Castaic High School announced the hiring of two athletic directors, Jibri Hodge and Mark Overdevest, on Thursday morning.
Although Hodge and Overdevest only met a few days ago, the pair quickly found commonalities in their shared vision for the athletics at Castaic, which is set to be opened in Fall 2019.
“Just to have a really strong sustainable and ethical athletics program,” Overdevest told The Signal. “A place that we can really create a winning environment, create an environment where the focus isn’t solely just on athletics, but on the social and emotional development of our athletes.”
Overdevest is currently a physical education teacher at La Mesa Junior High as well as ASB Director at the school, while Hodge, who was unavailable for interview, is an athletics counselor at Canyon High School.
The two will share duties overseeing athletics at Castaic, which begins with hiring coaches. Football, volleyball, basketball and soccer will each be included at the school, although more will likely be added, including possible lacrosse and water polo teams.
The timeframe for varsity team competition is yet to be determined.
“The small amount of time I’ve had with Jibri, I think that we’re both kind of on that page where it’s really up to where the talent is and whether the team is ready and certain sports might be ready to go varsity before other sports,” Overdevest said.
Overdevest has been teaching for 23 years and has also served as a swim and water polo coach. He played baseball and soccer for Granada Hills Charter before swimming for California State, Northridge.
His wife, Jennifer, is currently a video production teacher at West Ranch High School and was involved in the opening of West Ranch.
“She has a lot of positive insight on not only the challenges but the benefits of being part of that class of students and helping to build the tradition of the school and things like that, so those are all things that have kind of pushed me in this direction,” Overdevest said.
Hodge brings a lot of football knowledge to Castaic, as he has been not just an academic counselor, but also a receivers coach for Canyon. He played football at Pierce College and the University of Oregon and has 13 years of coaching experience between football and track and field in the Hart District.
“When I met him, I thought he was extremely personable, he has super strong knowledge of football,” Overdevest said. “As athletics grows and you get to the varsity levels, it really has become too big for really one athletic director. It’s great that we’re both starting together.”