Norris Fletcher

Norris Fletcher, Hall of Fame Coach

In 1989 Norris Fletcher was offered the varsity football job at Bishop Garcia Diego High School. This was the offer: the Cardinals had not had a winning football record in ten years; he would have to recruit his own staff; the co-ed student population was at an all-time low of 190 students, and there were serious considerations about dosing down the school.

How about it , Coach, interested? Interested? Not only did Norris Fletcher accept the job and its inherent problems, he did so with a tenacity seldom experienced at a small high school.His influence led the school from the pit of despair to its highest level in history and a very significant increase in the school population.

What about football? The end of his fourth year found the Cardinals in CIF Finals against a powerhouse Montclair Prep. From a 3-7 season in 1989 to a 9-2-1 year in 1996, with 51 wins, 37 losses, and 2 ties. His Cards won two Tri-Valley League tides and gained berths in the CIF playoffs for five straight years. In the rich tradition of Cardinal football, only four Cardinal teams have won nine games. Three of those were coached by Norris. His record against rival power Carpinteria was 2-2-1.

No stranger to awards, Norris was selected “Coach of the Year” by the SBART in 1993 and was honored three times by the Tri-Valley League as their “Coach of the Year.” But more important were the contributions he made to the youngsters fortunate enough to have experienced his counsel. He became a father-figure for numerous at-risk kids and helped them achieve at their maximum level.

One of his colleagues has said: “Bishop Diego HS and Santa Barbara are much better places for having the benefit of the heart and soul of Norris Fletcher and his wife, Barbara.” The Cards are proud, Coach Fletch!