Steve “Papa Steve” Edwards was a youth and high school football coach for almost 30 years. He coached youth football on military bases around the world and most notably in the Union City Jr Colts program where he head coached for more than 10 years and was also the VP of Football. During his years with the Jr Colts he won two championships and readied hundreds of youth players for high school at James Logan. He helped create a pipeline of athletes supporting Logan’s run in the late 80s and 90s of over 50 consecutive league wins in the Mission Valley Athletics League and over a dozen straight league titles. Some notable players coached within the Jr Colts are Roy Williams and Jacki Crooks. Both went on to star at Logan after playing for Papa Steve for four years as Jr Colts. Roy was an all American at the University of Oklahoma and an All Pro with the Dallas Cowboys. Jacki is one of the top rushers of all time at Rutgers University. Following Papa Steve’s Jr football coaching career, he coached in high school for 10 years. First with Logan in Union City and then with Smoky Hill and Eaglecrest high schools in Aurora, CO, both 5A schools in the vaunted Centennial league of the Denver metro area.
Papa Steve was known for not only his coaching but for providing an avenue for youth in his communities to excel in a positive environment. Often rounding them up from their homes to ensure they got to practice and feeding them on the way home. There was no secret why there was a line at “Coach Edwards Van” after practice to get a seat. Both Papa Steve’s sons played Jr Colts and at Logan, starring for the Colts and earning all-league honors. Papa Steve was a mainstay on the chain gang during their varsity years and in the stands while they both continued to play in college. His generosity wasn’t limited to the teams he coached, he often took his sons’ college teams to dinner when in town for the game and to an occasional movie. His team movie dates resumed most recently when he took his grandson’s Vista Jr Eagle team to see When the Game Stands Tall in 2014.
We lost Papa Steve on Dec 21, 2015 to an auto accident caused by a stroke. He will be forever missed as a father, grandfather, and a coach…we know that his coaching to all of us going forward would be to keep working hard and be a great teammate in everything we do.
Papa Steves's motto was "always earned, never given". We dedicate this youth football camp in his name and will aim to instill this philosophy into our campers.