Stub Travis coached Crane to 1A runner-up finishes in 2015 and 2016.
Stub Travis coached Crane to 1A runner-up finishes in 2015 and 2016.

Stub Travis, who ranks second in wins among eight-man football coaches in Oregon history, has stepped down after 23 seasons at Crane.

Travis went 167-61 with the Mustangs, missing the postseason only twice. He guided the team to two state finals, losing to Dufur 36-32 in 2015 and 42-38 in 2016.

“We've had some great kids and great teams,” said Travis, whose team went 8-2 and lost in the state quarterfinals last season. “I thought we probably should have won two or three state championships, just the luck never fell. We should have beat Dufur definitely the second time.

“It's been a lot of fun through the years. I'm sure I'm going to miss it. I've got two grandkids I haven't seen that live in Arkansas, so I want to do some more of that stuff, and get back into hunting.”

Travis, who is second in eight-man wins only to Dufur's Jack Henderson (290-104, 36 seasons), said his commitment to coaching football and girls basketball at Crane spread him thin. He has led the girls basketball team to three 1A titles (2004, 2020, 2022) and two runner-up finishes (2005, 2006).

“Since COVID, I haven't had a break at all in the summer, doing football camps and basketball tournaments,” Travis said. “I just kind of wanted to start doing some other stuff. I love football, but it was kind of a conflict in the summer, whether I was with the boys or the girls.”

Travis said he plans to continue coaching girls basketball. This season, the Mustangs are 10-1 and No. 2 in the 1A coaches poll.

Travis said that keeping a football coaching staff together became more of a challenge in recent seasons.

“It just seemed like it was getting harder and harder to find a coaching staff with people around here,” he said. “I've lost all my offensive coordinators. It seems like it's been a different coaching staff all the time.”

Travis graduated from Crane in 1972. He played three years of semipro rugby and worked as a professional bull rider and rodeo clown. An off-campus coach, he spent 25 years working in a state treatment program for youths and the last four years in landscaping.

He has maintained the football field at Crane.

“The guys that have put in for the job have already asked me to make sure I take care of the field,” Travis said. “I do all the yard work, so I'll still be out there around.”

La Pine's DeForest moving on

Bo DeForest, who coached La Pine to the 3A semifinals in 2021 and the quarterfinals last season, has resigned from the position after going 40-24 in seven seasons.

DeForest also has stepped down as La Pine's baseball coach. He led the Hawks to 3A championships in 2018 and 2019, compiling a 113-55 record in seven seasons. His son, Wyatt, was a senior on the 2018 team.

DeForest and his wife Becky, La Pine's athletic secretary, plan on moving to near the Oregon-Idaho border. Their son, Teagan, is a freshman defensive lineman on the football team at Eastern Oregon University.

“We want to watch my youngest play his remaining years at EOU,” DeForest said. “I've been at La Pine for 39 years, and I'm kind of wanting to move on for a little bit.

“We both kind of like that area. It kind of seemed like a place we could call home. It's not an easy decision, but a decision that we feel is best for us at this point.”

DeForest graduated in 1992 from La Pine, where he played for his father, Dave, the football coach from 1986 to 1994. Dave served as defensive coordinator for two seasons under Bo. Three of Bo's teammates from the 1991 team, which went 10-2, were on the staff in recent seasons.

An off-campus coach, Bo DeForest returned to the high school in 2010 and served as a football assistant through 2015. He got involved in the La Pine Park & Recreation District to help build the feeder programs.

“They hadn't had a whole lot of success since we were gone,” he said. “I got back into coaching with the idea of kind of bringing back what we had in the '80s and '90s, and I feel like that's been accomplished. Now I feel like we need to take care of some stuff for ourselves.”

Once relocating, he plans to work in construction and is hopeful to become a shop teacher. He hasn't ruled out coaching again someday.

“I told my son that if he decides to become a football coach down the road, I'll come back for him, do like my dad did for me,” he said.

Todd to retire

Pat Todd, the coach at 2A Lowell for the past 12 seasons, is retiring.

Todd went 85-40 with the Devils, including a state runner-up finish in 2013. Last season, Lowell finished 10-1 and made the state quarterfinals.

“I knew this was my last year,” Todd said. “I've been very clear to my players and the parents and everyone. If we went 0-9 or 9-0, either way I was going to be done. I had no idea we'd be any good. I was pretty shocked, really.”

Todd, a 1979 Lowell graduate, has worked in education for 34 years. He spent 17 years at Sandy, where he coached in the football program, before returning to Lowell, serving as an assistant for five seasons before becoming head coach.

Todd said he considered retiring a few years ago, but a change in pension rules allowed him to continue working and receive retirement payments.

“I did that for three years,” said Todd, who teaches PE and health. “It worked out really well for me.”

Eien mourned

Enterprise is mourning the loss of assistant coach Bruce Eien, who died Dec. 21. He was receiving treatment for a tumor on his pituitary gland at a Boise hospital.

Eien, 57, spent the last two seasons assisting in the Enterprise program, one year at the junior high and last year as the offensive coordinator at the high school. He coached for 36 seasons, including head-coaching stints at Brethren Christian (Calif.) and 1A Crow (2013-14).

He assisted at several schools, including Harrisburg, where he helped the Eagles win the 3A title in 2016.

Eien was known in coaching circles as an offensive innovator. He produced more than 200 videos on his YouTube channel, which has 2,600 subscribers.

Enterprise coach Josh Harman told the East Oregonian that Eien was a “walking football encyclopedia.”

“He might have only been here for two years, but I think we’re going to be feeling his impact with our football program for years to come,” Harman said.

Former Gold Beach coach Kevin Swift developed a friendship with Eien.

“Bruce was as intelligent and diversified as a coach as I have ever seen,” Swift told the East Oregonian. “He would literally give you the shirt off his back. There’s not many people like that running around the planet anymore.”