CONCORD, CA—De La Salle High School’s 2020 Athletic Hall of Fame includes five athletes, two teams and one longtime supporter of Spartan athletics.
The honorees this year will not be inducted on campus as usual around a fall football home game weekend due to the pandemic.
Lloyd Schine III, the school’s director of alumni relations, said, “We are hoping to do the ceremony in person in the Spring around a home game. But we are still planning just in case for a virtual backup event.”
The 2020 Athletic Hall of Fame inductees:
Bryan Byrne (Class of 2002) was a two-time all-BVAL player who led the team with a .410 batting average and was the Most Valuable Player his senior year. He helped lead the Spartans to a league championship in 2000. Byrne received a scholarship to Saint Mary’s College and was honored as the 2003 West Coast Conference freshman of the year. That year he led all WCC freshmen with a .358 batting average that was 3rd in the WCC while leading the Gaels in eight offensive categories. He was also a Louisville Slugger Freshman All-America and earned first-team all-WCC honors.
He was drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2005 and played six seasons, primarily at first base, at the AA and AAA levels. He was voted a Southern League (AA) All-Star in 2008 and 2010. He was awarded the best offensive player by the Mobile Bay Bears, where he broke the franchise RBI record. Byrne was the Director of Baseball Operations at SMC before joining the Houston Astros as an area scout in 2012. After four years with Houston, he joined the Washington Nationals where he currently works as an area scouting supervisor.
Matt Clizbe (Class of 1990) was a three-sport varsity athlete in football, baseball and track and field. A three-year varsity football player, he was named all-East Bay in 1988 and 1989, all-Bay Area and all-NorCal. His 1988 team was ranked 10th in America by USA Today. He was a member of the 1988 Bay Area News Group Cream of the Crop. Clizbe went on to play football at UC Berkeley, where he was a defensive back and running back for the Golden Bears. In 1993, he was named the special teams most valuable player. After graduating from Cal, Clizbe played in the Canadian Football League for the Birmingham (Alabama) Barracudas for one season. Today he works as a relationship specialist for Fremont Bank.
Theo Robertson (Class of 2005) set records at De La Salle for three-point percentage and overall field goal accuracy, finishing his Spartan career with 1,220 points. He attended UC Berkeley, where he was a two-year captain and standout forward for the Bears. Robertson earned Pac-10 all-freshman honorable mention. As a senior he was all-conference second team and named to the Pac-10 Conference all-tournament team. He was a key part of Cal’s 2010 Pac-10 championship team (the first for the school in 50 years), earning team MVP after averaging 14.2 points. He finished his career as the school’s all-time three-point shooter, making 44.0 percent, and ranks among Cal’s top 25 career scorers.
Following graduation, Robertson has been establishing his post-playing career in basketball. He spent a year in the Pac-12 office, three years with Cal basketball in two stints, one year as a Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach and a season with the Detroit Pistons. He spent two seasons with the Warriors, where he was part of the 2015 NBA Championship-winning program as the team’s video intern working with Steve Kerr’s coaching staff on game preparation. He was promoted to video coordinator/player development the next season, working on court with players in addition to game-planning responsibilities. In 2019 he returned to the Warriors in his current capacity as a player development coach and is now preparing for his second season in that position.
Kevin Simon (Class of 2001) excelled at De La Salle as a linebacker and running back playing on 1998 and 2000 USA Today National Championship teams, contributing to the school’s national record 151-game winning streak. As a senior at DLS, Simon scored 16 touchdowns. He was named 2000 Rivals National Defensive Player of the Year, Cal-Hi Sports’ State Defensive Player of the Year, USA Today, Parade, PrepStar, and Super Prep All-American and was rated the No. 1 linebacker in the nation by ESPN and Rivals.com. He played in the inaugural U.S. Army All-American Bowl before joining the University of Tennessee from 2001-2005.
As a Volunteer linebacker he was a two-time All-Southeastern Conference selection. He earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology in 2005 and later earned a master’s in sport psychology. He had a brief NFL career after being selected by the Washington Redskins in the seventh round of the 2006 NFL Draft. After his playing days ended, Simon joined the Dallas Cowboys as a college scout from 2009-2016. He left Dallas to join the Atlanta Falcons as a pro scout for three years, which included the 2016 NFC Championship and a trip to Super Bowl LI. Simon recently returned to his alma mater and is now the director of player development for Tennessee football. Among his accomplishments there was playing a key role in recruiting Spartan senior Henry To’oto’o, now a sophomore star for the Vols. Watch his video.
