Tag Archives: St Francis de Sales

Sport Notes, UPDATED


  • Congratulations to the cross country team from St Francis de Sales High School.  Both the Junior Varsity and the Varsity won the Three Rivers league championship this past Saturday at Pearson Park.  Son of Chili Dog placed second in the JV race (which would have placed him at least in the top 25 in the varsity race).

[side note: St John Jesuit placed third in the varsity race.  The school has an advertising campaign touting its "unparalleled" athletics.  I always thought "unparalleled" meant without an equal or peer, but I guess if no one else finishes third, then "unparalleled" applies, right?]

  • In the final minutes of the Ohio State-Illinois game in Champaign, Illinois had the ball at the OSU 12 yard line trailing 17-7 with just over a minute left and facing 4th down and 2 yards to go.  Know they needed to score at least a touchdown and a field goal, Illinois coach Ron Zook incredibly (moronically?) chose to go for it on 4th down.  They were stopped.  Game over.
  • Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz looked like a complete idiot chasing after San Francisco 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh after their game on Sunday.  Harbaugh is an ass, but Schwartz looks stupid, like an 8 year old.  That the NFL isn't going to fine either one is unjust.  If two players were involved in a similar situation, I would guess there would be fines assessed.
  • The Tigers parlayed a fine August and September into a nice post season run this year.  I thought Leyland was too quick to pull Scherzer in the final game given the bullpen's incompetence as of late.  The future looks bright in Detroit, but the baseball season is a marathon.  Picking up some valuable replacements for Ordonez and Guillen should be front and center in Dombrowski's planner.

[side note: Ramon Santiago wants a raise.  He says he has kids to feed.  When I hear that I just want to grab him by the neck and choke the living piss out of him.  I hope they cut his ass and trade him to Kansas City]

  • A race car driver was killed in a crash over the weekend.  Don't think I would call that a tragedy.  That this doesn't happen more often is a blessing.  He volunteered.  Think of all those who die in crashes that don't put on fire retardant and helmets and strap themselves to cars going 200+.  Those are real tragedies.
  • I cannot express enough what a pleasure Sundays are now that I no longer really care about anything that happens in the NFL.  I always thought people who didn't pay attention were nuts.  Now I wonder what took me so long.
  • The Kenton Wildcats are 8-0 and are AP-ranked #1 in Division IV in Ohio.  Saw them play Lima Bath a couple weeks ago.  Most entertainment I have ever had watching a high school game.   Final score 64-42.  It was like watching a real-life video game.  Kenton QB Maty Mauk, bound for Gary Pinkel's Missouri, had nearly 200 yards rushing and over 400 yards passing.  Bath's running back, whose name escapes me had well over 200 yards rushing.  Through 8 games, Kenton has scored 364 points (over 45 points per game average).

One more item that I had originally intended to include but failed to remember.  Middle age sucks.

  • Assuming Oklahoma wins out and the SEC champion is undefeated, it is very likely that an undefeated team from University of Wisconsin would not be in the BCS Championship.  Oh yea, and Boise State, too.

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Nitpicking High School Visitations

Grilled hot dogs
Image via Wikipedia

I read the story in today's Toledo Blade regarding the visitations by 8th graders this week of all six Catholic high schools in metro Toledo.  My daughter is in 8th grade, and so I have a vested interest in the story.  Those of you who know this space certainly know where my allegiances lie and where they don't.  I guess it's the paranoia in me, but whenever I read these stories, I look for bias in the Blade reporting.  I think I found some, but I can't be sure because my paranoia always seems to cloud my vision.  You be the judge.

It can also very well be that some schools treat this event a bit differently than others.  Some schools may try to sugar coat the high school experience, while others may be a little straighter in their approach.

First the Catholic school that calls itself "The One."

Central Catholic is the largest of the six high schools with 1,008 students this year.

While we all know the reason for that, the Blade seems incapable of reporting it.

Next on to Airport.

