ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — The Denver Broncos named David Joyce of Doherty High School and Shawn Mitchell of Discovery Canyon High School as the final two 2013 recipients of the NFL High School Coach of the Week award presented by the Colorado National Guard.
Joyce’s Spartans finished the regular season with a 40-0 shutout of Class 5A Pioneer League rival Palmer High School, highlighted by senior Zach Young’s 6-touchdown, 286-yard rushing performance. Young finished his regular-season senior campaign with 249 carries for 1,963 yards and 31 touchdowns.
“We struggled (in the past),” Joyce said. “The biggest part was they would have football during the season and then be done with it. I’m from Arkansas and we do football year-round. This program has the kids. They’re just more invested.”
Joyce, 34, is a native of Fort Smith, Ark. He graduated from Van Buren High School where he played quarterback and defensive back. Joyce went on to earn a degree in psychology from the University of Arkansas in 2005, and currently teaches health and weight training at Doherty.
With Discovery Canyon’s 24-20 win over league-rival Coronado High School this past weekend, Mitchell’s squad secured the Class 3A South Central League title and the top seed heading into state playoffs. The Thunder finished the regular season with a 9-1 record, which included three shutouts.
“We didn’t play our best game. Coronado was tough and gave us everything we could handle,” said Mitchell.
Mitchell, 41, was born in Cambridge, Neb., and graduated from Fort Lupton High School in 1991 where he was an offensive lineman. He switched to defensive tackle and was a three-year starter at Colorado College where he graduated in 1995 with degrees in history, political science and education. Mitchell furthered his education at Regis University where he earned a master’s degree in curriculum, instruction & assessment. He currently teaches social studies at Discovery Canyon.
The Denver Broncos have recognized 10 High School Coach of the Week honorees this season, and will honor a Coach of the Year at the end of the season. The program is presented by the Colorado National Guard with a selection committee led by The Denver Post’s Neil Devlin. The committee also includes Ring of Fame member Billy Thompson and 850 KOA’s Andy Lindahl.
Each weekly winner will receive a $2,000 donation from the NFL Foundation and the Colorado National Guard to be used by the school’s football program. Additionally, during the Broncos’ home game on Dec. 12, the NFL High School Coach of the Year will be named and presented with a $4,000 donation to the respective school’s football program.