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WOHS Football Future at Stake

Help defeat the attempted ouster of WOHS Head Football Coach Jacob.

In case some are not aware, the WOBOE Interim Superintendent has opened a search for new WOHS athletic coaches and is requiring current coaches to reapply for their positions.

Inasmuch as the application process has been inconsistent and shockingly biased for and against certain coaches and programs, there appears to be a nefarious personal agenda at play, orchestrated by someone who is determined to oust WO Head Football Coach John Jacob at any cost to satisfy his own selfish desires.

I probably don't need to detail the long list of ways Coach Jacob has been a mentor, father figure, and confidant to hundreds of young men. Suffice to say, anyone who knows John Jacob, whether as a former player, current player, friend, or supporter, knows what this man means to West Orange football. 

I implore everyone who cares about our football program to attend the BOE meeting on January 28 and voice their opinion in favor of retaining Coach Jacob and his staff. An overwhelming show of support can make a difference.  

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

john anthony prignano January 22, 2013 at 09:06 PM
I'll answer for you, "No." *
john anthony prignano January 22, 2013 at 09:39 PM
John Doe, The teams West Orange defeated last year had a combined record of 15 wins and 34 losses. Columbia defeated West Orange, and Columbia's record for the season was 4 wins and 6 losses. But that's neither here nor there. Here's a quote from Mr. Jacob himself; " If I can't turn this program around , I'm not the right man for the job." His overall record is 52 wins, 58 losses .He has consistently lost to winning teams, even teams from smaller schools, and he is occasionally upset by losing teams.In the case of Union City, West Orange was eliminated from the playoffs by a team that West Orange had defeated in the regular season. And as far as I know, he has never beaten a team that was a clear favorite. If you believe he's " turned the program around " so be it.
barry_geltzeiler January 22, 2013 at 10:42 PM
john anthony prignano You have a problem with every part of this town so you going against Coach only strengthens my conviction. BTW hows the trees on your street? Still need trimming!!!!! LOL
Jon Doe January 23, 2013 at 01:51 AM
its ok prignano. Your career didn't turn out to well the hatred for jakes is still there. Let it go man game over. Life is not what you thought it would be?
john doe 2 January 23, 2013 at 02:23 AM
Listen john we all know you weren't a fan of john jacobs its clear... you are one out of 100 kids that came out of this program. If you want to sit and talk about the records go ahead. Football is a sport that kids in highschool to enjoy and hopefully play in college. Jakes has successfully put many kids in college for football, and the program has grown from 2006 season. If your judging his coaching ability by records your wrong buddy. To be a coach means to be a mentor, a teacher, and a leader. Jakes surpasses all these categories and more. The program is growing its only a matter of time that a championship will come. But the football community has never been bigger. The mission in highschool football is turning young boys to men in today's society, getting kids into college, and winning is in the mix. He is a successful man and he will never put his program mission in jeopardy just to win.
Jacky Crann January 23, 2013 at 03:05 AM
I really don't want to get into it with anyone... but I would like to say that Coach Jakes has embraced his responsibilities as not only an educator and coach, but as a mentor of the young men and women under his watch. He has established a culture... a family if you will... of teammates, a brotherhood that if you are a part of the Football Family you will see how this culture is passed down from the Varsity players to the young boys in the PAL. Maybe this past football season wasn't our best, but it wasn't bad either. Next year will be better and the year after that will be even better... I do BELIEVE that within the next few years we will make it to a championship game. Our Football program is built on integrity, pride and accountability. There is no one more qualified to lead our young men into battle on the field, no one with the dedication, integrity, passion, accountability, trust or faith than Coach John Jacob.
Jacky Crann January 23, 2013 at 03:18 AM
I apologize for a mis-type... I should have said HighSchool players, as all of the young men playing football for the high school are a part of our football family, not just the Varsity. Also the young boys look up to the high school boys (their "older" brothers) with Pride! I don't want to speak for anyone else, but I can tell you that if you are a parent involved with our football program you know what I am talking about! Pride, Community, Acceptance... A Place We Call Home. Okay I am done.... for now.
Steve Brodsky January 23, 2013 at 03:29 AM
It's not just about wins and losses John. It's about teaching young men how to be upstanding husbands, fathers, and citizens. It's about sacrificing one's own family life to be available to players who need help with school work. It's about being a role model, friend, father figure, and confidant to youngsters, some of whom have nowhere else to turn for help. On all of those counts, Coach Jacob is more than a winner.
