Ferry’s Bruney receives honor from Minor Pro Football HOF

Dave Bruney’s already cramped trophy room is getting a little more crowded.

Martins Ferry High’s legendary football mentor will be feted in Pittsburgh on April 26. Bruney is one of the award recipients at the 34th Minor Pro Football Hall of Fame banquet.

He has been selected by the 2014 Ohio Coaches Achievement Hall of Fame for “leading Martins Ferry High School to years of outstanding success, leadership, fortitude and determination as a football coach.”

Steubenville’s Reno Saccoccia and Monroe Central’s Jay Circosta were previous recipients of the award. They are the only two OVAC prep grid coaches with 300 plus victories.

“I am humbled, excited and honored,” Bruney said. “In team sports no one accomplishes anything by themselves. I want to thank everyone who has helped….players and coaches and family.

“You work your entire career not worrying about awards, but they are nice when they come your way,” he added. “I am proud for everyone involved with our program.”

Bruney’s resume is steeped in success.

After starring on the gridiron for the Purple Riders and gaining his degree from Ohio University, he eventually returned to his alma mater to lead the Purple for the past 35 years, 12 of those campaigns yielded post-season berths.

Prior to that, Bruney served as head coach of Bridgeport for one campaign, guiding the Bulldogs to a sparkling 9-1 record. All told, he has compiled more than 250 head coaching victories.

This past fall, Bruney directed the Purple Riders to a 9-1 regular season mark. The Purple once again qualified for the OHSAA playoffs. They defeated Williamsport Westfall in the opening round before falling to powerful Wheelersburg in the regional semifinals. They also claimed the OVAC Class 4A title. It was the school’s 12th conference crown. Half of those have come under Bruney’s watch.

Bruney has scripted a glowing resume. His accomplishments have been so impressive and so encompassing that he received the ultimate of honors. That being Purple Rider Stadium being dubbed the Dave Bruney Football Complex.

Bruney is enshrined in the Ohio High School Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame. He was inducted in 2010.

Dave and his wife Cheryl are the parents of three former Purple Rider athletic standouts: Zac, Ashley and Trevor.

The Minor Pro Football ceremony will be held at the Sen. John Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh, beginning at 11 a.m. Anyone seeking additional information or or tickets should call 412-327-8586.

Kapral may be reached at bkapral@timesleaderonline.com