Snyder rooting for his coach, record

Published 2:21 am Friday, October 23, 2009

They are two coaches thinking about big games this weekend, but one coach was thinking about the other coach, too.

The Ironton Fighting Tigers host the Nelsonville-York Buckeyes in a game that will help determine a home game in the postseason playoffs.

The Marshall Thundering Herd hosts Alabaman-Birmingham Saturday in a game that could put one team in a first place tie in the Conference USA East Division standings.

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The Ironton coach is Bob Lutz whose team is going for win No. 7 that would give him career victory No. 361 and the most in Ohio high school football history.

Mark Snyder — who played for Lutz from 1980-82 — is the Marshall coach and he had his former mentor on his mind earlier this week at his weekly press conference.

If I could start with my high school coach real quick, I just want to wish coach Lutz good luck this week as he tries to break the record. We will be there in spirit,” said Snyder who isn’t expected to attend since his game has a noon kickoff.

Lutz would be more than happy to have Snyder visit and stand on the sidelines, but he has more important things on his mind.

“My only concern on Friday is beating Nelsonville-York,” said Lutz. “We have a good ball club. We stumbled in one game and lost a tough game to another team. This bunch has worked hard and they deserve the support of our fans.”

Lutz — who has had just one losing season in his 40-year career — is looking to push his record to 361-82-5 including a 20-8-1 mark in three seasons at Ironton St. Joseph.

The current record of 360 is shared by Lutz and former Hamilton Catholic-Badin coach Terry Malone.

“The record belongs to the players, parents, fans and everyone else who has been a part of the program. Those kind of things come with longevity and I’ve been around a long time,” said Lutz.

“The only record that matters right now is our record this season. We want to get in the playoffs, get a home game and then try to make a deep run.”

Nelsonville-York comes into the game 7-1 and can lock up a home game in the Division V playoffs with a win. Ironton is 6-2 and can secure its own home game in the Division IV playoffs by beating the Buckeyes.