PCA's Jim Thompson, the country's top expert in positive coaching education, speaks to over 300 NEPA high-school athletes at a conference held at the University of Scranton. The event was co-sponsored by the Bochicchio Sports Character Initiative.
Those who play youth and high school sports deserve to be taken seriously.
The Bochicchio Sports Character Initiative is managed by a group of educators, coaches, athletes, and athletic administrators most of whom reside in northeastern Pennsylvania. These individuals volunteer their time to promote positive, informed, and integral coaching in the local youth sports arena. The group dedicates itself to compiling and promoting the very best coaching principles and philosophies available. Affiliated with such organizations as the American Sports Education Program and the Positive Coaching Alliance, the Bochicchio Sports Character Initiative sponsors coach training, facilitates communication between local sports organizations, and works with high school, recreational, and youth sports programs to build enriching, effective, and rewarding athletic environments that promote player development, honor the game, and treat the participants with due respect. Since its inception in 2008, the Bochicchio Sports Character Initiative has offered in-person workshops to hundreds of area coaches and student-athletes.
The Bochicchio Sports Character Initiative Youth Soccer Coaching Workshop in honor of Joe Bochicchio. Among the many area soccer people in attendance as guests and instructors were (l to r) Jeff Bochicchio, Stephen Klingman (University of Scranton Associate Athletic Director and former U of S men's head soccer coach), Matt Pivirotto (University of Scranton men's head soccer coach),Sandy Bochicchio,Gus Esgro, Colleen Murphy (University of Scranton women's head soccer coach), Eilleen Sodano (North Pocono High School girls' assistant soccer coach), Steve Davis, Ph.D. (University of Scranton Associate Provost), Jack O' Malley, Ph.D. (Chair, Bochicchio Sports Character Initiative), and Chris Davis, Ph.D. (head soccer coach, Baptist Bible College women).
Former Duke basketball star and local sports legend Steve Vacendak (left) joined ESPN Executive VP John Walsh (right) and Scranton Times Sports columnist Donnie Collins (center) on a panel discussing "Youth Sports and Culture" during a two-day conference held at the University of Scranton in March, 2011.The event was co-sponsored by the Bochicchio Sports Character Initiative and Distirct 2 of the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Assocaiton.
These components of sporting excellence brought the team, and its winning coach, national recognition in Division III NCAA athletics.
Joe Bochicchio was the Head Women's Soccer coach at the University of Scranton from 1984-2006 He was revered as a man who was able to combine the pursuit of sportsmanship and moral excellence with an incredible success on the field. For example, in 23 seasons of conference play, his teams put together an extraordinary record of 115-10-4 (.907). He coached many teams that were nationally ranked and nationally recognized, including three teams that he coached all the way to the quarterfinals of the NCAA national championships. Especially worth highlighting is the fact that his 1985 team was the only Division III team that was ranked in the Division I top 20 that year. His 298 career wins places him among the top 30 coaches of all-time in all divisions of NCAA women's soccer.
A native of the Scranton area, Joe is a member of the University of Scranton Wall of Fame as well as the NEPA Chapter of the Pennsylvania Hall of Fame. He was a four-time Middle Atlantic/Freedom Conference Coach of the Year and, even more impressive, he was a four-time choice as NSCAA regional Coach of the Year. Most recently, he was named as a member of the second-ever class of inductees into the Middle Atlantic Conference Hall of Fame.
Beyond all of this, Joe was loved and admired widely as one of the true gentlemen of the game. He always maintained a humble and reserved demeanor, in spite of his team's substantial success. He cared for his players, and he honored the game. In essence, one could say that he pursued excellence in every sense of the word.