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Respect is Essential to Immaculata Football's Playbook for 2018 Season
Posted 06/15/2018 08:00AM

#RESPECT: Essential to Immaculata Football's Playbook for 2018 Season

Caption: Coach Columbo practices with his players at a mini-camp.

Just over 50 years ago, Aretha Franklin released her iconic song, R-E-S-P-E-C-T, and since then this powerful classic has captured generations of fans, because of its sound and more importantly, its message. 

While Coach Mike Columbo's Spartans football team may not be breaking out into soulful harmony in the locker room with these lyrics, this song echoes Coach's philosophy. Respect is the basis of his playbook, on the field, in the classroom, and outside of school. 

In Coach's vision, having respect for your teammates, opponents, coaches, teachers, friends, family, community is a value that reveals each individual's essence. "Believe me," says Coach Columbo, "I want to win as much as any coach. But if our team does not adopt a foundation of respect in everything they do, then we have not been successful in my estimation."

A long-time and highly successful coach at Delaware Valley High School, Coach Columbo has been working with Spartan players and coaches since becoming Immaculata's head coach this February. He has been pleased to see how quickly the team has embraced the new emphasis. As a Social Studies teacher at Immaculata, he will have day-to-day contact with his players, as well as other students.

"I have seen the momentum building in the weight room, at the team car wash, our commitment to the school's huge Garage Sale, team barbecue, our mini camp, and our parent meeting," says Columbo. "The team is excited about getting new uniforms this fall and they know that the subtle message is that in these uniforms, we as a team dress alike, walk to the home games as a unit, and carry ourselves in the Spartan tradition. We show our pride and respect as a team at all times.

"We have the perfect road map, established by Immaculata long-time coach, Pierce Frauenheim, who was at the helm of Spartan football for over 50 years. We are very fortunate to have Coach Frauenheim on the sidelines for practice and games. Based on the Spartan traditions, established for six decades, where discipline and structure are integral parts of the framework, Immaculata Football will look different this fall and we are very excited to unveil our new approach."

In talking to other coaches in the central Jersey area, Coach Frauenheim has high praise for Coach Columbo. "Everyone I spoke to has commented on his organization skills and his vision for his team. What I have witnessed so far only confirms these observations. He understands the formative quality of high school athletics and as a classroom teacher, he appreciates the importance of academics. Immaculata is very fortunate to have Coach Columbo on the coaching staff and I expect that with his team of coaches that he will greatly enhance our football program." 

Tom Gambino, Athletic Director, who worked under Coach Frauenheim as a defensive coach and was inducted into the State Coaching Hall of Fame for his tremendous record as a Spartan Baseball coach, can already see a palpable difference. "The kids and parents have really bought into what Coach Columbo represents and teaches. The Wall Street Journal just had an article, called 'The Catholic School Difference: A New Study Shows the Benefit of Demanding Self-Discipline' and said that 'Schools that value and focus on self-discipline will likely do a better job of fostering its children.' That's our end goal here and we look forward to the upcoming season."

  • ©2014 Immaculata High School
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  • 240 Mountain Avenue
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  • Somerville, NJ 08876
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  • (908) 722-0200

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