The South San Francisco boys basketball program will be in search of a new head coach for the third time in the last nine years after Jesse McCowan announced his intentions to step down from the position following four seasons.
McCowan, whose teams amassed a record of 28-64 (9-35 Peninsula Athletic League North), cited the need for and lack of paid assistant coaches, a problem at all public schools in the area, as the impetus for his decision to step aside.
“I spent seven years as an assistant. You don’t realize how important that position is until you’re in charge of the program,” he said. “I’m very grateful for the coaches who have assisted me over the years.”
The only way he could have had paid assistants on the staff would have been through also having them as track coaches. McCowan is also the head of the South City track program, and he’s also an alumnus of the school, having graduated in 2009.
“I may never take as much pride in coaching as I did in a place that has always been home to me,” he said. “It was truly a blessing to have the experience to coach where it all started for me.”
Before taking the helm at his alma mater, McCowan had gained experience as an assistant under Herb Yaptinchay at Westmoor and under Darrell Barbour at Sacred Heart Cathedral.
“Jess is one of the best skill development coaches in the area,” Yaptinchay said. “It’s a shame because they won’t know what they had until he’s no longer coaching at SSF.”
Whoever succeeds McCowan as head coach will be inheriting a Warriors team that’s looking to replace the production of six seniors, headlined by point guard Nico Alimorong and lefty shooter Anthony Vanderbur. Angelo Abulencia, who’s been on the varsity team since his freshman year, headlines the class of 2021 along with Daniel Marroquin and Ervin Cunanan, while Nolan Alimorong, Nico’s younger brother, will be just a sophomore.
McCowan’s decision makes South San Francisco the third PAL school to search for a new coach this offseason. Marty Ruiz stepped down from his post at Capuchino with three weeks left in the season and Hosea Patton opted to hand over the reins at Aragon.