Eye of the Tiger

Coaching legend returns to RHS

HUNTER RHODE

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This season, varsity basketball coach Greg Granucci brought back former Roseville High School varsity basketball coach Pablo Gonzalez to take a position as an assistant coach for the freshman boys basketball team.

Gonzalez has been an influential part of not only Roseville High School but the communities surrounding it.

“I was born in Roseville, lived here basically all my life, except for when I went to college in Oregon,” Gonzalez said. “I went to Roseville, graduated from Roseville, my wife did, my three kids all went to Roseville.”

After working with some of the freshman basketball players last summer, Gonzalez was offered the opportunity to come back to RHS and assist coaching the freshman team. Gonzalez took the chance and is currently working with the boys to condition for the upcoming basketball season this winter.

Although Gonzalez will be assisting the freshman team this season, he will also be available to help players of any level and give his input to further benefit the program. Granucci believes that Gonzalez’s experience with coaching basketball will be great for the program.

Gonzalez has achieved many things in his coaching career. As well as winning nine league championships as an RHS basketball coach from 1979 – 94, Gonzalez was also the coach of the Bolivian mens and womens national teams in the South American Championships in 1976-77.

Gonzalez also led four of his basketball teams to the Sac-Joaquin Section Champion game.

He also coached current RHS health and safety teacher Hank DeMello’s varsity basketball team to a section championship in 1980.

DeMello remembers Gonzalez’s coaching skills and believes that he will be a valuable asset to the freshman team this year.

“Pablo has so much basketball knowledge,” DeMello said. “The beauty about Pablo is that he’s willing to change and learn.”

Many of Gonzalez’s former players took what they had learned from him and went on to become coaches at other schools.

According to DeMello, Gonzalez took a more energetic and fun approach with his athletes while coaching and had a coaching style that clearly stuck in his former players’ minds.

“The one thing I remember is [that] we had fun at practice,” DeMello said, “but we worked, because he made it fun.”

Granucci is excited to have Gonzalez back in the basketball program and to have his presence around school and on the court again.

“It’s good for the community in general to see one of their own back in the gym or back in the school and helping out the kids,” Granucci said.

Granucci believes that having Gonzalez brings lots of culture and spirit back to RHS.

“He means a lot to the whole program,” Granucci said. “I mean I think he’s a Roseville Tiger through and through. He bleeds orange and black. Ever since I’ve been here, I’ve always wanted him to come back at some point.”

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