CSX to bring trains through O’Fallon this week

O’FALLON – Be prepared to stop for trains rolling through O’Fallon later this week as CSX Railroad will be moving locomotives through gathering rail cars from out east and bringing them back through town.

The cars were brought out east near the end of the cut section of track near Flora a while back. Back in December the O’Fallon Weekly reported that CSX had plans to retrieve those cars that had been sitting unused. The Federal Railroad Administration had granted a petition to retrieve the cars stored in Aviston and Shattuc as long as the trains did not exceed ten miles per hour and that CSX had flaggers and company police at every grade crossing.

The single locomotive will run east through East St. Louis, Caseyville, Fairview Heights, O’Fallon, and Lebanon on Wednesday, March 13. 

On Friday, March 15, between 10 a.m. and dusk, CSX will be “moving a significant amount of cars at a slow pace which could cause long delays at previously abandoned crossings.”

According to the St. Clair County Emergency Management Agency, railroad staff and special agents will be present at all crossings to ensure safe travel of the train cars.

Drivers are asked to take this announcement into account when traveling in the area on Friday. 

OTHS warns of sexually transmitted infection increase among students

O’FALLON – In an email sent to parents on Friday, officials at O’Fallon Township High School have alerted them about increased incidents of sexually transmitted infections (STI) among students.

The Illinois Department of Public Health reached out to the school and told officials that there are increased cases of chlamydia and gonorrhea in the student population. 

According to the email sent by Superintendent Darcy Benway, the school received statistics showing that there are increases of STI’s across St. Clair County. 

“Unfortunately, people who become infected may not always experience any symptoms of the infection, and then may, themselves, become unaware of the carrier of the infection… If treated timely, many STI’s can be cured. Untreated STI’s can lead to serious health problems,” Benway stated in the email.

The Center for Disease Control states that chlamydia is a common STI that can infect both men and women. The disease can cause serious, permanent damage to a woman’s reproductive system, making it difficult or impossible for her to get pregnant later on. Chlamydia can also cause a potentially fatal ectopic pregnancy, which is pregnancy that occurs outside the womb.

The CDC further states that most people who have chlamydia have no symptoms. If you do have symptoms, they may not appear until several weeks after you have sex with an infected partner. Even when chlamydia causes no symptoms, it can damage your reproductive system.

Women with symptoms may notice

  • An abnormal vaginal discharge;
  • A burning sensation when urinating.

Symptoms in men can include

  • A discharge from their penis;
  • A burning sensation when urinating;
  • Pain and swelling in one or both testicles, although this is less common

Gonorrhea is an STI that can also infect both men and women. It can cause infections in the genitals, rectum, and throat. According to the CDC it is a very common infection, especially among young people ages 15-24 years.

Some men with gonorrhea may have no symptoms at all. However, men who do have symptoms, may have:

  • A burning sensation when urinating;
  • A white, yellow, or green discharge from the penis;
  • Painful or swollen testicles, although this is less common.

Most women with gonorrhea do not have any symptoms. Even when a woman has symptoms, they are often mild and can be mistaken for a bladder or vaginal infection. Women with gonorrhea are at risk of developing serious complications from the infection, even if they don’t have any symptoms.

Symptoms in women can include:

  • Painful or burning sensation when urinating;
  • Increased vaginal discharge;
  • Vaginal bleeding between periods.

In both chlamydia and gonorrhea, the only way to avoid the diseases is to not have vaginal, anal, or oral sex.  However, if an individual is sexually active, the following things can lower the chances of getting chlamydia and gonorrhea:

  • Being in a long-term mutually monogamous relationship with a partner who has been tested and has negative STI test results;
  • Using latex condoms the right way every time you have sex.

It is possible for someone who has once had both chlamydia and gonorrhea to get the disease again after it has been previously treated.

The district provided parents with additional information about symptoms, treatments, and prevention of STI’s and asked parents to review them and contact the health offices at either the Smiley or Milburn campuses if they have any questions.

Consultants chosen to prepare school consolidation report

O’FALLON – During a recent BEST committee meeting, it was reported that the committee assembled to organize a study into the possible consolidation of the four O’Fallon area school districts has chosen consultants to conduct the effort.

Dave Hopkins, who represents the committee organized by the O’Fallon-Shiloh Chamber of Commerce as an independent party, said the committee has chosen Dr. Nick Osborne and Dr. James Rosborg.

