Loyola has a new varsity football mentor with more than 30 years of dedication to program
School announced that the interim tag has been removed, and Dr. Ricardo Pedroarias will be the official new leader of Cub Football.
There is no one who bleeds Cub Blue or appreciates the value of Jesuit education more than Varsity head coach Rick Pedroarias. Entering his first year as the steward of Loyola's storied football program, Pedroarias is determined to guide Cub Football back to prominence, and the odds are excellent that he will do so in short order.
To gain perspective on the level of dedication and commitment Pedroarias possesses, a little history is in order. Both of his parents fled from Communist Cuba in the early 1960s and eventually landed in Los Angeles, where they met and later married in 1964. The Pedroarias' settled in Echo Park. Virtually every penny they earned that was not expended on life necessities went to the education of their children. That commitment by his parents ingrained in him from an early age the importance and value of education.
Coach Pedroarias enrolled as a freshman at Loyola in 1980. He played football for the Cubs for four years and was a member of nationally ranked squads in 1982 and 1983. Suffice to say, the ethos of Jesuit education was instilled in him and remains so to this day. And the ineffable culture and great success of Loyola's esteemed football program likewise were embraced as a lifelong passion.
During his final year at Loyola Marymount University from which he graduated with dual degrees in History and Spanish, Pedroarias embarked on his Cub coaching career as a highly talented member of legendary Loyola head coach Steve Grady's program. From 1987-1990, Pedroarias served as a line coach for the sophomore squad under famed head mentor John Kvasnicka '66.
From 1991 through 1994, coach Pedroarias led the Cub sophomore program as head man. Three of his four squads were undefeated and were crowned league champions. That stint made it clear that Pedroarias knows the ingredients for winning.
In 1995, coach Pedroarias joined the varsity staff as a line coach under Grady. In his first six years as a varsity assistant, Loyola made it to the CIF Southern Section Division I finals three times (1995, 1996, 2000), and advanced to the semifinals once. He served as offensive coordinator for the Cubs' 2002 semifinalist team and was an offensive line assistant on the staffs of Loyola's 2003 and 2005 CIF Div. I title squads. With the exception of one season, Pedroarias has continued to serve as a Cub Football mentor since Grady's retirement following the 2004 campaign. Coach Grady's philosophy has had a profound impact on Pedroarias' approach to teaching the game. This will mark coach Pedroarias' thirtieth year as a football coach at his prep alma mater.
Coach Pedroarias possesses extraordinary organizational and motivational skills. He is a task master who demands fundamental perfection, keen discipline and relentless physicality. His passion rubs off on his players who invariably go the extra mile competing for him. And, importantly, he understands the mission of Jesuit education and embraces the hallowed, time honored traditions of Cub Football.
In addition to his accomplishments as a Loyola football coach - 17 players under his tutelage earned All-CIF honors and 19 were National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame Scholar Athletes - Pedroarias has distinguished himself as a teacher and administrator. He has served as a decorated instructor, Dean of Men, Department Chairman, Assistant Principal for Ministry, Director of Summer Session, and he currently acts as Assistant Principal of Supervision. Coach Pedroarias has also coached the high jump for the school's perennial powerhouse track & field program.
Coach Pedroarias holds a Masters degree from California State University at Los Angeles and earned a doctorate in Education Leadership from LMU. He has also served as a professor at his collegiate alma mater.
Loyola clearly hit the jackpot with coach Pedroarias. A man of high intelligence, integrity and passion for all that is Loyola, he is a perfect fit as the new leader of Cub Football.
Both of coach Pedroarias' sons, Andrew '12 and Daniel '15 graduated from Loyola. Daniel, who played football for the Cubs, is a member of the freshman coaching staff.
Coach Pedroarias and his wife Lourdes reside in Sherman Oaks.