Vista Assistant Turner Named Mesa Head Football Coach

A prominent assistant coach at football power Vista Murrieta High School is moving across town after his appointment Friday as head football...

A prominent assistant coach at football power Vista Murrieta High School is moving across town after his appointment Friday as head football coach at Murrieta Mesa.

Darrel Turner will take over the Rams from Justin Schaeffer, who resigned recently to take the head coaching position at Fountain Valley. Turner will continue teaching math at Vista Murrieta through the end of the school year before taking charge of the Murrieta Mesa program.

"I look forward to building relationships with the Mesa student-athletes, staff, teachers, administration and parents," Turner said in a news release. "I'm ready to begin serving the entire Mesa community and building on the success of the football program."

At Vista Murrieta, Turner served as assistant defensive coach and huddle coordinator for three years before moving to offensive coordinator and running backs coach. He has also served as the Broncos' assistant coach for the boys varsity basketball team and boys and girls track teams.

Coley Candaele, former head football coach and current athletic director at Vista Murrieta, had high praise for Turner.

"Coach Turner has contributed to the success of the Bronco football and track programs for the past three years," Candaele said. "His organizational skills, initiative, ideas and competitive spirit will take Rams football to the next level."

Murrieta Mesa principal Steve Ellis spoke enthusiastically about the hiring of Turner.

"We are very excited to welcome coach Turner to Murrieta Mesa," Ellis said. "His passion for developing character while teaching football will enhance the culture of our school. We believe he brings the right combination of energy, knowledge and excitement to build on the foundation we already have at Mesa."

The Rams program was headed in the right direction under Schaeffer. Turner will inherit a program that improved to 5-5 overall last season and won two league games for the first time.

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