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Robert "Bob" Haas

Inducted in 2014


Picture of Robert 'Bob' Haas

Robert “Bob” Haas was born and raised in North Robinson. Bob graduated from North Robinson (now Colonel Crawford) in 1958. Bob graduated from The Ohio State University with a Bachelor’s in Education and he also received a Master’s in Education from the same institution. Bob began his teaching career at Groveport High School in 1962 and also taught at Southeastern High School and Northeastern High School before landing at Willard High School in 1971, where he finished his career in 1993. While at Willard, Bob served as a math teacher, Assistant Principal, Administrative Assistant in the Superintendent’s office, Drivers Education teacher and Driver’s Education supervisor.

Bob played and lettered in baseball and basketball and has had an impressive career as a basketball and baseball coach.

Bob is best known for his tenure as head basketball coach for 22 years at Willard High School. Bob has 522 career wins to 114 losses for a winning percentage of 82%. Bob coached five undefeated regular seasons, seven UNDEFEATED N.O.L Championships, six N.O.L. Championships, three Co-N.O.L. Championships, 17 Sectional Championships, 11 District Championships, three Regional Championships, four Regional Runner-Ups and three Final Four State Tournament appearances. His team also had 69 straight regular season wins from February 23, 1979 to December 28, 1982. The undefeated Willard High School Boys Basketball Team from 1979-1983 was inducted into the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame and Museum in 2012.

“At Willard, Coach Haas promoted a popular saying, ‘The only way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time.’ This quote came from Beverly Johnson, the first woman to scale the granite challenge of El Capitan. Haas applied this quote to his basketball program to keep his players focused on what had to be done at the present, rather than spending irrelevant concern with the past or the future. They had an elephant mascot, and elephants began popping up everywhere in Willard. It became a fun way to underscore the need to ‘keep your nose to the grindstone’.”

Bob’s accolades include eight District 6AA Coach of the Year honors, three District 6 Division II Coach of the Year honors, two Ohio Boys Basketball Coaches Association Coach of the Year, one Ohio Boys Basketball Coaches Association Co-Coach of the Year, four UPI AA Coach of the Year or co-coach, and two AP AA Coach of the Year or co-coach honors. In 1991, Bob was inducted into the first Willard High School Sports Hall of Fame and in 1996, Haas was inducted into the Ohio High School Coaches Hall of Fame.

In 1979, Haas was the first coach of the Mansfield News Journal All-Star Game. In 1983, Bob was chosen “Citizen of the Decade” by the Willard Jaycees. Bob was the first coach of the NOL Classic All-Star game in 1986. In 1992, Haas was honored by the Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association for 500 wins. In 1993, Bob had the highest winning percentage among active Ohio boys basketball coaches after 28 years of coaching at .821%.

On December, 8, 2010 Willard High School announced that its gymnasium would be formally dedicated to former Willard Flashes basketball coach Robert Haas. His name is on the floor in the Robert L. Haas Gymnasium at the school.

In addition to basketball, Haas also coached baseball at Southeastern, taking the Trojans to the State Tournament in 1967. His baseball record was 100 wins and 59 losses.

Bob and his wife, Sandra, have two daughters: Michele and son-in-law Denny have three children, Heather, Heidi and Heath: and Lindy and son-in-law Ken have a son, Brian. Bob and Sandra are members of the First United Methodist Church in Willard.

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