Former Carroll High School football coach Jim Spoerl. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Patriarch of Carroll football dies

Jim Spoerl, affectionately labeled the patriarch of Carroll High School football by former Patriots players, died last Thursday at Hospice of Dayton. He was 86.

A Hamilton Catholic grad where he excelled in multiple sports, Spoerl played quarterback and defensive back at the University of Dayton. His successor as the Flyers’ QB was promising Chaminade product Gerry Faust. That began a friendship that would span both their distinguished coaching careers and beyond.

»» RELATED: Carroll names new football coach

Spoerl wasn’t the first Carroll head football coach. That honor went to Bernard Otten (1961-65). But it was Spoerl (1966-89) who established Carroll football as a mostly dominant program that spanned 23 seasons.

Former Carroll High School football coach Jim Spoerl and his wife Joanne. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Uncompromising and frugal about player accolades, Spoerl’s teams were built around a punishing veer offense that was so popular at the time and shut-down defense.

Lacking a stadium at the Linden Avenue campus, Carroll initially played “home” games at nearby Beavercreek High School, rotating Friday nights when the Beavers played away games.

»» RELATED: Area football head coach turnover

The 1970-71 Carroll teams were Spoerl’s best. Carroll lost its opener at Beavercreek to begin the 1970 season and finished 9-1. With much of its team returning, Carroll went 9-0-1 the next season.

Former Carroll High School football coach Jim Spoerl as a UD Flyer. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Carroll was an independent and later member of the Western Ohio League and Mid-Miami League while Spoerl was in place.

Carroll is in the midst of a major fund-raising campaign that among other things will refurbish its stadium. The new Field Turf playing surface will be christened “Spoerl-Bartlett Field,” in honor of Spoerl and former Patriots coach Steve Bartlett (1994-2010).

»» FACEBOOK: For more sports you should like Marc Pendleton

Spoerl was inducted into the inaugural Carroll athletics hall of fame in 2003 and the Miami Valley Football Coaches Association hall of fame in 2016.

Former Carroll High School football coach Jim Spoerl. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

A viewing will be held from 5-8 p.m. on May 2 at Tobias Funeral Home, Far Hills Chapel. A Mass will be held at noon on May 3 at St. Albert the Great Catholic Church in Kettering.

In lieu of flowers, his family has requested donations to the Carroll Athletic Club, 334 Grove Avenue Cincinnati, OH 45215 or on the website carrollathleticclub.org. Donations will help cover the expense of the new Carroll Athletic Field Naming Rights. The Carroll Athletic Club is a 501(c)3 and all donations are tax deductible.

Former Carroll High School football coach Jim Spoerl. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

»» TWITTER: You should like @MarcPendleton

Cody Byrd was promoted to Carroll’s head football coach in February, succeeding Ben Rulli.

Thank you for reading the Dayton Daily News and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to exclusive deals and newsletters.

Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Dayton Daily News. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.

X