teams for years with their wing-T attack with myriad fakes and deception plays. The Miners were experts in maximizing under-sized players who were heavy on desire. Scores of players went on to play in college. And Humphers took great glee in coaching his sons in Gabe and Hank on his last two teams. This is a football family if there ever was one.

Bu the year-round toll of leading a program - fundraising, weight training, off-season, player development - takes a toll on all coaches. They certainly don't do this for the meager stipends they earn.

Last month, Vista del Lago coach Chris Jones stepped down to spend more time with his family after six seasons at the Folsom school. His Eagles were 12-2 last season. He led Oak Ridge to three section D-II titles last decade.

In his letter of resignation to NU, Humphers wrote in part, "The long drive every year, the intense emotion, the highs and lows, have added up. It's time for a change for me, for my family and for NU football....I am the most fortunate man on Earth for the family I love. It is time to focus more on family, to watch my sons play college football, to watch dance performances and girls basketball and to support my wife (Dorene)..."

We will add more after talking to Humphers.

- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
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Bee staff writers Joe Davidson and Bill Paterson provide news, analysis and insight on the area high school sports scene in their Prep Blog. Have a question to ask them? Send them an email any time at or

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