Hire this guy

Peters Township will hire a wrestling coach for its program at this month's school board meeting. In August, the board had Jason Carpetta's name on its agenda for the position but decided to table it until the September.

Not sure why the board waited, but it might be because Carpetta resigned from his last coaching position six years ago after a drunken driving incident.

Here's hoping the Peters Township School Board will hire Carpetta for the job. Not only is he a good coach, but it's a perfect fit for a district that has struggled to find the right guy for its wrestling program.

We are a society that is noted for allowing second chances. Carpetta deserves one.

Wash High's dilemma

The news last week that Rich Burgdolt will not return to the Washington High School wrestling program as its head coach was surprising, but not all that unexpected. The wrestling program at Washington is one of the most storied in the WPIAL but over the last, oh, decade, has dramatically slipped.

Now, with a new coach coming in at such a late date, another bad season seems inevitable. When the 9th-grade program was dropped last year, it was a strong indication that the school board might be considering ending the varsity program soon.

Washington's enrollment is down and that has affected all its sports. The two mainstays, football and basketball, have not been as strong. Wrestling has gone from medicore to weak.

If the district wants to revive the wrestling program, here is what it should do. Resurrect the 9th-grade program, even if it has a handful of athletes. Those wrestlers can compete in a tournament-only schedule. An effort has to be made to recruit kids and nurture them through the youth program. Nothing kills a program quicker than a struggling youth program.

Not having a JV program is also a deathknell. Athletes will simply leave the sport and try something else at that point. And they probably won't return. Wrestling is not a sport that can be taken up in the high school. It's too late by then. The chances of success are almost nil.

This is a critical time for Wash High wrestling. If Burgdolt's replacement is not successful in reviving the program, then it would not surprise me if the district eliminated the sport.