JCA assistant athletic director Dave Douglas inducted into the IHSFCA Hall of Fame

Longtime Joliet Catholic Academy assistant athletic director and associate head football coach Dave Douglas ’75 was recently inducted into the Illinois High School Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame. The IHSFCA Class of 2021 Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place on Saturday, June 19 at the Shirk Center on the campus of Illinois Wesleyan University. Douglas joins former Joliet Catholic Academy football coaches Gordie Gillespie ’86, Bob Stone ’14, and Dan Sharp ’18 as Hilltopper coaches inducted into the IHSFCA Hall of Fame.

Dave Douglas has been employed at Joliet Catholic High School and Joliet Catholic Academy since 1985. Over an incredible 36-year coaching career, Douglas has been a part of nine IHSA Football State Championship coaching staffs (’87, ’90, ’99, ’00, ’01, ’03, ’04, ’07, ’18) and three IHSA State Runner-Up staffs (’96, ’09, ’11). Over that same time period, the Hilltoppers captured Douglas served as a lower-level assistant head coach from ’85 to ’86 and joined head coach Jim Boyter’s varsity staff in 1987. From 1989 until 2012, he served as the offensive line coach for head coaches Bob Stone and Dan Sharp. In 2013, Douglas was elevated to associate head coach and has served in that capacity until now under current head coach Jake Jaworski.

His offensive lines have paved the way for one of the most formidable rushing attacks in IHSA history. The 2007 Hilltoppers set an IHSA record with 6,609 rushing yards in a season. He’s coached offensive lines that produced two of the top 20 most total yards in a season in IHSA history (6,651 yards in 2007; 6,590 yards in 2011. The Hilltopper rushing attack also holds the single-game IHSA State Championship game rushing record with 747 yards on 64 attempts in 2011. The Hilltoppers routinely send multiple offensive lineman to the collegiate ranks, with over 100 former Douglas proteges continuing their careers at the NCAA, NAIA, or NJCAA levels.

Douglas’ career in education began as a math teacher at Custer Park Grade School in Braidwood in 1980. He joined the math department at Joliet Catholic High School in 1985. Throughout the years he has served in a variety of capacities, most recently as Assistant Athletic Director.

Not only has Douglas enjoyed a storied coaching career in football for the Hilltoppers, his service to the JCHS, St. Francis Academy, and JCA athletic departments may be unmatched in school history. Douglas has served as head girls basketball coach, sophomore head baseball coach, varsity badminton coach, and most notably head softball coach over this 36-year career at the three schools (JCHS and SFA combined to form Joliet Catholic Academy in 1990).

Douglas guided the JCA Angels softball program from 1990 to 2016, posting a 527-367 overall record. The Angels won nine regional titles, reached a sectional final, and won 20 or more games in 16 of his 26 seasons at the helm. He passed the reigns over to fellow JCA Assistant Athletic Director and Tina Kinsella in 2016.

Douglas credits several Hall of Famers that he had the opportunity to work with throughout his career including Gordie Gillespie, Bob Voss, Carl Hunckler, Mel Deskin, Bob Stone, and Dan Sharp.

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