Even though his hundreds of former students would surely disagree, it's possible that Bob Miley thinks he got more out of his 35 years of overseeing extracurricular activities at than what he gave back.
"I never wanted to be a 3 o'clock teacher," said Miley. "I thought it was important to give more time to my students. Plus, if I got to know them more socially and took more interest in their everyday lives, it usually translated to a more enjoyable classroom experience."
Miley's dedication to the improvement of his students' lives is one of the reasons he has received the lifetime achievement induction into the 2012 William Tennent Athletic Hall of Fame.
He and four other honorees were celebrated during a banquet Friday evening, followed by a halftime ceremony during the Panthers' basketball game against Bensalem (Tennent won, 59-56).
The event also marked the first time Miley had returned to the school since he retired in 2005. Even though he lives in Warrington, he had not yet seen the new building.
"The place looks beautiful," said Miley. "It's a nice homecoming, but it's very surreal to be up here."
He was joined on the main stage by his fellow inductees, including:
- Ted Abel, who started the school district's girls cross country, winter track and spring track programs and served as head cross country coach for 24 years and as head coach for the track and field team for 36 years.
- Jim Andrusko, a varsity football player from 1975-1978 that played on the 1975 and 1977 championship teams. Andrusko was named to the 1977 First Team All-Suburban. He was also 1978 district champion in javelin and still holds the school record in javelin.
- Brett Glassey, who played multiple positions for the football team from 1985 to 1987, including running back, defensive back and special teams. He also helped the school's bowling team earn three consecutive championships and broke all of the school's bowling records his senior year.
- Kathleen Roman, a standout athlete in three sports from 1990-1993. Roman was named an MVP once for the field hockey team, twice for the basketball team and three times for the soccer team. She was named to the Suburban I All-League Team in all three sports and set the school soccer record for total goals scored in a high school career (67).
The evening kicked off with a performance of the school's alma mater by some members of the Tennent's Madrigal singers, followed by an exhibition from the cheerleading unit. Following the buffet-style dinner prepared the the Tennent food service staff, each inductee was introduced by a special presenter. For Miley, it was one of his best friends and another former Tennent teacher, Robert Kennedy, who drove up from Greensboro, N.C., to attend the festivities.
"We've been best friends since 1972," said Kennedy. "There is nobody more deserving of this honor than Bob."
After the speeches, a commemorative slide show was projected in the cafeteria, followed by the halftime ceremony. The evening-long celebration is quite a step up from when Athletic Director Lou Pacchioli was a guest for the hall of fame dinner in 1997.
"I went to see my friend, Steve Frey, get inducted," said Pacchioli. "All they had was a box lunch. When I came on as A.D., I changed it to a formal banquet."
Roman, a Villanova graduate who now lives in Denver and works for Merck, was surprised and humbled by her selection to the hall of fame.
"It's a pretty cool honor," she said. "But I wouldn't be here if I didn't have some help. I had a lot of good coaches and a lot of good teammates."