Now the winningest football coach in Arizona Western College history, Minnick surpassed Ray Butcher during the 2015 campaign. He is now entering his ninth season at Arizona Western, and he is the only coach in AWC history to lead the Matadors to seven straight bowl appearances (2009 Mississippi Bowl, 2010 C.H.A.M.P.S. Heart of Texas Bowl, 2011-2015 El Toro Bowl). He is also the only coach in team history to win back-to-back-to-back conference titles (2009-11) and the first coach to lead the team to a WSFL Championship. His teams have finished in the NJCAA Top 20 in six of his eight seasons, and the Matadors are coming off back-to-back wins in the El Toro Bowl. He has coached an NJCAA Offensive Player of the Year (Reggie Bullock in 2010) and multiple league and/or region Players of the Year (Bullock, 2010; Damien Williams WSFL/ACCAC Offensive POY in 2011; Chris Young WSFL/ACCAC Defensive POY in 2011; Tanner McEvoy ACCAC Offensive POY in 2012; Paul Magloire ACCAC Defensive POY in 2014; Darrell Monroe ACCAC Offensive POY in 2014 and 2015). Plus, he was named the WSFL Coach of the Year in 2011 and 2014 and led the Matadors to the NJCAA Championship Game in 2011. Since 2009, Minnick’s Matadors have never been out of the national championship conversation during the majority of the season. For Matador fans, Minnick’s arrival in 2008 began the resurrection of the program, but for Minnick himself, it was just a continuation of the greatness he’d achieved during a long coaching career in the Midwest. Minnick came to Yuma from Joliet Junior College just outside of Chicago, Illinois, where he restored that program to national prominence in his two years as head coach with 17 overall wins (including a 10-win season in 2007), back-to-back Midwest Football Conference East Division titles and two appearances in the Graphic Edge Printing Bowl (and winning it in ‘07); and a #10 ranking in the final ‘07 NJCAA Football Poll-their highest national ranking in 5 years. Minnick’s two head coaching years at Joliet succeeded an extremely successful career as a longtime assistant to his mentor, NJCAA Hall of Fame Coach Bob MacDougall. Minnick was MacDougall’s starting quarterback at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, Illinois in 1986, his assistant at DuPage from 1990 until 1996 (helping lead them to bowl appearances all seven years and four bowl wins), and finally his assistant at Joliet from 2000 until MacDougall’s retirement in ’06, where they won 2 national championships (’01 (as NJCAA Non-Scholarship Champs) & ’02 (overall champs), put together a 21-game winning streak over 2 years, and won two bowl games. Minnick has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business at the University of Missouri-Rolla. Tom and his wife, AWC Spirit Team Coach Tiffany Minnick, will celebrate their 24th wedding anniversary this fall, and have two daughters, Payton and Morgan.
Defensive Coordinator / Associate Head Coach
Since 2005, there has been one main constant that opposing coaches have known to expect from a Matador Football defense: an aggressive, tenacious, nationally respected defense. That’s the by-product of the longest-tenured football coach on the staff as Jerry Dominguez begins his 11th year with the program. It’s no accident that Dominguez’s defenses have pitched ten shutouts during his ten years (nine as defensive coordinator), and have led the WSFL in sacks six times. A pair of Dominguez’s Matador defensive stars, Korey Toomer (Idaho) and Jesse Williams (Alabama), not only went on to excel on the four-year level (Williams won a pair of national championships with the Crimson Tide), but have both been drafted by the Seattle Seahawks and are now Super Bowl Champions! Former defensive end Randy Gregory became Dominguez's highest pick in the NFL draft as a second rounder in 2015. Former safety Maurice Alexander became a fourth-round pick by the Rams in 2014. Other players that have signed with NFL teams include former All-Pac 12 & Arizona State defensive lineman Luis Vasquez (Ravens), Arizona State linebacker Chris Young (Jets), Kansas safety Cassius Sendish (Browns), University of Idaho alum Jeromy Jones (Rams), Portland State’s Myles Wade (Buccaneers) and Hawaii’s Zach Masch (Seahawks). They’re part of a contingent of more than 50 players coached by Dominguez here at AWC who have gone on to play at NCAA Division I schools over that span. From 2009 through 2011, Dominguez’s defenses were tops in the WSFL (and 4th-best in the nation), allowing just under 200 yards per game in each of those seasons. Top NCAA Division I schools as Georgia, Arizona, Indiana, Kansas, West Virginia, Nebraska, Wyoming, Oklahoma State and Kentucky have come calling to sign Dominguez’s defensive protégés, and that kind of success continues to stoke the fires inside for Dominguez, who’s now in his 20th year of coaching and is also the Athletic Academic Service Coordinator for the Matador Athletic Department. The Watsonville, California, native was also a six-year assistant (five as defensive coordinator) at NCAA Division II Northern State University. Dominguez began his coaching career with two years as Secondary Coach & Special Teams Coordinator at NAIA power Bethany College in Kansas, picking up where he left off as a star player for Bethany. Dominguez has his Master’s degree in Science in Education, and has three children: two daughters, 18-year-old Maisey Joi & 12-year-old Melaya Evelia, and one son, 15-year-old Jazz Antonio.
