The Times West Virginian

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November 13, 2012

Legendary coach

Roy Michael built winning programs in football, wrestling

FAIRMONT — If you look up the term “winning” in the dictionary, you might see Roy Michael’s name in bold letters.

In his career at both Mannington High School and North Marion High School, he compiled a resume that few would ever touch: four state championships in foot­ball, three state titles in wrestling, 23 individual state champions on the mat and 18 winning seasons in 20 years of coaching football, including 17 straight from 1974-90 at Mannington and North Marion.

During his 20-year tenure in coaching, Michael relied on his leadership qualities as a coach.

Becoming a leader began when he was a child. Michael grew up on the outskirts of Rivesville, where he had a father who demanded respect and excellence.

Through his father’s presence, Michael realized the impact his father had upon his development as a child.

“If it was not for him, I wouldn’t have done what I did in my life,” Michael said. “No. 1, I would not have gone to col­lege. No way. I would not have played college football and I would not have become a teacher and coach, which, to me, is synonymous. They’re one and the same. You can’t be a good coach without being a good teacher.”

Because of his father’s positive impact, Michael was able to be coached by Fairmont State legend Deacon Duvall, and as a sophomore quarterback helped guide the 1967 Falcons to the NAIA National Championship.

He praised his college coach, saying, “But if it were not for coach Duvall — God only knows where I’d be today. He had a tremendous impact on my life.”

With Duvall’s knowledge as a coach and a will to give back to athletes, Michael found himself as a graduate assistant for a few years.


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