HOF Coach Profile: St. Joe's Gennaro Mirocke 5/7
By Submitted to PrepsKC
Coach Gennaro “Rocky” Mirocke served as a teacher and coach at St. Joseph/Aquinas High School from 1951-88, and at St. Thomas Aquinas High School from 1988-95, dedicating his career to the school and community.
Mirocke was originally from Shenandoah, Penn. He graduated from Shenandoah Catholic High School in 1944 before attending Penn State and Southwestern where he graduated in 1951. That same year he came to Kansas where he became the head football coach at St. Joseph Shawnee Aquinas.
He was instrumental in establishing an athletic program at the school, coaching basketball, track, and football. Of these, football was his passion, for he felt there was no better means for educating youth about life. He taught his players that success required dedication, teamwork, and nothing less than their best effort.
Under his guidance, his teams developed a standard of excellence that became a tradition known as “Bluestreak Football.” During his time his teams compiled a 257-117-6 in 40 years of coaching.
In addition to building winning football teams, Coach Mirocke was also building character. His greatest accomplishment was not measured in wins and losses, but in the number of young men and women whom he positively influenced. Many of the ideals and principles he taught continue to inspire those whose lives he touched.
Coach was a member of the American Legion, American Football Coaches Association, was the Aquatics Director for the city of Shawnee for 23 years, and served as a volunteer firefighter for 24 years, serving as District Chief from 1979 to the time of his passing.
He is remembered by his players and associates as a strict disciplinarian who was able to motivate his players to excel and how to play as a team. He was and still is an inspiration to his family, and all who played and worked for him.
Mirocke passed away February 5, 1995.
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