Though it'll happen about 150 miles away, football history will bring a Gibson County celebration.
It could happen Friday night.
Should his Brownsburg team, No. 5-ranked in Class 6A by both the Indiana Football Coaches Association and The Associated Press, win at Noblesville, it'll be career win No. 300 for Coach John Hart.
That name should sound familiar, and for more reason than his 101-21 record in 11 Mount Carmel seasons. Oldest offspring Nick Hart checks the Brownsburg result each Friday shortly after Gibson Southern's game ends. Daughter Brittany Maners not only is Princeton Community girls basketball coach, she's the wife of Tigers football coach Jared Maners.
John and Janet Hart's youngest offspring Derek, who like Nick assisted dad, now is high school football head coach in Kankakee, Ill., about 60 miles south of Chicago. Kristen, the third child born to John Hart and Janet, now is volleyball heach coach Kristen Madorin of Owen Valley High -- that's the Spencer, Ind., school where Jared Maners played quarterback and basketball.
The 299 wins of dad and father-in-law have come around just 90 losses in 35 seasons.
That's a .769 percentage. He'll become the fifth current Indiana head coach with 300 wins and the 11th ever -- Larry "Bud" Wright owns a state-record 423 wins, followed at 368 by retired Jasper coach Jerry Brewer.
Retired Heritage Hills coach Bob Clayton won 320 times, the sixth-most.
John Hart became Mount Carmel head coach in 1990 after starting his career at Edwards County High in Albion, Ill. His seven Evansville Reitz teams posted a composite 73-17 record,
see win/page b2
including the 4A state championship in 2007. He went 41-9 in four Indianapolis Warren Central.
Seasons, including a 6A state title in 2009. After a 28-12 four-year log in Huntley, Ill., where he revived the program, he moved to Brownsburg to be closer to family and has led the Bulldogs to a 31-8 log in four years including 5-2 this season.
They'll take a four-game win streak to Noblesville, this streak following a 7-3 near-miss at unbeaten and 6A No. 1 Avon.
"Dad has had a huge impact on my career," said Nick Hart, who has guided Gibson Southern to 81 wins around 14 losses in eight seasons.
"His staff includes a lot of guys who played for him or assisted him somewhere else. That speaks highly of dad. Playing quarterback for dad at Reitz was a great experience for me -- he sometimes is hard on you, but he's always there for you.
"Dad is very good with football's x's and o's. Not only that, he brings out the best in you -- I saw that not only when I played for him, but also when I assisted him as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Reitz and Warren Central. Assisting dad was a great learning experience for me."
The impact goes beyond football.
"Dad has always been a role model." said Brittany Maners, who played basketball and volleyball at Evansville Reitz and Oakland City Unversity before becoming a basketball assistant at Bedford-North Lawrence and then head coach at Evansville Central and Princeton. Through four seasons at Central and two at PCHS, she owns a 113-25 record.
"When we kids were growing up, dad was involved in everything we did. We rode his team bus to away games and got to be on the sideline during games. Those are great memories.
"From the time I was 5 or 6, I knew I wanted to coach. And even though football and basketball are different, he's probably the No. 1 person I'd call for advice. We still talk a couple times each week.
"He knows how to relate to people."
Jared Maners was playing basketball at Oakland City University when he met the then Brittany Hart.
"Most importantly, Brittany's dad and I have a father-son relationship. He's always been there for me. And I know he helped me get this Princeton football job," the son-in-law said.
"We sometimes stay with him. Last Saturday night I was in their home and we worked on football about all night. He knows the game so well."
That may be impressed on Tiger foes come postseason.
"John coached the flexbone offense for a long time," Jared Maners said.
"We may jump into that in getting ready for a Sectional 30 that I think we can win despite our record. We may jump into that."
The Maners staff exemplifies Nick Hart's mention that many of John Hart's proteges have gotten into coaching.
"Nick and I were teammates at Reitz when we played for his dad," said Zach Barrrett, now assisting Jared Maners.
"He's almost got Bill Belichick in him. He understands commitment and knows that every player has a job to do. Knowing that John expected that of us, we all did our job.
"He was also very good at making halftime adjustments."
Unlike in bowling, 300 is not a perfect score. But that's perfecftly all right with family proteges.