Former NFL player gets Plum Mustangs coaching job
The Plum High School varsity football team has hired an alumnus as its new coach in hopes he will boost the struggling program.
The school board last week voted 8-0 to hire Matt Morgan, a 1999 Plum High School graduate. Morgan replaces Frank Sacco, who was hired in 2008. Morgan will be paid $8,988.
Board member John St. Leger was absent.
Morgan, who lives in Plum, played offensive tackle for the University of Pittsburgh, and for the St. Louis Rams and the Buffalo Bills of the NFL.
“We needed a change in direction,” said board member Kevin Dowdell of the hiring. “He will bring enthusiasm to the kids. A change will be good for the kids.”
“He has excellent qualifications,” board member Sal Colella said.
Morgan has been assistant coach at neighboring Gateway High School for the past three seasons.
“It's pretty exciting,” Morgan said. “I had been pacing back and forth all day; I thought I was in the NFL again.”
The board in December opened the head coaching position.
Sacco was an assistant to former head football Coach Bill Rometo for 15 years before becoming head coach.
The Mustangs have lost their past 16 games, a school record. Overall, the team has a 10-28 record from 2009-2012. Sacco helped lead Plum to back-to-back playoff appearances in 2009 and 2010.
“I know we've only won one game the past two years, but I ultimately have to get the kids believing in football in this district,” Morgan said.
Morgan planned to meet with prospective players last week.
With former Gateway coach Terry Smith leaving the Gators for a position with Temple University, former assistants, including Morgan, have been freed to go elsewhere.
“I know some very solid guys coming with me from Gateway,” Morgan said as he begins the search for a staff. “One of Terry's strengths was structuring Gateway like a college or NFL team. I've learned a lot from him.”
Board member Joe Tommarello praised Sacco for his contribution to the team.
“I want to thank Coach Sacco for all the hard work and dedication he put into the program and the groundwork he laid for the program,” Tommarello said.
Karen Zapf is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8753, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Freelance writer George Guido contributed to this story.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.