Longtime educator and high school boys’ basketball coach Joe Hertel will not be returning to Thomas More Prep-Marian next year.
Citing personnel confidentiality, officials at the school could not comment on the matter when asked Saturday. However Hertel, via his wife, Cindy, took to Facebook on Friday and Saturday to make the announcement.
The full Facebook post reads:
“I am posting for Joe, who is not on FB: To my students, players and b-ball managers, I am humbled by your support and privileged to have been a part of your life. I value every one of you, and your success is my success. To my students’ parents... thank you for understanding that while I am not Mr. Social :), I am totally committed to helping your child in any way I can. Sometimes that means hard conversations. Your posting here means you support my expectations and also have high expectations for your child. I know he/she will be a success because of you. To my colleagues and friends... I’m am honored to know you. Thank you for seeing the real me. Teachers and coaches, keep fighting the good fight. To my family... this whole thing is a testament to the importance of family, right? To my Lord... I would do it again.
After 33 years of teaching at TMP, Joe was told today that his teaching and coaching contracts will not be renewed next year. He was not given a reason and is “allowed” to finish the school year, which clearly says he has done nothing unethical. Ask TMP graduates if he prepared them for college. Ask his players if he was fair and demanded their best. Yes, he is passionate. Yes, he is direct. Yes, he has high standards. Yes, he loves his Catholic faith. And, TMP, if you are going to treat him this way, you don’t deserve him. P.S. You will find someone to take his spot, but you won’t replace him.”
Hertel has been an English teacher in the school for nearly four decades, and has been in the head coaching position since taking over for Al Billinger in 1985.
During his tenure as head coach, Hertel accumulated a 467-274 record, taking the Monarchs to the state tournament this season for the ninth time in his career.
Out of those nine trips, TMP made four appearances in a state championship game and six appearances in the state semifinals. TMP won the Class 3A title in 2005 and won 4A in 2007.