Jim Meckstroth, of Cuba City High School, has been named Green Bay Packers Coach of the Week, the organization announced Thursday.
"It's a great honor," Meckstroth said. "I've been coaching for 30 years and just keep plugging away. It's very exciting. I don't know what to say."
The Cubans improved to 6-1, a perfect 5-0 in South Wisconsin Activities play, following the team's 27-9 victory over second-ranked and previously unbeaten Fennimore (6-1, 4-1) last Friday.
"We're 6-1 and we just beat a team that's expected to go to state and has dominated our conference the last couple of years," Meckstroth said.
The victory over the Golden Eagles puts Cuba City in control of the division race. A Cuban win in either of their last two games or a Fennimore loss in either of its two remaining games would clinch the division title for Cuba City. The Cubans could lock up the title tomorrow night when they travel to Iowa-Grant (3-4, 2-3) for a showdown with the Panthers.
"We have two more games left this season," Meckstroth said. "We have to play solid football to keep it going. Hopefully that will happen."
The Cubans are off to their best start since 2004 when the team won its first six games, finishing 9-2. But this season is extra special for Meckstroth because of the Cubans starting quarterback.
"It's really important this year because I get to coach our son," the coach said of senior Jake Meckstroth. "He's our quarterback this year. He's started for us for three years."
Meckstroth also acknowledged the work put in by his assistant coaches.
"I'm grateful for my coaching staff," said Meckstroth, who is assisted by Guy Copp, Steve Graber, Tom Wolfe, Gary Meyer, Ryan McGranahan, Kyle Kern and Jason Holzemer. "Four of my coaches have been with me for over 10 years. They make my job a lot easier."
Meckstroth, who was born in Sandusky, Ohio, is coaching his 30th season of Cuba City football after taking the Cubans' head coaching position in 1978. He began his coaching career after graduating in 1974 from Ohio State, where he played center for head coach Woody Hayes. Meckstroth was hired as the offensive line coach at Marysville High School in 1975. He was promoted to the school's offensive coordinator the following year, a position he held until leaving for Cuba City.
"I know a lot of coaches move on but I've been happy here doing what I'm doing," Meckstroth said. "It's a great place. I've been fortunate to be doing this for 30 years. Some people ask me how much longer I'm going to go. I don't know yet. 30 years is a long time but I'm still enjoying it."
*The Packers will recognize one outstanding high school coach as their 'Coach of the Week' winner during the 2007 high school football season. Winners are awarded several items and privileges, including a $1,000 donation to the school's football program from the Green Bay Packers and the NFL, as well as recognition of the award on www.NFLHS.com, the NFL's high school football Web site.
Nominations for Coach of the Week should be submitted by 9 a.m. every Monday to Tim Schroeder, community outreach coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org (e-mail) or by fax at (920) 569-7302. Please include the nominee's name, address, school, phone number, and reason he/she is deserving of the award.*