Edward F. Burke

About This Inductee

Edward Burke was a three-year starter and three-year letterman on the football team at Coughlin High School in Wilkes-Barre. Playing as an offensive lineman, defensive lineman and kicker, Burke helped lead the Crusaders to a 9-1 record in 1964. During the 1964, season he was in the top 20 in scoring in the Wyoming Valley Conference and was selected honorable mention All-State game. After graduating from Coughlin, he attended Frederick Military Academy for a year and immediately helped the football team capture a prep school championship. In 1967, Burke returned home to Wilkes-Barre and joined Rollie Schmidt’s golden Horde at Wilkes College. During his three seasons as an offensive tackle with the Colonels, he was part of a 32-game winning streak and helped the team capture three MAC titles. Wilkes won the Lambert Bowl in 1968 and was recognized as the best small school team in the nation in 1968. Burke was named most valuable offensive lineman by the MAC. He was also selected honorable mention All-American and All-State in 1969. After graduating from Wilkes in 1970, Burke was recruited by the Oakland Raiders, Atlanta Falcons and the Baltimore Colts.  In 1972, he began his football career on the sidelines as an assistant coach under Jim Fennel at Wyoming Valley West. He remained with the Spartans until 1977. Burke retired in 2005 after 35 years as a teacher (32 years as head teacher) in the Wyoming Valley West School District. He taught at Chester Street Elementary and Pringle Street Elementary. He and his wife of 40 years, the former Nancy Hassard, have three children, son Edward, daughter Erin O’Donnelll and son-in-law Dennis and daughter Nancy Bombulie and son-in-law Jonathan. The Burkes are also grandparents to Rory O’Donnell.