Utterback, 47, said a small number parents and their complaints led to his dismissal.
He has coached the Cougars’ girls volleyball team since 2004. He has coached the school’s boys volleyball team in two stints, the first for five yeas in the 1990s and the second beginning in 2006.
Utterback, a walk-on coach (a coach who is not a full-time faculty member) and a Capistrano Valley alumnus, said he was fired as boys coach by Capistrano Valley principal Kevin Astor on June 18, five days after he received his coach of the year plaque at an ocvarsity.com coaches/athletes of the year event. Utterback said he was told he could retain his girls coaching position, but he was told on July 16 that he would no longer be the girls coach, too.
A group of Capistrano Valley parents who have independently organized girls volleyball workouts in recent days have hired Utterback to assist in those practices.
Utterback is frustrated.
“I can’t get anyone to explain to me an example of what I did wrong,” Utterback said. “It’s a few squeaky wheels who say I’m a bad guy.”
The boys volleyball team this past spring won the Sea View League championship and advanced to the quarterfinals in the CIF-Southern Section Division 2 playoffs.
Astor and school athletic director Christy Curtis did not immediately respond to e-mailed requests for their comments. Utterback said he has applied for coaching positions elsewhere, but declined to name the schools.
More girls volleyball news from the OCVarsity blog:
More boys volleyball news from the OCVarsity blog: