O’Fallon football played Hazelwood Central in season opener
A member of the O’’Fallon High School football coaching staff for more than half of his life and the Panthers’ head coach for the past 12 years, Brandon Joggerst has decided to step down.
Joggerst, 47, who led O’Fallon to a 67-51 record and seven playoff appearances, became the third metro east area head football coach to resign in the last week when he announced his decision on Friday. Both Cameron Pettus at Belleville West and Brad Hasquin at Granite City resigned earlier in the week. Kris Stephens stepped down at Belleville East in November.
“Everybody has their reasons.,’’ Joggerst said. “For me this was a very difficult decision. I’’ve coached here for over half my life, 24 years, 12 as an assistant and 12 as head coach. O’Fallon High School is a great place to coach with great student-athletes and a very supportive administration and staff.
“It just felt like the timing was right. The football program is in good shape numbers-wise. Whoever they hire will have the opportunity to work with and help develop many outstanding student-athletes in this program.’’
Joggerst began his O’Fallon coaching career in 1994 under the late Gary Bridell. He then worked under former coach and current O’Fallon High School Athletic Director Todd Moeller from 2002-2006, before taking over the reigns in the 2007 season.
After guiding the Panthers to consecutive 4-5 record in his first two years, Joggerst led O’Fallon to eight straight winning seasons and seven playoff appearances. O’Fallon advanced to the IHSA Class 7A quarterfinals in 2009 and 2011. O’Fallon finished 10-2 in both seasons.
In his time as the Panthers head coach, more than 100 players moved on to play college football at more than 60 colleges around the nation.
But with his three children getting older and becoming more involved in athletics and his wife Kim getting back into education as a teacher, Joggerst said he felt like this stepping down was the right move.
“There was really no one specific reason for my decision,” he said. “My kids are getting older and are becoming heavily involved in their activities and I’ll have the opportunity to become more involved with them. And with my wife getting back into education by teaching night classes this will give her more an opportunity to do that as well.
“I’ll miss working with the kids on a daily basis. When there are 150 kids in a football program there are always things going on. I am also so very fortunate in that I had a tremendous coaching staff of which to work with and I feel like we worked very well together.’’
Joggerst, who is the chairman of the Special Education Department at O’Fallon High School, isn’t ruling out a possible return to the sidelines in the future.
“Never say never,’’ Joggerst said, laughing. “It’s time to recharge the battery a little bit and do some other things. I’m sure that when football season rolls around, I’ll get the itch. I’ve been a football coach for 24 years.”