Larry Watanabe is in his 27th year as a Wrestling Coach at Mt. San Antonio College with 17 of those years as the Head Coach. Watanabe is one of the most respected wrestling coaches in the state. His teams are consistently ranked top ten in the state and have placed 3rd in 1995 and 4th in 2005. He has coached 10 individual state champions and 15 All-Americans.
Watanabe wrestled for Mt. SAC in 1969 and 1970 where he won a State Championship at 126 pounds for the Mounties. That year Watanabe was a first team All-Conference Selection, as well as being named the Mt. SAC Student/Athlete of the Year. He went on to wrestle at Cal State Fullerton where he was the 134 pound Conference Champion (1973) for the Titans. In 1992, Larry Watanabe was selected as a charter member of the Mt. San Antonio College Athletic Hall of Fame.
Prior to arriving at Mt. SAC, Watanabe was the Head Wrestling Coach at Nogales High School for 15 years. At Nogales, Watanabe had great success with his teams and individuals. During his tenure, his teams captured the 1980 CIF Championship, won five league championships and produced individual state champion, Jeff Maes.
Watanabe is very active at Mt. SAC serving on numerous campus committees as well as having served as the Physical Education Department Chairperson for many years.
An avid fan of the martial arts, Watanabe has traveled the world studying the various art forms in detail. He currently teaches many of the martial arts classes available at Mt. SAC.