Thanks, Coach

December 8, 2016

The following is my weekly letter to the Bishop Chatard HS parent community:

This past Monday morning, Vince Lorenzano announced his resignation as Head Football Coach at Bishop Chatard High School. He has been at BCHS for sixteen years, fourteen as head of the football program. He has put in a total of twenty-six years as a head coach at three different schools.

He is the longest serving head football coach in BCHS history, and his teams have won seven state championships on his watch.

That is all great data, but if you know Vince, you know he could care less about any of it. Like him or not, agree with his football strategy or not, what you see is what you get with Vince.

I have known Vince for over twenty-five years, and coached against him (and lost each time) back when each of us was first starting out. In 2003, I was serving as the Athletic Director at Bishop Chatard when Vince was hired. So I guess, depending on your perspective, I will take credit or blame for hiring him.

The Vince I met twenty-five years ago and the one I work with today are one and the same. He is the model of consistency as far as how he conducts his life and in how he treats young men. Kids that have played for Vince knew they were loved as individuals and valued as part of the program. Don’t let the gruff exterior fool you.

I was there on Monday when he announced his retirement to the team. It was a tough moment for him. When he told them he loved them, it was from the heart. I was also there as each of the eighty plus players lined up to hug him and say thank you. (I especially enjoyed this part, knowing how awkward Vince felt with all the hugging.)

Vince’s words in an interview with the IndyStar captured who he is as a coach and as a man: “If I hadn’t won any state championships, I’d still think I was doing what was right for the kids, and modeling what I thought was right for them. We’ve made mistakes, like all people do, but you always try to do the right thing, no matter what.

It’s not about winning as much as getting kids ready to play and staying true to themselves. I want them to remember the good things—and for them to learn. There are going to be tough moments, and they have to work through them. It’s about having them become better men.”

To my friend, Vince Lorenzano – I know this scripture verse is often used at funerals, so I hope you will excuse me for using it here…but it seems fitting: “Well done, my good and faithful servant.” (Matthew 25:21)

Note: Vince will remain at Bishop Chatard, continuing in his role as Director of Safety and Wellness for the school.

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