Kobasa leaving Wesley to become Seaford AD

Jerry Kobasa spent the last decade at Wesley, his alma mater. He led the once-struggling Wolverines to four NCAA Division III Tournament appearances in the last seven seasons, He finishes with a record of 163-109. (Delaware State News file photo)

Jerry Kobasa spent the last decade at Wesley, his alma mater. He led the once-struggling Wolverines to four NCAA Division III Tournament appearances in the last seven seasons, He finishes with a record of 163-109. (Delaware State News file photo)

DOVER — Jerry Kobasa said a lot of people were asking him on Thursday why he’d take the job.

They wanted to know why he’d leave a successful men’s basketball program at Wesley College to become the athletic director for the Seaford School District.

The simple answer, said Kobasa, is that he likes a challenge.

Kobasa will certainly get a challenge at Seaford, which announced on Thursday that it hired the veteran coach to be its AD.

Kobasa spent the last decade at Wesley, his alma mater. He led the once-struggling Wolverines to four NCAA Division III Tournament appearances in the last seven seasons, He finishes with a record of 163-109.

At Seaford, he’ll oversee a once-thriving program that has fallen on hard times athletically. All 18 of the Blue Jays’ varsity athletic teams had losing records this past school year, including 14 of which won only two games or less.

“Seaford has some really dynamic people down there right now in admininstrative positions,” said Kobasa. “It just seemed like another challenge.

“I’ve been very lucky. We did some good things at Smyrna. … We did things to the next level at Sussex Tech. We came into Wesley when they said we couldn’t do things and we did.

“Everybody’s saying Seaford can’t win and there’s so many really positive people down there saying, why not?”

Wesley suffered through seven straight losing seasons before Kobasa arrived in the 2005-06 season. Formerly a successful boys’ basketball coach at both Smyrna and Sussex Tech, Kobasa had only three losing seasons out of his 10 with the Wolverines.

Wesley went to the NCAAs in 2009, 2010, 2013 and 2014 and was nationally ranked in the Division III Top 10. The Wolverines posted their first NCAA tourney win in 2013 with an 83-78 victory over Alvernia.

“What Jerry has accomplished in the last 11 years at Wesley has been nothing short of amazing,” said Wesley athletic director Mike Drass. “CAC teams feared playing us and he brought national recognition to our program with four NCAA appearances. Jerry is a great coach but at Wesley he is also an alumnus and a member of our athletic hall of fame. He will be sorely missed.”

In a combined 16 seasons coaching at Smyrna and Sussex Tech, Kobasa’s teams went 249-130 as he was twiced named the state’s Coach of the Year. He also served as Sussex Tech’s athletic director for 15 years.

Kobasa is a longtime friend of Seaford superintendent David Perrington while his wife, Geri, was a business teacher at Seaford High for 18 years.

There was a time when the Blue Jays had one of the top athletic programs in the state. Seaford has won a total of 15 team state championships, including eight in the 1980s.

Seaford’s last state title came in Division II girls’ cross country in 2000.

Kobasa has plenty of first-hand memories of how good Seaford was in its glory days.

“They were such awesome programs,” he said. “The Ben Sirmans, the Ron Dickersons, the Dave Bakers, the Ted Shepherds in softball, Macky Wilmore in field hockey — they had so many wonderful coaches there.

“This new regime (at Seaford) really wants to make things happen,” Kobasa added. “It’s a new challenge. I probably would not do this for any other administrator than Dave Perrington. I think he’s a tremendous guy. Everybody keeps saying, ‘Why would you do this?’ and I say, ‘Why not?’”

Reach sports editor Andy Walter at walter@newszap.com

Reach the Delaware State News newsroom at newsroom@newszap.com

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