1934 Football Team
The 1934 Coventry High School football team has the distinction of being the first football team in school history to win a championship. Coached by Carl Muster, the following young men were teammates on the 1934 Summit County Class B Championship team. Warren Baughman, Robert Esch, Louis House, Robert King, Raymond Latshaw, Charles Lepley, Robert Madick, Marks Manges, Richard McCoy, Russell McGovern, Emerson Murphy, Robert Oberholtz, Harold Palmer, Edward Popa, Clarence Richardson, Robert Scheible, Clyde Sweesy, Robert Teague, Robert Wadderson, Delbert “Red” Walton, Arnold Weil, Glennard Weil, William White, Manager Frank Smith and Assistant manager John Kafka. Mr. “Red” Walton, the last remaining member of this team, accepted the award. Mr. Bob Madick and Mr. Paul Lepley also accepted in honor of their family members.
Ken Eshleman (1952)
Ken Eshleman came to Coventry from Akron West High School in 1951. He wasted no time becoming one of the most respected young men in his class. While at Coventry, Ken was a member of the Future Teachers of America, he was elected president of the Future Collegians Club, played on the baseball team and was elected co-captain of the basketball team. Basketball was his true love. Upon graduation in 1952, Ken received an athletic scholarship to Kent State University. On December 9, 1953 Ken was playing in a game against Bowling Green University when he received a head injury. Feeling fine, and released by the medical staff, he went out with friends, returning to his dorm later that evening. That night he was transported to the hospital and passed away the following morning. To this day the Ken Eshleman award is presented each year to the male, graduating senior who exemplifies the character and leadership qualities that made Ken such an exceptional young man. It is one of the highest honors awarded at Coventry High School.
Bill Potts (1978)
Bill Potts holds the distinction of being the first state champion in a family that amassed five individual champions and three state championship team titles. With his height, many people felt that his sport would be basketball, but Bill chose wrestling. It is a good thing he did! Bill was a three-time state qualifier finishing third as a sophomore and winning his first state title as a junior. During his senior year, with Coventry poised to win its first team title, Bill suffered a severe shoulder injury that kept him sidelined for much of the season. When it came time for the first state qualifying tournament, they taped him up the best they could and let him give it a try. When he advanced enough to assure him a spot in the next tournament, they forfeited his remaining matches. The next week, they followed the same pattern and he qualified for his third state tournament. Now it was all or nothing. In Columbus with one arm taped to his side and little mobility, Bill won his second state title to the amazement of the spectators in St. John’s Arena. That victory, along with the success of his other teammates, enabled Coventry to bring home its first team state title in school history. Bill also participated in football while a Comet. Bill accepted an athletic scholarship to Ohio University, where he was a three year varsity wrestler, twice placing third in the MAC Championships. During his senior year, Bill re-injured his shoulder and made the decision to give up wrestling and concentrate on his education. Upon graduation, Bill moved to S. Lauderdale, Florida and began his career with Motorola Inc. In 2009, Bill moved to Georgia to be closer to his sons and took a new position with Motorola as the Federal Account Representative for the State of Georgia.
Mike Potts (1980)
Mike was a stand-out wrestler while at Coventry High School. A member of the 1978, ’79 and ’80 State Championship teams, he placed third in the state as a sophomore and won state titles in both his junior and senior year. He was also active in football and track, and in his “spare” time he boxed for Chet O’Kelly’s gym. After graduation, Mike accepted a full athletic scholarship to Michigan State University where, in 1980, he was named an NCAA Freshmen 1st Team All-American. He went on to finish third in the Big Ten in 1982 and 1983 and was named the heavy weight Big Ten Champion in 1984, capping off an undefeated season. Twice in his career he was a NCAA Division I All-American. He still holds the record at Michigan State for the most pins in a career and for the fastest pin in NCAA history. His most memorable matches included beating Matt Gaffari, an Olympic silver medalist and a narrow 5-3 loss to Bruce Bumgarder, a two-time gold, one-time silver and one-time bronze Olympian. After wrestling at MSU, he tried his hand at Judo. He was the NCAA Judo Heavy Weight Champion in 1984 and was a member of the World Judo Team from 1984-86, competing in the world games in Strasburg, France. He was honored to carry the American flag in the opening ceremonies. Mike’s proudest accomplishment is being a supportive and active father in the lives of his children
James “Jay” Seeman (1973)
While at Coventry High School, Jay was a stand-out three sport athlete, participating in football, basketball and track and field. Track seemed to be his true love. He was undefeated in both the high and low hurdles as well as the long jump during his senior year. In 1973, his efforts qualified him for the State Track Meet in Columbus where he placed third in the high hurdles and fourth in the long jump. Jay still holds the school record in the 120 yard high hurdles (14.5) and the 180 yard low hurdles (19.2), and probably always will! (Over the years, these distances have been changed from yards to meters.) Jay has remained in the community all of his life. His four children are all Coventry graduates and he recently retired with thirty years of service as Road Superintendent with Coventry Township. Jay and his wife enjoy their seven grandchildren and Jay volunteers his time with the Akron University Football Team.
Marie Skello (1990)
Marie Skello is the most decorated female athlete to graduate from Coventry High School. Participating in both Cross Country and Track and Field, Marie still holds the school records for Cross Country (18:35) the 1600 meter run (5:19) and the 3200 meter run (11:22), where she won the league, district and regional titles for three consecutive years, as well as being a three time state placer in that event. During her four year Cross Country career, Marie was undefeated in dual meets, voted league runner off the year (all 4 years), named the District Champion (all 4 years), a four-year state qualifier and placer and was named the Beacon Journal Runner of the Year in 1990. She was invited and competed in the TAC Junior Olympics. Marie is a seven-time state qualifier and a seven-time state placer. The only thing holding her back from being an eight-time state qualifier were levy issues in 1986 that resulted in the suspension of spring sports, just prior to the district meet. Her senior year, Marie was forced to make the choice between attending graduation with her classmates or representing Coventry High School at the State Track Meet. She chose the state meet and was awarded her high school diploma by her coaches Bob and Beckie Madick, under the goal post at The Ohio State Stadium. Marie attended The University of Louisville on a full scholarship where she was a member of the Cross Country team and was the Division Conference Champion. She graduated with a degree in biology and has taken those skills around the world, working in Australia, the Grand Cayman Islands and Hawaii. Marie also participates in team triathlons and is a champion mountain bike racer