Tim Sorber’s resignation as Abington football’s head coach might be more of a ‘see you later’ than a goodbye.
One thing is for certain the man who roamed the sideline for the Galloping Ghosts for the last 16 years will not be the headman for the Abington football in 2016 and beyond.
Sorber had contemplated the idea of giving up his head coaching duties when summer camp opened up this past season. Add a 1-10 record on top of the taxing coaching requirements helped confirm Sorber’s decision.
“It’s something that I thought about probably since the beginning of camp,” he said. “I just felt that after 16 years as head coach and four as an assistant its just time for a break.
“I think its just time for me to take a year or so off,” Sorber added. “I’m only 43 years old its not like I’m retiring completely from coaching.”
Sure a 1-10 season looks ugly but it possibly isn’t as bad as when Sorber first joined the coaching staff 1996 as the Ghosts didn’t even have a operable home field.
“In 1997 and 1998 Memorial Stadium was condemned by Suburban One League,” Sorber said. “In ’97 and ’98, my second and third years coaching, we had all away games, which I don’t think there are too many public schools to ever experience that. That right there I think was the low point of Abington football.”
As Sorber started his tenure as head coach in 2000 he started a program that would see Abington reach heights that were not reached dating back to his playing days for the Ghosts in the late 1980s.
As the PIAA did not install its current playoff system until 1988, the Ghosts had never even sniffed a district playoff game until Sorber took over as head coach of Abington. For an eight-year stretch from 2006-2013, the Ghosts made the district playoffs seven times.
“From about 2000-2004 we started to make strides. Our record got better every year,” said Sorber. “The big hump was the winning season that we got in 2005 when the stadium was built. And then we went on a stretch from 2006-2013 where we won two championships and went to the playoffs every year except 2007.”
Sorber humbly declined his achievements and credited them to his players and assistant coaches that he had throughout the years as he explained his philosophy of building a program to fit his players.
“I think there’s always a big misconception that it’s just the head coach,” Sober said of accomplishments. “The more and more that you look at it you’re only as good as your players and you’re only as good as your assistant coaches coaching those players.
“I think we did a nice job of adjusting our system to the personnel. Kevin Morton and Sam Kind threw for over 2,000 yards in individual seasons and we were successful doing that. A couple years later we had a quarterback (Julian Ireland) who primarily ran the football and we were successful doing that. A big part of coaching is fitting what we do to what our players are and not vice a versa.”
Looking back at his career as the head of Abington football, while the 104 career wins looks pretty good, its more than just wins that Sorber is proud of such as his player commitments and helping implement breast cancer awareness games throughout the Suburban One League are more important accolades for Sorber.
“One of the things I’m most proud of is the fact that myself and (North Penn head coach) Dick Beck were one of first coaches to embrace the breast cancer awareness,” Sorber said. “His mother is a breast cancer survivor and my mother is a breast cancer survivor and you look at Suburban One football (now) every single one of those schools has one of those games.
“I can honestly say that any kid that ever played for me was kid that earned his position,” Sorber added about his players. “And earned it by making a commitment from January until August coming to the weight room and working out. We had a lot kids embrace that work ethic and embrace that commitment because it meant something to them to be an Abington Galloping Ghost.”
When Sorber took over the Abington football program it was the laughing stock of the Suburban One League. Through some of the better years of the Sorber tenure Abington was one of the team that was the class of the Suburban One League, something that was frankly inconceivable when he took the reins. Now, whoever takes over the Ghosts football program has some nice-sized shoes to fill.
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