Don Dillon Selected as 2005 ACCFCA Coach of the Year

American River College head coach Don Dillon has been named the 2005 American Community College Football Coaches Association Coach of the Year.  The award will be presented to Dillon at the American Football Coaches Association Coach of the Year Dinner on Tuesday, January 10 at the 2006 AFCA Convention in Dallas, Texas.

“I am extremely honored by this award,” American River head coach Don Dillon said.  “To be recognized by your peers and the AFCA is the ultimate accomplishment for me.  I am honored to represent my coaches, players, American River College and all of the schools that play community college football in California.  This award doesn’t just belong to me, but to all of my players and coaches who have worked and played beside me over the years.  This was a team effort.”

In 2005, Dillon led American River to a perfect 10-0 regular season, a second Mid-Empire Conference championship and a trip to the Capital Shrine Bowl.  The Beavers came up short in their bowl game appearance, but it marked only the second time in the 50-year history of the school that the football team recorded 10 wins in one season.  For his efforts, Dillon was named Mid-Empire Conference Coach of the Year.  He recorded his first Mid-Empire Conference title in 1999 when the Beavers finished the season with a 6-4 record and a berth in the Modesto Graffiti Bowl in his first season as head coach.

Dillon has an overall record of 32-39 in his seven seasons at American River.  Prior to becoming head coach at ARC, Dillon spent three years as the runningbacks coach at the University of Hawaii and 16 years as a head coach at the high school level in California, winning two league titles at Hiram Johnson High School in Sacramento. 

About the ACCFCA: Community college football coaches are among the very best in the profession. In recent years, there have been two organizations, the California Community College Football Coaches Association and the National Junior College Football Coaches Association. Each organization has had its own coach of the year.

In 2000, the AFCA invited the organizations to meet at the AFCA Convention. Three national goals were set; to form a national community college football coaches association, to study the possibility of a national championship game between the two organizations and to elect, yearly, a national coach of the year and to have that coach recognized by the AFCA.

Their initial goal, to create an umbrella coaches association, has been accomplished. In 2002, the American Community College Football Coaches Association selected its first national coach of the year, Michael White of Reedley College.  Past winners of the ACCFCA Coach of the Year are: Troy Morrell, Butler Community College, 2003; and Tim Hatten, Pearl River Community College, 2004.

The ACCFCA Coach of the Year Voting Process: Two rounds of voting were conducted for the ACCFCA Coach of the Year. Coaches have to be a member of either the California Community College Football Coaches Association or the National Junior College Football Coaches Association as well as the ACCFCA and the AFCA as a prerequisite to vote for and win ACCFCA Coach of the Year honors. The first round narrowed the field of coaches to three candidates; Dillon, John Featherstone of El Camino College and Michael White of Reedley College. Once the finalists were determined, a final ballot was sent out to determine the winner.

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