Athletic Core Values Guide Students in Crisis

By Jeff Hutzler, Director of Athletics and Physical Education

I am proud to be part of a school and leading an athletics program that instills 13 core values in every LJCDS student-athlete.

The core values are as follows:

  1. personal integrity, 
  2. work ethic, 
  3. self-responsibility, 
  4. responsibility to others, 
  5. self-sacrifice, 
  6. delayed gratification, 
  7. teamwork, 
  8. overcoming fears, 
  9. attacking challenges, 
  10. goal setting, 
  11. the pursuit of excellence, 
  12. community 
  13. and being a part of something greater than oneself. 

I believe firmly that these qualities contribute to the personal development of young adults who can find satisfaction in their lives and contribute to their community.
An advantage of school-run athletic programs is that the life lessons and skills taught in the classrooms, the labs, the studios and on the stage can be reinforced through sports and vice versa. At LJCDS, we coordinate and collaborate between the various programs and divisions to reaffirm our values and give students a holistic experience. 

The qualities we value and the skills we teach have helped students adapt to the pandemic’s many challenges. Here are the ways our athletics program has helped student-athletes:

  • Our athletes understand the value of taking responsibility for one’s behavior because they learned that their decisions during practice and competition impact their performance and team. That same ability to take responsibility for oneself during the pandemic has helped keep others healthy and safe. 
  • Torrey athletes who are accustomed to self-sacrifice and delayed gratification can defer their current desires in exchange for the needs of the community, including prioritizing safety. 
  • Athletes accustomed to being a part of a team understand they represent a community; therefore, they make decisions for the common good. 

These behaviors are perhaps most evident in how Torrey athletes have responded to the state, county and CIF ever-changing return-to-play protocols and policies. The disappointment of not playing the sports they love while representing their school or of not being around their classmates/teammates and teachers/coaches has been gravely felt by students at LJCDS. However, they have selflessly and reasonably balanced their disappointment and frustration with their responsibilities as members of our school community as well as CIF and the San Diego community at large.

Many LJCDS student-athletes go on to compete at the college level, and some do not. Nevertheless, most Torrey athletes effectively apply the lifelong lessons in athletics to their lives as citizens and leaders. 

Jeff Hutzler
Jeff Hutzler

Director of Athletics and Physical Education

Jeff Hutzler is the winningest football coach in the school’s history, with a won-loss record of 101–37 from 2002–2013. His teams claimed six league and three CIF Championships. After playing eight-man football from 2001–2004 and returning to 11-man football in the Pacific League in 2005, the Torreys rejoined the Coastal League, California’s most competitive small-school football league, in the fall of 2011. Coach Hutzler was honored as one of California’s 13 model coaches in 2009. During Coach Hutzler’s tenure, 207 championship banners have gone up in Smith Gymnasium.

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