Riccitelli, Hogue come home as athletic directors

Randy Riccitelli remembers roaming the halls of McDonald High School, playing basketball, running cross country and track and field.

Being a Blue Devil means something to him. It’s part of who the 36-year-old has become.

He, like so many, was laid off at the General Motors Lordstown plant. Riccitelli became a student again, heading to Youngstown State University and pursuing an education degree.

The 2000 McDonald High School graduate saw the opportunity as Josh Krumpak decided to step down as the school’s athletic director to spend more time with his family. Riccitelli was named the school’s athletic director on Wednesday with a vote from the McDonald Board of Education.

“This was too good of an opportunity to pass up,” he said “To do it where I graduated and with coaches who coached me and to work with coaches I worked with for the last decade, I felt this was a really special opportunity.

“I couldn’t say no to it.”

Neither could Kevin Hogue to his alma mater, Hubbard High School.

The 2005 Hubbard graduate played baseball, basketball and golfed for the Eagles.

He takes over the school’s athletic director position from Chuck Montgomery, who retired. Hogue was approved for the position earlier this month

Hogue has been impressed what he has seen so far.

“The athletic facilities are better than most small colleges,” he said.

The athletics at McDonald are known for being some of the best in this area, rarely finding themselves below the .500 mark.

“We really thrive on it,” Riccitelli said. “Our coaches go above and beyond. Our athletes go above and beyond. The kids expect to win. The community expects to win. More importantly, we expect everyone. We expect everyone to put their heads down, do the work and we’ll live with the results.

“We know everyone is selling out for a quality outcome. “

It’s a quality experience at Hubbard as well.

“As an alumni, loved to have a chance to go back home and work with the amazing athletes and coaches of Hubbard,” Hogue said.

He comes from Jackson-Milton, where he was also a coach, teacher and athletic director. He taught social studies for 10 years there. He’s just an athletic director at Hubbard.

“I’m going to use the athletic department as still being involved with the education experience,” Hogue said. “We look forward to starting an athletic honor roll at Hubbard we had at Jackson-Milton.

“It’ll be nice to focus on one job as opposed to the three jobs I was at JM.”

Riccitelli said he’s working with hall of fame coaches like Dan Williams, Lou and Mary Domitrovich and Chris Rupe.

“Having the relationships with the coaches going back to when they coached me is making this a smooth transition,” Riccitelli said. “We are on the same page with everything.”

Riccitelli and Hogue have proved you can go home.