At St. John's Jesuit High School, the eighth-grade boys tour the 56-acre campus in golf carts driven by teachers or coaches.  And while most of the schools offer cookies or light refreshments, St. John's starts with cookies, moves into hotdogs on the senior patio, and ends the session with french fries and soda pop for good measure. St. John's, which began distributing iPads to all students this year, introduced that technology to eighth graders and showed off its new turf football field and athletic complex.

Gee, that sounds a lot like a sales pitch.  How about that sales pitch from Bancroft?

"We don't dumb it down like some schools," [Director of Admissions Rick Michalak] said. "We still have a [pep] rally, but the kids are going into our chapel to hear about service and our campus ministry. They're going down to the science wing and talking to the physics, biology, and chemistry teachers."

Wow, that sounds like fun, but where's my iPad2 the new turf football field, athletic complex or hotdogs on the senior patio?

Oh wait, I forgot.  The iPad2 is soon to be obsolete, I play football or soccer or lacrosse or whatever else is going to be played on that field but I don't get any real playing time because, well, you know, and I won't actually be a senior for four more years so for 75% of my high school life I can never step on this patio again (and eat delicious hot dogs).  But I will get to see a few pep rallies, go to the chapel frequently and take a science class every year.

Yea.  I know.  I'm sick.

But how might you wrap a story like this if you are the Toledo Blade?  Like this?

Fresh from helping out with a science lab experiment with dry ice at Central Catholic yesterday, St. Joan of Arc eighth-grader Mario Markho said he was leaning toward St. John's. "I found it more appealing to me," he said.

Of course you would.

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Apple and Marketing High School

Behold the iPad in All Its Glory.

Image via Wikipedia

This is a slightly different bend on the post directly below regarding St John Jesuit requiring its students to purchase Apple’s iPad.

Still citing the same article,

Though the school [St John Jesuit] is  Toledo’s first private school to implement the iPad 2 for all of its students, other private schools in Toledo have phased in personal technology for all of their students. In the fall of 2007, Central Catholic High School began giving each incoming freshman a Macbook laptop, which students can take home during the year and keep when they graduate. The school charges a $200 technology fee that covers insurance and other related technology costs.

“The general consensus among students is how incredibly prepared they are from a technology standpoint when they go to college,” Chris Hamady, Central Catholic’s director of technology, said.


At least in terms of them being prepared because they have a Macbook donated to them by the school.  This isn’t about education.  At all.  It is purely and simply marketing.  Students at CCHS, just as will be the case at SJJ, are no more prepared, technology wise, than students that go to any suburban public school district or other private school that doesn’t mandate the purchase of an Apple product.

Central Catholic was named one of 52 Apple Distinguished Schools in January, and has held events on its campus organized by Apple since the spring of 2008, where administrators from regional high schools come to learn more about combining Apple products with education.

Does anyone think that Apple would recognize a school as distinguished that didn’t require its shit to be purchased?  I would rate CCHS at highest 5th among the Catholic schools in the Toledo area, and that is a push.

Passing out or requiring students to purchase technology does not provide an educational advantage.  Reading from a lap top is flat out bad for you if you do it for hours on end.  The iPad is probably better in that regard, but not much.

Kudos to Notre Dame Academy and St Francis de Sales (surprise!), when it comes to this technology marketing bullshit.

NDA’s chief of marketing (WHAT?!? Marketing?):

Technology is changing so quickly.   You can start off with one type of laptop as a freshman and by your senior year, it can be totally obsolete [like what will happen to those kids at SJJ].

I added that last part.

SFS’s Dean of Academics Chris Steingass (WHAT?!? Not marketing?!?):

We want to keep it more of a college atmosphere. Colleges keep it like that, so we also want to do it like that [letting students decide what technology is best for them].

I should point out that many private universities and some state universities [certain majors especially] require the purchase of a lap top computer.  So Mr. Steingass is only partially correct on that point.

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Looks More Like Cubic Zirconium to Me

VANCOUVER, BC - FEBRUARY 24:  Team China celeb...

