ShareThis Page
Gorman: No change in South Park’s Loughran |

Gorman: No change in South Park’s Loughran

Sidney Davis | Trib Total Media
South Park's Tom Loughran conducts practice on Thursday August 14, 2014.
Sidney Davis | Trib Total Media
South Park head coach Tom Loughran on Thursday August 14, 2014.

Tom Loughran still wears the Spot-Bilt cleats he won at a Johnny Majors Pitt clinic in the mid-1970s and carries a high school football rulebook in his back pocket every game.

The South Park coach, who completes the New York Times crossword puzzle every Sunday, admits he’s a creature of habit.

So, he wasn’t about to change his coaching style after South Park’s school board tried making a coaching change last January.

“I don’t prepare any different any year for any group that we have,” said Loughran, who returned for his 32nd season. “I do the best I can, and my coaching staff does the best we can to prepare collectively with the material that we’re given.”

Why would Loughran change, given that he has won 186 games and two WPIAL and two PIAA Class AA titles at a school that had never won anything?

But this is the age of school boards making changes for the sake of making changes, believing that they know best. This one tried to use a 33-41 record the past eight seasons against Loughran, despite a 16-0 record and state title in 2005.

Loughran was never given an explanation, nor does he deny his disappointment over how it was handled. After an outpouring of community support, he returned and simply went back to work showing South Park what kind of coach it has.

The Eagles (8-2) started the season 1-2 but have won seven consecutive entering Friday’s WPIAL quarterfinal against No. 1 seed South Fayette (10-0).

“I’m not trying to say that I’m the best coach, teacher, parent or person,” Loughran said, “but I work at it every day.”

Win or lose, South Park should make one change: Consider itself lucky to have Loughran.

Kevin Gorman is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at [email protected] or via Twitter @KGorman_Trib.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.