The 35th Annual Buddy LaRosa High School Sports Hall of Fame - Ron Russo
Ron Russo - Frank's older brother by five minutes - has clearly established himself as the preeminent girls' running coach in Cincinnati history. While having started his coaching career at Forest Park High School and just this past year at McAuley, Ron staked his claim to coaching history while at his alma mater, Colerain High School. He has won more championship titles (71) than any coach in Colerain's nearly 90-year history. Russo’s girls' cross-country and track teams won 26 league championships and 12 Cincinnati city championships. He added another eight conference titles with his boys' cross-country and track squads. His girls' teams collected 9 Regional titles as well (eight in cross-country, one in track). His Colerain girls cross-country team won the Ohio Division I state championship an unprecedented four straight years. No other Division I or II boys or girls program has done that since the state tournament began in 1928. The team finished as runner-up three times and had a total of 10 ''Top 5'' finishes. Five of his teams finished in the Top 20 in the final national Foot Locker/Adidas National Poll, including back-to-back No. 3 rankings in 1997 and 1998. The undefeated 1997 team was ranked No. 1 in the country at one point during season. Individually, Ron has coached 12 cross-country individual league champs, 175 league track champions, seven state champions in four events, four state runners-up, 26 all-state cross-country runners and 61 all-state track athletes. He has had 33 Division I athletes. Ron has been named league coach of the year 33 times, has been named Cincinnati Enquirer Coach of the Year 11 times (nine in cross country, two in track), Cincinnati Post Coach of the Year 12 times, and was named the Ohio Coach of the Year in 1998. He has been inducted in to the inaugural class of the Colerain Hall of Fame. Currently, Ron, who works at Colerain High School as a counselor, and coaches at McAuley High School, lives in White Oak. He has a son, Brennan (19), who was also one of his father's individual conference champions (pole vault).