Brother Rice grad fills new Sandburg PE/health dept. post
BY PAUL JOHNSON For Sun-Times Media May 21, 2012 1:34PM
Oswego’s athletic programs have enjoyed tremendous success over the past six years under the direction of Brother Rice graduate Steve McInerney. But McInerney says it is time now to move back closer to his roots.
McInerney’s resignation as Oswego’s athletic director is expected to be approved Monday. He is moving on to Sandburg to become its new physical education, health and driver’s education department chair.
“It’s not an easy decision to leave or make changes, but this is a great opportunity for me and my family,” McInerney said. “I wanted to spend more time with my family. Six years flew by in a hurry. We had a great run.”
McInerney heads back close to where he grew up at Sandburg. He still has family in the area. It may be a little further from his St. Charles home, but to him, the opportunity is worth the extra commute.
“A friend of mine has a boat in the Ozarks that is called ‘It’s worth the drive,’” McInerney said. “This is worth the drive.”
Still a licensed athletic trainer, McInerney will still be active in that community, especially when it comes to education and prevention of concussions, a cause he has championed for years. He was inducted into the Illinois Athletic Trainers Association Hall of Fame in 2007.
When he interviewed for the position at Sandburg, he assured current Sandburg athletic director Bruce Scheidegger that he wasn’t gunning for his job.
“I told him I’d come out and help him out anytime, but if it’s cold or raining, I’m not sticking around,” McInernery joked.
McInerney came to Oswego after serving as the head athletic trainer at St. Charles North since that school opened in 2000.
When McInerney arrived at Oswego in 2006, the football team promptly hosted three postseason games and reached the state quarterfinals.
In 2009, he witnessed the boys basketball team make its magical run to second place in Class 3A. Then in 2010, the boys bowling team finished third in the state and the girls basketball team took fourth in Class 3A. But McInerney was more proud of the 85 IHSA team academic awards over the first five years of his tenure and the improvements that have been made to the facilities at Oswego.
“There are so many good kids in Oswego,” McInerney said. “The parents were real supportive. We have a great nucleus of core coaches. The booster club is superior. The parents are die-hards. If you need support, they find a way to get things done. We’ve improved the facilities tremendously, though we still have some things we’re working on. We just tried to make sure we had the tools and resources to compete at a high level. That’s what I always felt the athletic director’s job should be.”