Longtime Bay Port Football Coach Gary Westerman Steps Down After 12 Seasons

Longtime Bay Port Football Coach Gary Westerman Steps Down After 12 Seasons

The Bay Port football team suddenly is looking for a new leader.

Longtime coach Gary Westerman has stepped down after 12 seasons. Players were informed of his decision during a voluntary team meeting Monday.

The Pirates went 8-3 last season and won the Fox River Classic Conference title. They lost 42-15 to Milwaukee Marquette in the second round of the WIAA Division 1 playoffs.

“I am just really appreciative of HSSD,” said Westerman, who added in a previous email from Bay Port that it’s time to focus on his family, other interests and himself. “I’ve been blessed to coach there for 12 years, accomplished amazing things on the field. Most importantly, our athletes did amazing off (the field). The administration is incredible. The community is incredible. Really looking forward to watching the upcoming success. The sky is the limit. Excited to watch what they all become.

“Again, couldn’t be more proud to have led this program for 12 years.”

It’s a bit unusual to step down as a football coach this late in the offseason, but Westerman hopes to remain as a physical education teacher at the school and would be willing to help the new coach in some capacity.

“We extend gratitude to Mr. Westerman for his contributions to our football program,” Bay Port athletic director Dillon Maney said in an email. “We will now begin the process to find the new head coach. We are looking for someone who will build upon the foundation of our premiere program and who will foster a culture of teamwork, sportsmanship and excellence.”

Westerman had a tremendous amount of success with the Pirates after being hired in 2012 to replace longtime coach Mike Williquette.

He went 114-23 and won seven FRCC championships in 12 seasons.

Bay Port had a record 38-game conference winning streak that started at the beginning of 2016 and finally ended with a 19-15 loss to De Pere in September 2021.

Perhaps the biggest accomplishment by Westerman was leading the Pirates to their first WIAA state title game in 2019, when they lost to Muskego 21-10 in the D1 championship at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison.

He has coached and helped develop several NCAA Division I athletes, a list highlighted by future NFL players in Miami Dolphins fullback Alec Ingold and Jacksonville Jaguars offensive lineman Cole Van Lanen.

The two former Wisconsin Badgers are part of a list of football players Westerman coached who committed and either earned a full scholarship to a Big Ten school or eventually did while in college.

It includes running back Isaiah Gash (Michigan), linebacker Jayden Montgomery (Iowa), offensive lineman Jack Plumb (Iowa) and linebacker Landon Gauthier (Wisconsin).

It’s always possible Westerman could return to a sideline at some point, although Bay Port could be considered one of the best jobs in the state.

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Westerman landed his first head coaching gig when he was hired at Pulaski in 2011 before leaving for Bay Port the following year.

He was the defensive coordinator at Cedarburg from 2000 to 2003 and at Oshkosh North in 2004. He was in the position at Kimberly from 2005 to 2010, helping lead the Papermakers to two D2 state titles before landing at Pulaski.

2024-05-21 00:11:15
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