Late Valley football coach remembered for his lasting impact on high school sport

PHOENIX (KSAZ) -- A legendary Hall of Fame football coach who has left an impact on high school sports will be honored Friday night.

Coach Frank Castro passed away over the summer at the age of 83, and he has worked as a football coach in Arizona for more than 50 years. Back in 1980, Castro started working as the head football coach at Marco de Niza High School.

38 years later, his grandson is about to take the field for a football game, and it will be a game that will pay tribute to Coach Castro's legacy.

Coach Castro's grandson, Frank White, is prepping for tonight's big game.

"I can just feel it. He's with me," said Frank.

Friday's game is that will honor his grandfather with a shiny plaque listing his many accomplishments.

"Inducted into the Arizona Coaches Hall of Fame, Hispanic Coaches Hall of Fame, as well as the National Coaches Hall of Fame," said Castro's daughter, Enedina White.

Enedina talked about what made the revered coach special.

"He was, of course, competitive, wanted to win. I don't know a coach that doesn't want to win, but on and off the field, he was all about the athlete, the student, the player," said Enedina.

Castro also taught his grandson, Frank White, some important lessons: just believe in yourself.

"If you truly believe you're as tall as the sky, then you're tall as the sky, but if you think you're as small as the grass, then you're as small as the grass," said Frank.

"Frank, couldn't get him to play golf. As he was getting older, he wouldn't play golf with me. It was football, football, football," said Rick Molina, Castro's friend.

Enedina said her father always cared.

"My dad would do things like, if a kid didn't have a ride to practice, we would pick them up. If they didn't have a ride home, he'd take them home," said Enedina.

Castro's memorial game will begin at Marcos de Niza High School at 7:00 p.m., and during half-time, Castro's family, former coaches and players will honor his legacy.

FOX 10's Jennifer Auh reports.