I’ll get to some baseball extras on Thursday, but two things that many had speculated would happen came to fruition on the football coaching front on Wednesday night.
Holmdel’s Andy Carlstrom resigned as head coach of the Hornets after three seasons, as he is a non-tenured teacher who was one of 15 teachers (along with girls basketball coach Kelly Burns) who got laid off because the Holmdel budget was defeated on April 21 and because certain job positions were eliminated. I didn’t get a chance to talk to Andy on Wednesday night, but it’s pretty obvious that he got sandwiched by the economy and other factors. Carlstrom went 16-15 in three years and led the Hornets to a school-record 10 wins in a 10-1 season in 2007 that also included a National Division title and their first state playoff win since 1991. He is the one who stepped into the storm after former head coach and current Middletown South assistant Joe O’Connor resigned in the middle of the season in 2005 in a dispute with the administration that ultimately resulted in a new principal and a new athletic director at Holmdel.
The Hornets had a sophomore-laden team that went 1-9 this past fall after a large and talented senior class graduated. Carlstrom’s departure now leaves vacancies at Holmdel, Point Beach, Colts Neck, and, of course, Brick.
Once the Brick school budget was defeated recently, the feeling was that the football coaching situation would be up in the air. The prevalent rumor is that Pat Dowling, the head coach at Allentown and former head coach at Monroe, was going to be recommended by the administration over in-house candidate Len Zdanowicz and former Brick player Tim Osborn, the head coach at Jackson Liberty, to replace the legendary Warren Wolf, the only coach in school history. That ruffled a lot of feathers because it would signal a clean break with the Wolf contingent, which seemingly is about 90 percent of Brick.
However, it won’t happen on Thursday night at the Board meeting because no one is up for recommendation according to the meeting agenda,which you can check out here. That’s no shock because the big monkey wrench hanging out there was whether or not the budget would pass, and it failed. This Board meeting, which is at 7:30 at Lake Riviera Middle School, was set up to be a wild one from everything I heard and from talking directly to someone close to the situation. There were rumors of petitions, a large-scale protest and a million other wild things set for Thursday night’s meeting, and there still may be a vocal contingent there to voice their displeasure with a candidate who is not from Brick. The ones taking the hit in all of this are the players, who need to know what direction they are headed in under a new coach. We’ll see.