Bradenton, Florida - The living legend at Manatee High who bored holes through his glasses at the field for 30 years will no longer be walking the Hurricanes' sideline.
After five state titles and numerous district championships, Joe Kinaan unwillingly walked away after last season, citing health issues for his reason of not returning.
The void of leadership for a Manatee program that resembles more of a college dynamic than high school, has been filled by a coach familiar with Kinaan's legacy. Following a national search, Manatee turned to an alum and former Bloomingdale head coach John Booth to lead the Hurricanes into the next generation.
Booth's 16-34 record over five seasons at Bloomingdale would surely lead to his dismissal in a high-caliber program like Manatee. Yet the former NFL Europe and Arena League player believes the talent and tools in the Hurricanes program are in place to sustain the tradition.
While a new coach and nuances to the scheme could be a shock to the system for most Manatee fans, the Hurricanes return the offensive firepower that could lead to another season of double digit wins. In fact, the Hurricanes haven't won less than 11 games in a season since 2009, so anything less would send of sirens in Bradenton.
Booth's first season at the helm will be a trial by fire, as the Hurricanes' kickoff tonight against powerhouse East Lake, then they travel next week to Georgia to face state title contender Ware County.