Gary West is back.
The longtime boys basketball coach at Cabrillo High School, who was dismissed from his coaching position on Jan. 8, was reinstated Thursday and is on the sidelines for the Conquistadores' game at Nipomo High School.
Cabrillo High School athletic director Dan Troup said West was reinstated Thursday. Troup would not comment further on the situation.
Cabrillo, the four-time defending Los Padres League champion, first played without West in its Jan. 8 win over rival Lompoc. West was notified of his dismissal moments before the game as he was with his team just before tip-off. According to some close to the program, West made a short, emotional statement to the team that day before saying goodbye.
On Jan. 12, a stream of the coach's supporters stood before the Lompoc Unified School District Board of Education and asked that the coach be reinstated. No specific reason was given by the board for West’s dismissal, and the coach did not return a number of phone messages seeking comment.
Both LUSD Superintendent Trevor McDonald and Lore Desmond, an assistant superintendent in human resources at LUSD, also declined comment when asked about West's status or if the coach was the subject of any investigation.
"I cannot comment on any of that; it's a personnel matter," Desmond said on Jan. 13.
Cabrillo High Principal Jeff Wagonseller said that he was unable to provide any details about West's situation, but he did confirm that West was still currently working as a counselor at Cabrillo.
Still, 20 or so supporters — mostly former players and parents of current and former players — skipped the Conqs' Jan. 12 game at Orcutt Academy to go to the district boardroom, where they unanimously supported the coach who was in the midst of his 15th season at the school.
For mor information on West's return, click here.
Reporters Willis Jacobson and Kenny Cress contributed to this report.
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