MOORPARK – Now Jeff Matson knows what Gene Bartow felt like. In 1975, Bartow replaced legendary UCLA basketball Coach John Wooden. Now, Matson is replacing a semi-legend in these parts, taking over for Dick Diaz as Moorpark’s police chief. “I’m following a tough act there,” Matson said. Last week, the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department named Matson Moorpark’s top cop. Diaz retires next month after a 37-year law enforcement career, four of them running the Moorpark force. Kemp said Matson is an advocate of community involvement and building partnerships. His years in Thousand Oaks gave him an insight of what’s to come: answering to multiple bosses, including the Sheriff’s Department, city officials and local residents. Among his goals are enhancing community outreach programs, continuing to support the citizens volunteer force and forging already strong ties between law enforcement and the public. Sheriff’s Cmdr. Marty Rouse said Matson, 53, was the department’s only choice. Because Moorpark contracts with the department for police services, his selection required approval from the city. “He has a lot of energy, lots of expertise,” Rouse said. “He is someone who genuinely wants to leave their mark in a positive way … leave a legacy. Everywhere he goes, he’s done that.” During his 23 years with the department, Matson has served as administrative services captain for Thousand Oaks, managed the pretrial detention facility and the Internal Affairs Unit and most recently was the captain for East County patrol services, where he supervised 61 deputies and 10 sergeants. He is also credited with co-founding the Volunteers in Policing program in Thousand Oaks – an accomplishment that caught Moorpark Mayor Pat Hunter’s attention. “What impressed me most in talking with Capt. Matson was his understanding that a successful law enforcement program requires partnerships with a number of agencies and specifically, partnering with the public,” Hunter said. “He had experience with those kinds of relationships. He was and is and will be a good fit for the position in the city. He shares our vision.” The twist in being chief in such a safe city is maintaining that lofty position, Hunter said. “Moorpark is a growing community, and although we enjoy a very low crime rate, a growing community requires that you pay particular attention to crime trends,” said Hunter, a Los Angeles County sheriff’s lieutenant. “I expect him to be a hands-on manager, to analyze the kinds of crime in the city and do what he can to suppress criminal activity.” Matson is up to the challenge and said it’s a dream come true coming back to a city where he once worked as a patrol officer, although it’s changed dramatically, he said. “Going to Moorpark is an opportunity of a lifetime,” said the father of two college students who lives in Simi Valley. Matson will make about $118,000 a year. His arrival comes two months after the completion of the new police headquarters in Moorpark, a state-of-the-art $11 million facility. Diaz said Matson understands what needs to be done. “He is capable,” Diaz said. “Seems to fit.” Still, he said jokingly, “Nobody likes to be replaced.” Angie Valencia-Martinez, (805) 583-7604 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESanta Anita opens winter meet Saturday with loaded card Matson, a 23-year department veteran, has come home again after patrolling the city years ago. Now, he’ll oversee about 40 sheriff’s deputies – half of whom patrol the east Ventura County city of nearly 36,000. His first day is March 26. “I just want to leave Moorpark in better shape than the way I found it,” he said. He’ll find it in pretty good shape. The city is Ventura County’s safest. If it has one homicide in a year, that’s news. Kathy Kemp, the first female deputy chief in Sheriff’s Department history, worked alongside Matson when she was Thousand Oaks’ acting chief of police from 1993-2000. Matson was second in charge during part of her tenure. “Jeff has a real natural ability to get people to follow him, and that’s a great indication of a leader,” she said.
This week’s game has Lubbock abuzz about what a win could do for a team usually considered a Big 12 spoiler rather than title contender. Tech is ranked in the top 10 for the first time since 1977, an era when Texas still ran the wishbone with Earl Campbell and Bill Parcells was the Red Raiders’ defensive coordinator. Tech will be the first top-10 team to come to Austin since 1999, when the Longhorns beat No. 3 Nebraska. “My big thing is to relax and just enjoy it,” Hodges said. “Ten to 20 years from now I’ll look back and think that was such a great game, but if I’m too worried about other stuff my head’s going to be filled with stuff it shouldn’t be.” As dangerous as Tech can be, the Longhorns must fight an urge to take for granted a team they beat 51-21 last season. “We are a better focused team than we were last year,” Leach said. The Longhorns have beaten five ranked teams during their 13-game winning streak. And like Tech, they’ve been putting up some pretty big numbers. Vince Young, one of the top contenders for the Heisman Trophy, had a career day last week. He passed for 336 yards and two touchdowns and ran for three more scores in a win over Colorado. Against Tech last year, Young ran for four TDs as the Longhorns stifled the Red Raiders’ offense by keeping it off the field. Texas held the ball nearly 20 minutes longer than Tech in that game. While Young used to be thought of as a running quarterback, his passing has done most of the damage in the Longhorns’ biggest wins this season. He’s already matched last season’s total of 12 touchdown passes while running for five more. “I believe our offense can put up points just like Tech,” Texas wide receiver Limas Sweed said. Texas will not start leading rusher Jamaal Charles for the second straight week, although he is available, Brown said. Junior Selvin Young will start at tailback. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! If Texas wins, the Longhorns tighten their grip on the Big 12 South division and their No. 2 position in the BCS. A Red Raiders victory upsets not only the conference race, but also thrusts Tech into the national title chase. “Someone’s going home with a loss,” Longhorns defensive end Brian Robison said. “And I don’t plan on it being us.” Led by fifth-year senior and first- year starting quarterback Cody Hodges, the Red Raiders lead the nation in points (53.7) and passing yards (472) per game with the Wild West shootout-style offense coach Mike Leach brought to the high plains five years ago. Some of those gaudy numbers have been cranked up in wins over Florida International (56-3) and Division I-AA teams Sam Houston State (80-21) and Indiana State (63-7). But Brown notes the Red Raiders also beat Kansas, Nebraska and Kansas State, with Hodges passing for 643 yards in last week’s 59-20 romp over the Wildcats. “They beat Nebraska in Lincoln, and we all know that’s tough to do,” Brown said. “They totally dominated Kansas State. … Too much has been talked about the first three games instead of the last three.” AUSTIN — Texas coach Mack Brown doesn’t want to hear about Texas Tech’s soft early season schedule and how the Red Raiders’ score-a-minute offense piles up points against inferior teams. He says the Red Raiders are more dangerous than ever and could derail the Longhorns’ goals of winning Big 12 and national championships. “What they are doing in college football is unheard of, offensively,” Brown said. “It’s amazing.” Tenth-ranked Texas Tech (6-0, 3-0) meets the No. 2 Longhorns (6-0, 3-0) today in a game with huge implications for the conference and the Bowl Championship Series.