Bob O’Connor, who has been the face of St. Joe's football for three decades, has stepped down as head coach.
O'Connor, a 1965 graduate of the Town of Tonawanda school, is the winningest coach in school history with 169 games and 13 league championships.
Some quotes from the release:
“We are extremely proud of and grateful for all that Bob has accomplished during his three-plus decade tenure at St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute,” said Robert T. Scott, president and principal of the school. “His name has become synonymous with St. Joe’s football and, most importantly, he has had a profound impact on the hundreds of young men who have played for him over the years that cannot be measured in wins and losses.”
“Coach O’Connor was integral in transforming a very good football program into an excellent one,” said St. Joe’s athletic director Pete Schneider. “While his contributions to St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute are, quite frankly, irreplaceable, we will now turn our attention to identifying a candidate who will build upon the foundations established by Coach (Joseph) Brown, Coach (William) Fitzhenry, Coach (Tom 'Tucker') Reddington and Coach O’Connor, and leave his own distinguishable imprint on the legacy of St. Joe’s football."
The release says St. Joe's will be searching for a coach immediately -- but you would have to think that, with this decision having been made before the season, St. Joe's might have already have a plan in place. It will certainly be an interesting matter to follow as the program looks for a new guide.
O'Connor has always been pleasant to deal with for my decade at The News. The Marauders teams of the Naaman Roosevelt era were certainly some of the best and most exciting I've covered.
And as far as farewell seasons go, O'Connor did about as well as one could -- short of a title, of course. St. Joe's, which wasn't expected to be a championship contender, beat St. Francis twice and earned a trip to the finals at The Ralph. The Marauders slugged it out twice by Canisius before being outscored.
taggedHigh school football | St. Joe's