Grochow retires as RHS football coach
Scott Grochow has had some memorable games as a football coach, and for a variety of reasons.
Among them are a win against a No. 3-ranked Larimore at the time by field goal; a home playoff win against Cavalier that wasn’t supposed to happen; and a shutout in a rain-soaked Mayville.
During the Mayville game, players asked Grochow if they could jump into water near the endzone if the Rugby Panthers shut them out.
“I knew it was colder than heck but, yeah go ahead, [I said} but only if you shut them out,” Grochow said. “They played their hearts out on defense and shut them out. We won pretty handily. To this day, I still remember the yells when they hit that cold water.”
After 32 years of coaching, and 26 years as head coach, Grochow decided this past season would be his last as head coach of the Panthers.
Grochow said he had been thinking about retiring for the last couple of years, regardless of the team’s recent records.
“It’s kind of time,” Grochow said. “I want to watch my daughter [Kaycee, Bishop Ryan volleyball coach) coach; my son’s (Mitch) coaching football now, so I want to be able to watch those guys too.”
For Grochow, the desire to coach started in high school.
“[I] had a guy to this day I consider him a mentor of mine,” Grochow said. “He was actually a basketball coach when I was younger. To this day, if he walked into this room, I couldn’t call him by his first name.”
His older brothers became coaches as well.
“I really admired them and just really enjoyed athletics,” Grochow said.
Staying involved in athletics, as well as the impact coaches had on he and his friends’ lives became a driving factor in him becoming a coach.
Grochow started coaching at Rugby High School in the fall of 1987 as an assistant track coach, assistant basketball coach, and assistant football coach. He assisted the late Charles Hanneman.
“Charlie and I were great friends to the day he died,” Grochow said. “Charlie taught me a lot of things that I didn’t know and kind of looked out for me. And even when we made the changeover he was the head, then I kind of took over and he became my assistant he was the one who agreed to it, it never was an issue between him and I.
“He was just a great guy and a lot of fun to be around and a good guy to coach with.”
In his time as coach, Grochow has seen guys who played for him become coaches and assistant coaches elsewhere. He has also seen guys like David Schneibel and Kevin Leier, who played for him in high school, become his assistant coaches.
“My big thing is if I have taught or got people to get half as much out of what I got from everybody else, then I know God put me in the right spot to do the right thing,” Grochow said. “When I see these guys do that, I hate to say it, but it makes you feel good.”
Grochow said the things Rugby’s team has been able to do is because of not just him, but other people.
“If I had my way all the awards that say ‘coach of the year’ wouldn’t have my name on them,” Grochow said. “They’d have Rugby High School or the Rugby community on them. You don’t win [awards] because of what you do, it’s what everybody else does.”
Grochow will continue to be RHS’s athletic director.
Grochow said one of the biggest challenges as being both a coach and athletic director at the same time is the ability to separate what each does and still be both at the same time.
“When you make decisions, you have to make some decisions as athletic director as what is the best for everything here, not just what’s the best for that program,” Grochow said.
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