He coached seventh-graders Stafford and Kershaw in football

Rock Pillsbury has spent the last 13 years as athletic director at Chatsworth Sierra Canyon. Before that, he was a basketball coach at Highland Park High in Texas. And, as part of his duties, he coached seventh-grade football at a Dallas middle school during a year when his quarterback was Matthew Stafford and the guy snapping the ball at center was Clayton Kershaw.

Now Stafford and Kershaw will be reunited in Los Angeles, with Stafford taking over as the Rams’ quarterback and three-time Cy Young Award winner Kershaw ready to continue his Hall of Fame career with the Dodgers.

“Nobody knew about Kershaw,” Pillsbury said, recalling those seventh-grade days. “He was a chunky guy. Stafford could throw a junior football 50 to 60 yards. He could throw it a country mile. They were buddies.”

Each played multiple sports while growing up in Texas.

Pillsbury said he’d met Kershaw since but not Stafford. His loyalties also may be challenged, since he and his family are Dallas Cowboys fans.

He’s certain about one thing: “They were both great kids,” he said.