John Hayes receives Lifetime Achievement Award at NFF Banquet
Written by: Billy Splain on Monday, March 23rd, 2015
When Bellwood-Antis hired John Hayes to be their Head Football Coach back in 1980 I don’t think they knew just how important the relationship they were about to build would be. Thirty five years later coach Hayes accepted the Lifetime Achievement in Football Award from the Central Pennsylvania chapter of the National Football Foundation.
“I’m very humbled and extremely grateful that I’ve been able to do what I do. Football in Central Pa. is a way of life” said Hayes. “I do this for the involvement with people, the students and it’s a decision I wouldn’t change.”
John Hayes started out as an assistant at Tyrone from 1969 through 1978. “I never thought about the next year, it was just today that I thought about (on being a coach for 35 years). It’s the challenge, the competition was hard to get away from. It morphed me into what I do now. No matter what you do tomorrow means nothing. It’s what you do today that matters.”
I’ve been fortunate to have coached many fine young men. I never coached a division 1 player, and certainly never an NFL player but I’ve coached a lot of fine young men. Doctors, Lawyers, engineers, law enforcement officials and football played a part in them being so successful. Most of my assistants played for me. ”
John has a stellar record at Bellwood-Antis, with a 296-96-2 record in his 35 year span as a head coach. His teams have been to the PIAA Final Four 3 times, they’ve won six District 6 titles and 17 Inter-County titles but he doesn’t take credit for it all. “I have to thank my wife Vicki, it takes a strong wife to be this successful. “She’s put up with a lot, piles of laundry, scheduling, the meal times always being adjusted, without her I wouldn’t be who I am today.”
He’s got some good advice for those who aspire to be a head coach. “You know, in my 10 years as an assistant it helped formulate things that I thought needed to be done and the relationships that needed to be forged. It’s hard to tell them specifically but each day as you go along you try to encourage in all your coaches what you think to be important and let them be the judge of how they view that because you have to be yourself. It’s a tough path to take and you have to follow your own passion, do what you do. The road to pleasing everyone is the road to failure.”
Coach Hayes has served as the Game Director of the East/West All-Star Game for 2001-2010 and was very instrumental in re-establishing the game when it lost sponsorship. Coach Hayes was also named Regional Athletic Director of the Year in 2001 and State Coach of the Year in 1985.
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