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HSN Speaks with John Rosa Following Surprising Departure from Hopewell



Since getting hired back in January, John Rosa has been excitedly working and planning on taking over as head coach of the Hopewell Vikings football program.

Rosa and his coaching staff have been active with the players in the weight room along with working to install their system and philosophies.

However, in what comes as shocking news, Rosa will not be returning to coach his alma mater as he was offered and has accepted a position as the athletic director of prestigious Winchester Thurston, one of the top private schools in Pittsburgh. Many people refer to Winchester Thurston as the Sewickley Academy of Pittsburgh.

This is obviously huge news for the athletic program as the school district must now determine how to address the vacant head coaching position, three months before the season starts. Also, Rosa was viewed by many people within the district as the odds-on favorite to replace Don Short as Hopewell’s Athletic Director. Short has already announced his resignation, which will end his long tenure at Hopewell in July.

As for Rosa, this was not a situation that he was looking for or pursuing. However, once he was contacted by the officials at Winchester Thurston and presented with his opportunity, it was one in which he couldn’t turn down.

With that being said, this decision certainly comes with mixed emotions as he was very much looking forward to the opportunity with Hopewell.

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Hopewell Sports Nation had an opportunity to talk with Rosa about this emotional decision.

“I was so excited about returning to my alma mater and the position at Winchester Thurston just feel into my lap,” said Rosa. “It was a very, very strong offer that they made me. It was a family decision and a very difficult decision for me. Even with the AD job at Hopewell and what they were offering, it was too good of a job to pass up. I wasn’t for sure getting the AD job at Hopewell so with that being said, there were still some unknown there. Then when this opportunity presented itself, kind of by accident, I never expected the offer to be what it was.”

“I feel a sense of sadness in one breath because Hopewell has really good kids and they have an excellent future that I was very much looking forward to being a part of. But like everyone else, I have a family, a kid in college, responsibilities to my household and those things outweigh other things. I wanted to coach football; this is a decision that’s more about the future of my family than anything. It’s really hard to walk away from something that I’ve wanted for so long. This was without a doubt a gut wrenching, hard decision to make.”

Rosa tells HSN that he has passed along to Superintendent Dr. Jeff Beltz his recommendation on filling the now vacant head coaching position. It remains to be seen the direction in which Dr. Beltz and the Hopewell School Board chooses to go.

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