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Mike Fahey pretty much has witnessed it all at Stagg during 12 seasons as an assistant coach.
He was present during the best of times in 2002, when the Chargers finished 10-3 and advanced to the Class 7A semifinals behind hotshot quarterback Joe Ganz.
He’s also been there for the worst of times, which included last season’s 2-7 mark.
Now Fahey gets a chance to return the program to prominence after being named its coach on Thursday. He takes over for Mark Kleinpeter, who resigned after one season.
“I have high expectations,” Fahey said. “Hard work pays off if you do the right things.”
Fahey was a relentless player at Andrew in the early 1990s, first as a defensive back his junior year, then as a running back his senior season in 1992.
The 36-year-old inherits a football program that hasn’t posted a winning record in seven seasons. From 2006 through ’12 the Chargers are 16-47.
Fahey knows the pace of the Chargers’ turnaround largely will depend on the work ethic and skill of his players.
One of his first orders of business is to build better relationships with the feeder programs. Far to often, top junior high players have chosen the many private high school alternatives instead of Stagg.
“The key is keeping the kids in the District (230) that go to Catholic schools,” Fahey said. “The years Stagg has had success we kept the core kids at Stagg. We have to keep those kids from fleeing to the Catholic schools and want them to build something special here. It’s not impossible. The wins have to come to get people to start believing.”