Mickey Smith

Coach Francis J. “Mickey” Smith

Mickey Smith coached the two earliest teams inducted into the Hall of Fame  — and they played completely different sports.

Mickey joined the Glen Rock High School faculty in September 1957 and was appointed Assistant Football Coach (to Athletic Director Ernie Fellows), Head Basketball Coach and Assistant Baseball Coach (to Carl Zaisser). Two years later, he was made Head Football Coach. He also continued as Assistant Baseball Coach through the 1968 season.  

Mickey’s 1960 football squad put the school on the map in New Jersey interscholastic sports. The team finished the season with a 9-0 record, scoring 262 points, nearly 30 points per game, and giving up only 26 points, less than 3 points per game. In addition to being North Jersey Conference Champions, the team was selected by The Bergen Record as mythical County Co-Champions with Pascack Valley, the only other undefeated and untied team in Bergen County.

Because of its legendary accomplishments. a large photo board honoring the 1960 football team had a prominent position in the Senior High School gym lobby for decades and the team was the first boys team inducted into Glen Rock High School Hall of Fame. They were the only undefeated football teams in the school’s history until the 1996 and 1999 football teams.

Mickey was named All-Suburban, Coach of the Year by The Ridgewood Herald-News after the 1960 season.  

In 1963, Mickey launched the school’s cross-country program as its first Head Coach. His 1966 team won the NBIL, Eastern Division Championship and then won the Group 3, Sectional Championship with a dominating score of only 25 points, a figure that stood as the lowest total in Group 3, Section 1 history until 2015. The team then finished second in the Group 3, State Championship.

The 1966 cross-country team was the only Glen Rock High School cross-country team to win a Sectional Championship until each of the 2001 boys and girls teams won Group 1, Sectional Championships. In the fall of 2019, because of their accomplishments, the 1966 cross-country team was inducted into the Glen Rock High School Hall of Fame.

In the mid-1960s, Mickey was one of the founders of the Glen Rock Junior Football Program. He also served the broader community as director of the Boys Club and as a leader of the town’s summer recreation program.

Mickey stopped coaching the school’s cross-country teams after the 1974 season and retired from teaching in April 1982.  He passed away in 2018 at the age of 98.

Mickey attended Williamstown (MA) High School and later coached and taught biology there for ten years. He was a big part of the town’s sports scene as player-manager of the local semi-pro baseball team and recreation director.

He earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees at Springfield College where he played three varsity sports: football, basketball and baseball (captain), and later became assistant baseball coach.

Mickey served his country for thirty months during WWII in the V Bomber Command of the Fifth Air Force. First Lieutenant Smith was honorably discharged at the end of 1945, having seen extensive action in the Pacific Campaign. He was awarded the Bronze Star (for bravery under fire) and eight Bronze Battle Stars for various operations in New Guinea, Australia, the Philippines and Okinawa.

Mickey taught and coached at Glen Rock High School for 25 years and was a key driver in the establishment and development of the high standards and distinct culture of our athletic programs. Mickey was inducted posthumously into the Glen Rock High School Hall of Fame in 2012.