Interim Homestead Athletic Director John Krueger had to manage a state wrestling team dual and a boys basketball game on his first official day of work (Tuesday) and now he's getting ready for a home boys basketball game tonight (Friday) with the potential for further WIAA tournament action looming dead ahead.
Not bad for a man who got his masters in sports administration 10 years ago from UW-La Crosse.
"It's the perfect opportunity," he said. "It (sports administration) is just something I haven't pursued in the last couple of years. This works out pretty well actually. I like the people I work with, I don't have to change locations and it's a great experience."
Krueger, who has also applied for the full-time position that was vacated as of Monday when eight-year Activities Director Charlie Gross became an Associate Athletic Director at UW-Milwaukee, started in his new temporary post on Tuesday.
The veteran physical education and health teacher, who started out in Menomonee Falls before coming over to Homestead several years ago, is well known to the Highlander athletic community as coach of the highly successful girls golf and track teams. He will stay on as track coach through the coming spring.
"Heather (his wife and an assistant coach on the track team) was my biggest supporter in this," said Krueger. "Some people were actually asking if I was nuts to try and manage all this, but I really wanted to use my degree plus I get to work with some really great coaches."
"And as for track, I've got such a great group of assistant coaches so I really don't have any worries. It's a great support system."
Before taking over on Tuesday, Krueger spent Monday formally prepping his health and physical education replacement Jason Olejniczak, who will handle the teaching position for the rest of the semester as a long-term sub. Olejniczak himself is familiar to Homestead students as an assistant football and wrestling coach.
Gross headed both the athletic department at the high school and also the municipal recreation department under the heading "activities director". Until a full-time replacement is hired, the two positions will remain split, with Mike Schommer holding down the interim post at the recreation section.
Krueger knows that Gross worked hard to raise the level of services in both of his jobs and he knows he will have to put in a lot of effort to emulate his predecessor.
"These are some big shoes to fill," he said. "Charlie set some very high standards for both the athletic office and the recreation department. It's a great framework to work with. I hope I can make it better."
The school district is in the early stages of finding a full-time replacement for Gross.
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