February 19, 1999
LOS ANGELES - John Pearce, who served as head football coach at Stephen F. Austin State University from 1992-1998, has been hired to coach defensive ends at UCLA, head coach Bob Toledo announced today.
"John is an outstanding football coach who has been successful at all levels," said Toledo. "I have known him a long time and I feel he will be a great fit on our defensive staff."
During his seven years as head coach at Stephen F. Austin, Pearce compiled a record of 46-32-2. He produced winning seasons in five of his seven years, including 1995, when the Lumberjacks were ranked No. 4 in Division I-AA, compiled a record of 11-2 and reached the semi-finals of the NCAA playoffs. SFA was also 8-3 in 1997, 8-4 in 1993, 7-4 in 1996 and 6-3-2 in 1994. Between 1993 and 1997, SFA compiled a record of 40-16-2, was the only Division I-A or I-AA school in the state of Texas to have a winning record in each of those five seasons and reached the NCAA I-AA playoffs twice.
Prior to becoming head coach at SFA, Pearce spent three seasons (1989-91) as an assistant coach at Texas A&M during Toledo's tenure as offensive coordinator, tutored the running backs, tight ends and specialists. Texas A&M compiled a record of 27-8-1 in that span and was ranked in the Top 20 in each of those three years.
The new Bruin assistant enjoyed a successful career as a high school coach prior to moving to Texas A&M. In five seasons (1984-88) as head coach at Fort Bend (TX) Willowridge High, he compiled a record of 51-10-1. Former Bruin standout tight end Charles Arbuckle played for Pearce at Willowridge. Pearce also spent two years (1982-83) at Sherman (TX) High (6-13-1) and seven seasons (1975-81) at Allen (TX) High (50-21-1). He also served as the defensive coordinator at Kilgore (TX) High (1974) and Waco (TX) Connally High (1970-73).
Pearce, 52, who graduated from East Texas State University is married to the former Jaime McKinney and they have two children, Amy and Michael.