Image by Getty Images via @daylife

St John Jesuit High School in Toledo made two very important announcements yesterday that bears passing along in this space.  First is the ground-breaking for a $1.5 million renovation to its current track and field.  Basically the school is redoing the current track and installing field turf on the field.  Unlike the rumors that have circulated, there are no apparent immediate plans to construct a stadium.  The school has a small bleacher section (est. 500 capacity) which it moves from soccer field to football field from time to time.  This bleacher section may hang out near the new “state of the art” field permanently?

Now before you think this is sour grapes on my part, let me tell you it is.  Not because St John Jesuit is getting such a fine new covering for its field.  The sour grapes are once again courtesy of The Toledo Blade with the staff at  St John Jesuit undoubtedly assisting Steve Junga in his never-ceasing quest to heap praise upon Airport.

Here’s the headline:

Titans start work on new jewel

Seriously, a jewel?  It is a covering for a field and a refinished track. I mean, yeah it’s expensive to put down field turf, but let’s keep some perspective here.   Congrats to SJJ for their new field covering and redone track.  It is nice to have and my hope is that some day Bancroft will be able to afford it.  Considering St Francis hosts several very important track meets, lacrosse and soccer matches in its stadium, field turf would certainly help because there are times when the grass in the middle of that field is sparse. 

Here’s SJJ board chairman Geoff Lyden,

A new athletic field and surrounding track will serve an important purpose for a great number of our students on the St. John's Jesuit campus. It is an investment in the future that allows us to continue to develop the finest student athletes in northwest Ohio and throughout the state.

I get field turf.  It’s durable and virtually maintenance free.  I have no idea what shape the track is in, but I imagine kids are still running on it.  So tell me what “important purpose” this “new athletic field” serves to the “great number” of students?  While you’re at it, tell my how the school intends to develop the finest student athletes throughout the state.

Here’s board member Don Mewhort, who is,  Junga very relevantly points out, “the father of ex-Titan and current Ohio State lineman Jack Mewhort,”

The development of the St. John's Jesuit track and turf is long overdue. This is an important piece of our campus that required renovating and updating to benefit current and future athletes. When the project is complete, it will set St. John's apart from most other schools in Ohio.

Like I told you, I don’t know what shape these things are in today.  New stuff is nice and it will benefit the school in general, not just the athletes who use it.  What it will absolutely not do is set St John Jesuit apart from “most other schools” in Ohio.  There are schools in our very community that now have vastly superior athletic facilities.  Whitmer, Central and Perrysburg immediately come to mind.  But for the field turf, even St Francis facilities are more functional.

Here’s Junga again,

Funding for the project has been raised exclusively through private donations.

As opposed to what? 

As for the second part of the announcement, St John Jesuit announced that it’s hired a new Athletic Director.  Bob Ronai.  Here’s what he has to say about the school’s athletics,

St. John's has one of the top high school athletic programs in the state of Ohio. They're not just good in one or two sports, they're good in everything.


p>Define good.  Define top.  How many schools have “top athletic programs?”  What makes a school “good in everything?”  A better than .500 record?  State championships? 


p>I am reminded of myself when I say to my kids, “This song is good.  It’s definitely in my top ten,” 


p>They say to me, “Dad, you have about 150 songs in your top ten.”


p>Ronai does have at least one redeeming quality.

A native of Long Island, N.Y., he grew up in New Jersey, received a bachelor's degree from St. Francis (Ind.) University

Thanks to John B for the tip.

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Say It Ain’t So, Dick

Dick Cromwell announced his retirement as head coach of the St Francis de Sales High School varsity football team February 8, 2010.

Cromwell’s football teams won many city championships and two state championships.  His success lies not in all those victories.  Cromwell is beloved by most of those who played for him and their parents.  He is highly regarded among his peers.  To me, that is the measure of success for a high school coach.

The Tuesday Feb 9, 2010 print version has an extended story, but a brief online story can be found here.

The story (online at least) has a photo of Cromwell I consider less than flattering, but I have no doubt this is how the non-SFS world (and probably a good portion of the SFS world as well) sees the man.


Photo via.