possibilities of a return to Balboa Island, describes it this way:
"Hey, they loved me or hated me, but that's me."
And even today, 20 years after ending his tour with the Sailors
and at the age of 71, he maintains he'd love to do it again.
"I might do some things differently," said Giddings, a resident of
Murrieta where he spends a lot of time quarreling with the game of
golf and maintaining a physical presence. "It was such a wonderful
time for me."
Reflecting on those Friday nights, Giddings said, "I'd hope my
players would say 'That son-of-a-gun cared,' because I did."
A product of Balboa Island, he grew up on the playing surfaces of
Newport Grammar School. He spent his high school days at South
Pasadena High and played for a coaching legend of the 1940s, Frank
Williamson, on the way to UC Berkeley
So it's not too surprising that the first stop on his path in
coaching after a tour in the U.S. Marine Corps, would be at Monrovia
High where Williamson was the principal.
After nearly two decades of coaching on the high school, junior
college, college and pro levels, he found himself on 62nd Street in
Newport Beach when his son, Mike, also known as "Gidds," was a
freshman at Harbor in 1977 as he began his Pro Scout Inc. endeavors.
He also had time to reflect on perhaps his happiest days as a
coach when at Monrovia, where three years of coaching (two on the Bee
level) produced a 28-1 record.
An opportunity to lend a hand on the lower level at Newport Harbor
surfaced in 1979, and his contributions did not subside until he
closed it out in 1985 after four highly successful years on the
Those seven years would account for a 54-20 record, giving him an
overall prep mark of 82-21. And, sometimes, he wonders if he would
not have had a more satisfying career if he had simply stuck to the
preps, where the purity of the game remains despite the ever-changing
The Giddings' era at Newport Harbor began in 1979 when Hank
Cochrane was the choice over John McGee to succeed Bill Pizzica as