JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The newest high school in St. Johns County has its first football coach.
Mike Kolakowski was introduced as the program’s hire on Friday, joining the program after a lengthy career at the college level.
Kolakowski said that he is planning on finishing his current season at the University of Findlay before getting going at Tocoi. Kolakowski is the defensive coordinator there.
“My wife and I have vacationed in St. Augustine, St. Simons Island, and we loved that area,” Kolakowski said. “I’ve recruited that area. I knew about St. Johns County. I’m not unfamiliar with it as far as high school football.”
Findlay is playing a six-game spring season and Kolakowski said it was only right that he saw that season through. That’s the same route that Jeff Herron is taking in his return to the job at Camden County. Herron is finishing out the spring season at Tennessee Tech before rejoining Camden County.
He’s been in college exclusively since 1980, and served on staffs that launched football at both Mercer and Ave Maria.
Kolakowski has coached in college at numerous programs, including Mercer, Cincinnati, William & Mary, Morehead State, Youngstown State and Maine.
Before his tenure at Findlay, Kolakowski spent six seasons at Mercer as the defensive coordinator/linebackers coach.
“I’m super excited to have Mike on board, he comes with a wealth of knowledge,” said Tocoi athletic director Jeff Holland. “On the football end, listening to the way he can simplify the fundamental teachings of football was refreshing.”
Tocoi Creek, which will open this fall, is the first new high school in St. Johns since Creekside and Ponte Vedra opened in 2008.