The landscape of St. Louis high school sports will have a new look in the fall. For reasons that are coincidental, cosmic or both, there will be a slew of new faces in athletics director (AD) positions throughout West County. Among those schools that have announced changes are CBC, De Smet, Vianney, Kirkwood, Priory and Bishop DuBourg.
CBC announced Rocky Streb would assume the AD job with the resignation of David Hill. Hill took over at CBC two years ago after Scott Brown was stripped of his position. It has been reported that Hill left to focus on a personal consulting business.
Streb steps in immediately after holding the same position at Oakville from 2005-07. He is currently the head wrestling coach and is expected to remain in that role as he is one of the most influential and impressive wrestling coaches in the state. He built the Oakville wrestling program and turned it into a powerhouse. He’s continued to build and grow the Cadets program after taking over in 2010.
At De Smet, Kevin Fober planned his exit. He chose to leave the school and announced his intentions earlier this school year. When his contract expires, he’ll be replaced by assistant basketball coach John Stewart.
Vianney cut ties with AD Dan Borkowski. After a long run in the job, he was told he would be replaced headed into the fall.
Terry Cochran, currently the president of John F. Kennedy, will take over on July 1. You can read more about Cochran on page 54.
There have been grumblings that Borkowski is in the hunt for the open position at Bishop DuBourg. Jim Welby announced he was leaving DuBourg’s AD job to take the same spot at St. Dominic.
Kirkwood announced current AD Jeff Townsend was shifting positions last week. He’ll move from AD to assistant principal at Kirkwood High School. In his place will be former MICDS assistant AD and assistant football coach Corey Nesslage.
Townsend says he didn’t go looking for a change. But he wanted to have a better connection with the kids in the high school and he had a hard time doing that as the AD. “I love what I do, I love athletics,” Townsend, 40, says. “I miss relationships with students. I haven’t figured out how to do that as AD.”
As an assistant principal, a position he held before succeeding Jim Velten as AD, Townsend will start with the freshmen class in the fall and be their principal all the way through to graduation in 2016. It also will give him an opportunity to experience more of Kirkwood’s vast extracurricular activities. “Kirkwood has an outstanding choir and drama department,” he says. “It’s another opportunity to see kids do some different stuff.”
At Priory, longtime stalwart Joe Genoni decided this year would be his last. Genoni, 64, says there was no singular moment that pushed him over the retirement cliff. He just felt the timing was right. “It’s a nice time, I’m the right age,” he says.
Genoni has been at Priory for the better part of 40 years. He coached golf, football and taught advanced placement American government. He doesn’t have grand retirement plans, but he and his wife will travel some to visit family in Europe. He also enjoys golf, cooking and is crazy about bridge. He’ll find something to keep him busy. “Retirement is a work in progress,” he says. Former Chaminade AD Tom Fiala has been named as his successor.