Discussion:
Robert Foti, Wrestling Coach Who Made International News In 1984
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Bill Schenley
2004-11-12 05:11:50 UTC
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FROM: The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel ~
By Amy Rabideau Silvers

http://www.jsonline.com/news/nobits/nov04/274029.asp (w/photo)

Robert J. Foti got way more than 15 minutes of fame when he took a
stand by having a young wrestler sit down.

The incident happened in 1984.

Foti, then wrestling coach at Vincent High School, forfeited a match
rather than have one of his wrestlers grapple with a female wrestler
from Custer High School.

"My husband thought this wasn't appropriate for boys to wrestle
girls," said Susan Foti, his wife. "He made the decision for the good
of the sport and the good of the kids. He made the decision to
forfeit, and they lost that entire match."

That was just the beginning of the attention.

Foti's decision made headlines. He never wavered.

"We got letters from all over the world," his wife said.

Foti died Sunday of heart disease, while in hospice care at his
Thiensville home. He was 71.

Born in Milwaukee, Foti was the son of a father from Sicily, who
married a first-generation Sicilian-American woman here. He did some
wrestling himself, first at Riverside High School. He next served with
the Marines during the Korean War.

He returned to wrestling and his own education at the University of
Wisconsin-Milwaukee. After early stints at other schools, Foti began
teaching social studies at then-new Marshall High School in 1965. He
later taught and coached at Vincent High until retirement in 1989. He
was active with the Milwaukee Secondary Coaches Association, including
as president.

"He was very well liked by his students, especially his wrestlers,"
Susan Foti said. "He was a strong advocate for kids. The kids came
first. His students' needs came above his need to win as a coach."

Certainly, that was true with the 1984 forfeiture.

At the time, Milwaukee Sentinel columnist Dale Hofmann was among those
who weighed in on the issue.

"I don't know Bob Foti, but I think I like him," Hofmann wrote. "He's
that sexist, scofflaw wrestling coach at Vincent High School who lost
a meet last week rather than put one of this kids between a rock and a
hard place. . . . Like Foti, I'm more concerned about what's right
than I am about what's legal. It's not always the same thing."

Hofmann closed with the hope that his own kids would "run into a lot
of Bob-Foti-type coaches along the way."

Foti - and his wife, too, in this case - also made news in 1975 during
the Milwaukee teachers' strike. A front-page headline read: "Love on
the Line - the Picket Line."

The couple married on a Saturday that January, then showed up for
picket duty at their respective schools. He was then at Marshall; she
was at 9th Street Elementary School.

"We've been getting up with the birds, but not the love birds," Foti
then quipped regarding their early-morning picket times.

The two, introduced through family and friends, first dated in October
of 1974.

"Our first date was a UWM football game," she said, laughing at the
memory. "I sat in the rain with him and got soaking wet. It was the
best time I ever had."

They were engaged that November and, of course, soon married while on
strike.

"He was one of those old-fashioned guys," Susan Foti said. "His faith,
his family, his Sicilian heritage, and the kids he taught. Those were
the things that were important to him. He was a calm, even, steady
kind of guy, with a lot of patience. And he was a lot of fun."

Other survivors include brother Joseph Foti. Another brother, Santo,
died last month.

Visitation will be held from 9 to 10:45 a.m. today at St. Cecilia
Catholic Church, 128 W. Buntrock Ave., Thiensville. The funeral
service will follow at 11 a.m.
Brad Ferguson
2004-11-12 14:48:07 UTC
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Post by Bill Schenley
Foti, then wrestling coach at Vincent High School, forfeited a match
rather than have one of his wrestlers grapple with a female wrestler
from Custer High School.
"My husband thought this wasn't appropriate for boys to wrestle
girls," said Susan Foti, his wife. "He made the decision for the good
of the sport and the good of the kids. He made the decision to
forfeit, and they lost that entire match."
That was twenty years ago. Does anybody know if they ever settled this
boys vs. girls thing?
Terrymelin
2004-11-12 15:24:43 UTC
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Post by Brad Ferguson
That was twenty years ago. Does anybody know if they ever settled this
boys vs. girls thing?
I thought the whole thing was some sort of feminist joke. Why not have the
girls wrestle each other? They could sell tickets to that.

But having boys wrestle girls at an age when hormones are raging is truly
diseased and emblematic of the kind of thinking that goes into modern Feminism.

