Steele tops Indians’ undefeated season with Delaware Coach of the Year nod
Ray Steele, who guided Indian River High School to a perfect 12-0 record and the Division II state football championship, has been named the Tubby Raymond Coach of the Year by the Delaware Sportswriters and Broadcasters Association and will accept the award at the annual DSBA banquet on March 22 at Dover Downs.
“This is kind of like the icing on the cake. It’s a great feeling,” Steele said of earning the Raymond award. “It’s kind of like a dream. As a team, we accomplished everything, and then some, that we set out to do. It’s left me with some things that I’ll never forget.”
Steele was quick to give thanks to the community, the student body, the cheerleaders and the marching band for helping the team create one unforgettable season.
However, Steele’s players were also quick to deflect a lot of the credit back to him. After all, they noted, he is the one who had enough faith in them to run a no-huddle offense behind senior quarterback Jamie Jarmon.
“I think [Steele] had some kind of an inspiration I guess that no other coaches have tried in years past with the kinds of athletes we had come through, as far as the fast, smart kids we had behind center,” said Tyler Dean, a wide receiver and cornerback for IR. “This year he was able to contribute by telling us, ‘Let’s work on this no-huddle offense. If you guys want a state title, we’ll do something that’s rarely ever done in high school sports that we could probably master.’ So he put the no-huddle in for us.”
P.J. Kraushaar, the team’s middle linebacker, said it went far deeper than X’s and O’s when it came to Steele’s success. After all, the Indians went just 5-5 in the two seasons before Steele became the head coach.
“He’s always upbeat,” Kraushaar said. “He keeps the tempo up for practice and keeps everybody looking forward to the next day. He brought a lot to the table that we as captains couldn’t always do. He kept everybody happy and he’s an awesome coach.”
In addition to the Raymond Award, the DSBA will hand out its annual awards for athlete of the year, team of the year and service to the sports community. The DSBA also will recognize the Delaware Special Olympics Athlete of the Year and other notable head-table guests.
Noted funnyman Joe Conklin will provide entertainment as the DSBA also recognizes the 2011-2012 first-team All-State basketball, boys’ soccer, cross-country, field hockey, football, swimming, girls’ volleyball and wrestling teams.
A reception begins at 5:30 p.m., with dinner to follow at 6. Tickets cost $50 and can be ordered online at http://delsports.org.
For more information on the banquet, contact DSBA Vice President Jason Levine at (302) 324-2539 or firstname.lastname@example.org.