Mike Orthmann has served as offensive coordinator at Arizona Western College for the past six seasons, a span that has seen one of the most successful periods in the history of AWC football. From 2009 – 2015, the Matadors earned seven NJCAA bowl game appearances and won four WSFL championships. The 38 wins from 2009 to 2012 are the most in any four-year period in AWC football history. Orthmann’s players have been named NJCAA Region I Offensive Player of the Year four times and the Western States Football League’s Offensive Player of the Year three times. In 2010, Matador running back Reggie Bullock was named the NJCAA National Offensive Player of the Year. That season, Bullock led the nation in rushing (1830 yards) and scoring (132 points), and finished his two-year AWC career with 3247 rushing yards, the most career rushing yards in the history of the Western States Football League and 5th most all-time in the NJCAA. In 2011, Damien Williams became the second Matador in a row to lead the nation in rushing and scoring, with 1931 yards (9th best in NJCAA history) and 188 points; both are AWC single-season records. Williams finished his two-year AWC career with 2654 rushing yards, second only to Bullock. In 2012, quarterback Tanner McEvoy set AWC single-season records for touchdown passes (28), completions (156), completion percentage (64.5%) and quarterback rating (171.96), joining Bullock and Williams by being named NJCAA Region I Offensive Player of the Year. Nine of Orthmann’s Matador offensive players have been named NJCAA All-Americans. Prior to joining the AWC staff in 2009, Orthmann coached at eight different schools at the various NCAA and NAIA levels. Orthmann has coached numerous future NFL players, most recently Evan Dietrich-Smith (Tampa Bay Buccaneers). Orthmann played offensive line at the University of Idaho for Head Coach Dennis Erickson. He earned Bachelor’s Degrees in both history and education as well as a Master’s Degree in business administration from Eastern Washington University.
Tony Mitchell, Jr.
Defensive Line Coach
Mitchell’s ninth year with the staff will be his fifth year on the defensive line, after spending time on the offensive side of the ball. It was Mitchell’s offensive blockers that produced the holes to allow Reggie Bullock, Damien Williams & Tanner McEvoy to accumulate enough yards to win rushing titles for Bullock & Williams, and Offensive Player of the Year awards for all three. Four of his linemen in the three years were NJCAA All-Americans (Akoakoa Paleka-Kennedy, Dionte Savage, David Ke’kuewa & Aaron Douglas), while seven linemen enjoyed All-Region I & All-WSFL honors during that period. Mitchell has also spent his time in between his final season with Joliet Junior College and his first season at AWC in Hamburg, Germany, coaching for the Blue Devils German Football League. Like Minnick, Mitchell calls NJCAA Hall of Fame Coach Bob MacDougall and former Hamburg Head Coach Joe Roman mentors. Mitchell has played and coached under ‘Coach Mac’., since he was a star linebacker for two MacDougall-led bowl-bound teams at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, Illinois; and then reunited with MacDougall and Minnick on Joliet’s coaching staff a decade later. In between, Mitchell ended his playing career by starting for two more years as a linebacker at Kentucky State University in 1993 and 1994. Mitchell earned his Bachelor’s degree from Governor’s State University in Illinois after earning his Associate’s degree while at the College of DuPage. Coach Mitchell is originally from Chicago, but loves his new WARM home in sunny Yuma, Arizona.
Taylor Walkenhorst is now in his second year with the Matador football program after coming to Yuma from Weber State University. Walkenhorst worked as the Defensive Quality Control Coach for the Wildcats. In the process he worked with the linebackers specifically and the defense as a whole. He began his coaching career at Lone Peak High School in Utah. He was the Varsity Linebacker Coach and Special Teams Coordinator. While at Lone Peak, the team went to three region championships as well as two state playoff semifinal games. Outside of coaching, Walkenhorst has run five marathons and, as an Eagle Scout, is always prepared.