Morenci school board 4.16

Written by David Green.


Morenci football fans will see a familiar face on the sidelines when the season opens in August.

Former head coach Dan Hoffman was hired Monday night to serve as head varsity coach for the 2008 season.

Audience members Phil and Pat McCaskey inquired about the board of education’s decision-making process.

“There were about 15 applicants,” board member Gary Ries said. “We narrowed it down to four candidates and we interviewed those four. A lot of applicants were from far away. We interviewed who we thought were the best candidates.”

Superintendent Kyle Griffith explained that the board was not obligated to give the names of all four candidates.

“So you’ve just made your decision and that’s it,” said Pat McCaskey.

“What’s the hurry in naming a coach?” asked Phil McCaskey. ”Maybe someone will apply for a teaching position who would make a good coach.”

“Ultimately that is what we would have liked,” Griffith answered. “But none of the candidates we had were a good fit with our teaching openings.”

“Dan Hoffman was replaced previously,” said Phil McCaskey. “Why would he be a coaching candidate?”

“Historically we have had a tough time keeping coaches around,” said Griffith. “There are still six or seven on our staff right now that are head coach material who will not take a head coaching job.”

“Parents have been so tough on coaches that some of our toughest head coaches will not return to head coaching positions.”

Griffith added that Coach Hoffman was given a list of expectations for the football program by the board of education.

“We hope to see the football program grow from the Junior Dawgs right on up through the varsity team,” Griffith said.

BOND—Griffith said the “Vote Yes” committee is doing a great job at getting the word out about the bond proposal that voters will face in May.

“We have some great community members behind the ‘Vote Yes’ committee,” he said. “That’s a big plus when business owners back the school.”

PERSONNEL—Kim Mohr was hired as assistant high school track coach for the 2007-08 season.

Heidi Drake was granted third year probation, effective during the 2008-09 school year.

  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.base Ball
    UMPIRE Thomas Henthorn tosses the bat between team captains Mikayla Price and Chuck Piskoti of Flint’s Lumber City Base Ball Club. Following the 1860 rules, after the bat was grabbed by the captains, captains’ hands advanced to the top of the bat—one hand on top of the other. The captain whose hand ended up on top decided who would bat first. Additional photos of Sunday’s game appear on page 12 of this week’s Observer. The contest was organized in conjunction with Stair District Library’s Hometown Teams exhibit that runs through Nov. 20.
    VALUE OF ATHLETICS—Morenci graduate John Bancroft (center) takes a turn at the microphone during a chat session at the opening of the Hometown Teams exhibit at Stair District Library. Clockwise to his left is John Dillon, Jed Hall, Jim Bauer, Joe Farquhar, George Hollstein, George Vereecke and Mike McDowell. Thomas Henthorn (at the podium) kicked off the conversation. Henthorn, a University of Michigan–Flint professor, will return to Morenci this Sunday to lead a game of vintage base ball at the school softball field.
  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.

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