Bullis eyes McDonogh's Poklemba

May 20, 1994|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,Sun Staff Writer

McDonogh baseball coach Al Poklemba is close to accepting a job as athletic director at the Bullis School in Montgomery County, the school's assistant headmaster, Bill White, confirmed earlier this week.

White said he has met with Poklemba "on three occasions," most recently "one day last week."

McDonogh's headmaster, Bo Dixon, would not comment on Poklemba's status. Asked about the position yesterday, Poklemba would not comment and referred all questions to White at the Bullis school.

"We've been in the interviewing process for about a month, and he's [Poklemba] a very good candidate and a quality person," said White, who -- like Poklemba -- is a 1975 graduate of Frostburg State University, where Poklemba played soccer and baseball, and White played football.

"We're still negotiating, but we're in the final stages and should resolve things in a few days."

If hired, Poklemba would replace 15th-year athletic director Walt King, whom White said will remain on staff as a teacher and as a coach in the football and wrestling programs.

The move comes during a controversy involving McDonogh's baseball team.

Carole Working, has filed a $1 million lawsuit against the school, charging that McDonogh allowed her son, John, 16, to be humiliated by upperclassmen in a hazing ritual by the baseball team during its annual preseason trip to Florida on which Poklemba was one of three chaperones.

Poklemba, who has 75 victories at McDonogh, is completing his sixth year as the Eagles' coach. Yesterday, his third-ranked Eagles (18-5) were runners-up to No. 2 Calvert Hall, losing, 4-1, in the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association title game.

The Eagles -- who were 12-9 four years ago -- went 20-7 two years ago when they beat Calvert Hall for the Maryland Scholastic Association crown. The Eagles were MSA runners-up to Calvert Hall last year.

On Wednesday, The Sun learned McDonogh football coach Mike Working, the father of John Working, would resign to become varsity football coach at Mount St. Joseph.

Dixon said McDonogh has already begun the search for Working's replacement.

"We'll start right now, but it's difficult to do at this time of year," said Dixon, who said he is aiming for a July deadline. "Obviously, we'd like to do it as quickly as possible, but we want to be very thorough. We're looking for a great teacher-coach to replace Working and to work with an outstanding group of young men."

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