Longtime coach Bohren nears 300 wins | News, Sports, Jobs
In September 1965, Lyndon B. Johnson was President of the United States, The Beatles owned the country’s No. 1 song and album (Help!), The cost of a postage stamp and a Hershey bar was of five cents, and Bill Bohren recorded his first victory as a high school football coach.
The country has since seen 10 presidential changes – roughly the same number of managerial changes in Bohren’s career. And while Presidents, The Beatles, and cheap chocolate have come and gone, Bohren remains a staple.
On Saturday, Bohren will look for his 300th victory as head coach when his Mathews Mustangs travel to the SPIRE Institute in Geneva to take on St. John.
Last Friday, Mathews (4-2) beat Fairport Harding 36-0, giving Bohren his 299th career victory. Based on records compiled by the Ohio High School Athletic Association, Bohren would become the 16th coach in state history to reach the 300-win milestone.
Bohren, 87, began his coaching career at Ohio High School in Ohio, Illinois. In his first season, he led Ohio High to an 8-2. He made several other stops in Illinois, then headed to Ottawa-Glandorf. He followed that up with a three-year stay in Steubenville before becoming a staple in the Mahoning Valley.
The 1976 Bohren team at Steubenville finished 7-1-2, Big Red’s best performance in the All American Conference. At Lakeview, Bohren compiled a mark of 32-18. At Boardman, his Spartans were 59-26 with two Steel Valley Conference titles and a trip to the Division I title game.
Salem won his first league title in 104 years under Bohren, and at Niles he won two league titles and made two playoff trips – including Niles’ only regional final appearance in 2000.
Bohren compiled a 46-46 record at LaBrae, including two playoff trips. In the three years before Bohren’s arrival, the Vikings were 3-27.
In 2007, Bohren was inducted into the Ohio High School Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame.
RETURN OUT OF GAME
The lights were on Friday at the Joe Lane Sports Complex in Mineral Ridge. The Rams marching band and cheerleaders entertained the crowd, spectators filled the stands.
From a weather point of view, it was a perfect evening for football.
The only thing missing was a football game.
Last Friday, Mineral Ridge had its homecoming game canceled due to COVID issues within the Jackson-Milton program. The cancellation originally meant some of the homecoming festivities would be delayed until next Friday, when the Rams host Sebring.
Then members of the reunion tribunal approached Weathersfield local schools superintendent Damon Dohar with the idea of holding the ceremonies last Friday without a football game.
“I would like to take credit for the idea, but it was the students who came to me and pointed out to me that some had family members from out of town, they all had the heart to work on Friday ” Dohar said. “At the end of the day, we want to do what’s best for the students, and in this case the girls were right, it was best for everyone involved.”
“We made the most of a bad situation and it really turned into a special night.”
In keeping with tradition, the reunion tribunal marched into the stadium from the school parking lot. The girls were introduced to the crowd and a reunion queen was named. It was the typical Mineral Ridge homecoming football game without an opponent.
“Basically, we played against COVID and we won”, Dohar said. “We haven’t allowed COVID to hinder a very special night for many of our students. “
The Cleveland professional baseball team played its last game with the Indians on Sunday. The franchise will now be known as the Cleveland Guardians.
In August, two Ohio lawmakers introduced a resolution at Ohio House calling on school districts across the state to remove Native American mascots and nicknames. The resolution is currently only a recommendation.
Several states have already banned the use of such mascots. More recently, Colorado passed a bill banning the use of Native American-themed mascots, nicknames, or likenesses in its public schools. Any school that currently uses such a mascot must change it by June 1, 2022 or face a fine of $ 25,000 per month.
Locally, six school districts in the area would be affected if such a ban were put in place in Ohio. They understand; Girard (Indians), Southern Local (Indians), Brookfield (Warriors), West Branch (Warriors), Badger (Braves) and Warren G. Harding (Raiders).
Across Ohio, 78 school districts – more than any other state in the country – use a Native American-themed nickname, mascot or logo.
Incidentally, many schools across the country have also recently dropped out of the “Rebels” nickname due to association with the American Confederation. This is not the case at Crestview High. The students at Crestview were tasked with choosing a school nickname and mascot at a time when the film “Rebel without a cause” made James Dean a household name. With the film in mind, the rebels were born.