Facing 1-year suspension, Seton LaSalle football coach Mauro Monz resigns

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Thursday, June 17, 2021 | 10:10 PM


Suspended football coach Mauro Monz, facing a one-year ban from the WPIAL over recruiting allegations, said he’s resigning at Seton LaSalle rather than continue to appeal.

“It’s too much for the school and too much for my family to take,” Monz said Thursday night, but the first-year coach maintained his innocence.

A former Seton LaSalle football player, Monz was hired in November to fix a struggling program that went 1-6 last season. The 1992 graduate played for the Rebels under coach Greg Gattuso.

Yet, Monz’s tenure at his alma mater ends without him coaching a game.

“There’s no end to the tunnel,” he said. “I’m out of (coaching at Seton) until at least April. I can’t be a distraction to the school for 10 more months.”

The WPIAL held a closed-door hearing Monday in Green Tree that lasted more than an hour and a half. It was Monz’s second before the WPIAL board and a chance for Seton LaSalle to present new evidence, but his suspension was upheld.

Monz said his efforts to coach had become “too much of a distraction to the kids” on the team. Seton LaSalle assistant Chris Siegel, a former WPIAL head coach at Shaler, is expected to serve as interim coach.

Before resigning Thursday, Monz released a written statement defending his innocence. In it, Monz details some testimony Seton LaSalle presented in Monday’s hearing.

A key concern for the WPIAL was whether Monz used a Seton LaSalle football camp this past winter as a recruiting tool, an allegation he has denied. In his statement, Monz said five witnesses from that camp testified Monday.

“Two members of the Seton LaSalle Football Booster Club testified that they attended the camp and observed that neither Monz nor anyone else on their coaching staff attempted to recruit during the camp,” the statement said. “Darnell Dinkins, former NFL Tight End and current Professional Speaker testified that he was the Keynote Speaker at the football camp and affirmed that no illegal recruiting occurred. Seton LaSalle Defensive Coordinator Dayonne Nunley also corroborated Monz’s innocence.”

Administrators from four WPIAL schools — Bethel Park, Brownsville, Canon-McMillan and McGuffey — raised recruiting allegations against Monz in a hearing March 30. It was that hearing that led to his one-year suspension.

In his statement Thursday, Monz highlighted that no parents or students testified that day.

“Instead, coaches, athletic directors and superintendents of competing WPIAL football programs to Seton LaSalle brought hearsay and rumor-based claims about students that Monz might have allegedly recruited — almost all of whom were nameless and faceless players,” said the statement.

The WPIAL panel that heard the testimony voted 12-0 to impose the suspension.

In the hearing Monday, Monz said, one middle school student and his parent testified via Zoom.

“The student testified that while Monz talked to him at a football camp, the student never applied to Seton LaSalle or enrolled there,” according to the statement, “and that this oral conversation was his first and only communication with Monz.”

Monz has coached football for more than two decades as an assistant at the college and high school levels, and was briefly head coach at Carlynton in 2014. More recently, he served an assistant on staffs at Mt. Lebanon and Baldwin.

His son, Dom, transferred from South Fayette to Seton LaSalle this past winter. The WPIAL on June 7 ruled him eligible to play football for the Rebels this fall.

Chris Harlan is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Chris by email at charlan@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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