Coincidentally, that same September found Orange Coast College
opening its new football stadium and Al Irwin prepared to coach his
eighth and final grid year at Newport Harbor High School before
moving on to direct football at OCC a year later.
The harbor area did not feature a heavy population in those days
in Newport or Costa Mesa. The population in Costa Mesa in '52 was
around 12,000 and less than that in Newport Beach.
In addition, there was only one high school then, Newport Harbor
High, and one junior college, OCC. Hence, the sports coverage demands
for a local newspaper was not overwhelming as it is today.
In the fifties, Burroughs took an opportunity to buy a weekly
called the Seal Beach Pilot and chose to merge it with the old
Globe-Herald. Many natives favored the old name , but the publisher
had a fondness for the name Pilot and, in time, would prompt the old
moniker to fade away.
One of the finest salutes that should always stand for Burroughs
was his firm dedication to push for the creation of the University of
California, Irvine, with strong friend Joan Irvine Burt. And they
succeeded in grandiose fashion.
Burroughs himself was an honored graduate of the University of
California, Berkeley, and made it clear he wished for a high
scholarly institution. That, too, became a reality at Irvine.
He was always a positive boost for any employee he felt made
genuine efforts to improve the paper. We drew the first place honor
for best California sports section in our class in 1958 and he
invited us to fly to Berkeley for an honorary luncheon by the
California Newspaper Publishers Assn.
We hesitated momentarily since our only experience in flight was a
very uneasy trip aboard an old World War II transport plane , and it
often dropped long distances with a constant flow of air pockets.
Once was enough.
Burroughs smiled, then said, "No, this flight will be aboard a
smooth jet." So, we came to enjoy a most comfortable adventure.
One unique happening arose in the early sixties when a '47
basketball teammate named Bill Skiles, who became a noted national
comedian and musician, drew front page attention from coast to coast