Maroons' Noha named Coach of the Year
Wednesday, December 11, 2013 6:00 PM
MENOMINEE - Coach Joe Noha and five members of the Menominee football team have added to the postseason honors the Maroons earned during their drive to the Division 5 state title game.
Noha has been named the Division 5 Coach of the Year by the Michigan High School Football Coaches Association Board of Directors.
Noha, who led the Maroons to a 13-1 record in his second year as head coach, was eligible for the state honor after being among the coaches selected for Region 1 Coach of the Year honors.
Noha was previously honored as the Great Northern Conference Coach of the Year.
"This one means the most," Noha said of being chosen by his peers. "It's quite an honor to be chosen. It reflects the infrastructure we have at Menominee.
"I have great coaches and I've had great coaches as mentors."
All members of the MHSFCA vote on regional coaches of the year and then the Board of Directors select the Coach of the Year for each division.
Millington defensive coach Lenny Dantinne, who was a Dream Team defensive back for Stephenson, is one of two directors in Region 11.
"This honor means that coaches throughout the state have great respect for coach Noha and Menominee," said Dantinne.
Noha and his staff of Jamie Schomer, Dave Mathieu, Drew Buyarski and volunteer coaches "Satch" Englund and Josh Mathieu led the Maroons to the Great Northern Conference, district and regional titles.
Making adjustments to the single wing, Noha got his speed players into open space and the Maroons set a modern-era school record by scoring 645 points.
Noha will be honored with the award winners from the other seven divisions Jan. 17 at the Lansing Center in Lansing, Mich.
"We're part of a community where everyone is willing to pitch in to help our cause of helping the players become the best people and players they can be," he said.
Junior Justin Brilinski and seniors Devon Harris and James Brown have been named to the Detroit Free Press Division 5 All-State team.
Brilinski caught the attention of the Free Press with his outstanding play in the playoffs and was named the Division 5 quarterback.
The slippery moves, breakaway bursts and sure-handed receiving talents of Harris earned him an all-state slot as a running back.
Brown who made life miserable for opposing quarterbacks with his charges around the offensive line, landed all-state laurels at defensive end.
Senior receiver Shaun Sullivan and senior linebacker Ryne Francour were honorable mention selections on the Free Press team.
Eric Prestay of North Central was named to the Division 8 team as a linebacker.
U.P. Offensive Player of the Year, quarterback Alex Briones of state champion Ishpeming, was named the captain of the Division 7 all-state offense and teammate Adam Prisk was named to the defensive line.
Offensive lineman Jeremy Ball of Negaunee earned Free Press state honors in Division 6.
Forest Park running back Lee Graff, North Dickinson offensive lineman Brad Gustafson and defensive back Gage Kreski of St. Ignace also earned Division 8 honors.