Osborne and Rosborg most recently prepared a consolidation feasibility study for Freeburg, Smithton, and St. Libory school districts. In that report, the pair did recommend consolidation, however child sex abuse allegations at Freeburg District 70 and the potential litigation costs associated with them scuttled the deal. 

The consultants have told Hopkins that they plan to discuss the consolidation idea with each of the four school districts, Districts 85, 90, 104, and 203, to determine the level of interest in consolidating. If they feel a district will not comply and the board of education will vote not to take part, they don’t wish to pursue consolidation plans that include that district as it could kill the whole process. An event similar to this took place when Smithton rejected the consolidation idea with Freeburg and St. Libory. 

“They are going to get the base data and then they will make the recommendation of which will be the most effective combination of schools. At the mid-point [of the study], they will make the recommendation of final combination,” Hopkins said. 

“The basis behind this is that if they have indications that at one school district or another that the idea just isn’t going to pass, they’re going to leave them out rather than pay for a separate study. Do what has a chance of succeeding rather than grasping at scenarios,” Hopkins continued. 

The projected cost of the study is around $17,500. The city of O’Fallon has dedicated $7,500 and the village of Shiloh has agreed to contribute $5,000. The remaining $5,000 is expected to be raised in the community. Hopkins said he does not anticipate the committee will have to approach any of the school boards for contributions towards the study cost. 

The study is expected to be completed by June 30. It will first be made available to the chamber committee, then the chamber membership, and then the public at large.

“I’m very happy we have a consultant identified and that we’re moving forward. We’re probably about a year later than what I expected, but I’m happy to see some momentum,” Hopkins told the BEST committee members.

Area Girl Scouts take a trip around the globe for World Thinking Day

FAIRVIEW HEIGHTS – Local Girl Scouts from O’Fallon, Shiloh, and Fairview Heights received a global view of their organization on Saturday as Service Unit #201 took part in a World Thinking Day event. 

According to organizer Mae Scott, World Thinking Day acknowledges that there are Girl Scouts in hundreds of countries.

“Each troop chose a country. They researched about the Girl Scouts, or similar component that is part of the world association of Girl Scouts, and they learned about the country, the food, the customs. They learned what it is like to be a Girl Scout in other countries,” said Scott.

The Scouts traveled through a world showcase, this year set up in the gymnasium of Illini Elementary School in Fairview Heights.

“The girls will learn a little bit about each country without having to leave the building,” Scott said.

This year’s event featured 35 countries and more than 350 Scouts from 37 troops took part. The girls ranged in age from five to their teens. 

“Its an event for all of our girls. Its neat to watch them learn and experience the other nations, along with watching them teach each other what they’ve learned,” Scott said.

Panther Girls Bowling win State Championship, make OTHS history

O’Fallon Panther Girl’s Bowling team make OTHS history

O’FALLON – The third time was the charm for the O’Fallon Panthers Girls Bowling team, as they made school history and won the IHSA State Bowling Tournament on Saturday at Cherry Bowl in Rockford. 

Coming so close in the past two years makes it just that much sweeter that they would not only win this year, but also be the first team in OTHS history to win a state team championship.

Senior Lauren Tomaszewski averaged 212 over 12 rounds for the Lady Panthers. Her 683 and 670 on Saturday helped her to finish second overall in the tournament with 2,552 pins. 

Juniors Mary Orf and Natalie Heltne also came in big, scoring 2,430 and 2,429 pins respectively. Senior Hayleigh Williams walked away from state scoring 2,398. Along with junior Grace Braswell, the team finished the tournament with 12,122 pins, only 98 more than the previous year’s champion, Machesney Park Harlem. The remaining teams in the top five consisted of Minooka, Joliet West, and Lockport.

“This was an amazing experience coaching these girls. I was so proud to be their coach and was so impressed with the hard work they put into this. The success they found in this will carry over into the success they will find in their lives, as long as they bring the same principles of hard work into everything they do,” said Head Coach Garrett Spencer. “Its a great day to be a Panther.”

The State Champions received a ride around town on an O’Fallon Fire truck before being welcomed back to OTHS with a celebration

The team celebrated the historic victory on Monday, starting with a ride around town on top of an O’Fallon Fire truck and escorted by the O’Fallon Police Department. From there, the team was honored at a reception at the Panther Dome.

“This weekend, history was made at O’Fallon Township High School. We have our first ever state championship team in our girls bowlers,” Superintendent Darcy Benway began the celebratory reception by saying.

Principal Rich Bickel said the team exemplified what the athletic program at OTHS is about. 

