Metea Valley's Vozza resigns as coach
Bob Vozza was on the ground floor of both the Neuqua Valley and Metea Valley boys basketball programs. After more than 20 years coaching other people's children, he doesn't want to miss his own three sons' achievements.
In news that came to light Monday, Vozza said he tendered his resignation to Metea Valley athletic director Dan DeBruyker on April 6.
"With two of my boys being in high school next year, I made the decision I kind of wanted to experience those games next year," said Vozza, 43, a guidance counselor at Metea Valley.
Bob and Sue Ellen Vozza live in Wheaton but in the District 87 district. This fall they'll have two boys at Glenbard South and another in sixth grade at Glen Crest Middle School, each playing a minimum of two sports including, of course, basketball.
"It's been a long three weeks, talking to my wife and talking to my kids," Bob Vozza said. "It was not an easy decision. I just finished my 23rd year in coaching, it's kind of all I know and all my kids know. It's going to be a big life change. I'm kind of nervous and a little scared about it, but I don't want to miss their experiences."
Paired with the March 24 posting of the Waubonsie Valley job following Chaz Taft's resignation, Vozza's decision suddenly leaves the longest-tenured boys basketball coach in District 204, Neuqua Valley's Todd Sutton, the last man standing.
Before starting as Sutton's top assistant at Neuqua Valley in 1996-97 and helping the Wildcats go from a six-win debut season to two supersectional appearances, Vozza coached three seasons for Tim Pease at Geneva, his first year while still a senior at Aurora University.
A 1990 graduate of Waubonsie Valley and an inductee into Waubonsie's Athletic Hall of Fame, Vozza became Metea Valley's first varsity boys coach in 2010. He went 107-70 in six seasons and amazingly for a startup program, last season's 14-16 record was the Mustangs' first sub-.500 campaign.
Vozza quickly hit paydirt at Metea when in his second season, 2011-12, Kenny Obendorf and the Mustangs went 25-5 and reached the sectional finals.
"Just to be able to open a school with a group like that -- they just bought into it very early -- it was truly a great experience to be a part of," Vozza said.
He thanked former Metea principal Jim Schmid and former athletic director Tom Schweer for giving him the chance to be a head coach, and current principal Darrel Echols and DeBruyker for their support, plus all his players and staff.
"It's going to be weird," Vozza said of not coaching the Mustangs, "but I'm going to realize what I'm doing when I'm sitting and watching my kids."