August 27th, 2014

Hyland's Heroes: Mike Glaser

Sarah Newell

CSN Staff Writer

Hyland's Heroes: Mike Glaser
Mike Glaser's fifth/sixth grade football team / photo provided by Glaser

The following feature is a part of a bi-weekly series, sponsored by Hyland Insurance. "Hyland's Heroes" is a series of profiles that spotlight Louisville area Catholic volunteers, coaches and administrators who assist athletic programs and teams, and help promote excellence in all aspects of sports.

Know someone that you think should be featured as the next "Hyland's Hero”? Send your recommendation to

Mike Glaser is an assistant football for the St. Agnes. Prior to volunteering for St. Agnes, he had been the longtime head football coach at St. Xavier from 1981 to 2012.

Glaser had a record of 336-78, won seven state titles and was runner-up four times. The last time the Tigers took home the championship trophy was 2009, which happens to be the last time the Tigers beat Trinity—and they did it twice that season.

He is married to Suzanne and the two have a daughter, Katherine, who is a senior at Sacred Heart Academy.

When and how did you get involved with St. Agnes? Why so?

I have been a member of the St. Agnes Parish community for the past twenty years.  I have been a volunteer on many levels over the years but just became involved with the football program this year. 

Who asked you to contribute or what got you involved?                               

A former player of mine at St. X, Joey Thurman, became the head coach of the fifth and sixth grade football team and asked me to help him coach. Since I had just retired from coaching at St. Xavier, I accepted. 

What sports did you volunteer to help and for how long?

I am helping with the fifth and sixth grade football team. It is both as a coach for the players and as a mentor for Joey who is in his first season as head coach. The main reason for volunteering is to help the young athletes enjoy the experience the game and to help insure a safe and positive experience for each of them. With a game like football, the coaching is very important because it is very easy for the players to have a bad experience, especially at the youngest level.

What’s the connection with your faith and giving your time to student athletes?

The young people need to be taught the game properly so that they can play the game safely, especially when it comes to tackling.  Our main themes are to teach the kids the proper fundamentals of the game. Then, we want to teach them how to make a commitment and to stick with it. We want to teach them the meaning of TEAM. This is the key ingredient for us. Each player is taught that he is special and has an important role on the TEAM. No one is more important than anyone else. We want them to understand that being a part of something is more important than individual honors or glory. We teach them the value of love, family, commitment, caring for others, and courage to do what is right. It is our goal to teach them much more than football; we want to teach them how to be a great teammate, brother, and leader in their families and their school community.

Who is the most influential person on your volunteer career? Why?

I learned how to be a mentor and volunteer from my older brother, Bill, who coached me when I was in high school and who I also coached with at St. X.  He was also a great role model for me when our father died.  I was fifteen, and Bill became my mentor and role model.

What does your role at St. Agnes bring to you, your family?

My wife, Suzanne, and daughter Katherine, a senior at Sacred Heart Academy, are happy to see me volunteering at St. Agnes.  They know that I missed coaching after I retired from St. X and that I enjoyed helping others.  For my family and me, it has always been about helping others to grow and not about the championships or the wins and losses.

What are the fondest experiences or memories you have of your volunteer time?

The most fun so far this year has been to watch them (the student athletes) grow and improve each day. It is fun to see them get excited when they do well and see the excitement on their faces when they see their buddies do well.


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