“Three of the pillars of our athletic program at OTHS are ‘Lead Boldly’, ‘Compete Fiercely’, and ‘Love Strong’. Those principles are embodied by this squad. Talk about competing fiercely, that state tournament is set up to be grueling. It’s set up as a 12 round, over two day, endurance test of mental strength for these girls. One of the things that struck me was how fiercely they competed but did so with total class,” Principal Rich Bickel said.

“One of the things that gave me total chills was in the eleventh round of this twelve round bout was when they were neck and neck with the defending state champions, and then they dropped that hammer on that team!” Bickel continued.

The girls program first began at OTHS 23-years ago. At the start, Bickel served as the coach for what was a co-ed bowling team. 

Athletic Director Todd Moeller said the Lady Panthers are a fantastic example for the whole community of how to deal with adversity. 

“Last year the girls went to state. We had such high expectations and things just didn’t work out the way you planned. But you made a resolution in your minds and you came back and you did it! Let that lesson live in you for the rest of your lives. Failure doesn’t mean failure forever. It’s only failure for the moment. So great job for everyone here in O’Fallon serving as a model of what failure can mean for us,” Athletic Director Todd Moeller said to the team. 

Moeller compared the team to Roger Banister, who is known for being the first man to run a four-minute mile. 

“After he ran the four-minute mile, he broke the belief barrier for everyone behind him. That’s exactly what you’ve done at OTHS. Because now we’re going to have more [championships]. We’re going to have more in other sports because you have broken the belief barrier. It not only can happen here, it has happened here and I’m so proud of all of you,” Moeller said. 

A banner will soon be designed and hung in the Panther Dome. 

Community invited to celebrate Girls Bowling state championship victory

Principal Rich Bickel and the O’Fallon Township High School Girls Bowling team and coaches celebrate the school’s first state championship on Saturday, February 16. (Submitted Photo)

O’FALLON – The OTHS Girls Bowling team has won the first state championship in the school’s history and the public is invited to welcome them home and party with them to celebrate.

The team will climb aboard a fire truck at Fire House 4, located at Venita Drive near the O’Fallon Sports Park, at 2 p.m. on Monday, February 18. The truck will ride the team around town running from Venita to Porter to Obernueffeman, to West State, to Lincoln, to Third, to Smiley, and finally to OTHS.

Fans are asked to arrive by 1:45 p.m. to line up and cheer for them the team passes by.

From there, a reception will be held from 2:30 until 3 p.m. in the foyer of the Panther Dome. Fans and community members are invited to stop in and congratulate the Lady Panthers on their historic accomplishment. 

“Let’s celebrate together as a community and congratulate the Lady Panthers!! Congrats to Coach Spencer and the Lady Panther Bowling team,” Athletic Director Todd Moeller said in an email announcing the event.

Woman’s Club honors life of Elsworth Gartside at monthly flag ceremony

O’FALLON – The O’Fallon Woman’s Club and members of Girl Scout Troop 482 from Estelle Kampmeyer and Troop 213 from Fulton Junior High School celebrated the life and World War II service of Elsworth Gartside, Technician 5, US Army at the club’s monthly flag ceremony on February 2. 

Elsworth Gartside was born in O’Fallon on December 21, 1919, a son of Levi and Kate Bertram Gartside. After graduation from O’Fallon Township High School, he accepted a position in a welding shop in Chicago. He was among the first O’Fallon boys to be drafted.

Gartside was inducted into the US Army at Belleville on June 13, 1941. He received basic training at Camp Polk, Louisiana, and embarked for overseas duty in August 1943. He was attached to the 3rd Armored Division, 54th Field Artillery under General George Patton. 

Gartside was killed in action in the Battle of the Rhineland on October 22, 1944. He was temporarily buried in the Henri-Chapelle temporary cemetery in Belgium. His remains were returned to the United States on October 26, 1947 and he was buried at St. John’s Cemetery in Collinsville in December with full military honors.

The vocalist for the ceremony was Kimberly Bennett, who sang the National Anthem.

The minimum wage increase dooms small businesses

Well, it has started and is taking place quicker than even I imagined. Last week the Senate introduced and passed legislation increasing the state minimum wage to $15 from its current $8.25. The bill now sits in the House of Representatives, where it will be called by Speaker Madigan and inevitably passed by the Democrat super majority. The goal is to have it done before Governor Prtizker gives his budget address later this month so he has something to tout as an accomplishment.

And what an accomplishment!

