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Tom Finan HOF '07

December 23, 2010
Missouri Football Coaches Association


Former DuBourg coach inducted into MFCA Hall of Fame
Finan's legacy lives on

By Jason Reckamp | Posted: Tuesday, July 31, 2007 12:00 am

Former DuBourg coach and South City resident Tom Finan was posthumously inducted into the Missouri Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame on July 21 at the Hall of Fame Banquet at Central Missouri State University in Warrensburg, Mo.

Finan coached for 45 years. He began at DuBourg in 1956 and went on to coach at Mercy, Kennedy and Cardinal Ritter before returning to DuBourg, where he retired in 1991. He led the Mercy Bulldogs to the 3A state finals in 1969.

Tony Finan, assistant football coach at Priory, accepted the award for his father.

"It was a great honor to be able to receive the award for my father," said Tony, who made the trip with his mother, Barbara Finan. "Coaching was his life, he sacrificed a lot of hours to help mold kids. Obviously, I picked up on that, too."

Finan played football and graduated from McBride High School (1952). He went on to Missouri State University at Springfield (1956) and was named a Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association All-American. He received a master's degree in educational administration from St. Louis University in 1961.

According to Sam Knopik, football coach at Pembroke Hill High in Kansas City and Vice President of the Missouri Football Coaches Association, the honor was a long time coming for Finan.

"We wanted to recognize him and honor his outstanding work with kids and service to the game of football," Knopik said.

Finan joins a group of other St. Louis-area notables in the Hall of Fame. They are: Bob Johnson (McCluer), Paul Martel (St. Louis University High), Ed Velten (Ladue), Clarence "Stub" Muhl (University City), Gerald Nordman (Riverview Gardens), Jack Jones (Webster Groves), Frank Barro (Duchesne), Don Ohlms (Chaminade), Don Heeb (Vianney), Ron Holtman (Country Day), Bryan Hagerty (CBC), Ray Cliffe (Cleveland), Larry Walls (Sumner), John Titus (Brentwood), Steve Stahl (St. Charles West), Larry Frost (Clayton), Denny Staub (Parkway North), Robert Penn (Brentwood), Julius Blanke (McKinley), Gary Heyde (Mehlville), Bill Lenich (Kirkwood), Art Hill (Affton), Brian Morse (Principia), Jim Lemen (John Burroughs), Mic Picataggio (Lafayette), Jerry Maher (Ladue). Jim Schottmueller (McCluer North) and Robert "Pop" Hughes (MICDS).

Finan passed away five years ago at the age of 67. But not before he established a legacy in coaching, and helped passed it along. Not only within his family, but to countless kids and coaches.

"Not too many people still coach for 45 years," Barbara said. "And think of how many young kids and young coaches he mentored. It was a neat award for a great man."

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