Terry Ellsworth
James Neibaur
2004-11-12 17:15:23 UTC
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Post by Terrymelin
Post by Brad Ferguson
That was twenty years ago. Does anybody know if they ever settled this
boys vs. girls thing?
I thought the whole thing was some sort of feminist joke. Why not have the
girls wrestle each other? They could sell tickets to that.
But having boys wrestle girls at an age when hormones are raging is truly
diseased and emblematic of the kind of thinking that goes into modern Feminism.
There has been a girl on the wrestling teams of the high schools I've worked
at for nearly every year that I have been teaching. And there frequently
isn't another girl for her to wrestle, or to practice with, so she works out
with, and wrestles, the boys. It doesn't sit very well with me, but that
isn't my line so I don't really say anything.

JN
Terrymelin
2004-11-12 19:07:46 UTC
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Post by James Neibaur
There has been a girl on the wrestling teams of the high schools I've worked
at for nearly every year that I have been teaching. And there frequently
isn't another girl for her to wrestle, or to practice with, so she works out
with, and wrestles, the boys. It doesn't sit very well with me, but that
isn't my line so I don't really say anything.
JN
It's really creepy, don't you think? Don't these feminist nuts have anything
better to do?

Terry Ellsworth
Bill Schenley
2004-11-12 17:28:59 UTC
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Post by Terrymelin
Post by Brad Ferguson
That was twenty years ago. Does anybody
know if they ever settled this boys vs. girls
thing?
They must have ... because this year, in Pennsylvania, in a PIAA
wrestling match, for the first time, a girl beat a boy (on points).

