Former East Brady And Seneca Valley Football Coach Terry Henry To Be Inducted Into PSFCA Hall Of Fame This Weekend (06/15/17)

Terry Henry, former East Brady and Seneca Valley football coach, and longtime friend of Clarion Area head coach Larry Wiser, will be inducted into the Pennsylvania Scholastic Football Coaches (PSFCA) Hall of Fame, this Saturday, June 17th, in a ceremony at Harrisburg’s Red Lion Hotel.

(Photos submitted) Three legendary coaches, Marv Levy (Buffalo Bills), Howard Schnellenberger (University of Miami) and Terry Henry (East Brady) with their former standout, Jim Kelly

The rest of the Class of 2017 includes Bill Elder who coached at Williams Valley and Mount Pleasant and started his career as an assistant at Brookville; Walt Nottingham from Cambridge Springs, who was also an assistant at Venango Christian; Ernie Fetzer of Westmont Hilltop, Somerset and Penn Cambria; and Stan Kucharski of Scranton Prep, Mid Valley and Wallenpaupak. The induction is held in conjunction with the Big 33 Classic (Pennsylvania vs Maryland) held later that day at Landis Field, in Harrisburg, home to Central Dauphin and Central Dauphin East High Schools. The inductees will be introduced at halftime.

Coach Henry was East Brady’s head coach for nine years (1973-79, 1982-83), guiding the Bulldogs to a 69-16-3 record. His Bulldogs won or shared four straight Little 12 Conference titles: 1976 (tied), 77, 78, 79 (tied). They won Little 12 Western Division championships, in seven of his nine seasons: 1974, 76-79, 82-83. There were no District Nine or state playoffs then. His only losing season at East Brady was his first as head coach, when he went 4-5.

Under Henry, the Bulldogs had two undefeated seasons, going 9-0-1 in 1976 and 10-0 in 1977 and three one loss seasons, 1978, 79, 83. The Bulldogs had only three regular season losses, total, in his last six seasons. They had three seasons, scoring over 300 points. The only year his teams were outscored was in 1973 and by only two points 104-102.

Coach Henry was selected the Little 12 Coach of the Year five times (1975-77, 82-83).

Coach Henry and Jim Kelly at Super Bowl XLV

While at East Brady, Coach Henry mentored Jim Kelly, who went on to quarterback at the University of Miami, the Houston Gamblers of the USFL and the NFL’s Buffalo Bills. Kelly, a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, will be Coach Henry’s presenter at Saturday’s ceremony.

In twelve seasons at Seneca Valley (1984-95), Coach Henry’s Raiders amassed a record of 74-48-4, with winning records in nine out of twelve seasons. They made the WPIAL playoffs three times (1989, 91, 95), going 3-2. Seneca Valley made it to the WPIAL final at Three Rivers Stadium in 1989, losing to Aliquippa, after having beat the Quips in the regular season. The 1995 Raiders won the Quad North championship.

Coach Henry’s overall record, in twenty-one years as a head coach was 143-64-7.

Coach Henry was WPIAL Sectional Coach of the Year (AAA) in 1989 and WPIAL Sectional Coach of the Year (AAAA) in 1995. He was selected to the Butler County Sports Hall of Fame Class of 2014, Seneca Valley Sports Hall of Fame Class of 2014 and the Western Pennsylvania Sports HOF Class of 2016, in the Heinz History Center.

Coach Henry is the second East Brady coach named to the PSFCA Hall of Fame, joining Bernard L. McQuown (Class of 1993), who also coached at Indiana and Kane and several other coaches from the Little 7-12/KSAC. Among those are: Harry E. Clarke (Class of 1986- inaugural class) from Reynoldsville and Renoldsville-Sykesville (also coached at Central High School in Martinsburg); Charles Zoffuto (Class of 1989) from Brockway; Rich Vidunas (Class of 2003) from Union; Clyde Conti (Class of 2005) from Clarion-Limestone (also coached at Slippery Rock and Butler); Larry Wiser (Class of 2011) from Clarion; Ray Reckner (Class of 2013) from Brockway and Norm Zwald (Class of 2013) from Clarion (also coached at Ridgway).

Two other Clarion County coaches are in the Hall, who coached before the conference was formed: Robert Moore (Class of 1988) from Clarion (also coached at Coudersport, Franklin and Philipsburg-Osceola) and Bob Pflug (Class of 1987) who coached at Keystone pre-cursor Knox (also coached at Bradford).

Coach Henry had this to say about his coaching career and induction, “I am honored being inducted into the Pennsylvania State Coaches Association HOF.

“Having Jim present me makes my day even brighter.  Through the years we have become very good friends. If Jim could teach a class it would be titled ‘How to Treat Your Family and Friends’. Scott Berchtolder, VP for Communication for the Buffalo Bills, just told me this past weekend “I don’t think there is any other player in the NFL that has a player/coach relationship like Jim and I.

“It is a pleasure being inducted into the HOF with other coaches from the Little 12.  We had great games with the Clarion and Clarion-Limestone through the years when I was coaching at East Brady.

“My coaching days at Seneca Valley was a great experience.  The WPIAL was quite competitive at the AAA and AAAA level which required hours of preparation 365 days a year.”