Through this one piece of legislation Pritzker and the Democrat super majority will wipe out a number of small businesses in Illinois and keep businesses from wanting to locate in Illinois. I can tell you that I have been running the numbers as it relates to the O’Fallon Weekly and its not been pretty.

Currently, I have two employees and the following math is based on just those two employees. Neither are paid the minimum wage, but they’re not making much above it. 

Beginning in January 2020, minimum wage increases $1 to $9.25. Then on July 1, 2020, it increases to $10. This is a $1.75 increase in one year. 

From there, the rate increases $1 per year until 2025 when it finally maxes out at $15 per hour. 

The first year doesn’t kill the Weekly. Under this structure, it will cost me an additional $1,300 in wages. 

NOTE: None of this math takes into account increased payroll taxes. That’s something I need to speak with my accountant about.

Year two, when the rate goes to $11 per hour is when things get fun. That’s when I now need to find an additional $3,494 to cover my two employees versus today. Mind you, this means I can have no staff growth or find a way to pay myself anything yet.

By year three, my payroll expenses for two employees has jumped by $6,874.

Year four adds $10,254 to my bottom line expenses.

Year five will bring me an increase of $13,634.

Finally, by year six, 2025, my payroll will have increased by $17,014. I essentially need to find the cash in my current, meager budget to pay for another part time employee. Mind you, I can’t actually go and HIRE another part time employee. I just have to find money that I would have used to do so and give it to my current employees.

This doesn’t account for any other extra increased costs for goods that can be attributed to the need for my vendors to make more money so they can pay higher wages as well. This math is strictly payroll, and to think there won’t be other increases to be dealt with is utter ignorance.  

The simple fact is that my budget cannot withstand this cash grab. Cash grab? Yup. This is a tax increase in disguise.

Think about it… who wins when wages go up? The worker? NO! Prices of goods will increase accordingly to accommodate the inflated salaries and wages. 

The only people who win when the minimum wage increases are the unions and the state government. Many unions base their wages or cost of living increases in contracts as a percentage above minimum wage. 

And the state government? Oh, they’re going to rake in so many more payroll tax dollars. And don’t think for a second you won’t see a corresponding income tax increase to go along with this wage increase. Pritzker already has been setting the table for that announcing that the budget deficit is higher than former-Governor Rauner reported. They’re itching to take hold of those newly increased wages they’ve so generously given you.

So what can be done? At this point, I fear very little. It’s pretty obvious this is going to pass and we’ll have to deal with it. I now have to figure out how to squeeze more blood out of a rock in order to keep what I’ve got and maybe someday expand. And maybe even one day pay myself what will probably amount to less than minimum wage, but I’m just a big greedy business owner.

Thanks Springfield…

Bank of O’Fallon Shootout serves as showcase for top high school programs

O’FALLON – The Panther Dome was packed with basketball fans this past weekend watching some of the best in high school hoops from around Illinois at the fifth annual Bank of O’Fallon Shootout. 

The action began on Friday evening when Alton took on Springfield Southeast. Terrion Murdix led Springfield Southeast over the Redbirds, 64-58.

Game two featured the O’Fallon Panthers against the Belleville West Maroons. 

The game was tight and competitive, but West led O’Fallon 35-28 at the half. 

After three quarters Belleville West continued to lead O’Fallon 46-37. However, O’Fallon’s Drew Tebbe led all scorers with four 3-pointers at the end of the third. 

The Panthers rallied back but ultimately fell short, losing 55-49 to Belleville West.

The final game on Friday evening featured the Collinsville Kahoks against Springfield Lanphier. Collinsville led the game, ultimately winning 76-59.

Saturday, February 2, featured a number of games  basktetball fans were clamoring to see.

The first game featured CBC against Normal West.  CBC took a small lead before heading into the second half and retained it through the third and fourth quarters. CBC defeated Normal West by a score of 61-50.

Game five of the Shootout was nicknamed the Battle of Scott-Troy Road, when the O’Fallon Panthers took on the Triad Knights. At the end of the first half, the Panthers led Triad 26-21. 

The two teams were fairly evenly matched, but it was O’Fallon that pulled ahead when it counted, winning game five by a score of 37-35. Shaun Riley II was named the Northwestern Mutual MVP for the game. 

“This win gives us some big momentum. We’re just looking forward to playoff time,” Riley told a student reporter for OTHSToday.com in a post-game interview.

Game six featured Whitney Young versus Iowa City West. Whitney Young came out to an early lead and led 24-17 at the half. By the end of the game, Iowa City West would put up some more points, but not enough to defeat Whitney Young. Whitney Young won 58-42.