john anthony prignano January 23, 2013 at 05:16 AM
John Anthony Prignano jr.,West Orange High School, class of 2004, is not the writer. Start over.
Jon Doe January 23, 2013 at 04:56 PM
Prignano for the coaching job everyone? I think he would do an awesome job don't you think Johnny boy?
john anthony prignano January 23, 2013 at 07:55 PM
Steve I appreciate the gentlemanly tone of your letter You articulate your points well. First, how well does Jacob teach integrity, maturity and courage of convictions , when some of his most ardent supporters refuse to identify themselves? Also , look at the quality of those letters and then tell me how much he is actually helping those young people with their spelling and punctuation and syntax. Also ,WHY don't these young people have anywhere else to turn? I've often stated that the Character Curriculum, school guidance counselors, school psychologists, school social workers, substance abuse coordinators,ad infinitum, are virtually useless. If you don't agree with me, do you at least see my point? All the complimentary things you have said about John Jacob are more than negated by the reasons my family and I loathe him. He ABSOLUTELY knows those reasons. You write, "There appears to be a nefarious personal agenda at play, orchestrated by someone who is determined to oust WO Head Coach John Jacob at any cost to satisfy his own selfish desires." Steve, this individual that you speak of may be a fan of Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice. In effect, he may be saying to John Jacob what Shylock said; " The villainy you teach me I shall execute, and though it may go hard, I will better the instruction."
Steve Brodsky January 23, 2013 at 09:55 PM
John, I am sorry to hear that you and your family loathe Coach Jacob. I cannot imagine what he could have done to you to make you so bitter. It is apparent that you and I will never agree on this topic, so there's no sense in continuing the debate. Suffice to say, from what I hear, there is tremendous support for the coach, and that support will become apparent in the coming days. I wish you were one of those people.
woresident January 23, 2013 at 10:47 PM
What the coch did to earn his wrath is to be an employee of the WOBOE. The poster you refer to hates the BOE, the teachers union, teachers etc. Thats why he high jacks all posts and spews his hatred.
Gary Englert January 23, 2013 at 11:21 PM
On its face, the idea of periodically opening coaching positions to new applicants does not sound like a bad idea; unless one looks around once in a while, you'll never know what talent is out there. That said, common sense would also dictate that a head coach for any sport be chosen first and then have considerable say in choosing his/her assistants and staff. I'd like to hope the concerns being expressed here are premature and/or overstated...and I do trust that no one person (with whatever personal agenda) is unduly influencing the process.
Kate Farrell January 24, 2013 at 03:25 AM
I'm confused. Nobody got fired, and from what I'm hearing, nobody is trying to get rid of anyone. What is going on here?
AJ January 24, 2013 at 05:52 PM
Why should a coach have an issue with reapplying for their coaching position? If he is an outstanding coach, then he should not be concerned about reapplying, nor endorsing a campaign that is saying he was fired, or that someone is trying to get rid of him. The superintendent initiated the process in the best interests of ALL the students. It seems as though some parents may have a personal interest in keeping Coach Jacob around - like ensuring their kid gets on the varsity and gets play time, especially if they're friends with the coach. There have been issues with Coach Jacob and his behavior that have been a concern to parents also. Perhaps there is more to this situation and Coach Jacob than meets the eye.
barry_geltzeiler January 24, 2013 at 06:52 PM
Aj you ask the question "Why should a coach have an issue with reapplying for their coaching position? If he is an outstanding coach," email the Coach at JJacob@woboe.org and ask him, he will answer you. Lastly you make the comment "Perhaps there is more to this situation and Coach Jacob than meets the eye" what are you insinuating? You obviousl;y have information and you are hiding behind a screen name so why dont you just post your allegations?
Steve Brodsky January 24, 2013 at 09:33 PM
Hey AJ, please don't make up stories and post them as the truth. The coach is not "endorsing" anything. He has nothing to do with it. I have not spoken to him since the season ended. This is a movement being put together by parents and players who care about the best interests of the WO football program. And BTW, I'm pretty sure you don't have to reapply for your job at regular intervals. Teachers don't. My employees don't. If you're doing a bad job, you get fired. If you are doing a good job, it's yours to keep. That's usually the way things work.
AJ January 25, 2013 at 04:55 AM