Also, two years ago, my youngest daughter, an All-Metro soccer player
who played in the NCAA tournament last year ... was asked to kick FGs,
PATs and to punt for a high school football team (Erie East). As much
as I would have liked to see her do it ... I advised against it ...
But this year a girl from Erie Central kicked a FG in a PIAA high
school football game. I thought it was pretty cool.
Post by Terrymelin
I thought the whole thing was some sort of
feminist joke. Why not have the girls wrestle
each other? They could sell tickets to that.
Only if they allowed hair pulling ... and mud.
Post by Terrymelin
But having boys wrestle girls at an age when
hormones are raging is truly diseased and
emblematic of the kind of thinking that goes into
modern Feminism.
Hormones are going to be raging anyway.
BuccaneerJuan
2004-11-12 20:28:10 UTC
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Post by Bill Schenley
Post by Terrymelin
I thought the whole thing was some sort of
feminist joke. Why not have the girls wrestle
each other? They could sell tickets to that.
Only if they allowed hair pulling ... and mud.
And pudding. Don't forget the pudding.


~~~~~~~~~~~
"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness" - Mark Twain
b***@gmail.com
2019-11-10 18:30:04 UTC
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Post by Bill Schenley
FROM: The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel ~
By Amy Rabideau Silvers
http://www.jsonline.com/news/nobits/nov04/274029.asp (w/photo)
Robert J. Foti got way more than 15 minutes of fame when he took a
stand by having a young wrestler sit down.
The incident happened in 1984.
Foti, then wrestling coach at Vincent High School, forfeited a match
rather than have one of his wrestlers grapple with a female wrestler
from Custer High School.
"My husband thought this wasn't appropriate for boys to wrestle
girls," said Susan Foti, his wife. "He made the decision for the good
of the sport and the good of the kids. He made the decision to
forfeit, and they lost that entire match."
That was just the beginning of the attention.
Foti's decision made headlines. He never wavered.
"We got letters from all over the world," his wife said.
Foti died Sunday of heart disease, while in hospice care at his
Thiensville home. He was 71.
Born in Milwaukee, Foti was the son of a father from Sicily, who
married a first-generation Sicilian-American woman here. He did some
wrestling himself, first at Riverside High School. He next served with
the Marines during the Korean War.
He returned to wrestling and his own education at the University of
Wisconsin-Milwaukee. After early stints at other schools, Foti began
teaching social studies at then-new Marshall High School in 1965. He
later taught and coached at Vincent High until retirement in 1989. He
was active with the Milwaukee Secondary Coaches Association, including
as president.
"He was very well liked by his students, especially his wrestlers,"
Susan Foti said. "He was a strong advocate for kids. The kids came
first. His students' needs came above his need to win as a coach."
Certainly, that was true with the 1984 forfeiture.
At the time, Milwaukee Sentinel columnist Dale Hofmann was among those
who weighed in on the issue.
"I don't know Bob Foti, but I think I like him," Hofmann wrote. "He's
that sexist, scofflaw wrestling coach at Vincent High School who lost
a meet last week rather than put one of this kids between a rock and a
hard place. . . . Like Foti, I'm more concerned about what's right
than I am about what's legal. It's not always the same thing."
Hofmann closed with the hope that his own kids would "run into a lot
of Bob-Foti-type coaches along the way."
Foti - and his wife, too, in this case - also made news in 1975 during
the Milwaukee teachers' strike. A front-page headline read: "Love on
the Line - the Picket Line."
The couple married on a Saturday that January, then showed up for
picket duty at their respective schools. He was then at Marshall; she
was at 9th Street Elementary School.
"We've been getting up with the birds, but not the love birds," Foti
then quipped regarding their early-morning picket times.
The two, introduced through family and friends, first dated in October
of 1974.
"Our first date was a UWM football game," she said, laughing at the
memory. "I sat in the rain with him and got soaking wet. It was the
best time I ever had."
They were engaged that November and, of course, soon married while on
strike.
"He was one of those old-fashioned guys," Susan Foti said. "His faith,
his family, his Sicilian heritage, and the kids he taught. Those were
the things that were important to him. He was a calm, even, steady
kind of guy, with a lot of patience. And he was a lot of fun."
Other survivors include brother Joseph Foti. Another brother, Santo,
died last month.
Visitation will be held from 9 to 10:45 a.m. today at St. Cecilia
Catholic Church, 128 W. Buntrock Ave., Thiensville. The funeral
service will follow at 11 a.m.
b***@gmail.com
2019-11-10 18:32:05 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Post by Bill Schenley
FROM: The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel ~
By Amy Rabideau Silvers
http://www.jsonline.com/news/nobits/nov04/274029.asp (w/photo)
Robert J. Foti got way more than 15 minutes of fame when he took a
stand by having a young wrestler sit down.
The incident happened in 1984.
Foti, then wrestling coach at Vincent High School, forfeited a match
rather than have one of his wrestlers grapple with a female wrestler
from Custer High School.
"My husband thought this wasn't appropriate for boys to wrestle
girls," said Susan Foti, his wife. "He made the decision for the good
of the sport and the good of the kids. He made the decision to
forfeit, and they lost that entire match."
That was just the beginning of the attention.
Foti's decision made headlines. He never wavered.
"We got letters from all over the world," his wife said.
Foti died Sunday of heart disease, while in hospice care at his
Thiensville home. He was 71.
Born in Milwaukee, Foti was the son of a father from Sicily, who
married a first-generation Sicilian-American woman here. He did some
wrestling himself, first at Riverside High School. He next served with
the Marines during the Korean War.
He returned to wrestling and his own education at the University of
Wisconsin-Milwaukee. After early stints at other schools, Foti began
teaching social studies at then-new Marshall High School in 1965. He
later taught and coached at Vincent High until retirement in 1989. He
was active with the Milwaukee Secondary Coaches Association, including
as president.
"He was very well liked by his students, especially his wrestlers,"
Susan Foti said. "He was a strong advocate for kids. The kids came
first. His students' needs came above his need to win as a coach."
Certainly, that was true with the 1984 forfeiture.
At the time, Milwaukee Sentinel columnist Dale Hofmann was among those
who weighed in on the issue.
"I don't know Bob Foti, but I think I like him," Hofmann wrote. "He's
that sexist, scofflaw wrestling coach at Vincent High School who lost
a meet last week rather than put one of this kids between a rock and a
hard place. . . . Like Foti, I'm more concerned about what's right
than I am about what's legal. It's not always the same thing."
Hofmann closed with the hope that his own kids would "run into a lot
of Bob-Foti-type coaches along the way."
Foti - and his wife, too, in this case - also made news in 1975 during
the Milwaukee teachers' strike. A front-page headline read: "Love on
the Line - the Picket Line."
The couple married on a Saturday that January, then showed up for
picket duty at their respective schools. He was then at Marshall; she
was at 9th Street Elementary School.
"We've been getting up with the birds, but not the love birds," Foti
then quipped regarding their early-morning picket times.
The two, introduced through family and friends, first dated in October
of 1974.
"Our first date was a UWM football game," she said, laughing at the
memory. "I sat in the rain with him and got soaking wet. It was the
best time I ever had."
They were engaged that November and, of course, soon married while on
strike.
"He was one of those old-fashioned guys," Susan Foti said. "His faith,
his family, his Sicilian heritage, and the kids he taught. Those were
the things that were important to him. He was a calm, even, steady
kind of guy, with a lot of patience. And he was a lot of fun."
Other survivors include brother Joseph Foti. Another brother, Santo,
died last month.
Visitation will be held from 9 to 10:45 a.m. today at St. Cecilia
Catholic Church, 128 W. Buntrock Ave., Thiensville. The funeral
service will follow at 11 a.m.
Bob was a good man who cared about the life of a 13 year old kid, when no one else did!
Michael OConnor
2019-11-10 18:54:22 UTC
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The coach would be fired if he did that today, and would never work in the educational system ever again. The wrestling team at that school would probably be shut down for a year or so, at least until they could hire a female coach, for the boy's wrestling team.
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