It’s been 16 years since the Brookside Cardinals last tasted a conference championship in boy’s basketball.
In deciding on a new coach to steer the struggling program, Brookside reached into its more successful past, tabbing Brent Schremp.
Schremp played point guard for the last Cardinal team to win a conference title, in 1991, and now will attempt to breathe new life into his alma mater.
Schremp takes over at Brookside after previous head coach Joe Schill resigned in June, citing a frustration with losing.
“I want a program that gets people excited,” said Schremp. “I think we need to get greater numbers out. People have to get as excited about boys basketball as they are in this community about football.”
This will mark Schremp’s first tenure as a head coach. He has previously served as an assistant at Vermilion for the last five years and was an assistant at Brookside from 1999-2002.
For the better part of a decade, the Cardinals have struggled to remain competitive. Their best season in that time came two years ago, under Schill, when the team went 8-13.
The Cardinals went 6-15 this season and 3-10 in the Patriot Athletic Conference Stars Division before bowing out to Max Hayes in the Division II sectional.
When Schill stepped down nearly five weeks ago, he said he still wanted to be involved with Brookside basketball. Soon after, Schill, also a Cards grad, called Schremp, imploring his former hoops teammate to apply for the job.
One of the most important elements Schill says he wants to emphasize is tradition and family.
“You need to create a family atmosphere and it can’t start just in high school,” said Schill. “You have to establish that at the lower levels — in seventh grade on up. You’re going to go through hard times as a team, but you also go through the good times, too. And you do it all together.”
Brookside athletic director Dick Kerschbaum was struck by Schill’s passion for the game and love of teaching.
“He brings tremendous enthusiasm,” said Kerschbaum. “You can feel it when you talk to him. When he comes into the room, you can feel it. We have a ways to go and we understand he’ll have some growing pains in first head coaching job. But we see him as the kind of guy that can make a program competitive. We look forward to being the kind of team no one wants to play.”
Contact Pete Alpern at 329-7137 or email@example.com.