Tim Samec former West Hazleton High and University of Virginia acclaimed athlete is currently head wrestling coach and assistant football coach at Hazleton Area HS. He is currently a substitute teacher in the Hazleton Area School District.
He played Beaver Banks Little League baseball for manager Richie Boris fro 1979 to 1982 and CYO basketball with Tresckow St. Michael’s team from 1979 to 1983. In 1981, his Beaver-Banks midget football coach was Joe DeBias. He lettered in football and wrestling all three of his years at West Hazleton HS. The Wildcats finished 9-2 under Coach Williams in Samec’s senior year and qualified for the Eastern Conference playoffs for the second time in the history of the school. Both Williams and Samec are now on Coach Rocky Petrone’s HAHS football staff.
Among his achievements at West Hazleton High in 1987 were “Who’s Who Among American High School Students,” Bill Pursell Memorial Wrestling Award, most pins and mots points for the Wildcat wrestling team, WHHS most valuable wrestler and Schuylkill League wrestling champion. His 1988 football achievements included the Pennsylvania Big 33 team, the Associated Press Pennsylvania All-State second team, being named to the All-Anthracite team and being selected WXPX, Mountain Dew Player of the year. In wrestling that same year Samec was named to the All-Anthracite team, was the recipient of the Bill Pursell Wrestling Memorial Award, won the PIAA District 11 Class AAA heavyweight and Northeastern PA Regional heavyweight championships. In 1988 he received the Swing club Scotty Roman Award that goes to the region’s outstanding athlete of the year. He also received the Thomas Cronin Memorial Award for wrestling, the Frank Walser Award, the West Hazleton Improvement club Award and the U.S. Army Reserve National Scholar/Athlete Award.
Samec received a full football grant-in-aid athletic scholarship from the University of Virginia where he played in the Sugar Bowl, Gator Bowl, and the Citrus Bowl. He was named to the Atlantic Coast Conference All-Academic Honor Roll all four seasons at Virginia from 1988 to 1992. In 1992, he was the starting center on offense and again was awarded a letter and was named one of the “Top Ten Centers in College Football” by USA today. From 1990 to 1992 he participated in the university’s Volunteer Tutoring Program through the Student Athlete Mentor (S.A.M.) program. In the S.A.M. program, athletes elect fellow athletes to form a type of liaison for various sociological, psychological, and physical addictions and/or problems. He repeated being named to the ACC All-Academic football team and the ACC All-Academic Honor Roll. He was on the NFL Pittsburgh Steelers roster and is now on the retired list because of an injury.
Samec is married to the former May Joy and the have three children, Tim Jr., 8; Hunter, 6; and Kayla, 4. He is a son of Michael Samec and the late Priscilla Samec of Tresckow.