More to Mike Rae than meets the eye


Mimo Kassis

It is not very often that you come across a man that has a little bit of everything going for him. However, once in a blue moon, he comes around, and Saddleback College is lucky enough to have scored him as the new golf coach.

Hired away from Long Beach City College, Mike Rae joined the Saddleback staff last semester, and has no plans of going anywhere anytime soon.

“When you love sports as much as I do, you have to find one you can play at an older age,” Rae said. “I can’t play football like I used to, obviously, but I still know my golf.”

Not only does he know his golf, Rae has a 17-year football career behind him. He played quarterback at USC, and brought back the national championship his senior year with a 12-0 winning streak.

Rae went on to play for a few different leagues.

He played three years in the United States Football League (USFL), three years in the Canadian Football League (CFL) and six years in the NFL.

He was picked up as a backup quarterback by the Oakland Raiders just in time to win their first Superbowl in 1976.

“Many players play for years before they get to experience the Superbowl,” Rae said. “I was lucky enough to not only have played in it but I got to walk away with a ring as well.”

A couple years later Rae was traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, where he ended his career in 1982.

He then found his career teaching and coaching at a few schools.

Rae was a walk-on football coach for five years at Orange Coast College.

He taught physical education for 20 years and served as golf coach for seven years in his hometown of Long Beach at Long Beach City College before a phone call from Gauchos athletic director Tony Lipold directed him to Saddleback.

“The golf course is high quality and it’s just a different environment than Long Beach,” Rae said.

Through Long Beach connections, Rae partnered with Jim Barnes to found Daily’s Sports Grill in Mission Viejo off of Santa Margarita and Impressa.

He currently owns the bar, and business there for 15 years.