Archbishop Murphy High School announced Wednesday that it has hired Bill Marsh as its next head football coach.
Marsh, who takes over for Dave Ward, was recently an assistant coach at Mercer Island and also coached at Eastside Catholic for 10 years before resigning in 2009. Ward was released from his contract as the Wildcats football coach in early March.
“It’s a good day to be me,” Marsh said Wednesday afternoon. “There’s a lot to be excited about in taking over at Murphy. It’s a program that Terry Ennis built, Dave Ward continued and I hope to not mess up. I want to continue the winning tradition.”
Murphy athletic director Jerry Zander said the school received more than 20 applications for the job from a number of highly qualified applicants, but that Marsh stood above the rest. Zander said the school whittled the number of candidates to a top five and then a top three before choosing Marsh.
“We kept hearing fantastic things from all types of people about Bill,” Zander said. “Most often it was: ‘He’s a good football coach, but a better person.’
“It’s very important to us that we run a competitive and virtuous program and we believe that Bill will do that for us.”
Zander said that former Archbishop Murphy assistant coach Jeff Schmidt was interviewed for the head coaching job and made the top five. All assistant coaching decisions will be made by Marsh, according to Zander.
Archbishop Murphy finished the 2011 season 12-2, losing to Lynden in the 2A state championship game.
Here’s the entire press release from Archbishop Murphy:
“Archbishop Murphy High School has hired Bill Marsh – five-time Metro League football coach of the year – to be its new football coach.
“Marsh was the assistant football coach at Mercer Island High School. Before that, he was head football coach at Eastside Catholic School in Sammamish from 1999 to 2009 where he registered more wins as head coach than any other coach in the school’s history (66-27 overall record). In his final season at Eastside Catholic his team won the Metro League title and finished fifth in the state.
“He also is the executive director of Beecher’s Flagship Foundation, an organization that helps children make smart and healthy eating decisions.
” ‘Bill not only has an excellent coaching background, he understands Archbishop Murphy’s culture and values,’ said Athletic Director Jerry Zander. ‘Our program is all about being competitive and virtuous. Bill will help us take the program in an exciting direction.’
“In addition to coaching, education and administrative experience, Marsh has managed highly successful youth football camps and helped launch the Eastside Junior Football program. He also is sought out as a motivational speaker with clinics, schools and businesses.
“‘Archbishop Murphy is the perfect high school for me to return to head coaching,’ Marsh said. ‘The leadership, vision and enthusiasm from the administration, along with a great winning tradition and community support base, is something I am eager and excited to be a part of and build upon both on and off the field.’
“Marsh, 39, has a degree in secondary education from Washington State University. He is the fourth person to lead the Wildcats’ esteemed and hard-working football team.
“ ‘The decision to offer him the position was made after a thorough evaluation of the program, and included input and guidance from a diverse committee that oversaw the applicant pool and interview process,’ said AMHS president Matt Schambari.
“Coach Marsh starts immediately.”