St. Edmond hires Borer

New Gael football coach coming from Nebraska

Submitted photo New St. Edmond football coach Jon Borer.

Jon Borer has been handed the reins of the St. Edmond football program, the school officially announced on Friday.

Borer will replace Dick Tighe, who resigned from the position of head football coach following 15 seasons this past fall. He is expected to start in May after concluding his current teaching contract.

“My wife and I are very excited about the opportunity,” Borer said. “We have been very impressed with the St. Edmond community so far, and look forward to developing many relationships in the coming months.

“We thought the school and community would be a good fit for our family. It had all the qualities we were looking for in a strong, Catholic school. We both grew up in smaller communities and it is something we want for our (three) children.”

Borer most recently coached Mount Michael Benedictine in Elkhorn, Neb., where he posted a career record of 12-35 over five seasons. He was also the athletic director at the school.

The Knights went 4-5 a year ago, their second four-win season under Borer. Mount Michael had won just five games total from 2006-11, and had not won four contests in a single season since 2004.

His work at Mount Michael went beyond just coaching football, though.

Borer was the driving force and leader behind a brand-new football field being built in 2014. For 40 previous years, the Knights played at the local middle school.

“Jon is a very high-character family man who has only taught and worked in Catholic schools,” St. Edmond president Mary Gibb said. “He knows how they operate and work. He talked about building relationships with the athletes (during his interview). He encourages multi-sport athletes, and will be a tremendous asset to our coaching staff as a whole.

“There were just a multitude of things that stuck out about Jon as the top candidate.”

Borer’s coaching resume also includes stops at Thomas More Prep-Marian in Kansas — he was the head coach for two seasons, going 7-11 overall — and Lourdes Central, where he was the offensive coordinator. While at Lourdes, the offense set new school-records for passing and total yards, ranking in the Top-5 in its class.

St. Edmond, which reached the Class 1A state championship and semifinal rounds in 2013 and ’14, respectively, under Tighe, went just 2-7 a year ago. But the cupboard is far from bare for Borer, as starting quarterback Andrew Gibb returns on offense for what will be his junior season and the state’s leading tackler, senior-to-be Jack Rasmussen, is back on defense.

“All of the candidates did a nice job. Jon just had something that the committee felt was special,” St. Edmond athletic director Joe Shanks said. “He stood out over the others.”

Shanks added that all current Gael assistant coaches are expected to return next year to the staff.

Current juniors Cade Naughton, Ty Smith, Sean Flaherty and Will Woodruff; sophomores Elijah Litwiller, Peyton Spangler, Sean Newell, Jake Rossow and Mason O’Brien; and freshmen Charlie Shelly, Jackson Bemrich and Nick Lawler all spent time in the starting lineup.

“After spending time in the school and area, as well as much prayer and reflection, it seemed like the right time and place for our family,” Borer said. “In the short term, I want to meet the players, parents and coaches, getting a start on building relationships.

“Long term, I want to establish a program that people want to be associated with, which brings great pride to St. Edmond and the community.”

Prior to his coaching career, Borer was part of the first-ever football team in Briar Cliff University history, playing quarterback. He finished his career ranked in the Top-6 in school history for passing touchdowns, attempts, completions and yards.

Borer graduated from Wahoo Bishop Neumann High School in Nebraska before completing his degree in secondary education/history at Briar Cliff. He received his Master’s in educational leadership from Doane College.