(L to R) Vincent Clardy, Michael Duece Robinson and Gustyn Cook are the new coaching staff for the View Park Knights (Amanda Scurlock/L.A. Sentinel)

The View Park Knights football team will be heading into the 2024 season with Gustyn Cook as head coach. Cook took on the job with a mindset of getting the Knights back to its competitive ways.

View Park football has not won a game since the 2022-23 season. The Knights have not had a winning season since 2016, when they went 7-3 overall and had a 2-0 record in the Metro League.

“We had a vision to change View Park back into what it should be,” Cook said. “We talked about tradition.”

Cook has experience coaching high school football, he was at the helm of the New Designs football team prior to View Park. He also coached at Belmont and Teach Tech. Cook coaches other sports, including volleyball.

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Cook aims to prepare students for not just gamedays, but for being on the college level.

“This year, our motto is going to be: new attitude, same tradition,” Cook said. “We want them to come in with that ambition.”

On his coaching staff will be Vincent Clardy and Michael Duece Robinson. Clardy will be working with the offensive and defensive linemen. He was also an assistant coach for Cook at New Designs and Teach Tech.

Both Cook and Clardy attended Crenshaw high school; during his time competing on the Cougars football team, Clardy learned how to be committed to all of his obligations.

“You got to have a lot of heart and dedication, your grades have to be right,” Clardy said. “If you don’t have the grades, you can’t do anything.”

Robinson graduated from View Park in 2017, he is eager to change the narrative about View Park football. He wants to instill a strong football IQ into the players. That strategy was something former View Park head coach Derrick Ward taught Robinson.

“I don’t want to be the team that’s winning games because we’re more physical than the other team and we’re overpowering them, I want to outthink them,” Robinson said. “I want to out-coach them, I want to out-scheme them.”

Cook started his coaching career during his college years at New Mexico Highlands University were he volunteered at Robertson high school.

“Eventually that coach stepped down so I kind of took over the program,” Cook said.

Cook calls himself a “politician coaching;” he is currently the chairperson of the bylaws committee for the Empowerment Congress Central Area Neighborhood Council. He also ran for president of the Parks Mesa Heights Community Council.