GARDEN CORNERS - Pat Groleau, who was a basketball standout in the Garden Peninsula area 50 years ago, is returning to his roots to become a high school basketball coach.
Groleau was named varsity boys basketball coach at Big Bay de Noc High School this morning during a special school board meeting.
Groleau, 66, replaces Pete Schlenvogt of Escanaba, who did not apply for the position after the Black Bears finished 2-19 in his first season at the helm.
"We posted all of our fall and winter coaching positions," said superintendent-athletic director Bill Pistulka this morning. "The board had a past practice of that but hadn't been consistent with it.
"We looked at our overall sports program last year and wanted to see what was out there. All current coaches could re-apply."
Pistulka said Schlenvogt and boys jayvee basketball coach Steve Pelletier were the only coaches who did not apply for their past positions. Joe Levandowski, a 6th grade teacher at Big Bay, will be the boys jayvee and 8th grade coach.
Groleau spent one year as coach at Brimley and four years as an assistant at Lake Superior State College
Groleau was a basketball standout at Nahma High School, with the Arrows, Garden Jets and Cooks Clippers merging to become Big Bay in 1969. He scored 1,916 points for the Arrows and led the Upper Peninsula with 634 points in 1963-64.
He was a four-year basketball and track letterwinner at LSSC and was the basketball team's MVP in 1970-71 and 1972. He was an NAIA All-American in 1971-72.
His brother Warren is a former boys varsity basketball coach at Big Bay.