Dallas Grider was born December 5, 1944, in Eufala, Oklahoma, and is the oldest of ten children. He attended schools in both Oklahoma and California. In 1963, he graduated from Arvin High School, where he played football under “The Bear,” the legendary Duane Damron, and basketball under Ivan Pfeffer and
Bill Nelson. Dallas married his high school sweetheart, Mary Hitt, in 1964.
Dallas played football at Bakersfield College in 1963 and then transfered to UCLA in the spring of 1964. He was a team co-captain in 1966, the year in which UCLA defeated Michigan State 14-12 in the Rose Bowl. After coaching UCLA’s freshman football team in 1967 and working at Alamany High School for one year while getting his master’s degree, he and Mary moved home to Bakersfield.
Dallas began teaching and coaching football at West High School in 1969. After eight years as an assistant coach, he became the varsity head coach in 1977. Dallas believed that West High School should be the best in athletics as well as in academics. Under his leadership and with strong administrative support, the football program compiled a record of 77-7-2. This included three Valley championships and one second-place finish.
Dallas left West High School to coach at Bakersfield College in 1984. He was named head football coach in 1995. In his twenty years at BC, he coached fourteen Potato Bowls and was defensive coordinator for the national championship team of 1988. In his nine years as head coach at BC, he had a 76-22 record, seven consecutive Potato Bowl appearances, and a berth in the 2000 California junior college state-championship football game, which BC lost to City College of San Francisco. In 2008, he was inducted into the Bob Elias Kern County Sports Hall of Fame.
Dallas and Mary have two children, Amber and Chad, who are both teachers at West High School. Dallas retired in 2004 and now enjoys the many things he couldn’t do while coaching. He enjoys fishing, hunting, and traveling with his family.