@Barry... I am familiar with Coach Jakes.. so it's not necessary for you to bully anyone. How about this. Why has West Orange High School had such problems with retaining AD's? Who has caused ADs at the high school so many problems? Could it it be someone who doesn't want to answer to anyone? And why not fight for all the coaches that must reapply, not just Coach Jakes? How did you even hear of this? @Steve... I know of former students that have been contacted to come out to the BOE meeting next Monday. Do you know all these former students? Who contacted them? Steve, coaches are NOT tenured positions. Once the season is over, you must reapply. When is the last time the district advertised externally for all coaching positions? Coaching positions are stipend positions, not secure teaching jobs.
barry_geltzeiler January 25, 2013 at 02:25 PM
AJ I am sorry if you took my post as a bully stance. A select few of us use our real name and you use a screen name which makes it quite easy for you to make comments without being held to them. i was serious in emailing Jakes, he is extremely accessible and will honestly answer your questions. As for fighting for all of the coaches, perhaps you should speak to some BOE members, as I have adamant against this practice of reapplying from the time i was informed of it. As for the former students being contacted, once the ad was placed in star ledger different groups have contacted their peers, current students, former students, former players, parents and members of the community to support Jakes. If you ask, Jakes and his staff they are embarrassed by all of the attention and this is not what they want. But the issue is that nobody in afforementioned groups want see Jakes and his staff gone so there is no stopping this.If you know anything about Jakes this is not the way he goes about things, but it has snowballed. Monday night is going to be very interesting. It is interesting AJ you all the BOE buzzwords and phrases, perhaps you are a school employee ?
Ann Jamison January 28, 2013 at 04:00 AM
LOL... Barry, no I am a parent just like you only I've had kids in the football program. Any involved parent knows 'buzz words' like tenure, and stipend. If Coach is embarrassed, why is everyone persisting in making this a cause? I would be surprised if 'all parents and students' agreed with you.
Ann Jamison January 28, 2013 at 04:01 AM
Please, though, call me AJ.
barry_geltzeiler January 28, 2013 at 02:30 PM
AJ the parents, alumni, students, players, former players and community are persisting becaue they all want to be proactive and do want a situation like the girls softaball coach where they were standing up for the coach after he was fired. AJ you should come to tonights BOE meeting and you will be surprised at the turn out. More people agree with me than you can imagine!!!! This meeting will not only be standing room only i dont believe the WOHS library will be able to hold all the people. I know the Star Ledger will have a reporter there. This is much bigger than you realize!
barry_geltzeiler January 28, 2013 at 04:25 PM
Pretty funny nobody knows an Ann Jamison or have any recollection of having children in the school and/or football program, Obviously as i first alleged you are a Bligh plant and/or school employee! LMAO AJ!!! all of a sudden you log on for the first time to comment on this, clown!!!
wohopeful January 28, 2013 at 04:48 PM
Could be that Ms. Jamison is using her maiden name and her children have the surname of their father, Could be that the children she speaks of are foster children with entirely different surnames, could be you haven't spoken to enough people to find the ones that have a recollection of her, etc. Any number of very plausible reasons why your research failed to dig up information on her or her children, not that it needed to be done other than to satisfy your paranoiaic instincts. Ms. Jamison makes some very caluable observations and asks meritorious questions which deserve a respectful response and not personal attacks.
barry_geltzeiler January 28, 2013 at 06:06 PM
sure wohopeful that a possibility but not likely. When a newbie comes on the forum scene with an attacking agenda like AJ and then when this is over disapperars the writing is on the wall. I am born and raised, very active in town coached, pta, boe, town council, I know most of the names plus i do research before i post. Nobody in all of my cirlce know this name plus she has no twitter or facebook presence and comes up empty on the google search. That usually means a phoney!! I could be wrong, but i dont think so!
Ann Jamison January 28, 2013 at 07:31 PM
LOL, wohopeful is right. My kids don't have the same name as I do. How did you get your information at the high school, by the way? My son was at the hs before Mr. Bligh was AD. But I do recall that last year at a BOE meeting, several high profile NJ sports people came out to support him.
barry_geltzeiler January 29, 2013 at 05:20 PM
Hey Ann contact me on face book i can private message some real good information
john anthony prignano February 10, 2013 at 01:47 AM
woresident On January 9 you stated you were going to ignore my posts. Yet on January 23 you commented on my above post. Try to exhibit some self - control. However,if in fact you are ignoring me,it would behoove you not to do it in such a strident manner. Also, you should try to improve your writing skills - coach , teachers' union, and hijacks.
wohopeful February 24, 2013 at 03:38 PM
Looks like Ms. Casalino, bully of the WOBOE has orchestrated part of her evil agenda with the ouster of Coach Jacobs and his staff. The3 hard working, overtaxed, honest families of West Orange deserve better than what Ms. Casalino is profering.


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