Stub Stepping Down, Sorta

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John L. Braese

CRANE – For the past 30, yes 30 years, the Crane football team has stepped on the field with Stub Travis on the sidelines. Travis recently announced he is wanting his fall season back and is retiring from coaching football.

The announcement came with the caveat Travis will continue as the head coach for the Mustang girls’ basketball team, currently the reigning 1A state champions and playing for a repeat.

As Travis steps away from Crane football, his numbers are impressive.

Travis took over the program as the head coach in 2000 after coaching the junior high program and assisting at the high school the previous years. He is the second winningest coach in 8-man history for Oregon. Travis retires with a 162-59 record with the Mustangs only missing the state playoffs twice during his tenure.

Under Travis, Crane appeared three times in the state championship game. In all but two seasons, Crane advanced to the quarterfinal or semifinal game when making the playoffs.

Crane has competed in Oregon football for a total of 61 years, 30 of those with Travis on the field. Only the Dufur Rangers have compiled more team victories than Crane.

“Stub has played a significant role in the game of 8-man football in Oregon and more specifically a significant role in the rise of Crane Mustang football for over three decades,” said Crane Athletic Director Jamie Siegner. “It takes a special person with a special mindset and a special heart to be able to endure all that a coach endures during that amount of time. A person can’t do that without a true love of the game and a true love of kids. We are extremely grateful for the commitment Stub has shown to our Mustang football program.”

The work Travis has put forth goes so far beyond the football field. EOS recently spoke with a Harney County resident. He knew of the retirement announcement as Travis had stopped by his home, making sure a Christmas tree order was completed.

In an era of revolving high school coaches for a multitude of reasons, 30 years of coaching a single team is impressive. Crane Superintendent Matt Hawley has informed EOS the district and the Crane community is planning a formal recognition of Travis’ accomplishments for next fall on the Mustang field.

Until then, Travis can be found on the basketball floor today preparing for a weekend of action versus Nixyaawii, Damascus Christian and St. Paul.

On a personal note, years ago I wrote an article on the Mustangs, quoting Travis but attributing the quote to “Travis Stub”. I caught hell from the man himself the next time we met. Ever since, Stub has been more than gracious with me, always taking the time to talk and downplay his coaching while talking up his team.

Thanks go to Jaime Siegner for making the effort to compile Stub’s impressive record and to the Crane community for notifying EOS of Stub’s announcement. Crane has supported and welcomed EOS with open arms and Stub has been a leader in that effort.

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