There was a time, in the midst of championships for Kahuku football, wrestling and judo, when Reggie Torres never really imagined life without coaching.
Today, the longtime coach and glue guy for Kahuku on campus is a Kamehameha Warrior. Kamehameha hired Torres on Friday to become a co-athletic director. He joins longtime administrator Ed Paola on the administrative staff. One more co-AD position, recently created, remains open.
Torres, who was an educational assistant at Kahuku, will officially retire from the school in August. In the meantime, he is preparing for his first day at Kamehameha on July 19, when football season kicks off.
“Honestly, it’s like, I cannot believe it. I’m excited. This is just a great opportunity,” Torres said.
He spent the summer helping out coaches at Kahuku.
“We worked on EDDs (every day drills), helping new coaches. The kids knew that Kamehameha was a possibility for me, but it wasn’t a done deal until Friday. Now, it is for real,” Torres said.
Previously, he had applied for the Waialua AD position, which eventually went to Darnell Arceneaux.
“He was a longtime sub teacher, so he got the job rightfully so,” Torres said.
Rewind the clock, and Torres was an elite coach in three sports for a long time at Kahuku.
“I went back to school for this. That was my next step. If something pops up, I’ll jump into it,” he said of the process. “I wanted to get into that realm.”
Torres will also be joining Robert Hesia, Kamehameha’s director of campus athletics and human performance. Hesia oversses the athletic department. Like Torres, he is a Kahuku graduate — and a former state championship wrestling coach.
“He’s not going to sugarcoat anything. You want the honesty and constructive criticism. I like the ruggedness he brings to the program,” Torres said.
Just like that, after 36 years as a coach, mostly at Kahuku, The exception was a few seasons as an assistant coach at Punahou under Kale Ane. Torres will set aside the red shirts for navy blue.
“I’ve been in one place for so long, but if Punahou taught me anything, it’s who you’re working for. As long as we’re helping kids, it doesn’t matter. Kamehameha has a huge student body. That’s why I wanted to become an athletic director, to pass my experience as a coach on, to mentor new coaches,” he said. “As a mentor, you can guide them, but you can only do so much. You share advice, but they don’t have to take it. As an administrator, you can make it policy about certain language with kids, communication with kids and parents.”
For now, it is a new process.
“I want to get to know the coaches, how they run their programs and be there as someone they can talk to and get advice from. Be supportive, but at the same time, they’ll know where I’m coming from. In this first year, I’ll get used to the coaches and their styles, and try to be an asset rather than someone who’s hounding them,” Torres said.
It is another change for the grandfather of 10 and his wife, Lita.
“She’s excited. Shout out to her for all her support,” he said.
Some things may not change entirely for Torres, who lost two part-time jobs during the pandemic, but enjoyed his midnight shift working security at Kualoa Ranch.
“I’ll be on call if they need help,” he said. “And if I can fit it in my schedule.”
Congratulations Reggie on your next adventure make us proud.
Congrats Coach Reggie! You and Rob doing great things and representing the Red Raider nation well as always! Keep passing down the knowledge to all the generations to come! Imua! But still RR4L!
Lucky Kamehameha students.
Reggie Torres will be a HUGE benefit to them.
You gotta do what u gotta do coach reggie…go where you gotta go..thats life..you and so many other coaches that have been there and made us what we are the mighty red raiders have left to pursue careers at other school’s ..due to our athletic administration having there heads up there ass..or so called whatever..you all will be missed and remembered as forefathers at kahuku…I guess its time for new and younger talented coaches to rise up from the red and white and fill you all shoes…and see if they can take it further….mahalo rr4l…
Good luck to Reggie.
We are hoping that you and Rob can change that toxic sports culture up on the Hill.
RR’s lost a great one.
How did Torres get the job when others applied has way more qualifications then Torres. Nothing against a great coach, please please explain how much qualification did he truly have, except for coaching.
Great Hire! I say in the next few year’s, Kamehameha will be competing with STL & Punahou for Stud athletes from the North Shore.
Are you freaken kidding me? how the hell does he go from fired from coaching at Kahuku, helped out at Punahou, and AD at Kamehameha? Something is wrong with this picture and it need to investigated. Terrance Chun from kuhuku, Hesia from Kamuku,I am sure there were higher qualify people for the job. something smells up there at Kamehameha!
i sure dare mor qualify peeple dat shud be leafing mesages on the chat.
Stop hating and if you want to investigate, go ahead. Just waste your own energy and resources. Kamehameha can hire and terminate anyone they choose. Reggie is a high character guy.
I Mua Kamehameha!
1. I am Reggie supporter and am sure he can do the job.
2. I know that he will be good for that toxic athletic program.
3. I am also aware of how stringent and selective the process can be to be hired on the Hill.
Imua2 may have a valid point.
Were there more qualified people? Maybe
Does it seem like there may have been some influence in the decision? Possibly
Did they select someone that can get the job done? No doubt.
My only concern.
If Reggie can withstand the internal challenges that have beaten down other more seasoned AD’s.
I can tell you this, if you know him, he will definitely stir things up on the Hill.
Good luck Reggie.
BTW, can you help me get my kid on the HILL now??? lol.
Kahuku should have never gotten rid of him after 2013.
Coached Torres is one of the very best out there. The student athletes are fortunate to have his mentorship and leadership. A huge grab for Kamehameha.
Congrats coach…im sure more Kahuku kids will be transferring in the coming years since the Red Raiders still can’t get it together….we still stuck on fighting/complaining for keep our mascot and a new field when the effort for change should be focused on the front office….main thing adult decisions and pride do nt hurt any kids chances at better opportunitys
I’m sure that guy that lost Kamehameha millions and millions was more qualified…time to hire for character and experience rather than who sat in a classroom longer.
Good luck my brother, it’s about time. You da man. Thanks for giving me my first shot at coaching, many valuable lessons were learned, from a great example. Hope Kamehameha students understand what their getting. First Dave Stant, than Rob Hesia , now you. GO BIG RED.