COACHING CAN be a thankless profession, especially on the high school level where the pay is miniscule compared to the time invested.
Even successful coaches often times have to deal with the wrath of critical fans, self-centered parents and disgruntled athletes.
But every so often coaches reap the benefits of their hard work.
Such was the case this past weekend.
Two of the finest coaches ever to grace the Ohio Valley football sidelines experienced the sweeter side of their profession.
Monroe Central’s Jay Circosta and Martins Ferry’s Dave Bruney have combined for some 80 years of coaching football, which is an achievement in its own right. Both are Hall of Famers and both enjoyed Friday nights they will not soon forget.
Circosta, who split four decades of being a head coach between Woodsfield and Monroe Central high schools, attained a milestone that only 12 grid mentors in Ohio history have reached — that being 300 wins. Needless to say, that is a staggering total.
Circosta has received every award a coach can receive and is endeared in the Monroe County community. His achievments are a result of tedious preparation, a deep knowledge of the game, an ability to adapt and superb communication skills to go with unbridled passion.
Bruney, meanwhile, who also possesses those same attributes, hasn’t reached 300 as of yet, but is closing on 250 career wins.
His special night was a reflection of the love, respect and support the Martins Ferry community has for its head coach of 33 years. It came in the form of Purple Rider Stadium being christened the Dave Bruney Football Complex.
It will serve as a lasting tribute to a man deserving of such an honor.
Jay Circosta and Dave Bruney will go down in Ohio Valley annals as true coachng legends.
We tip our helmets to both men for their superb careers and, just as importantly, the positive impact they have made on thousands of players.