The final game of the Shootout featured the Belleville West Maroons against Simeon. The game was extremely tight, with West only leading 26-25 at the half. The teams would go into overtime, tied at 45. Ultimately it was West who pulled off the 55-54 OT win.

Local school districts working toward plan to establish their own bus services

O’FALLON – Changes could be coming to local bus routes if a plan for the four local school districts to establish their own transportation system were to come to fruition. 

O’Fallon/Shiloh school districts began analysis of transportation costs and services over the summer, as an area where potential cost savings could be found. The preliminary direction of the analysis was for the districts to combine transportation services and become self-operational. All four districts, Shiloh District 85, O’Fallon District 90, Central District 104 and OTHS District 203, currently use Illinois Central for bus services and EMT for special education transportation.  

Superintendents have been in communication with Belleville schools that went self-operational this school year, tracking their methods and savings as a model for O’Fallon/Shiloh districts. At their December board meetings, all districts approved the creation of a Transportation Director position as the first step to becoming self-operational as early as July 2019. 

Meetings have taken place over the last couple of months with Illinois Central, and recent proposals may have superintendents and school boards looking in a different direction for the 2019-2020 school year than originally planned. 

At the OTHS school board meeting on January 24, Superintendent Dr. Darcy Benway presented information to the board from Illinois Central with discounts and other opportunities for additional savings. The most recent proposals from Illinois Central have estimated cost savings for OTHS of $216,000 per year.

Illinois Central is offering a seven percent rate decrease for the 2019-2020 school year, an immediate $85,000 savings for OTHS. Because school districts are not charged sales tax, a proposal for the schools to directly purchase the fuel instead of Illinois Central would provide an estimated $6,000 savings. 

Special education transportation is currently provided by EMT, and Illinois Central is proposing to purchase the needed vans to provide that service instead. Dr. Benway indicated that the district is currently charged on a per pupil basis with EMT, Illinois Central’s proposal would coordinate special education transportation across the four districts and will not be charged on a per pupil basis. The potential savings to OTHS is estimated to be $25,000 and would total $100,000-125,000 across the four districts. 

The greatest savings opportunity presented by Illinois Central was to coordinate bell schedules across the four districts. Creating efficiencies with scheduling would reduce the number of buses needed for Illinois Central by 12-15 buses. This would be an estimated $425,000 across the four districts, $100,000 specifically for OTHS. 

Dr. Benway indicated that coordinating the bell schedules will likely alter start and end times a little for each district, and would also require the academic calendars across the four districts to be identical. Coordinated academic calendars across the districts has been a desire of many parents, and the OTHS school board saw this as an added benefit to Illinois Central’s proposals. 

The early estimates for savings for OTHS if the transportation services became self-operational were about $250,000. The recommendation from Dr. Benway, which the board agreed with, was to pursue the proposal by Illinois Central for the 2019-2020 school year. The estimated savings with Illinois Central are close enough to the savings they were hoping to receive going self-operational without the liability. 

The possibility of self-operational transportation services is still an option for the districts in the future, but will not be considered for the 2019-2020 school year at OTHS. At the time of the OTHS school board meeting, the other three districts had already held their January board meetings, so those boards will receive the information of savings specific to their districts at their February meetings.

Large snow storm expected to begin around Noon on Friday

The O’Fallon area is bracing itself for what is predicted to be a large winter storm.

The National Weather Service is predicting the storm will impact St. Clair County around noon today, bringing between six and twelve inches of snow in some areas before it ends around midnight Saturday night into Sunday morning. The bulk of the snow is expected to fall prior to Saturday morning and then continuing off and on throughout the day on Saturday. 

The city issued a press release on Thursday telling residents to please clear their vehicles off of emergency snow routes so that plows could effectively treat the roadways. 

“Per city ordinance, emergency snow routes take effect when, at any time, the depth of snow reaches two inches. Violations of the emergency snow routes may cause your vehicle(s) to be subject to a tow at the owner’s expense.”

A map of O’Fallon’s emergency snow routes may be viewed by clicking HERE.

We will keep you posted as the situation develops and if we learn of any early dismissal plans from area schools.

McCarter confirmed as U.S. ambassador

Kyle McCarter was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as the newest Ambassador to Kenya on January 2, 2019.
(File Photo)

Former State Senator Kyle McCarter, a Republican from Lebanon, was confirmed to by the United States Senate to serve as the next Ambassador to the Republic of Kenya. 