Jacob Yount (Class of 2005) had an outstanding golf career for the Spartans. He was medalist at the local qualifying tournament for the 2005 US Amateur at Montreux Country Club in Reno. In 2004, he made it to the round of 32 in the US Junior Amateur at the Olympic Club in San Francisco, won the Future Collegians World Tour junior golf event at Singing Hills in El Cajon by firing rounds of 66-70 and won the Country Youth Classic in Illinois by 13 shots posting rounds of 67-64. He was ranked among the Top 50 Junior Boys in 2004 by Golfweek magazine. Yount was a FCWT all-America and also posted one top 10 and three top five finishes in his American Junior Golf Association career.
He attended the University of San Diego where he continued his stellar golf career. He was named the 2008 West Coast Conference player of the year after winning medalist honors at the WCC
Championships in sudden death, shooting a three-round total of 218 (73-71-74). Yount is now a regional director of sales for AppDynamics, leading an enterprise field sales team, and he continues to stay busy with his amateur golf career.
Tom Bruce has been an integral part of the De La Salle community for over 30 years. He was a De La Salle parent who never left after his sons Matthew ’97 and Andrew ’00 graduated. Bruce joined the DLS Athletic Assistants (Whitecoats) in August 1993 at the freshman football meeting. He was later appointed coordinator of the volunteers team. A graduate of Saint Mary’s College, his professional career was in management with Emporium-Capwell, Wollborg Michelson Staffing and Regus Limited. Bruce’s additional volunteer positions include president of the Saint Mary’s College National Alumni Association and chair of GaelSports board of directors.
2006 Basketball Team coached by Frank Allocco Sr. had a 32-1 record that led to Bay Valley Athletic League, North Coast Section and CIF State Division 1 championships. The Spartans only loss came by two points at a tournament in December to a Washington team. They won 27 straight games after that with the final victory 43-40 over Clovis West in the CIF State Division I championship game at Arco Arena in Sacramento. It was the school’s 2nd basketball title after also winning in 2000.
The Spartans defeated Deer Valley 44-28 in the NCS finals, their 3rd victory over the Antioch team that season as they held the Wolverines to 22, 22 and 28 points in those three games! In the NorCal championships they beat McClymonds and Serra to reach the finals where they dispatched Tokay High of Lodi 65-52 to qualify for the school’s 4th trip to the CIF finals. The team ranked in the top 10 nationally.
Among the key players were guards senior Justin Joyner (went on to UC Santa Barbara where he was joined by DLS teammate Paul Roemer) of Concord and junior Ryan Silva (went to UC Davis) from Clayton. Seniors Marcus Schroeder and Lincoln Gunn went to Princeton and formed a backcourt there in the Ivy League while Ethan Niedermeyer played at Portland.
1993 Football Team was undefeated North Coast Section titlists and split CIF State champions 13 years before State Bowl Games started. Coach Bob Ladouceur’s Spartans outscored their three NCS opponents (American, Washington and Pinole Valley) 151-27 in the second year of what became the national record setting 151-game winning streak and the still active 28 consecutive Section titles for DLS football. Starting with the school’s first Section football championship in 1982 the only three years DLS was not champion (1983, 1987 and 1991 the lost to the eventual NCS winner).
The team was ranked 7th nationally by USA Today. Over the course of the season, the defense and special teams coached by Terry Eidson outscored their opponents’ combined point totals. The team’s rushers averaged 9.8 yards per carry. A large portion of the team also was on varsity the previous 1992 season when the famous 151-game winning streak began.
Nine players went on to play football at NCAA Division 1-AA or higher programs, among them seniors David Loverne and Robert “Bam” Portis, who are both in the school’s Hall of Fame as individuals. Loverne was the 90th overall selection in the 1999 National Football League draft by the New York Jets and also played for Washington Redskins, St. Louis Rams, Detroit Lions and Houston Texans over a seven-year NFL career. Portis was No. 18 in the Cream of the Crop by Contra Costa Times and was invited to the North-South Prep All-Star Game. He received a scholarship to the University of Colorado for Buffs football.