"At Willard, Coach Haas promoted a popular saying,
'The only way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time.' This quote came
from Beverly Johnson, the first woman to scale the granite challenge of El
Capitan. Haas applied this quote to his basketball program to keep his
players focused on what had to be done at the present, rather than spending
irrelevant concern with the past or the future. They had an elephant mascot,
and elephants began popping up everywhere in Willard. It became a fun way to
underscore the need to 'keep you nose to the grindstone'."
Coach Haas' teams during the 1980, 1981 and 1982 seasons set the record for
Ohio high school boys consecutive regular season victories. His coaching
career began at Southeastern High School in Clark County where he was 52 and
28 in four years. In two years at Northeastern High School, his record was
29 and 12. For the next 22 years, he served at Willard High School, where
his teams won 441 and lost only 74, for a total of 522 wins and 114 losses
during his high school coaching career - a phenomenal 82.1% success rate!
During his tenure, he won seventeen league titles, seventeen sectional,
eleven district and three regional championships. The Final Four appearances
at State Tournament came in 1980, 1982 and 1984 while he was coaching at
Willard. His teams were noted for their spirited, disciplined and heady
Bob's honors include District 6 AA Coach of the Year eight times; Division
11 three times; OHSBCA Coach of the Year in 1991 and 1992; Co-Coach with
Steve Stoller (a former player) in 1993; AP Coach of the Year twice; UPI
Coach of the Year four times; Coach of the Mansfield New-Journal All-Star
Games in the first and tenth year of their existence; coach in the
North-South All-Star game in 1982, and the first coach of the Northern Ohio
League All-Star Classic.
A graduate of North Robinson High School in 1958, he received his
undergraduate degree from The Ohio State University in 1962. He earned his
Master's degree from Ohio State in 1967. In addition to basketball, Haas
also coached baseball at Southeastern, taking the Trojans to the State
Tournament in 1967. His baseball record was 100 wins and 59 losses.
Bob and his wife, Sandra, have two daughters: Michele and son-in-law Denny
have three children, Heather, Heidi and Heath: and Lindy and son-in-law Ken
have a son, Brian. Bob and Sandra are members of the First United Methodist
Church in Willard.
Coach Haas has been a member of OHSBCA since 1963, and maintained membership
in OEA, NEA, Ohio Association of Secondary School Administrators, Ohio
Council of Math Teachers and the National Council of Math Teachers.