McCarter was confirmed on a voice vote, along with 23 other appointees, on January 2, 2019. President Donald Trump nominated McCarter to serve as Ambassador to Kenya on March 28, 2018.

McCarter will replace Ambassador Robert Godec who was appointed by President Barack Obama. Godec wished his successor well in a tweet posted on January 3.

“Congratulations Kyle McCarter on your confirmation by the U.S. Senate as the next U.S. Ambassador to Kenya! It’s been an honor & privilege to serve here for six years. Lori & I will forever cherish our friendships & memories of this beautiful country & its extraordinary people,” Godec tweeted.

McCarter has represented parts of O’Fallon for many years, both as a St. Clair County Board Member in District 15 and as State Senator in District 54. McCarter did not seek re-election this year to his State Senate Seat, imposing a term limit on himself.

McCarter operates a family charity in Kenya called EachOne FeedOne International. Founded more than 30 years ago, the organization works with orphaned and abandoned children and treats those with diseases such as HIV and AIDS.

OTHS honors student athletes

OTHS honoring All-State athletes and teams for their outstanding athletic accomplishments, as well as the two athletes named Athlete of the Year for 2017-18, in between the Boys and Girls Basketball games on Friday, January 4.  

All State Athletes for the 2018 calendar year honored were:

Winter 2017- 2018

• Jack Bond – Wrestling

• Lauren Tomaszewski – Bowling

• Jalen Hodge – Basketball

Spring 2018

• Hayden Juenger – Baseball

• Quinn Lowery – Baseball

• Nate Martin – Baseball

• Sam Stutsman – Girls Soccer

• Bryce Backhus – Boys Volleyball

• Connor Sheehan – Boys Volleyball 

• Dominic Macaluso – Boys Tennis

All State Teams honored for the 2018 calendar year were:

• Winter 2017-18 Boys Bowling

• Winter 2017-18 Girls Bowling

• Winter 2017-2018 Golden Girls 

• Spring 2018  Boys Lacrosse 

• Fall 2018 Boys Cross Country

The 2017-18 Athletes of the Year honored were Hayden Juenger for his achievements in baseball and bowling and Alyssa McMinn for her spectacular accomplishments in girls golf. 

Among his numerous achievements, Juenger was the 2018 Baseball MVP and named the MVP of the All-State All-Star baseball Game, as well as being named to the 1st team all-conference in bowling. 

McMinn, who holds the lowest tournament average, the lowest match average and lowest single round score in OTHS history, finished in fourth place at the IHSA state tournament earning her all-state honors by the IHSA. She was also named the Metro East Golf Coaches Association Player of the Year.

Panthers down Tigers in close matchup

O’FALLON – The O’Fallon Panthers played hard and narrowly defeated their conference rival, the Edwardsville Tigers, 42-40 on Friday, January 4.

Edwardsville led the Panthers by one at the close of the first quarter, but O’Fallon would flip the script and lead 18-17 at the half.

Following halftime, the teams were evenly matched, both scoring 11 points each in the third quarter. However, O’Fallon would manage to score one more point over the Tigers in the fourth, giving them the narrow two-point victory.

Senior Kyle Dismukes led the Panthers with 11 points, while Amarey Wills was close behind scoring ten points. Drew Tebbe led the team with three-pointers with two.

OTHS Football Head Coach, Joggerst, resigns from position

Brandon Joggerst

O’FALLON – Football Head Coach Brandon Joggerst has resigned from his position effective with the 2019-20 school year. 

In a letter submitted to Principal Rich Bickel and Athletic Director Todd Moeller, Joggerst thanked the school for the privilege of coaching the team for the past twelve years.

“I have had the pleasure of personally interacting with thousands of players during the past twenty four years as both a head and as an assistant coach. OTHS has great student-athletes who work extremely hard both on the field and in the classroom. Our football program has had over 100 players attend college and play at 60 different universities during the last twelve years as their high school coach,” Joggerst wrote.

During his time as coach, OTHS won three conference championships and participated in seven state playoffs.

In his resignation letter, Joggerst had positive words for OTHS and his time coaching.

“I want to thank all of my assistants who have spent countless hours providing unwavering support for our football program. OTHS is truly a special place and I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to guide our student-athletes as their football coach. I want to thank all of the stakeholders for their continued support during the past twelve years,” Joggerst wrote.

Since taking the reigns of the team in 2008 from Moeller, Joggerst would take the team to a 86-50 record. This past fall the Panthers struggled and went 1-8 for the season.