Several of Coach Henry’s friends, ex-rivals on the sidelines and fellow Hall of Fame members also shared their thoughts. As you read I’m sure you will see the mutual love, respect and camaraderie shared by these fine men.

Larry Wiser (Clarion Area) said, “Terry Henry’s teams ranked as on of the Top-3 offenses I’ve ever coached against. I always felt we had to be at our best to beat (his East Brady teams) and we were better for playing against him.

“Terry coached when tendencies were more predictable than they are today, but he would throw on running downs and run on throwing downs. When we met in the playoffs and his teams crossed the 50 yard line, he wouldn’t throw, but he would throw from his own endzone.

“He wasn’t your typical ’70s and ’80s coach. He didn’t brow beat his players. His team and the East Brady community just loved him. The coaches in the conference were very proud, when he went on to Seneca Valley and was successful there.

“As a young defensive coordinator, I learned a lot from Terry. And All the Little 12 coaches at Jim Kelly’s camp got to know each other better.”

Clyde Conti (Clarion-Limestone) had this to say, “He (Coach Henry) is as fine a HS football coach that I’ve encountered.

“I met Terry in 1973, my 1st year coaching at C-L in a scrimmage at East Brady.  He was 24 & I was 22.  The following year our teams would meet in the Little 12 Championship game at Union HS.  His teams were so well coached.  The Kelly boys that Terry coached:  Ray, Jim, Dan & Kevin were obviously outstanding athletes.  There was a mystique to playing at Brady.  Bud Stanley carried on the tradition when Terry left for Seneca Valley, but I missed playing the kids from Brady when they left D 9.

“Terry had a wonderful team at Seneca Valley in 1989, meeting Aliquippa in the WPIAL Title game, but I’ve always felt his skill athletes at Brady were just as good as those at Seneca Valley.  I think Terry set the standard for all of us in the Little 12 by moving on and doing so well at Seneca Valley.  I was always cheering for his success.  It is so refreshing to see the level of mutual respect that exists between Terry & his former players, especially the Kelly boys.

“I think Larry, Ray, Bud, Floyd Taylor, Terry & myself became closer while working at Jim Kelly’s summer football camps.  I have so much respect for Terry and the athletes that he coached at Brady.

“Terry married a beautiful girl (Deb), the sister of David Kerschbaumer (Karns City’s girls basketball coach), who has brought added purpose to his life.  I’m so happy that he is finally receiving this long deserved recognition.  Having Jim be his presenter is beyond awesome!”

Ray Reckner (Brockway) commented “I was coaching junior high when Terry was at East Brady. When Jim Kelly was a senior I did see East Brady play more than Brockway because of scouting. I returned with the same report, stop the Kelly brothers and we have a chance to win. Brockway lost only 2 games that year both to East Brady. The Little Twelve Championship Game was a little closer than the regular season game.

“I did work for six years with Terry at Jim’s football camp. He is an excellent coach and deserves to be in the Hall of Fame. I congratulate him.”

Finally we share Jim Kelly’s letter of recommendation for Coach Henry, to the PSFCA Hall of Fame committee. It shows the love these two best friends and hunting buddies have for each other and shows that Coach Henry was much more than a coach to his players:

There is no doubt a winning record is what gets the conversation going as to who is eligible for any sports Hall of Fame induction, however what’s equally as important is the devotion and sacrifice that is required to impact players lives. That is exactly what Terry Henry has done for me.

Coach Henry has meant a great deal to me throughout the years, not only during my football career but my entire life. He and I started out together when I was a quarterback and he was head coach at East Brady High School in the 1970’s. During Terry’s coaching career he went 69-16-3 as East Brady’s football coach, reaching the Little Twelve title game seven times in his nine years there. He turned around a struggling Seneca Valley football program, amassing a record of 74-48-2 making the WPIAL playoffs three times and reaching the finals once. He was named the Coach of the Year in 1989 and 1995.

I have been around a lot of coaches throughout my career, and Terry is definitely one of the best. He exemplifies the definition of being a great coach, not just by talking X’s and O’s but by building relationships and always pushing his team to do their very best. He has enriched the lives of so many student athletes through the game of football. I remember those tough days at practice and coach being on my case about work ethic, telling me to make sure I hang out with the right group of guys, and all those things that a young athlete may not WANT to hear, but NEEDS to hear. And because he earned the respect of his players, they paid attention. This is a message I continue to pass along at my annual football camp for kids.

I can honestly say if it wasn’t for Terry, I would not have attended the University of Miami, and I would not have had a shot at my childhood dream of playing football in the NFL. I try to thank him every chance I get, although it never seems to be enough.

I thank the good Lord all the time for putting this mentor, and a role model in my life. Terry is not only a Hall of Fame coach; he’s a Hall of Fame person and to me there is nothing better. I am proud to nominate Terry Henry to be elected in the Hall of Fame of the Pennsylvania Scholastic Football Association. I couldn’t think of anyone more deserving and overdue for this great honor. He is, and always will be, my mentor and a man I look up to.

My Very Best,

Jim Kelly


(Note: Big 33 Alumni have been invited to attend this year’s game. John Marshall who played in the 1983 game, will represent Clarion.)