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Williams was key Warrior gain as gridders' defensive coordinator

When the 2008-09 school year started, a new English teacher by the name of Kyle Williams began spurring reading progress in his Fallbrook High School classes. When Coach Williams left the classroom for the football field, his focus was on stopping Warrior opponents.

Head football coach Joe Silvey worked with the Fallbrook Union High School District to find a teaching position for Williams. The on-campus staff position enabled Williams, who had been the defensive coordinator at Poway High School, to become Fallbrook’s defensive coordinator.

“I’m even more excited now to be a part of the program, to be a part of the school, to be a part of the community,” Williams said.

“We feel really fortunate to be able to bring him over from Poway,” Silvey said. “We’re really excited about him. He’s just a real big addition to our staff.”

The opportunity of a full-time teaching position lured Williams to Fallbrook from Poway. “It was a difficult decision,” he said. “I’ve really enjoyed my time at Poway.”

Poway had reached the CIF Division I finals in 2006 and 2007 and won the Division I championship in 2007.

Silvey himself is a former defensive coordinator; his eight years in that position with Carlsbad High School included CIF Division I championships in 2002, 2005, and 2006. “Coach Silvey has been extremely successful,” Williams said.

The combination of Silvey and Williams gave Fallbrook the defensive coordinators for four of the previous six CIF Division I championship teams. “That’s big for us,” Silvey said.

Silvey had previously been the defensive coordinator at Santa Margarita Catholic High School in Orange County and had been involved the Eagles’ CIF Southern Section championships in 1996, 1997, and 1998.

Williams was also a player for Poway High School. “I think it’s helped to give me that competitive edge,” he said. “I’m a very competitive person.”

That translated to beyond the football field. “It helped to build my character and personality,” Williams said. “You’re going to have to show up to play every single game.”

Williams followed his Poway High School career with two years at Mesa College, where he played defensive back. Although he did not play football at a four-year university, he obtained his B.A. degree from Cal State University San Marcos.

After the end of his playing career he returned to Poway High School as the defensive backs coach for the 2000 and 2001 seasons. He was the coach of defensive backs and special teams for Mira Mesa High School in 2002 and 2003, and from 2004 to 2007 he was Poway’s defensive coordinator.

Williams’ coaching experience also includes consulting with his father. Bill Williams has been an assistant coach and consultant for numerous high school and college teams and was also an assistant coach for the Chicago Blitz of the United States Football League when Marv Levy was the Blitz’s head coach. “I have a great fundamental background,” Kyle Williams said.

Bill Williams has a video library of more than 7,000 tapes. “I’ve got tremendous resources,” Kyle Williams said. “I can study these things at my leisure.”

Bill Williams assisted his son in 2008 by coaching Fallbrook’s defensive line. “Having his expertise and his energy level on the field at Fallbrook is also going to be a wonderful thing,” Kyle Williams said prior to the season.

Kyle Williams began demonstrating techniques at the age of seven. His brother Brett also coached at Poway from 2004 to 2007 with Kyle and Bill.

Kyle Williams believes that he also obtained his high energy level from his father. “I think the kids will really feed off that energy,” he said.

The 2007 season saw Poway’s starting defensive unit give up an average of fewer than eight points a game and the team as a whole allowed less than 11 points per game. The Titans also had 23 interceptions. One of Poway’s victims during the 2007 season was Fallbrook.

The kids definitely played hard,” Williams said of the 2007 Warriors. “Very tough, very physical kids, so what we’re likely to do is take that, move it up one level higher.”

Williams believes that attitude - including tenacity – is more important than specific strategies. Williams utilized a 3-4 defense at Poway but felt that a 3-3-5 stack defense was more suitable for Fallbrook. “I think the personnel at Fallbrook fill that scheme better. We don’t have to be a big football team,” he said. “The 3-3-5 is predicated on speed.”

That formation also allows the defense freedom to “prowl” prior to the snap. “It’s going to allow us to play extremely fast and utilize the skills that we have,” Williams said prior to the season. “Also I think it creates a lot of confusion for the offense.”

Williams had never previously coordinated a 3-3-5 defense, although Silvey used a 3-3-5 defense at Carlsbad. “Like any other system, it’s going to take some time to implement it,” Williams said. “Once they get it I think you’ll see us come full throttle.”

Fallbrook’s 2008 season ended in the second round of the playoffs with a 14-12 loss to second-seeded Escondido. While the loss was disappointing at the time, a 5-7 season record and a first-round playoff win can be considered a successful improvement from the Warriors’ 2-8 season in 2007. “It’s always a challenge to rebuild a program,” Williams said.

Fallbrook’s last CIF championship game in Qualcomm Stadium was in 2003 and the Warriors’ last CIF championship was in 2000. “I think we all have the same goal, and that’s to bring Fallbrook back to the stadium,” Williams said. “We’re all going to try to work together to make that happen.”

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